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WSOP Review: Merciless Mercier; Selbst Sweat; Romanello Denied Triple Crown

TAGs: Jason Mercier, Roberto Romanello, Vanessa Selbst, WSOP, WSOP 2016

In today’s World Series of Poker roundup we bring you news of a huge bracelet sweat between Jason Mercier and Vanessa Selbst, Roberto Romanello denied a Triple Crown, and much more.

WSOP Review: Merciless Mercier; Selbst Sweat; Romanello Denied Triple CrownVanessa Selbst is in a world of hurt.

After Jason Mercier had become the 39th player in history to win four gold bracelets, after victory in the $10,000 2-7 Draw Lowball Championships on Monday, the PokerStars Team Pro revealed that he stood to win $1.8m from Selbst if he could win two more by the end of the summer.

Coming into the 47th Annual WSOP, the poker community were aware that Selbst had offered Dzmitry Urbanovich 200:1 odds that the Pole wouldn’t win three bracelets in his rookie year. But news of the Mercier bet didn’t emerge until more recently.

The betting has created some controversy. If PokerStars teammates Mercier and Selbst were good friends before the summer, that relationship must now be strained to breaking point. Selbst released a statement on Twitter explaining how she offered Mercier odds of 180:1 after she had been drinking. After her hangover had subsided and the news of her latest bet had sunk in she offered Mercier to back out of the bet for $1k.

Mercier refused.

Then he went and won a bracelet. Selbst upped the ante, this time to $100,000.

Mercier once again refused.

And it’s this refusal to allow Selbst to backtrack from her drunken bet that has set the sabre tooth tiger amongst the pigeons.

Should Selbst be Worrying?

Before the summer, only six players in 47-years had won three bracelets in a single WSOP: Puggy Pearson (1973), Phil Hellmuth & Ted Forrest (1993), Phil Ivey (2002), Jeff Lisandro (2009), and George Danzer (2014).

That doesn’t seem a lot, but it’s enough to scare Selbst into offering Mercier $100,000 to back out of the bet. Mercier’s refusal of what is a large sum of money for effectively doing bugger all is also a sign that one of the world’s greatest poker players believes it’s possible.

And it seems the sniff of $1.8m has affected his play. No sooner had he won the 2-7 Draw Lowball Championship, he jumped into the $10,000 Razz Championship and now leads the final eight players with a substantial portion of the chips in play.

If Mercier does win bracelet number five, Selbst will be under incredible pressure because the WSOP is still to get into full swing. It’s common knowledge that professional players have microscopic amounts of their action when competing in bigger buy-in events, so it’s doubtful Selbst has been in this situation before, and $1.8m is an awful lot of money to be lost on a single bet.

2-7 Draw Lowball Championships Final Table Results

1st. Jason Mercier – $273,335

2nd. Mike Watson – $168,936

3rd. Lamar Wilkinson – $120,025

4th. David Grey – $86,302

5th. Benny Glaser – $62,810

6th. Stephen Chidwick – $46,277

7th. Alex Luneau – $34,522

8th. Herezel Zalewski – $26,078

9th. Jesse Martin – $19,953

Other big names to make a dash for the final table included Anthony Zinno (10th), Brian Hastings (12th), Mike Matusow (13th), and Daniel Negreanu (14th).

As previously stated, Mercier is also the big chip leader heading into the final day of Event #20: $10,000 Seven Card Razz Championships.

$10,000 Seven Card Razz Championships Final Table Chip Counts

1st. Jason Mercier – 1,595,000

2nd. John Racener – 1,174,000

3rd. Ray Dehkharghani – 838,000

4th. Brian Hastings – 367,000

5th. Robert Campbell – 360,000

6th. Yueqi Zhu – 312,000

7th. Bart Hanson – 246,000

8th. Jyri Merivirta – 109,000

Jason Dewitt Wins the Millionaire Maker

From someone who may lose a million to a few people who have just won a million.

7,190 entrants created a $9,706,500 prizepool, making the 2016 Millionaire Maker the eighth largest event in the games history, and Jason DeWitt has beaten Garrett Greer in heads-up action to take the million dollars first prize. Greer won’t be too disappointed as he also picked up a million dollar consolation prize.

It was an unusual pay structure with a chasm of $500,000 between second and third. To get three-handed and then miss out on the million would be tough, but one doubts there were too many consternations, this time, around after kindergarten teacher, Lisa Meredith, picked up the half a million dollar booby prize after competing in her first WSOP event of her life. Meredith’s amazing feat of jiggery-pokery is the fairytale of all fairytales and exactly what the WSOP should be all about.

Back to the winner and it was DeWitt’s second bracelet, and both came attached to huge scores. The 32-year-old has cashed 20 times in the WSOP, this was his seventh final table, and in 2010 he won a $5,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em event for $818,959.

Final Table Results

1st. Jason DeWitt – $1,065,403

2nd. Garrett Greer – $1,000,000

3rd. Lisa Meredith – $500,000

4th. Frank Rusnak – $366,787

5th. Luke Anthony – $276,632

6th. Arkady Tsinis – $210,112

7th. Michael Semenov – $160,725

8th. Alessio Deicesare – $123,828

9th. Stanley Lee – $96,091

Other notables to have a successful Millionaire Maker were the 888Poker Ambassador Sofia Lovgren (12th), UK star Simon Deadman (27th), and former Jeopardy winner Alex Jacobs (52nd).

Paul Volpe Wins Event #15: $1,500 Eight Game Mix (Six-Handed)

Paul Volpe continues his exceptional recent WSOP form with his second bracelet victory in the past two years. 491 entrants created a $663,820 prizepool in the $1,500 Eight Game Mix, and Volpe defeated Jason Stockfish in heads-up action.

Volpe must have felt the butterflies after getting heads-up. Last year, he lost out to Shaun Deeb and Keith Lehr at this same stage in the $10k Pot-Limit Omaha (PLO) and Heads-Up (HU) Championships. But bracelets are not Volpe’s primary focus. It’s all about the money and security for his family.

“With me, poker is mostly about the money.” Volpe told WSOP officials after his win. “I know with the World Series of Poker there’s so much history and I respect that. But I am here mainly to earn a living, make money, and support my family.”

And he does a pretty good job of making a living. The 35-year old has now cashed 27 times in WSOP events, made eight final tables, and has now won $4.9m in live tournament earnings.

Final Table Results

1st. Paul Volpe – $149,943

2nd. Jason Stockfish – $92,638

3rd. Ronald Ware – $60,882

4th. Benjamin Ludlow – $40,911

5th. Tony Lazar – $28,123

6th. Gavin Smith – $19,787

Other notables to run deep included Chris Klodnicki (9th), David Steicke (13th), and David “ODB” Baker (14th).

Roberto Romanello Denied Triple Crown

Only five players have the opportunity to join Gavin Griffin (2008), Roland De Wolfe (2009), Jake Cody (2011), Bertrand Grospellier (2011), and Davidi Kitai (2012) in poker’s Triple Crown Club by the end of the summer. One of them has just come mightily close.

Roberto Romanello has just finished third in a $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em event after ploughing through a field of 2,242 entrants. His $142,926 cash is the largest of his esteemed WSOP career, but that won’t matter to the Welsh All Time Top money earner. He would have given it all up for the touch of gold.

It was a great spot for the Welshman. The final table was devoid of experience, and the eventual winner, Chase Bianchi, was cashing in a WSOP event for his first time whereas Romanello was cashing for the 22nd time and making his sixth final table. Biology teacher Erik Silberman finished second.

Final Table Results

1st. Chase Bianchi – $316,920

2nd. Erik Silberman – $195,738

3rd. Roberto Romanello – $142,926

4th. Charlers Carragher – $105,308

5th. Paul Nunez-Devillavic – $78,301

6th. James Alexander – $58,758

7th. Felix Morin-Dutil — $44,503

8th. Cameron Rezaie – $34,024

9th. Christopher Leong – $26,259

A few others superstars who came close to an appearance on the Mothership were Jeff Gross (23rd), Michael Telker (26th), and Georgios Zisimopoulos (31st).

Marco Johnson Wins Event #18: $3,000 H.O.R.S.E

Marco Johnson joins the ranks of multiple bracelet winners after victory in Event #18: $3,000 H.O.R.S.E. Johnson overcame a field of 400 entrants to take the first prize of $259,730. It was his second gold bracelet. He won a $2,500 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em Six-Handed event for $206,796 back in 2013.

Johnson also finished 47th in the Colossus II. The 30-year old was making his 33rd WSOP cash, and eighth final table. He has now earned $2.5m in live tournament ITM finishes. It was a timely win. His wife is six months pregnant.

Chino Rheem made the final table finishing in the eighth position. Phil Hellmuth created a new WSOP record for ‘most WSOP cashes’ when he cashed in 45th place for $5,801, his 116th WSOP career cash, and the first of the 47th Annual WSOP.

Final Table Results

1st. Marco Johnson – $259,730

2nd. Jared Talarico – $160,522

3rd. Gerald Ringe – $108,924

4th. Todd Ickow – $75,397

5th. Glenn Engelbert – $53,259

6th. John Crisp – $38,409

7th. Tom Kalaj – $28,291

8th. Chino Rheem – $21,294

Other big names to make a deep run were Eli Elezra (11th), Michael Gathy (12th), and Chris Bjorin (17th).

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