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2009 WSOP, Events 8, 9: Monnette Leads Ivey in Lowball Final, McConville Leads $1,500

John Monnette

$2,500 No-Limit Deuce-to-Seven Draw Event #8, Day 2 – John Monnette Heads Final Table

John Monnette will take the chip lead into the final table of Event #8, the $2,500 No-Limit Deuce-to-Seven Draw, a new event at this year’s World Series of Poker. He is sitting on a stack of 259,000, with Raphael Zimmerman not far behind in second chip position on 238,000. Poker legend Phil Ivey is still in the hunt and will be gunning for his sixth bracelet, but he’ll have his work cut out for him as he starts with the second-shortest stack of 106,300. Rodeen Talebi will be nursing the short stack, with 94,500.

Day 2 began with 35 out of the original 147 players, 14 of whom would leave with nothing and 21 making the cash. A payout of $96,361 will go to the eventual winner, out of a total prize pool of $338,100.

The day’s first elimination came only about 15 minutes after the starting gun. Farzad Bonyadi was all in before the draw in the small blind, and Phil Ivey called him from the big blind. Bonyadi stood pat while Ivey drew one. It was apparently the card he needed, as his 9-6 edged out Bonyadi’s 9-7. A little over an hour into the fun, Erik Seidel was ousted. He moved all in before the draw, getting a call from Monnette, who stood pat with a J-10. Seidel drew one card to try for a 10-9, but the king the dealer gave him was of no help.

Phil Hellmuth was denied a chance at his first non-hold’em bracelet when he put in an all-in reraise before the draw and was called by Raphael Zimmerman. Both players drew one. Zimmerman showed 8-6-5-3 and drew a seven, leaving Hellmuth drawing dead with his 9-8-5-3. Despite taking some needling from Tony G for busting out two spots before the money, Hellmuth reportedly left the table quietly. Daniel Alaei was the next one out – and the last one to finish without cashing – popping the tournament bubble at about 6:00 p.m. The players redrew for seats at the final three tables. Less than 30 minutes later, Archie Karas became the first one to take home a paycheck (21st place; $4,094).

Over the course of the next 15 minutes, Erick Lindgran, Erle Mankin, Barry Greenstein, and Vanessa Rousso were all eliminated in rapid succession. By about 8:15 p.m., the field was down to 14 runners, and the players once again redrew for seats.

Freddy Deeb left in 12th place for $4,960 when the deck just wouldn’t cooperate. He was all in before the draw against Yan Chen. Both elected to draw one, but showed their hole cards first: Deeb’s 7-6-4-2 was up against Chen’s 8-5-4-2. Chen drew a deuce, making a pair. Deeb simply needed to avoid pairing in order to stay alive and double up. Only nine cards could come that would deny him the best hand, but fate selected one of them – another four.

Layne Flack had been the overnight chip leader but he would not survive the day, being the last one eliminated before action ended around 11:30 p.m. (eighth place; $8,453). He was all in before the draw, and needed a low card for his 10-8-3-2 to beat Raphael Zimmerman, who had stood pat with 10-8-7-6-5. When Flack’s draw was revealed to be an ace, the day was done for the entire remaining field.

The final table, consisting of the last seven players, will commence at 2:00 Thursday.

$1,500 No-Limit Hold’em Event #7, Day 2 – Craig McConville Tops Leaderboard

Meanwhile, in Event #7 $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em, the first of seven $1,500 full-tabled no-limit hold’em freezeouts on this year’s WSOP calendar, the current chip lead belongs to Craig McConville, the only player so far to crack the million mark at 1,035,000. Not far behind is Steven Karp with 957,000 in chips, and Jacob Kalb is hot on their heels with 894,000.

Day 2 kicked off at 2:00 p.m. with 337 of the original 2971 players still alive and competing for 297 paid spots, including $666,853 for the eventual champion. Play was predictably slow until the money bubble burst about two hours in, following which the eliminations came with machine-gun rapidity – 46 in less than half an hour, in fact.

Alex Jacob had done well early in the day, but ran his {K-Hearts}{K-Spades} smack into the {A-Spades}{A-Clubs} of Mark Salinaro, with every chip from two big stacks meeting in the middle before the flop. A miracle seemed to be in the offing when the first board cards came {K-Diamonds}{2-Hearts}{9-Diamonds}{3-Clubs}, but the {A-Diamonds} on the river meant that the battle ended in the rockets’ red glare. Salinaro was doing something right today; a couple of hours later he was again on the good side of an aces-versus-kings clash, again all in preflop, and again prevailing.

At the dinner break the field had been whittled down to 163. The overnight chip leader, Victor Greeley, caught a lucky break in the evening when his {6-Hearts}{6-Spades} started off in bad shape against David Nin’s {Q-Hearts}{Q-Spades}, all in preflop, but improved to a set on the {6-Diamonds}{3-Clubs}{K-Hearts} flop and quads on the {6-Clubs} turn, pushing his stack up to about 215,000. It would not last, though. About two hours later, he was running on fumes and pushed with {K-Diamonds}{5-Hearts}, only to be called by Jeremy Joseph with {A-Clubs}{Q-Hearts}. Greeley had run out of miracle saves, and the better hand held up. He took home $7,390 as consolation.

The last woman left in the field was eliminated shortly after midnight. Sandra Naujoks put it all in with {K-Clubs}{8-Clubs}, and was already behind her caller’s {A-Spades}{10-Hearts}. The flop of {K-Hearts}{Q-Spades}{J-Diamonds}, however, gave her opponent the nuts and left Naujoks looking for a runner-runner miracle. She got halfway there when the {8-Spades} peeled off on the turn, but the {7-Diamonds} river card sent Naujoks to the rail.

The schedule had called for Day 2 to continue until a final table was set, but tournament officials pulled the plug at 3:00 a.m., invoking the new “Rule 95.” The field of 33 will return at 1:00 p.m. today, and presumably play down to the bracelet. Join PokerNews for all the action as we count down to another WSOP champion.

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