Josh Arieh Flushed Out of WSOP Main Event Early; Four Past Champs in Day 1a

At the dinner break on Day 1a of the 2022 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event, Josh Arieh was already out thanks to some rough luck, while four previous winners are working on building stacks.

The first session of poker’s world championship event kicked off at 11 a.m. PST with the defending champion, Koray Aldemir, announcing “shuffle up and deal.” Last year’s world champion didn’t take his seat to play as he intends to enter the Day 1c flight on Tuesday.

Past Champs in Attendance

Martin Jacobson
Martin Jacobson, 2014 WSOP Main Event champion.

Shortly after Aldemir gave dealers permission to begin slinging cards to those who paid $10,000 to enter the no-limit hold’em tournament, more than 500 players had already taken their seats. Three 120-minute levels into the day and that number has already cracked 800 in what figures to be the smallest of the four Day 1 sessions.

Among those in the field include four previous winners, three of whom had exceeded the 60,000-chip starting stack at last check. Ryan Riess, who won it in 2013, is the only former world champion below starting stack the last time the PokerNews live reporting crew checked in on him, but he was still in good shape at 50,600.

Qui Nguyen, 2016’s world champion, was seated next to Riess, and he’s had a bit better luck to start off the tournament and was last spotted with a healthy stack of 85,100 chips. The 2014 winner, Martin Jacobson, was at 83,000 shortly before break, while 2018’s Main Event champion, John Cynn, was right around 70,000.

There are a couple of living former world champions that we know of who won’t be in attendance this year. Doyle Brunson (1976 and 1977) announced on Twitter he won’t show up to play due to health concerns. Jamie Gold (2006) told PokerNews he also won’t be able to make it to Las Vegas for the Main Event this year.

Not Arieh’s Day

Arieh, the 2004 Main Event third place finisher and 2021 WSOP Player of the Year was an early exit on Sunday. There wasn’t much he could have done to stick around long this year.

In one hand, he lost most of his stack despite hitting a flush. On a board of {10-Diamonds}{5-Hearts}{6-Clubs}{5-Diamonds}{9-Hearts}, Arieh check-raised a bet of 13,000 from Jimmy D’Ambrosio to all in for 25,000 with {a-Hearts}{2-Hearts}, the nut flush. But he was snap-called by a full house — {6-Spades}{5-Spades}. Not long after, he failed to hit a flush draw for his remaining chips and lost to Nate Corbin, who flopped top pair with top kicker.

Arieh didn’t have luck on his side in the Main Event, but he’s still within striking distance of repeating as WSOP Player of the Year. He’s currently in 11th place at 2,041 points and is chasing the leader, Dan Zack (3,702 points). The defending POY has three final table appearances this summer with a pair of third place finishes.

The remaining players will return to action at 7:05 p.m. to play two more levels before bagging chips.

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