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Borgata Poker Tournament Guarantees $2 Million Prize Pool

Main Event Entry Fee Reduced to $3,200 This Year


Borgata hosts its fourth annual Winter Open.A $2 million-guaranteed prize pool and a reduced entry fee.

Borgata Hotel and Casino is hoping that combination will bring in the masses this Sunday as its fourth-annual Winter Open main event kicks off. The five-day Atlantic City tournament costs $3,200 to enter, down from $10,000 a year ago.

“The goal here is to provide the same experience that we’ve always had…but for 30 percent of the cost to the player,” said Ray Stefanelli, director of poker marketing for Borgata.

The tournament series, which featured 46 events ranging from deep-stack tournaments to satellites, started on Jan. 13. Its first event attracted an impressive field of 1,556 entrants.

Satellites to the main event are running every day until Sunday, for as little as $190 on Saturday (wherein one out of every 20 players will qualify) to $700 on both Friday and Saturday, where one out of every five players will earn his or her seat into the main event.

The main event will have two start days, one on Sunday and a second on Monday. The action on both days will start at 11 a.m. Each player will start with 50,000 in chips.

The casino has guaranteed that there will be at least a $2 million prize pool.

“This is going to be a sick tournament,” said poker player Boris Kravets. “Whoever wins first place will definitely get a lot of value for the money.”

At least 667 players need to register for the casino to make its guarantee.

Unlike last year, the main event will not be a World Poker Tour event.

“The only major difference here is that we’re running this 100 percent Borgata,” said Stefanelli. “The goal is that this event series is as good or better than any one we’ve ever done before.”

Here is a look at the tournament schedule for the no-limit hold'em championship:

Sunday, Jan. 25: Day 1A (All tournament days begin at 11 a.m. EST)
Monday, Jan. 26: Day 1B
Tuesday, Jan. 27: Day 2
Wednesday, Jan. 28: Day 3
Thursday, Jan.29: Final Table