2013 Runner-Up Albert Daher on Top as Merit Classic North Cyprus Draws 375

One year ago in Cyprus, Albert Daher got heads-up for a World Poker Tour title in Cyprus, only to fall just short to a masterful performance from Alexey Rybin, who led from start to finish. Daher hopes he can follow that same path in 2014, improving his finish by one more spot.

Daher bagged the biggest stack of anyone during the two starting sessions in the 2014 WPT Merit Classic North Cyprus, taking 219,200 with him into Day 2 Sunday. Rybin might have a say in that, building up an above-average stack of his own on Day 1A.

Dmitry Samoylenko (182,700) is second, while Andrey Pateychuk – who has both an EPT and a WPT title to his credit – starts Day 2 in third with 161,800. Sam Trickett (140,000) will take a top 10 stack into Sunday’s action as well, with the likes of former WPT champions James Dempsey, Dmitry Gromov and Dominik Nitsche – along with Oliver Price, Mickey Petersen, Oliver Price, Erwann Pecheux and Vladimir Troyanovskiy – among the other survivors.

Day 1A saw a total of 172 entries among 150 players, while Day 1B drew 203 entries from 161 unique players. That sets the total field for this event at 375 – an increase of over 100 entries, year over year. The prizepool has not yet been released, but that information will likely come out during the early stages of Day 2 Sunday.

The 181 who remain in the hunt for this title will return to play at 1 pm local time in Cyprus (6 am EST).

2014 WPT Merit Classic North Cyprus – Combined End of Day 1 Chip Counts

  1. Albert Daher – 219,200
  2. Dmitry Samoylenko – 182,700
  3. Andrey Pateychuk – 161,800
  4. Dmitry Bayramov – 149,200
  5. Seref Anar – 147,200
  6. Ivan Sheptytskiy – 144,100
  7. Sam Trickett – 140,000
  8. Alexander Lakhov – 136,100
  9. Timor Mavgolin – 129,900
  10. Dmitry Kuzmin – 126,300

(Photo c/o WPT)

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Tim Fiorvanti

Tim Fiorvanti graduated from St. John's University with a B.S. in Journalism in 2008. After several years in the industry, he started working for BLUFF in the summer of 2010. He worked his way up at BLUFF and joined full time as a Senior Writer in April of 2012. Fiorvanti now serves as the Managing Editor of BLUFF. He's a tortured Mets and Jets fan, along with several other frustrating allegiances, but he's also a two-time defending BLUFF Fantasy Football Champion.
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