A report by David Sasseman & Claire ‚Anne‘ McDonald
Working at the First World Poker Tour (WPT) Event of the Year. It will be televised.
(Biloxi, Mississippi USA Jan 2009) – At first I worked too hard writing recaps of the results of each event in this Southern Poker Championship (SPC) which culminated in the final event, a WPT event where the winner won a cool USD 1,000,000. I was up day and night, but Anne, my wife, came and helped after a couple of days. I came to these warm gulf coast sandy shores with a friend, John, and Anne came later.
This years SPC was very successful. The first event attracted 1005 entries! That’s over 100 tables of poker players. It was crazy. They play for 14 hours (till 2 AM) then come back and play the next day till someone has all the chips. There are 15 event. I worked, getting chip counts at 2AM. Then between 4-6PM I watched the final table to see the winning hands and get quotes from the players. We reported our results to web sites and magazines including Rounder Magazine. We get paid for it but it sure interrupted my playing poker. I played cash games (USD 1/USD 2 no limit hold’em) for 35 hours ‚chipping‘ away, playing boringly tight I won USD 30/hr. Anne and I played at the same poker table two times for fun. We played USD 4/USD 8 limit hold’em. I also played in one USD 300 tournament finishing 85th out of 610 players. I was not in the money. I am now 7 cashes (in the money) out of the 17 events I have played.
The Beau Rivage Resort & Casino (an MGM property) had a Media Tournament for us. Afterward there was a cocktail party with media, players, and some pros. It was fun. I finished 6th in the Media Tournament. Ken Lambert (director of poker here and at the sister property, Gold Strike Resort & Casino in Tunica, Mississippi USA) gave me my prizes. This year they gave ‚casino chips‘ and bags of tons of goodies. You have to bet the ‚casino chips‘ in a table game or slots (they have no other value). Well, I said, here goes my USD 125 winnings as I start rolling the dice at the crap table. But I turned the USD 125 into USD 700+. I rolled and my friend John (my ride to Biloxi) rolled and we quit. John had just a couple hours earlier, finished 4th in a USD 500 entry hold’em for USD 18,000+ so his luck continued.
Some of the pros who were eliminated in the 2009 Southern Poker Championship WPT Main Event were Vanessa Rousso (the television will show sixth place Vanessa finished on the „television bubble“ in seventh place- sorry Vanessa), Tony Cousineau, (eighth), Hevad Khan (14th), Brent Carter (21st), Bernard Lee (media personality and poker pro who finished 23rd), and Ted Lawson (former WSOP event winner took 25th place). There was USD 2,662,747 in prize money — with the winner’s share a cool one-million dollars. The Beau Rivage casino very generously added USD 24,219 to the winners share, so the top figure would hit the seven-figure milestone.
This Main Event began with 283 entries. Last year 259 players entered the same WPT championship event – which amounts to an 8 percent increase in attendance (the economy does not seem too bad down here).
Anne and I had fun- gotta love it.
Going to Tunica Mississippi (20 miles south Memphis Tennessee) next. 23 Jan – 5 Feb. Wish us luck.
Best regards and luck, David Sasseman