Take a World Series of Poker event with a $10,000 buy-in, title it Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split World Championship, and you're sure to have a field of pros show up to glean the spoils. Event #33 started with 168 players and a total net prize pool of $1,579,200 of which first place would earn $442,183, and 16 players would chop up the rest.
The final table was one of champions, except perhaps for the virtually unknown Eric Rodawig, the other players are easily recognized as high stakes poker players, gold bracelet winners, TV poker stars; every one of them recognizable by name and face. This is the line-up that Rodawig faced at the final table:
2nd place – 11-time gold bracelet winner and 1989 world champion, Phil Hellmuth, Jr.
3rd Place – Last year’s WSOP Main Event Championship runner up, John Racener
4th Place – Five-time gold bracelet winner and Seven-Card Stud specialist, Ted Forrest
5th Place – Former gold bracelet winner and high-stakes cash game pro, David Benyamine
But Eric Rodawig started the final table with the chip lead and kept it, whittling them down to keep the lead - even if he lost it momentarily, he moved back in control. When John Racener was eliminated in 3rd place, it went to Phil Hellmuth to stand against Eric Rodawig.
Hellmuth faced an improbable task and was all-in several times before Rodawig scooped him. It started with Rodawig bringing it in and Hellmuth completing. Rodawig raised and Hellmuth got all 280,000 of his chips in with Rodawig calling.
Rodawig held // against Hellmuth's /. When Phil Hellmuth caught the on 7th street it was over, sending him out in 2nd place with $273,233.
Hellmuth portrayed a gracious loser and told Rodawig, "You played well." His friends Huck Seed and Jean-Robert Bellande offered consolation and the crowd gave him a rousing ovation.
Eric Rodawig may not have been a recognizable name before this victory but many would know him as a pro/instructor at the poker training website Cardrunners. Now many more will know him as the 2011 Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split World Champion, a gold bracelet winner, and the first place prize of $442,183. Congratulations Eric!
The final Eight:
|1 ||Eric Rodawig ||442,183 |
|2||Phil Hellmuth ||273,233 |
|3 ||John Racener ||171,122 |
|4 ||Ted Forrest||123,904 |
|5 ||David Benyamine ||96,836 |
|6 ||Mikhail Savinov ||77,222 |
|7 ||Joe Tehan ||62,710 |
|8 ||Ali Eslami ||51,750 |
For more detailed hands and information about the event, visit PokerNews Live Reporting.