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WSOP Circuit Harrah's Tunica Day 2: Final Table Set with Nguyen in the Lead

John Nguyen

The World Series of Poker Circuit Main Event at Harrah's in Tunica, Mississippi, continued on Monday with Day 2 action. Of the original 480 entries, only 111 players returned to compete for their share of the $698,400 prize pool, including the first-place prize of $148,612. By the end of the night, the final table had been reached, which included John Nguyen who will enter the final day with a 2.3 million chip lead.

Nguyen managed to maintain a slow and steady approach as he built his monster stack. Along the way, he even managed to knock out some tough opponents. In one hand, action folded on the button to WSOP-C regular Kai Landry who put in a raise only to be faced with reraise from Nguyen in the small blind. Landry moved all in for around 210,000 and Nguyen called:

Nguyen: {K-Diamonds}{J-Clubs}
Landry: {A-Hearts}{J-Diamonds}

Landry was ahead but not after Nguyen hit the {K-Spades}{8-Hearts}{5-Clubs} flop. Suddenly, Landry needed an ace to stay alive. The {Q-Spades} on the turn gave him some straight outs, but the {9-Hearts} on the river completely missed and he was eliminated in 22nd place. That hand brought Nguyen up to 1 million. A couple hours later, Jim Dowen moved all in for 155,000 on a board reading {Q-Hearts}{A-Spades}{5-Hearts}{3-Hearts}. There was already around 100,000 in the pot and Nguyen made the easy call with his {A-Clubs}{3-Clubs} two pair. Dowen’s {Q-Diamonds}{7-Clubs} was no good and the {4-Clubs} on the river didn’t help him, sending him home in 13th place while bringing Nguyen up to 1.63 million. From there, he never looked back.

While Ngueyn fared well on Day 2, not everyone was so lucky. Tommy Vedes started the day second in chips with 246,300 (just T100 behind the chip leader) and was a clear favorite. Unfortunately, things turned disastrous when he held {A-}{9-} on a {9-}{10-}{2-}{9-} board against Jesse White who held {Q-}{J-}.All the money went in the pot, approximately 350,000 with White at risk, but a {K-} on the river gave him a straight and knocked Vedes down to 115,000. Shortly, Vedes moved all in for around 64,000 after Mohammed Ali Khan had raised to 12,000 from the hijack. Khan made the call and the cards were turned up:

Vedes: {A-Hearts}{K-Hearts}
Khan: {9-Hearts}{9-Spades}

It was a race that Vedes just couldn't catch up in as the board ran out {Q-Clubs}{7-Diamonds}{2-Clubs}{5-Diamonds}{2-Hearts}. Amazingly, Vedes was out of the WSOP-C Harrah’s Tunica Main Event.

Others who began Day 2 but fell shy of the money were Kevin Calenzo, Traci Brown, Jonathan Holloway, and Todd McKellar. On the other hand, a slew of players who fell in Day 2 action managed to crack the top 54 and make the money including: Jeff Gibralter (50th- $2,654), Rusty Boyker (39th- $2,896), Stephen Kats (31st- $3,574), Kai Landry (22nd- $5,378), and Dale Slatton (16th- $7,534).

One of the most interesting story lines of Day 2 was that of La Sengphet, who had won a WSOP gold circuit ring by taking down Event #41: $555 NLHE in Tunica. That win gave her some major points in the race to become Casino Champion, which would automatically qualify her for the WSOP-C National Championship. Unfortunately, Sengphet’s run came to an end in tenth place when her {A-Diamonds}{10-Clubs} was outdrawn by Jesse White's {K-Spades}{10-Spades}. With Sengphet's elimination, Kyle Cartwright, the two-time Tunica ring winner, officially locked up the “Casino Champ” designation and will be playing in the WSOP-C National Championship in May.

Here is a look at the final table heading into the last day of the Main Event:

WSOP-C Harrah’s Tunica Final Table

Seat 1Mary Harden (Ooltewah, TN)1,281,000
Seat 2Kurt Jewell (Frankfurt, KY)1,851,000
Seat 3John Holley (Dustin, FL)561,000
Seat 4Sam Barnhart (Little Rock, AK)758,000
Seat 5John Nguyen (Fairview Heights, IL)2,300,000
Seat 6Jesse White (Billings, MT)923,000
Seat 7Preston Durden (Houston, TX)497,000
Seat 8Brian Burney (Branson, Mo)901,000
Seat 9Marco Palacios (Austin, TX)440,000

Day 3 of the WSOP-C Harrah’s Tunica is set to begin at Noon CST on Tuesday and will play down to a winner. The PokerNews Live Reporting Team will bring you all the action and eliminations as we look forward to the crowning of another WSOP-C Main Event champion and find the next two qualifiers for the WSOP-C National Championship.

If you want a full recap of all the Day 2 action from the WSOP-C Harrah’s Tunica Main Event, visit our live reporting blog. Also, be sure to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

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