Canadian Mike 'Tîmex' McDonald almost skipped playing the biggest buy-in poker tournament the world has ever seen, but after late-registering, he finished Day 1 atop the final eight in the 2015 PokerStars World Championship of Online Poker $51,000 Super High Roller.
"Me registering very late, that wasn't a [Phil] Hellmuth-style, 'I don't think I can play deep stack,' or 'I want to make an entrance' kind of thing," McDonald said after Day 1 finished. "It was literally just that throughout the tournament I thought it was much tougher than my expectations. I thought it would be tough in the sense of a live super high roller, but this was tough in the sense that the average player was extremely good. Basically, in the last 30 of 45 minutes of registration, I feel several weaker players registered, as well as chips kind of flew towards some of the weaker players in the field. Even in spite of those things, I don’t know how well I fare against this field. There was a time when I was quite confident it was not a good decision for me to play, but after those things going on I decided to hop in."
Joining McDonald in the final eight were Jose 'Cejakas14' Angel Latorre, David 'dpeters17' Peters, Ben 'Ben86' Tollerene, Fedor 'CrownUpGuy' Holz, Nikita 'fish2013' Bodyakovskiy, 'Nopaleva', and 'cuffme'.
|1||Mike 'Tîmex' McDonald||Canada||237,712||119|
|2||Jose 'Cejakas14' Angel Latorre||United Kingdom||214,540||107|
|3||David 'dpeters17' Peters||Canada||195,294||98|
|4||Ben 'Ben86' Tollerene||Canada||193,912||97|
|5||Fedor 'CrownUpGuy' Holz||Austria||145,222||73|
|6||Nikita 'fish2013' Bodyakovskiy||Belarus||69,783||35|
When the players return to PokerStars on Monday at 12:30 p.m. ET, the blinds will be 1,000/2,000 with a 250 ante and the top six spots will pay out. A min-cash will be worth $126,500, but two players will go home empty handed on Day 2. The winner will receive $851,000, and McDonald has positioned himself nicely to take the title.
After Day 1, which attracted 46 total entries to the field, McDonald took some time to chat with PokerNews' Frank Op de Woerd in the following interview.
Some of the notables to bust out on Day 1 were Nick 'caecilius' Petrangelo, Daniel 'mrGR33N13' Colman, Thomas 'WushuTM' Muehloecker, Jason 'JasonMercier' Mercier, Daniel 'KidPoker' Negreanu, Dzmitry 'Colisea' Urbanovich, and Doug 'WCGRider' Polk.
Be sure to stay tuned to PokerNews Canada to read about the completion of this event after play concludes on Monday.