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Largest Ever Main Event Starting Day at WSOP

09 Jul 2024
Jonathan Raab 09 Jul 2024
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  • Day 1d of WSOP Main Event is the largest ever
  • 5,014 players took their seats in the $10,000 Championship event
  • John McDonald holds the chip lead on 496,000
  • Eight former Main Event champions play, all but one progress to Day 2

Day 1d of the 2024 WSOP Main Event
2006 WSOP Chips (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Day 1d of the 2024 WSOP Main Event was the largest ever starting day with 5,014 entries

Day 1d was the largest ever starting day of the World Series of Poker Main Event, with 5.014 players taking their seats in the $10,000 buy-in showpiece tournament. 

By the end of the scheduled five levels of play (each two hours long), almost 1,200 of these had been busted, leaving 3,823 of the day’s starters with stacks to return to on Day 2.

The numbers were up on last year's 4,100 Day entrants, and although overall still a little down year-on-year, with late entry open until the end of level seven on Day 2, there is still a chance that it could become the largest WSOP Main Event event. It is gauranteed to be at least the second biggest on record.

The Top Ten Chip Stacks from Day 1d

The overwhelming chip leader by the end of the day was John McDonald (not the PDC darts master of ceremonies), who got very close to the half million mark, bagging up a stack of 496,000. He was the only player to push his head above the 400,000 parapet, as second placed Scott Stewart finished on 370,200. 

These two Americans (with Scottish ancestry) were joined on the day 1d chip podium by yet another American with a Scottish sounding name, David Miller, back on 332,200.

RankPlayerChip CountCountry
1John McDonald496,000United States
2Scott Stewart370,200United States
3David Miller332,200United States
4Jeff Beckley312,000United States
5Victor Fryda310,000France
6Michael Danley295,000United States
7Ruslan Nazarenko282,800United Kingdom
8Jayphong Nguyen280,700United States
9Endrit Geci267,500United States
10Dau Ly261,500United States

Eight Former WSOP Main Event Champs Play On Day 1d

Seven of the eight former WSOP Main Event Champions who played on Day 1d are still in contention, with only Joe Cada failing to make it to the end of the day. 2022 champion Espen Jorstad posted the largest stack of the group, ending up on 150,800. Unlike on Day 1c, most finished with above average chip stacks, with reigning champion Daniel Weinman posting the smallest, 55,600.

PlayerChip CountCountry
Espen Jorstad150,800Norway
Jack Sinclair124,400United Kingdom
Joe Mckeehen121,300United States
Martin Jacobson117,800Sweden
Scotty Nguyen104,200United States
Ryan Riess81,500United States
Daniel Weinman55,600United States

Notable Players in Day 1d of the Main Event

With such a big field, there were inevitably going to be a lot of very well known players in Day 1d. Some of those who played and made it through the day included:

  • WPT Global ambassador Phil Ivey (162,500)
  • Brian Rast (130,500)
  • Kristen Foxen (122,200)
  • John Juanda (96,000)
  • Tony Dunst (63,800)
  • Chris Hunichen (62,900)
  • Kevin MacPhee (60,800)
  • Men ‘The Master’ Nguyen (56,300)
  • Jan-Peter Jachtmann (51,200)
  • Barry Greenstein (35,000)
  • Cliff Josephy (34,500)

And amongst those who came, saw, but failed to conquer Day 1, these players were spotted shiftily making their way out of the 'players only' area:

  • Nick Petrangelo
  • Ian Matakis
  • Humberto Brenes
  • David Kitai
  • Kathy Liebert
  • Daniel Sepiol
  • Jason Koon
  • David Williams
  • Jeff Madsen
  • Chance Kornuth

British Players on Day 1d

There were also far too many British players to list all those who took their seats on Day 1d, but the top three in terms of overnight chip counts were Ruslan Nazarenko (282,800) Domenico Micillo (244,900) and Dennis Rubba (206,800).

Other British players still in contention include 2023 Irish Open winner David Docherty (166,200), Darius Samual (155,000) who won the $25,000 Heads Up bracelet earlier in the series and high stakes supremo Stephen Chidwick (126,000).

Other Brits who made it into Day 2 include:

  • Talal Shakerchi (109,500)
  • Daniel Willis (106,900)
  • Martin Adeniya (106,400)
  • Rob Sherwood (106,400)
  • James Atkin (104,600)
  • Ben Collins (95,100)
  • Adam Owen (94,900)
  • Thomas McDonald (92,000)
  • Andrew Hedley (87,900)
  • Roland Boothby (87,200)
  • Simon Trumper (77,000)
  • Tom Hall (75,500)
  • Benny Glaser (36,200)

However, not all British players rode the Day 1 wave like an incoming prime minister, some were hastily exiting by the backdoor, hoping nobody would notice them quietly slipping away. We did however and can report that the following players will not be taking any further part in the WSOP Main Event:

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