The Southern Poker Championship at Biloxi's Beau Rivage Casino got off to a great start this week when 1,005 players entered to compete in a $340 no limit hold'em event. Its 15-event schedule runs until January 14 when it wraps up with the four day World Poker Tour $10,000 Championship. The winner of the initial event which was held on Saturday was Georgian Ronnie George who pocketed $65,109 for his efforts in his first major cash. The Southern United States was heavily represented at the event with all but one of the players in the top nine hailing from the South.
Event number 2 was Sunday's $550 no limit hold'em event that brought in a field of 566. Dan Clemente of Mississippi won $65,468 as the winner of the event. All players at the final table were from the South.
Event number 3 was a $550 no limit hold'em tournament that attracted a field of 409 players on Monday. Mark Wilds of Biloxi took home the top prize of $50,859. Wilds is no stranger to cashing in poker tournaments since 2000 and have $743,358 in lifetime winnings. Once again, all final table participants were from the South.
Event number 4 was a $1,070 no limit hold'em event that brought in 216 entrants and was won by Michael Benvenuti of California who took home $63,898 in winnings. Aside from the winner, all other finalists were from the South.
Event number 5 was won by Bill Bostick which was a $550 seven card stud tournament with 85 participants. Bostick who hails from Minnesota took home $12,366 for his efforts.
Event number 6 was won by Floridian, "Detroit" Al Green in a limit hold'em event with 180 players. Green who won $28,808 said that despite his nickname, he has never been close to being in Detroit. “When I was growing up, I had this special haircut,” Green said. “It was called a ‘Detroit.’ So, that’s what they all called me. I’ve never even been to Detroit. I’ve never even flown over Detroit.”
Event number 7 was held on Wednesday and was a $550 stud eight or better tourney that lured in 111 players. It was won by Russell "the Muscle" Salzer of New York who took home $16,151 for his efforts. Salzer has been regularly cashing in tournaments since 1993 and is getting ever so closer to the $1 Million mark in lifetime earnings. After this win, he is now at $926,937.
The tournament series continues all week and features two championship events, a $5,000 pot limit Omaha event on Sunday and the $10,000 World Poker Tour event.
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