Las Vegas Sun

August 2, 2014

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Full house at Caesars for heads-up poker tournament

The past two World Series of Poker main event winners prevailed in their first-round matches Friday as the fifth annual National Heads-Up Poker Championship got under way at Caesars Palace.

Peter Eastgate, the 2008 World Series champ, defeated Andy Bloch, runner-up in last year's National Heads-Up Poker Championship. Jerry Yang, the 2007 World Series winner, ousted Clonie Gowen.

Fans lined up outside the Caesars poker room and crowded around the tournament gallery, which was filled to capacity, to catch a glimpse of the action. Tournament viewing is open to spectators on a first-come, first-served basis.

Eastgate and Yang were competing in the Hearts bracket based on Thursday night's random draw at Pure nightclub, which set up the 64-player field. Eastgate takes on Sam Farha, who beat Allen Cunningham, in Round 2. Yang faces John Phan, who beat Erik Seidel.

First-round action in the Clubs and Spades brackets was scheduled to continue through Friday evening, with second-round play resuming Saturday.

The tournament, with a $1.5 million prize pool, continues through Sunday night.

Also in the Hearts bracket:

Eli Elezra def. Johnny Chan

Erick Lindgren def. Howard Lederer

David Williams def. J.C. Tran

Scott Fischman def. Jamie Gold

In the Diamonds bracket:

Kenny Tran def. Antonio Esfandiari

Jennifer Harman def. Greg Raymer

Phil Laak def. Kenny Yeh

David Oppenheim (a late replacement for Layne Flack) def. Vanessa Selbst

Gus Hansen def. David Benyamine

Huck Seed def. Jonathan Little

Glen Chorny def. Chad Brown

Brad Garrett def. Annie Duke

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