The final table of Event #57, Six-Handed No Limit Holdem with a $10,000 buy-in, brought 474 players to the felt in search of the gold bracelet and the first place prize of $1,136,197 that would go home with the winner. The prize pool grew to a startling $4,455,600 and the top 48 finishers were sharing a piece of it.
The event was scheduled to run three days and ended up with two players coming back to play one final hand on the fourth day. The final nine players included three former gold bracelet winners: Layne flack, Timothy Adams, and Keith Lehr.
The final and only hand played on Day 4 found Gregory Merson opening from the button to 280,000. Keith Lehr three-bet to 915,000 and Merson shoved. Lehr called all-in for his tournament life with the to Merson's .
Merson's rail cheered when the flop hit with the . But when the hit the turn, Merson's rail began the card calling chant for a jack. It worked. The hit the river and Gregory Merson won his first bracelet.
Keith Lehr missed his attempt to add another gold bracelet to his collection but did take home $701,757 for his second place finish.
Gregory Merson moved to Toronto after Black Friday to continue his online poker playing career. Merson bubbled the final table of Event 28, the $2,500 No Limit Holdem Four-Max but told the WSOP 'that was such a cool experience' and ended the interview by being so emotional he couldn't continue. P-s-s-s-s-t! We like that people can't conceal their emotion sometimes - a poker face should only be worn when in the heat of battle, not when standing at the finish line with all the cash and the bracelet.
Lynn Gilmartin of PokerNews.com interviews Gregory:
The Final Six Payouts:
PokerNews Live Reporting has more.