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Poker News | World Series of Poker | WSOP2009 | WSOP2009 Tournaments

Day 6 Action: All Games on With NLHE, PLO, and Stud

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The sixth day of the 2009 World Series of Poker had it all. Some days of the non-stop poker summer will be primarily focused on one particular game like no-limit hold’em, but others will feature a bit of several games on the spectrum. This was one of those days, with pot-limit Omaha and seven-card stud beginning, and no-limit hold’em trying to find its final table.

While the Champions Invitational played out with the likes of Brunson and Eastgate at the ESPN featured table, the tables in the rest of the Amazon Room were filled with PLO players. Other rooms like the Brasilia ballroom were filled with many hundreds of NLHE players making the money in the biggest non-WSOP main event tournament in poker history, and a few tables were designated for the world championship of seven-card stud. With cash games and satellites also running in full force, the Rio Convention Center was any poker player or fan’s dream.

It was also a pleasant surprise for fans in the Rio hallway in the afternoon hours to witness Doyle Brunson and Amarillo Slim Preston racing their wheelchair/scooters around a makeshift obstacle course. In true old-school gambler fashion, the two legends of the game had $2,000 riding on the fastest scooter, and Preston ended up winning by several seconds. Poker enthusiasts who were fortunate enough to be in the right place at the right time witnessed a little non-poker excitement that would be amazing fodder for any home game conversation.

Only at the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas, folks.

Event 4:  $1,000 NLHE “Stimulus Special”, Day 2

The original field consisted of 6,012 players starting the tournament over the course of two days, at which point they had played down to a combined field of 760. That seems like a drastic reduction until it is noted that Day 2 was supposed to eliminate enough players to see a final table. Clearly, that was going to be a difficult task.

It began with the Brasilia Room filled with players who were looking to survive long enough to hit the money at 621, guaranteeing themselves a $1,894 finish and a small profit. It took only one hour to get there and a diligent effort on the part of the tournament staff to monitor the number of players and their finishes as they exited. Finally, they found the bubble player, and in fact, there were two of them. Jeff Greco and Petr Kadavy were eliminated on opposite sides of the room in the same hand-for-hand instance, which meant that instead of leaving with no money, they both split 621st place money. Each of them received $947, which was a bit less than their entry fee for the event but enough to stave off the bubble blues.

The tournament staff finally decided that they would only play until 3:00am, and they did so with 50 players remaining. They were set to return on Day 3, guaranteed to make at least $12,391 for their efforts but striving to make the final table, which was also scheduled to be played on Day 3. Their return would find Robert Comegys in the chip lead with 1,186,000 chips, followed by Danny Fuhs as the only other player over 1 million in chips. The rest of the top five players on the leaderboard included Eric Chor, Stephan Ma, and Amanda Baker.

Event 5:  $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha, Day 1

Pot-limit Omaha seems to grow in popularity from year to year, and this was the first PLO event offered at the 2009 WSOP. That brought 809 players to the tables for the first day of action-packed poker. When that number was finally determined at the close of registration, it was also noted that the prize pool was $1,104,285. The last 81 players standing were set to cash on the second day of play, and the ultimate first prize winner would receive $237,415.

The interesting thing about this tournament was the first implementation of the new add-on feature that will be offered for some tournaments. While rebuys were certainly cut from the schedule this year, the new offering boasts of an opportunity for players to begin with only a third of their starting stacks. Each other third can be taken through an add-on during the first three levels, as players can let the floor staff know that they want to cash in an add-on chip for another 1,500 chips. Those who choose not to take them will be given the remainder of the true 4,500-stack at the end of the third level to put all chips into play.

As the day progressed, the field thinned until the money bubble was reached near the end of the night. It was finally reached about 20 minutes prior to the end of play, and action continued until the end of the level, which left exactly 50 players to return on Day 2. Leading the pack was Jason Mercier with a serious stack of 227,300 chips. Matt Humphrey followed with 162,200, and the rest of the top five included Jae Chang, Matthew Greenwood, and Alex Michaels.

Event 6:  $10,000 World Championship Seven-Card Stud, Day 1

The late starter for the day at 5pm allowed a select group of stud fans to pony up a solid $10K buy-in to compete for the world championship title. Only six days into the 2009 WSOP, the stud event offered some serious non-NLHE action for the more experienced poker players.

Registration started slowly, with only seven tables of players, and it looked as if it could be a solid disappointment to Harrah’s to receive such a low turnout. But as is typical with the players in this type of event, most of them registered late. By the time the first two levels were complete, there were 142 players signed up, which created a prize pool of $1,334,800 and a first place prize of $373,751. Only the last 16 players standing would be paid, so the majority of the funds available for payouts were clearly going to be at the final table.

The field was a stacked one, with pros everywhere and a rail filled with fans to watch it go down. Eliminations were slow in the beginning, and only 41 players exited on the first day of action. In the end, David Oppenheim was the chip leader with 97,000 chips, but many others were close behind. Ben Lin had 96,500 chips, and John Cernuto , Nick Frangos, and Barry Mullinax were also at 90K or above. Day 2 looked to be a fight to the finish to reach the money and the final table.

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