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2008 WSOP Event #39, $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em Day 2: Thom Werthmann Heads Final

2008 WSOP Event #39, $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em Day 2: Thom Werthmann Heads Final 0001

After a rapid-fire Day 1, Event #39, $1,500 No Limit Hold'em, got off to a similarly fast start on Day 2. It looked for a while like the final table would be set quickly, but as the field thinned and the chip stacks got deeper, the sprint became a marathon as a 2005 WSOP bracelet winner finally took the chip lead into the final table as restaurants all around Las Vegas opened up their breakfast buffets.

With all 218 remaining players in the money, the bustouts came quickly to start the day. Several pros were among the initial wave of eliminations, including Tony "Bond18" Dunst and Kenna James. Dunst ran pocket tens into pocket jacks and failed to hit his two-outer to survive. Later, James moved the last of his chips in preflop from late position with {a-Diamonds}{6-Hearts}, and found one Ernie Dolan re-raising to isolate. James was well ahead when Dolan tabled {a-Spades}{3-Clubs}, but the {3-Spades} on the flop put James in trouble. The board ran out {q-Hearts}{8-Hearts}{3-Spades}{q-Diamonds}{5-Hearts}, and Dolan's two pair sent James to the rail.

Barry Greenstein earned himself a few more Player of the Year points with his cash in Event #39, but missed the final table when he went to the rail early. All his chips went in preflop with {a-Diamonds}{4-Spades}, and Joshua Schlein called from the button with {k-Diamonds}{q-Diamonds}. The board came down {10-Diamonds}{10-Clubs}{6-Spades}{4-Diamonds}{3-Diamonds}, and Schlein went runner-runner flush to send Greenstein to the rail.

The pace of eliminations remained steady throughout the night until the final few tables were set, when the flood of players headed to the payout line slowed to a trickle. Minh Nguyen busted in 24th place when he ran {a-Clubs}{j-Hearts} into Day 1 chip leader Michael Polcari's {a-Spades}{k-Clubs} preflop. No help came for Nguyen, and he exited.

Late in the evening, Gary Bain went to the rail in 19th to set up the final two tables, and then play seemed to stall. Once the field hit 14 players, the survivors went into lockdown mode, holding for over an hour without an elimination.

As the chip leaders jockeyed for position, with a new name atop the leader board seemingly every hand, Day 1 chip leader Michael Polcari made his exit just off the final table. Polcari moved all in over the top of Thom Werthmann's preflop raise with {10-Clubs}{10-Diamonds}, only to see Werthmann table {j-Clubs}{j-Spades}. Polcari hit a welcome flop with {a-Spades}{10-Spades}{8-Diamonds}, but the {j-Diamonds} river gave the pot back to Werthmann and sent Polcari home in 11th place with $36,756 for his troubles.

After nearly an hour of one-table play, Paul Kerr became the final-table bubble boy when he busted in 10th place ($36,756). Kerr moved all in over the top of Thom Werthmann's preflop raise, and David Woo was the only caller. Kerr's {4-Diamonds}{4-Spades} was in a race against Woo's {k-Spades}{q-Clubs}. The board ran out {a-Clubs}{k-Hearts}{6-Diamonds}{q-Diamonds}{2-Hearts}, and Kerr missed the final table by one spot.

With Kerr's elimination, the final table was set, and Werthmann, who picked up a WSOP bracelet in 2005 in pot-limit hold'em, finished the day with the chip lead. The final-table seating assignments and chip stacks looked like this as the nine remaining players headed to bed:

Seat 1: Eric Beren 640,000

Seat 2: David Woo 1,090,000

Seat 3: Habib Khanis 645,000

Seat 4: Michael Glasser 495,000

Seat 5: Curtis Early 1,225,000

Seat 6: Jim Paras 535,000

Seat 7: Matthew Wood 675,000

Seat 8: Thom Werthmann 1,600,000

Seat 9: Thanhdat Tran 1,255,000

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