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Thursday, June 21, 2018
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Vin Narayanan

Vin Narayanan is the former managing editor at Casino City and has been involved in the gaming industry for over a decade Vin is currently based in Hong Kong, where he runs his own consultant group and works as head of gaming and public relations for Mega Digital Entertainment Group.

Before joining Casino City, Vin covered (not all at the same time) sports, politics and elections, wars, technology, celebrities and the Census for, USA WEEKEND and CNN.

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World Series of Poker Main Event draws 6,598 entrants

LAS VEGAS -- Nearly 6,600 people entered the World Series of Poker Main Event this year. The total field of 6,598 is slightly smaller than last year's Main Event field of 6,865, and the fifth-largest overall. The largest Main Event field came in 2006, when 8,773 players entered the tournament. Jamie Gold won the Main Event that year and claimed the $12 million first-place prize.

This year's champion will win $8,527,982. The top 666 players will win money in this year's tournament. Players who finish in the money will take home at least $19,227.

Two-time Main Event champion Doyle Brunson was a surprise participant in Day 1C of the Main Event Monday. The 78-year-old poker icon had previously announced he would not play in this year's Main Event. Brusnon was one of 3,418 players taking part on the third opening day for the Main Event. He ended the day with 81,400 in chips.

Doyle Brunson decided at the last second to play in this year

Doyle Brunson decided at the last second to play in this year's World Series of Poker Main Event. (photo by Vin Narayanan, Casino City)

Days 1A and 1B survivors will play together on Tuesday. Day 1C survivors will play on Wednesday. The field combines Thursday on "Day 3."

Monday's field isn't the biggest one-day starting field the WSOP has seen. That honor belongs to a $1,000 tournament earlier this Series that had 4,128 players. But it is the largest single-day opening field the Main Event has seen. And it was filled with fan favorites that kept fans at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino buzzing.

Elizabeth Hurley stopped by to watch her boyfriend, former Australian cricket star Shane Warne, play. Hurley earned a rare and coveted seat inside the ropes to watch Warne play. At least three smooches were exchanged when Hurley decided to leave the tournament floor. The kisses proved to be good luck for Warne. Warne survived the crowded Day 1C field.

Former Main Event champs Johnny Chan, Joe Cada, Jonathan Duhamel and Chris Moneymaker all played Monday as well. Duhamel and Moneymaker didn't survive the day. Chan (82,300) and Cada (117,375) did.

Jason Alexander

Jason Alexander's mustache might bring him luck in this year's Main Event. He's sporting the mustache and the hair for a movie he's in. (photo by Vin Narayanan, Casino City)

Jason Alexander has become a regular at the Main Event, so his presence in Monday's field wasn't a surprise. But his appearance was. Alexander sported a hairpiece and a 70s-era mustache that he's wearing for a movie he's filming. Don't believe us? Check out the picture! The new look worked for him at the felt, even as he was feeling the pain from a knee injury. He advanced to Wednesday's Day 2B field.

Monday also marked the return of Phil Ivey to the Main Event. Ivey, who took last year off in the wake of the Full Tilt indictments, stumbled late and ended up with 11,525 in chips.

Other notable chip stacks:

Antonio Esfandiari: 78,925
Christian Harder: 33,000
Gus Hansen: 67,575
Brandon Adams: 158,100
Michael Mizrachi: 60,050
John Juanda: 74,450
Viktor Blom, 110,225
Ben Lamb: 32,475

Notable eliminations:
Bryan Micon
Andrew Robl
Annette Obrestad
Lex Veldhuis
Humberto Brenes
David Bach
Chino Rheem
Jimmy Fricke
Kevin Mathers

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