The third day of the 42nd World Series of Poker welcomed one of the marquee events of the series with the Event #4: $5,000 No-Limit Holdem kicking off in the Pavilion Room.
Today's event was a true test of how Black Friday would effect the World Series, and when the dust settled on registration, a whopping field of 865 settled down to battle it out the felt; which bested the 792-player field from last year.
Nearly every table was stacked with a seasoned veteran or a dangerous online whiz kid as players sought to take advantage of a generous structure. Reigning champion Jason DeWitt led an array of causalities throughout the day as highly-talented players such as Vanessa Selbst, Jason Mercier, Daniel Negreanu, Sorel Mizzi, Tom Dwan, Jonathan Duhamel and Huck Seed all managed to find an early exit.
With the chips bagged and tagged, the board still reads that 246 players remain in contention for taking a piece of the $4,065,500 prizepool home - but more importantly the $874,116 first prize.
Leading the field into tomorrow Gavin Cochrane who amassed a 175,500-chip stack which just pipped PokerStars Team USA Pro Victor Ramdin who bagged a 174,700-chip stack mainly courtesy of winning an ace-king versus queens flip late in the day. 2009 champion Brian Lemke sits third on our leaderboard with 171,900, and when you throw in the dangerous Jordan Morgan (136,400), Brandon Cantu (129,500) and Erick Lindgren (102,200) alongside Jennifer Tilly (61,900), Maria Ho (47,000) and Lauren Kling (27,800), and tomorrow's field is certainly stacked.
The PokerNews Live Reporting Team will again be providing continuous live coverage as we play firstly down to the money-paying top 81, before making a run at the final table. Make sure to join us from 2:30 pm PST as we continuing writing the history of the 2011 World Series of Poker live from the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino!