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PaddyPowerPoker Irish Open 2011: Day 1

Defending Champ James Mitchell Ends Day Just Outside Top 10

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JP Kelly is second in chips going into day 2Day 1 of the PaddyPowerPoker.com Irish Open 2011 saw 615 players make the trip to the Burlington Hotel in Dublin for what was set to be an action-packed day which saw the field decimated to 287 by end of play.

Former Irish Open champions and well-known players filled the field all vying for the first-place prize of €550,000 from a total prize pool of €1,968,000. Last year’s champion James Mitchell furiously gathered chips throughout the day and ended up just outside the top 10 with 96,000. The 2010 runner-up, Paul Carr did not do so good and his run this year was cut short late on the first day. Defending Sole Survivor Rob Sherwood could not repeat his astounding achievement of last year, which means this year’s Open will see a new face receive the €100,000 package.

Other former champs who also turned out were Neil Channing and Marty Smyth, alongside Irish legends Liam Flood, Noel Furlong and Mickey Finn. A good mix of young Internet pros, live regulars, and big names filled every corner of the tournament room with players such as Dan Harrington, Dave “Devilfish” Ulliott, Teddy Sherringham and Tony Cascarino peaking spectator interest.

The most well-known player sitting on the upper planes of the chip leader board is JP Kelly. He ended the day with 136,450 just behind chip leader Barry Donovan who has 143,100 going into day 2. Donovan finished 12th in the main event last year, so there is no doubt he is hungry to do 11 better.

Here are the top 10 in chips going into day 2:

Barry Donovan 143,100
JP Kelly 136,450
Julian Herold 120,275
John Magill 120,000
Lee Bennett 110,325
Thomas Nolan 109,100
Johannes Meyer Zu Wendischhoff 107,900
Umar Khan 102,000]]
Archie Mckie 100,600
Paul Febers 97,400

Some big names to hit the rail throughout day 1 were James Akenhead, Roberto Romanello, Padraig Parkinson, Owen Robinson, Yann Dion, Luke Schwartz, Jeff Kimber, Vanessa Hellebuyck, Reggie Corrigan, Keith Hawkins, recent EPT title winner Ben Wilinofsky, Max Silver, and Steve Jelinek.

Stay tuned to the live stream and indeed the blog from 2 p.m. (local time) today to follow all the action as it happens. Check back to CardPlayer.com for recaps of each day also as the Irish Open 2011 unfolds.

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