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Reese Honoured at WSOP $50k Championship
The 41st World Series Of Poker surged to life today as the poker world's elite gathered to play the $50k "Player's Championship" and honor one of its biggest stars.
The opening ceremony saw WSOP Tournament Director Jack Effel host a chorus of tributes remembering the late, great Chip Reese from some of poker's biggest legends.
"Chip was the best player I've ever played with," said Doyle Brunson of Reese - the inaugural winner of the tournament back in 2006.
"They say achievements and accolades are usually buried with their owner. That might be true but everyone who played with Chip will remember him."
Reese built a reputation as a fiercesome exponent of every type of poker from No Limit Hold'em through to 2-7 Triple Draw.
Though he was regarded as primarily a cash game player, he also managed to notch up nearly $4 million in tournament winnings, in a career spanning four decades.
His impressive tournament record was capped with victory in 2006 in what was then the $50k H.O.R.S.E tournament. Reese collected $1,784,640 for the win and when he sadly passed away in December, 2007, the $50k H.O.R.S.E. was swiftly renamed the "Chip Reese Memorial Trophy" to commemorate Reese's impact on the poker community.
Reese's memory still lives on and as today's ceremony continued, there was a queue of poker players keen to contribute their own testimonials and eulogies to the mix.
"I didn't know Chip as well as some but he always behaved like a gentleman at the table," said David Bach, last year's winner of the $50k H.O.R.S.E.
"It's an honour to have my name on Chip Reese's trophy."
Once applause for Reese's many accomplishments died down, it was down to another of poker's legends to herald the start of the Player's Championship.
"Shuffle up and deal," said Doyle Brunson and a field replete with stellar talent went about trying to win one of the WSOP's showpiece events.
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