Championship: Upeshka De Silva Leads 48 Survivors

$3,500 Seminole Hard Rock RRPO Championship
End of Level 20: 5,000/10,000 with a 1,000 ante
Players Remaining: 48 of 760

Upeshka De Silva
Upeshka De Silva

From a starting field of 760 entries, just 48 players remain as Day 2 concludes in the Rock ‘n’ Roll Poker Open $3,500 Championship Event.

Texas pro Upeshka De Silva holds a big lead at the end of the night, bagging up 1,938,000 chips to set the pace heading into Day 3. Ari Engel (1,116,000) is the only other player with a seven-figure stack. Super high roller Matt Berkey was the first one to really assert himself atop the leaderboard on Day 2, crossing into seven figures earlier than anyone probably should have. Berkey rode his mighty stack to a relatively easy day, ending in third place with just shy of a million chips.

The day began with 283 players still in contention, and the early eliminations came at a torrid pace. Noah Schwartz, Allen Kessler, Tom Marchese, Tristan Wade, Brian Hastings, Ryan Riess, Joe McKeehen, Chris Moorman, the brothers Massey, Jerry Wong, and High Roller winner Ben Tollerene were among the casualties, sent home empty handed during the day’s opening hours of action.

The bubble burst late during the night’s penultimate level, with former November Niner Russell Thomas earning the unfortunate title of Bubble Boy. His elimination left the 72 remaining players in the money, and another 24 of them would fall before the end of the night. Some of those included Keven Stammen (64th place), defending champion Jake Bazeley (60th), Chino Rheem (58th), Matt Stout (56th), Matt Affleck (51st), and Ryan D’Angelo (49th).

The 48 who did survive the day are set to return to the ballroom on Monday for another long day of poker. Here’s what the top of the leaderboard will look like when play resumes:

1. Upeshka De Silva – 1,938,000
2. Ari Engel – 1,116,000
3. Matt Berkey – 972,000
4. Matt Humphrey – 914,000
5. Jessica Dawley – 840,000

Dawley leads the way for Team Seminole Hard Rock Poker, but four of her teammates will represent some stiff competition for her and the rest of the field tomorrow. Jason Mercier (378,000), Mukul Pahuja (333,000), Natasha Mercier (194,000), and John Racener (190,000) will all return for Day 3 with their sights set on the trophy.

Everyone left is guaranteed to earn at least $8,998, with a top prize of more than $560,000 awaiting the eventual champion. Blinds will be 6,000/12,000 to start the day, putting the average stack just under 40 big blinds. Day 3 begins Monday at noon, with the goal of playing down to the final 18 players.

Day 3 Chip Counts  |  Day 3 Seat Draw