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Poker News | World Poker News

World Poker Records Shattered at the 42nd Annual WSOP

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The 42nd annual World Series of Poker has passed the half way point and along the way has been smashing current world records. Record shattering milestones have been hit in several events where attendance has eclipsed all expectations and sent prize pools soaring to massive proportions.

Throughout the first 30 WSOP events, the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas has been jammed with 33,173 tournament players which is an 11.7% increase from last year. That number of players reflects 79,166 total entries, as many players play in several events. Along with the increased entries came record setting prize pools which totaled $55,883,060 at the half-way mark, which was up 8.6% over 2010 numbers.

Not only have 11 records been set for the WSOP, but they have also been set for any live tournament ever. The record setting events so far include:

•    Event #2: The $25,000 Heads-Up No Limit - Biggest heads-up tournament prize pool in history $3,040,000

•    Event #3: The largest $1,500 Omaha High-Low Split event with 925 entries

•    Event #10: The $1,500 NLH largest six handed event in history with 1,920 entries

•    Event #16: The $10,000 Deuce-to-Seven – the biggest six handed tournament prize pool in history at $1,184,400.

•    Event #18: The $1,500 NLH – largest NLH tournament with one day start with 3,157 entries.

•    Event #20: The $1,000 NLH- largest NLH tournament in history with single day start at 3,175 entries.

•    Event #18 and Event #20: Largest consecutive-days starting field sizes in poker history with 6,332 combined entries.

•    Event #22: The $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha – largest PLO tournament in poker history with 1,071 entries.

•    Event #23: The $2,500 buy-in Eight-Game Mix – the largest Mixed-Game tournament in poker history with 489 entries.

•    Event #30: The $1,000 Seniors NLH Championship event – the largest Seniors’ poker tournament in history with 3,752 entries. Also breaks the record as the largest $1,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em tournament in history with single day start.

Another record was set over the weekend when on Friday, June 18, the WSOP seated 5,946 players for the various poker tournaments scheduled that day. This marks the largest number of players ever entered on a single day in live poker history.

In 2010 the WSOP enjoyed attendance growth of 20 percent and set records for nine of the largest 17 live poker tournaments in history. And again this year, they are seeing the largest turnouts for any poker tournament worldwide – ever.

“We are humbled once again by the incredible turnout from players all over the world,” said WSOP Executive Director Ty Stewart.  “It has been a record-setting summer thus far in 2011 and we are confident it will continue through the duration of the tournament.”

On top of the tournaments, the WSOP side action which includes cash games, single-table-satellites, mega-satellites and daily deepstack tournaments are also setting records with attendance up 45 percent since last year. The sizzling hot cash games have attracted non-stop action featuring 96 live poker tables filled to capacity with stakes from $1-$2 blinds all the way up to high-stakes competition like No-Limit Holdem with blinds at $1,000/$2,000.  This year, the hottest ticket in town has been the Pot-Limit Omaha games where over 20 tables are being spread at a time. This is another milestone and makes the Rio famous as having the greatest concentration of Pot-Limit Omaha action anywhere in history.

Another segment that is up 18 percent over 2010 is the satellites, which the WSOP is spreading to the tune of over 150 a day. But one of the biggest hits this year has to be the low buy-in, one-day “Daily Deepstacks” poker tournaments that kick off at 2PM, 4PM and 6PM. These Deepstack events are regularly drawing over 800 entrants, all paying the $235 buy-in to take a shot at the $30,000 to $40,000 first place prize. These events are so popular they will be running until July 16th, well into the start of the Main Event.

Asked about the turnout this year, Tournament Director Jack Effel explained, “It is one thing to plan and prepare to accommodate such a large number of people on a daily basis, but it is truly an amazing feeling to see it all unfold in front of your eyes like we have witnessed at the WSOP in 2011.  We are grateful for everyone’s patience throughout and want to thank the players who have showed up thus far.   We look forward to welcoming still more players who are still yet to make their 2011 WSOP debut.”

Making use of every inch of floor space, a total of 408 poker tables are in use at the Rio right now during the WSOP, making it the largest concentration of poker tables at one time anywhere in history. But even with over 400 tables running, several days have seen players waiting and long waiting lists due to the unprecedented number of players that have descended upon the Rio.

There was some speculation leading up to the WSOP this year about what effect Black Friday would have on attendance. Specifically if those players who won prize packages online at the big four poker rooms would still be able to attend. If anything, Black Friday may actually have helped boost attendance at the WSOP as players flock to live venues - making it obvious from the numbers that live poker is more popular than ever.

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