Mukul Pahuja Leads the Final 21 at The Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open $10 Million Guarantee

mukul-pahuja-leads-the-seminole-hard-rock-poker-openThe Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open $10 Million Guarantee Championship Event has reached Day Four, and the man in charge is Mukul Pahuja with 8,125,000 chips.

Pahuja has $612,017 in live tournament earnings spread over a five-year period, and shared table space with the Day Two chip leader, Justin Bonomo, Bryn Kenney and Griffin Benger during a tough Day Three session

The big moment for Pahuja came when he eliminated the World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet winner, Ryan Welch, in a monster flip. Welch jamming with the baby fours and Pahuja on hand with ace-king – an ace on the flop pushing Pahuja into the chip lead and Welch out of the door.

Also lurking in those 21 spots is the European Poker Tour (EPT) Berlin High Roller winner Griffin Benger, WSOP bracelet winner Blair Hinkle and Mark Radoja and the Day Two chip leader Justin Bonomo. Keep an eye on the online supremo Benger, who is getting closer to that major title and was incredibly unfortunate not to do more at the WSOP this year.

With the failed guarantees of the International Stadiums Poker Tour (ISPT) and United Kingdom and Ireland Poker Tour (UKIPT) over in the UK, a $10 million guarantee was something a lot of people though was beyond the reach of the tournament organizers, however, the re-entry clause certainly helped the tournament cement 2,384 names into the record sheets thus creating a total prize pool of $11,920,000, and $1,745,245 for the winner.

It seems everyone’s a winner, and yet Mike ‘The Mouth’ Matusow believes that the re-entry format has more holes than Swiss cheese.

“I think it’s an atrocity. You can actually play on Day One and have 80k chips at the end of the day, and then buy in tomorrow and keep your highest chip stack over the two days and we use the same chip sets? What’s to stop you taking chips out of your stack and putting them on your stack the following day? It’s open to collusion. We know certain people who are more than capable of doing that. If you are going to use the same chips every day you can’t have a tournament where you can have two stacks.” Matusow told Bluff during a break in the competition before continuing; “With a re-entry event you may have to knock Phil Ivey out of a tournament seven times! I think it’s really bad. You give the tournament more rake, but I think it’s bad for poker.”

Matusow makes some good points, and now that the potential for collusion is out in the open air, let’s hope the tournament organizers catch on and do something about it to nip it in the bud.