Ladies and gents of the poker universe the time for nine has finally arrived after the World Series of Poker Main Event reached the end of Day 7 and a well-earned rest until October. Gaelle Baumann, the final female left in the competition, earned the dubious honour of 10th place in this year’s Main Event and the first lady of French poker will have to console herself with the $590,422 bounty. For the remaining nine it’s time to party.
Leading the way when we get back down to it on October 28 is American Jesse Sylvia with a stack of 44.06m – his previous best cash was a mere $15k back in 2008. Americans are a running theme throughout the nine with all but fourth-placed Hungarian Andras Koroknai (23.95m) hailing from the land of the dream,
Koroknai has invoked the bile of TwoPlusTwo posters during the WSOP Main Event this year after two controversial moments. The first of these was when he looked like falling out of the Event but saved by the integrity of an opponent and the other a misunderstanding with Fabrizio Gonzalez resulting in his suspension for one-round. One poster, ddog892, even stated that Koroknai is “the most hated person in poker right now” and “at least we have a clear villain to root against”. After all, no great story is complete without the villain now is it?!
Greg Merson, sitting in second on a stack of 28.805m chips, came into the Main Event having won the $10k NLHE Event #57 at this year’s WSOP and with it the $1.136m prize. He also has two other cashes at this year’s tournament and if you are a betting man…well you catch our drift. Third place is Connecticut’s Russell Thomas with 24.975m chips and completing the cluster between 20m and 30m chips is the aforementioned Koroknai.
Sacramento California’s Steven Gee, another that already has a bracelet round his wrist following a $472,479 win in the 2010 WSOP, is on 16.94m chips and occupies fifth place. Michael Esposito, in sixth place on 16.26m chips, won a WSOP Circuit last year and cashed in the 2006 edition of the Main Event – albeit in 540th place. Robert Salaburu (15.155m), Jacob Balsiger (13.115m) are in seventh and eighth places, and Jeremy Ausmus (9.805m), who cashed in eight other WSOP events this year, brings up the rear.
As we mentioned at the head of the article Baumann was the last one to be eliminated and her exit came just after the other last woman standing, Elisabeth Hille, went out in 11th place. If either had made it it would have been only the second time a woman had made the final nine and quite remarkable given that just 211 of the 6,598 entrants were female.
Chip leader at the start of the day, Canadian Marc Ladouceur, took the unlucky 13th place and the final $465,159 prize. The nine will line up as follows when they return to the Rio on October 28 and battle it out for the $8m+ prize.
Seat 1: Russell Thomas
Seat 2: Jacob Balsiger
Seat 3: Jeremy Ausmus
Seat 4: Steven Gee
Seat 5: Greg Merson
Seat 6: Jesse Sylvia
Seat 7: Robert Salaburu
Seat 8: Andras Koroknai
Seat 9: Michael Esposito