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2011 World Series of Poker Day 21: Two Bracelets Awarded and Selbst Leads Event #35

Vanessa Selbst

Day 21 of the 2011 World Series of Poker saw two bracelets awarded, including the $10,000 Stud 8 or Better Championship where Phil Hellmuth was going for his 12th career bracelet. Event #34, $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em, thinned the field as they battled towards the final table and the $5,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Six-Handed Event drew the pros out in force to degen it up.

Event #32: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em

The third day of the $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em event started with 35 players and all were looking to take home the bracelet. After a few hours of play, the final table was reached and it looked to be a long night at the tables. Ben White led with 2.46 million followed by Kirk Caldwell, who followed by only 50,000.

Action was intense in the early goings as the final table was cut from nine to four players in about an hour. From that point, things slowed down a bit as the event ground down to the final two players. It was the initial chip leaders, Ben White and Kirk Caldwell that faced off heads-up for the bracelet. Caldwell had a 8.75 million to 3.95 million chip lead at the beginning of heads-up play.

Things started off slowly in the match-up and then suddenly the event was over in one dramatic flash. After Caldwell raised to 300,000 from the button, White three-bet to 900,000. Caldwell then moved all-in and was called. Caldwell showed pocket eights and was racing against {A-Clubs}{Q-Spades}. The flop of {7-Hearts}{9-Diamonds}{9-Hearts} and turn {j-Clubs} missed both players, but when the {8s) hit the river, Caldwell had a set and the victory.

Kirk Caldwell won the Event #32 bracelet and $668,292.

All of the final table action can be found in our live reporting blog.

Event #33: $10,000 Stud 8 or Better Championship

On Monday, the $10,000 Stud 8 or Better Championship started with 18 players, but most eyes were on Phil Hellmuth, watching to see whether he could win his 12th bracelet. Hellmuth made the final table but was facing a stiff field that included chip leader Eric Rodawig, David Benyamine, Ted Forrest, Joe Tehan, and John Racener.

Hellmuth battled with a short stack for a good part of the final table but somehow always managed to find a way to survive. While Hellmuth was merely surviving, Eric Rodawig was thriving as he retained his chip lead over the course of the final table and steadily built upon it.

Phil Hellmuth did manage to make his way heads-up in the event with Eric Rodawig, but he was facing a severe chip deficit. Eric Rodawig held 4.4 million to Hellmuth's 635,000. Hellmuth built his stack up to 1.3 million at one point, but that is as close as this match-up got. Rodawig ground Hellmuth back down to 520,000 and with 100,000 and 200,000 betting, Hellmuth was in double-up or fold mode.

Hellmuth was down to around 400,000 when he put the last of his chips in with {J-Clubs}{10-Clubs}{9-Hearts} against the {A-Hearts}{8-Diamonds}{3-Clubs}. Through sixth street, Rodawig picked up {2-Spades}{2-Clubs}{3-Diamonds} to make two pair. Hellmuth picked up {5-Clubs}{4-Hearts}{7-Spades} and needed one of the three eights in the deck to survive, as long as Rodawig did not fill up. Rodawig caught a king on the river, giving Hellmuth hope, but Hellmuth turned over the {j-Hearts}, and, once again, Hellmuth was denied his 12th bracelet.

Eric Rodawig went wire-to-wire at this final table to win the $10,000 Stud 8 or Better Championship and $442,183.

Read more about this final table in our live reporting pages.

Event #34: $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em

Day 2 of this $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em Event started with 323 players already in the money and looking to make their way to the final table. As the day played on, the field thinned and players departed to collect their winnings. Among those cashing in this event were Anthony Harb, Mark Segal, Barry Shulman, La Sengphet, Peter Gelencser, Matt Affleck, Shawn Busse, Lars Bonding, and Chad Batista.

After 10 levels of play, 27 players remained to play to the bracelet on Tuesday. Mike Souza is the current chip leader with 650,000. Play in this event will resume at 14:30 PDT (2130 GMT) on Tuesday.

Where did your favorite player finish? Read our blog and find out.

Event #35: $5,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Six-Handed

The $5,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Six-Handed event was the only new event to kick off on Monday. This is also the first ever six-handed Omaha event in WSOP history. A field of 507 took to the felt to create a prize pool of $2.38 million. First place will receive $548,095 and the bracelet.

Among the players that put up the $5,000 buy-in were John Juanda, T.J. Cloutier, Sorel Mizzi, David Benefield, Vanessa Selbst, Jake Cody, Phil "OMGClayAiken" Galfond, Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi, Matt Jarvis, Dan Shak, Annette Obrestad, Van Marcus, and Praz Bansi.

Vanessa Selbst was the chip leader to finish Day 1. She will lead a field of 110 into Day 2 action. Selbst already has a PLO bracelet on her resume and is always a threat in these events. Erick Lindgren, Shaun Deeb, Mike McDonald, Peter Jetten, David "DevilFish" Ulliott, and Joseph Cheong round out the top 10 in chips.

For all the Day 1 action, read our live coverage pages.

On Tap

A bracelet will be rewarded in Event #34, and the $5,000 Pot-Limit Omaha event will play to both the money and possibly the final table. Two new events will kick off on Tuesday, as well. The $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em event should draw a large field at 1200 PDT (1900 GMT), while the pros and the mixed game experts will take the field for the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship in the evening.


The PokerNews Podcast team returned to work on Monday and discussed events of the past weekend at the Rio. They were then joined by Jordan "jymaster11" Young who talked with them about his second year at the WSOP and about his upcoming feature article for PokerNews.

The PokerNews Podcast should be a part of your podcast playlist. Click here to listen.

Video of the Day

Chris Lee won the $2,500 10-Game Mix bracelet on Sunday. Lynn Gilmartin caught up with Lee after the bracelet ceremony on Monday to talk about his victory.

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