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Poker News | World Series of Poker | WSOP2008 | The Works

The 'Nonymous Nine – More From Day 7 Of The WSOP Main Event

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5:10 p.m.

ESPN and Harrah's dream is shattered. With the blinds at 60,000/120,000, Dennis Phillips opened the pot from under the gun to 500,000. Peter Eastgate flat called from middle position and Tiffany Michelle called as well from the big blind. The flop came A-10-9 rainbow and Tiffany checked. Dennis bet one million and Peter quickly called. Tiffany had a look of amazement on her face. I turned to fellow writer, Jason Kirk, and said, “She has an ace, something like A-Q or A-J, it's so obvious.”

Kirk agreed and said, “She really should fold, she's given away her hand.”

What made matters worse was Eastgate's play. Why would he flat call a million on a draw heavy board? It smelled so much like a set. Tiffany moved all in and Dennis went into the tank. Kirk and I figured he had a hand like kings or queens.

“Tiffany has him beat,” I said. “It's the other guy I'm worried about, I think he has her beat.”

Dennis finally folded and Eastgate snap called. He did indeed have a set, although I was surprised by which set he had as he had pocket aces. Tiffany would need runner-runner straight cards to survive but it was not to be.

It was a tough day for Tiffany. She changed the way she played and it looked like the pressure of the situation got to her. Regardless, it was an impressive tournament. Her 17th place finish was the highest finish by a woman since 2000. She received a standing ovation from the entire room as fans, media, players, and tournament staff all applauded her effort. Great job, Tiffany, be proud of your finish!

6:05 p.m.

I think Chino Rheem had about 20 backers watching him play today. He just doubled up with a king on the river and the rail went nuts. I know of at least two backers he has. One of them when Chino went all in started walking away because Chino was drawing thin after the turn. When the announcer said, “King” on the river and the rail started going berserk, he ran back and joined in the frenzy. He has 10% of Chino so I can understand his roller coaster of emotions on the hand.

6:45 p.m.

It's as if someone shot a bullet in the collective heart of the Amazon Room. There was excitement in the air earlier when Tiffany was playing but now that she's out, there is no one left to root for unless you are friends or family of a player. As I was walking back to the tournament area, an older couple asked me what place Tiffany went out in. When I told them 17th place, they went “Awwwww,” and turned around and left the room.

The players are on a 90 minute dinner break. I have a feeling they are going to need their energy because these next six bust outs are going to go very slow. The blinds will be 80,000/160,000 with a 20,000 ante when we return and there are 14 players remaining making the average chip stack 9.8 million. Peter Eastgate has been getting ran over by the deck and is the chipleader with 18.8 million while Gert Anderson is the short stack with 3.7 million. It's still anyone's game though as Anderson still has over 20 big blinds.

10:38 p.m.

We are down to 11 players now. Nick Sliwinski had the loudest cheering section at the feature table. Johnny Chan was seated with Nick's girlfriend and sister and was talking to Nick in between hands. Whatever Johnny taught Nick wasn't very good because Nick made one of the worst bluffs I've ever seen. Dennis Phillips limped in pre-flop and we saw a flop of 9-7-3 all hearts. Nick led out for 500K and Dennis took his time but eventually made the call. The turn was the 6 of spades and Nick led out for a much larger bet this time of 1.2 million. Dennis again took some time before deciding what to do, but made the call. The river paired the board with another 9 and Nick wasted no time in moving all in. Dennis was just as quick in calling and Nick's cheering section started cheering thinking Nick had just won a monster pot. Dennis flipped over K-Q of hearts for the flopped flush and Nick looked at his friends and family and shrugged his shoulder. His tournament was over as all he had was 6-5 off suit.

I walk over to the other table to see what is going on and I see the cheering section of all cheering sections. Robert and Michael Mizrachi, Theo Tran, Nam Le, Greg Mueller, Mark Newhouse, and J.C. Tran are all there cheering on Chino Rheem. I stand there and talk with the group for a while. Robert tells me he practically raised Chino. Some one in the group passes gas and the whole section starts to clear out... that's how bad it was. J.C. Tran says, “That was a one outer,” and everyone laughs.

Chino wins a big pot right before the break with the turned nut straight and they all go nuts. Average stack is 12.4 million now and the shortest stack is 7 million. I'm setting the over under at 2 a.m.

1:25 p.m.

It has been a crazy couple of hours. I was continuing to watch the Chino Rheem table. He re-raised the opening raise of Ivan Demidov and Demidov came all in over the top of him. Chino started talking to Demidov to see if he would give up any information but the Russian was silent and still. Something clicked for Chino and he said, “I call.” Demidov shook his head as if he knew he was behind and flipped over pocket 9's. Chino jumped out of his chair and triumphantly showed pocket 10's. It was an 18 million pot and if Chino won it he would jump into the chip lead.

The crowd surged into the rail, anxious to see the moment. If Demidov didn't improve he would be the 11th place finisher and the tables would merge into one. The flop came 10-8-6 and Chino's rail roared until they saw that it was all hearts and that Demidov had the 9 of hearts. There were yells of “pair the board” and “heart” coming from different areas. The turn was a cruel heart for Chino. “Pair the board” came even louder from the rail, but it was not to be. Chino dropped to 7.5 million after the hand and walked out of the room to regain his composure. He came back before the next hand was dealt and said to Ivan, “It's part of that game, I should have been out day 5, nice hand.”

The two shook hands and play continued.

About an orbit later, Joe Bishop had lost the majority of his chips to Darus Suharto when his A-Q ran into kings on a queen high flop. Chino opened the pot and Joe moved all in for a little more than 2 million more. Chino didn't like it but he eventually made the call and asked Joe if he had a pair. When Joe nodded his head no, Chino said, “It's a race.”

And it was just that as Chino had pocket 2's and Joe had A-3. The flop was a great one for Joe... A-3-5. He had flopped two pair and now Chino would need a 2 or a 4 to eliminate Joe. Chants of 2 and 4 came from all over. It was apparent who the crowd favorite was. The turn was a brick. The rail pushed in as close as possible and the dealer turned over the river. A 4! Chino jumped up in the air and ran to his friends in the rail who were going nuts, high fiving and giving each other hugs. Chino was mobbed and Joe walked out of the room, obviously disappointed with how his tournament ended.

The final 10 was set and the seating arrangements and chip counts were as follows:

Seat 1 – Dean Hamrick 12,460,000
Seat 2 – Dennis Phillips 21,500,000
Seat 3 – Craig Marquis 12,000,000
Seat 4 – Ylon Schwartz 10,500,000
Seat 5 – Scott Montgomery 20,635,000
Seat 6 – Darus Suharto 16,425,000
Seat 7 – Chino Rheem 10,100,000
Seat 8 – Ivan Demidov 18,700,000
Seat 9 – Kelly Kim 4,330,000
Seat 10 – Peter Eastgate 10,440,000

4:30 a.m.

I had notes taken for the last few hours, but truth be told, I'm wiped and I can't think straight. The play down to 9 was dramatic, especially when Dean Hamrick re-raised Peter Eastgate and Craig Marquis moved all in. It was folded back to Peter who folded but Dean made the quick call with pocket queens. Marquis was in terrible shape with A-Q. The flop came J-7-3 with two hearts. Robbie, the tournament director, said, “Craig is going to need an ace, running straight cards, or running hearts if he is going to survive.”

The turn was the 4 of hearts and the crowd let out a collective groan as it gave Marquis a flush draw. The river was the 5 of hearts and the entire room roared, mainly in shock and disapproval, as Marquis pulled out the miracle to double up. Kelly Kim, the shortest stack at the table, sat there stunned. He was this close to making the final nine and just like that the dream was snatched from him.

Or was it? Hamrick would lose another two million to Chino Rheem and found himself down to 2.2 million when he picked up A-Q. He moved all in first to act and found familiar company as Craig Marquis also moved all in. Everyone folded and Marquis turned over queens. Could Hamrick pull out his own miracle? The flop came K-10-3 giving Hamrick a few more outs. The river was another 10 and now the only way Hamrick would not be eliminated is if he hit an ace on the river. It didn't happen and Hamrick was out.

Our final nine was set and the crowd and players who made it celebrated as if it were New Years Eve and the clock had just struck midnight.

The 'Nonymous Nine will return in November. They won't be so 'Nonymous by then.

News Flash

The IRS Scores Big at 2015 WSOP ME Final Table

The IRS managed to snag 34.13 percent from the payouts of the 2015 November Nine, totaling $8,467,091.

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