After Kia Hamadani became the bubble boy at the 2009 World Series of Poker Main Event, the chorus of “All in and a call” rang out over the Amazon room loud and often. The flurry of post-bubble bust-outs kicked off the evening action on an unusually brisk Day 4 of the WSOP Main Event, as only 407 players made it all the way through to Day 5. Among the players cashing but going home earlier than planned were Kristy Gazes, Mark Gregorich, Alexander Kostritsyn, Surinder Sunar, and Patrick Bruel. When action was called to a halt, Matt Affleck was sitting at the top of the leaderboard, followed closely by Ludovic Lacay (pictured).
Chris “Jesus” Ferguson was another Day 4 casualty, losing most of his stack after he flopped bottom two pair with on the board of to Dariusz Paszkiewicz’ . All the chips went in on the turn as Ferguson had Paszkiewicz barely covered. The former World Champ failed to improve and went on break with just 4,000 in chips remaining. Those few chips went in a couple of hands after the break when Ferguson was all in for his ante with . Sander Lylloff raised preflop to isolate and showed . The board hit Lylloff right between the eyes when it came down . Ferguson was drawing dead after the landed on the turn, and the field was one former champ lighter.
Another multiple WSOP bracelet winner to hit the rail on Day 4 was Jesper Hougaard. In 2008, Hougaard became the first player to win bracelets in the WSOP and WSOP-Europe in the same year, but his Main Event was cut short when he ran into an opponent’s on the flop of . The turn and river came down and , and Hougaard was finished. Other Day 4 eliminations included Paul Wasicka, Justin Bonomo, Carter King, Mike Sexton, and David Williams.
By far the most notable elimination on Day 4 was former World Champion and 11-time bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth. Hellmuth lost most of his chips to Ebrahim Mourshaki when Mourshaki flopped trip jacks and took the vast majority of Hellmuth’s stack. The rest of his chips went into the middle in a big pot that started out with Hellmuth and three other players calling a raise from Mourshaki to see the flop of . Kevin Jenkins opened the post-flop action with a shove from the big blind. Mourshaki got out of the way, and Hellmuth moved all in over the top for just a little more. Jose Manuel Gomez Rebenaque folded, and Kenny Hsiung called. Jenkins showed for the open-ended straight draw, Hsiung tabled for top two pair, and Hellmuth showed for a pair of very cracked pocket aces. Jenkins took over the main pot when the made his straight on the turn, and the river brought the to give Jenkins the main pot, Hsiung the side pot, and Hellmuth a much earlier exit to the Main Event than he wanted.
As the night wore on, online qualifier Matt Affleck surged forward to close out the day with 1,819,000, good enough for the chip lead. Ludovic Lacay, who began Day 4 in second chip position, ended it the same way, this time on a stack of 1,608,000. Other big stacks at the end of the day included James Akenhead, Jordan Morgan, and Tom Lutz. Phil Ivey and Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier both finished the day with big stacks and put themselves in position to make a deep run on Day 5. Other notable survivors included Tom Schneider, Lou Diamond Phillips, Joe Hachem, and Joe Sebok.
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