The 2021 partypoker LIVE MILLIONS North Cyprus has commenced at the five-star Merit Crystal Cove Hotel Casino & Spa in Girne. After a break of one and a half years, the popular live poker festival is off to a decent start with 121 entries for Day 1a of the $2,200 Warm Up, putting the tournament on track to easily crush the $500,000 guarantee with three starting days to come.
The tournament featured 92 unique players and 29 re-entries, and 52 hopefuls survived after eight levels of 60 minutes each. Only two of them have accumulated more than half a million in chips and those are Muharrem Atsiz (604,500) and Yasen Dichev (549,400). Other notables with big stacks are Tony Aziz (486,600), Omid Mojaverian (471,300), Piotr Sowinski (384,600), and Ravil Khamatgareev (290,300).
Among those who entered and failed to bag and tag chips for the night were the 2020 WSOP Online Main Event winner Stoyan Madanzhiev, Paul Newey, Selahaddin Bedir, Marwan Salamoun, Sergio Fernandez Bernal, Zorlu Er, Alexander Lakhov, Anatoly Korochenskiy, and Ran Azor.
Madanzhiev was caught bluffing with just a pair of sixes on the first bullet and the second attempt saw his top two pair with ace-king go down in flames against a rivered flush for the vast majority of his stack. Another player that was certainly involved in a lot of action was Lithuania's Mantas Nanartavicius. He was among the very early chip leaders and then went on a rollercoaster ride throughout the day, eventually ending it with 326,200. One of the setbacks included the double up of Sowinski, who hero-called correctly with the second pair in a large pot.
Stefan Fabian seemed destined to battle for the overnight chip lead but suffered a big blow in the final level of the night when he was caught bluffing with a busted flush draw. Omid Mojaverian called with just the top pair and was good to end the night in the top 10.
Ultimately, more than half of the field was eliminated throughout the day and all those that didn't make it have another three chances to advance. One regular and two turbo heats remain for the upcoming two days and the late registration also remains open for another four levels on Day 2, which takes place on Saturday, September 18.
The PokerNews team will provide updates for this tournament from start-to-finish and also pick up the action in the $5,300 Main Event as well.