2023 WSOP: Main Event Day 1A closes with 23 Asian players advancing; Shota Nakanishi leads; Daewoong Song, Pete Chen run deep at COLOSSUS


The most anticipated tournament of the year, the 54th Annual World Series of Poker $10,000 World Championship NLH aka WSOP MAIN EVENT kicked off on Monday, July 3, 2023 with 2006 champion Jamie Gold delivering the famous call “Shuffle up and Deal!”

jamie gold

With that, cards went flying as hundreds of players battled it out at host venue Horseshoe & Paris Las Vegas. By the end of the scheduled five levels of play, each level lasting two hours, Day 1A concluded. Based on the WSOP / Pokernews reports, 721 survived however the official number of entries had yet to be confirmed.

Gold was among the survivors with a 273 bb stack, and joined by other past champions Martin Jacobson with 258 bb and Joe Cada with 192 bb. Racking up the chip lead was Israel’s Yehuda Dayan with a towering 650 bb equivalent to nearly 11 starting stacks. Another strong heat finisher was three-time WSOP bracelet winner Doug Polk with 470 bb putting him in 4th rank.

wsop daya field

From the Asian front, 23 players bagged up chips, 8 of them were from Japan, led by Japanese Short Deck pro / WSOP bracelet holder Shota Nakanishi with a massive 600 bb stack. Nakanishi finished second in the overall Day 1A chip counts. Also powering through was Yuri Ishida with a very healthy 313 bb stack.

Screenshot 2023 07 04 074721
Photo credit WSOP / Pokernews

Ranked fourth in the Asian survivor list was Taiwanese pro / WSOP bracelet holder Pete Yen Han Chen who jumped in immediately after finishing 3rd at Event 70: $400 COLOSSUS NLH. Chen quickly chipped up and bagged up a hefty 316 bb stack. He was the only player from Taiwan who advanced.

Photo credit: WSOP / Pokernews

Another bracelet holder in the Asian lineup was Guoliang Wei with a 90 bb stack at the end of the night. Wei was one of 7 players from China to make the cut. Hai-Chi Ho topped the Chinese contingent with 496 bb bagged.

Wei Guo Liang – file photo

From India, four players survived led by Indian-American Sebastin Kolman with 348 bb. India’s Nishant Sharma was down the rung with 222 bb. Sharma has already cashed at three events. Another Indian contender was Paawan Bansal who up until the Main Event boasted of five cashes however is still looking for that big payload. Bansal closed with 94 bb. To complete the four was Dilip Ravindran with 81 bb.

Nishant Sharma
Nishant Sharma – file photo

Several players from Korea were seen on the tournament floor but only two had chips by the end of play – Bawoo Yun (196 bb) and Daehyung Lee (191 bb). Also in the list was Ying Chan, the lone survivor waving the Hong Kong flag.

Rank Player Flag Stack BB
1 Shota Nakanishi Japan 360,100 600
2 Hai-Chi Ho China 297,400 496
3 Pete Yen Han Chen Taiwan 189,700 316
4 Yuri Ishida Japan 187,600 313
5 Yilu Yuan China 165,600 276
6 Nishant Sharma India 133000 222
7 Bawoo Yun Korea 117,500 196
8 Kenji Harada Japan 115,000 192
9 Dae Hyung Lee Korea 114,400 191
10 Zhiyuan Xu China 93,400 156
11 Linglin Zeng China 89,000 148
12 Tomoki Terashima Japan 82,000 137
13 Ying Chan Hong Kong 70,700 118
14 Paawan Bansal India 56,100 94
15 Guoliang Wei China 54,000 90
16 Dilip Ravindran India 48,800 81
17 Tongguang Sun China 47,900 80
18 Teruhiro Aritake Japan 38,700 65
19 Asako Kitamura Japan 34,500 58
20 Masao Watanabe Japan 31,500 53
21 Yuichi Sumida Japan 26,800 45
22 Xiaoqiang Yuan China 15,200 25

Daewoong Song and Pete Chen run deep at Event 70: $400 COLOSSUS NLH

WSOP ring winner Daewoong Song and WSOP bracelet holder Pete Yen Han Chen came close to victory at the mighty Event 70: $400 COLOSSUS NLH but ultimately both fell to UK’s Moshe Refaelowitz who locked up his first WSOP bracelet.

Screenshot 2023 07 03 224158

Day 3 opened with 80 players returning out of the massive 15,894 entry field. This was the third largest series field to date. Eight hours later, it was down to the final four led by Chen.

Returning from a break, Chen’s pocket Jacks lost an all in against Song. After Darrick Arreola was eliminated, Chen later joined, thus missing out on a career second bracelet. He was the second player from Taiwan to be stopped in 3rd place with Chen-An Lin first denied at Event 39: $1,000 Super Turbo Bounty NLH. Chen walked away with a sizable payout of $216,320 then headed straight to the Main Event registration.

One hour later, Song followed Chen to the rail, falling in 2nd place. This was Song’s sixth series cash, the most by any player from Korea. He pocketed a career high payout of $300,410.

Other Asians cashing on the final day were Toshimasa Sakato (13th- $29,470) and Erdenbold Begzjav (48th – $10,330).

Other Asia deep runs

Event 73: $2,500 Mixed Big Bet Event – 377 entries – Day 2

  • Xu Zhu – China – 19th for $7,199
  • Tamon Nakamura – 20th – $7,199
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Tricia David

Tricia David has long experience as a recreational poker player and has been covering poker events since 2010 for numerous outfits in Asia. She spent one year working part time with Poker Portal Asia then became editor and lead writer for all event coverage of the Philippine Poker Tour (PPT). Under the PPT, she overlooked content for their website, and produced live updates on all their events. In addition, she served as the live and online events website content writer for the Asian Poker Tour. Currently, she does live events reporting in Asia for online news site Somuchpoker and is also one of their news contributors.

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