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Sorel Mizzi and Joseph Cheong Chop Bellagio's $25,000 High Roller

Sorel Mizzi & Joseph Cheong

This past weekend the Bellagio held a $25,000 High Roller tournament that attracted just six participants — Cary Katz, Joseph Cheong, Roger Sippl, Sorel Mizzi, Tom Marchese, and Scott Seiver. After approximately seven hours of play, Mizzi and Cheong chopped the $271,700 prize pool with Mizzi receiving $149,707 and Cheong getting $121,993.

Eric Rosenberger, author of Poker: A Different Level of Thinking, live reported the event for Poker Telegraph, and according to his live blog, there were five reentries during the tournament including Seiver, Cheong, and Sippl.

Sippl’s first bullet missed its mark about four hours into the tournament. It happened when Katz opened for a raise in the under-the-gun position only to have Sippl three-bet to 5,000 from the small blind. Katz responded by moving all in, Sippl called off, and the cards were turned up.

Katz: {a-Diamonds}{q-Hearts}
Sippl: {j-Clubs}{j-Hearts}

According to the PokerNews Odds Calculator, Sippl was a 56.72% favorite, but Katz would win 42.88% of the time. The {a-Spades}{5-Diamonds}{k-Diamonds} flop was disaster for Sippl as Katz found an ace to become an overwhelming 91.72% favorite. Sippl needed a jack or running straight cards — something that’d happen a mere 8.27% of the time — but he came up empty handed as both the turn and river blanked.

Around six hours into the tournament, Marchese moved all in from the small blind holding the {a-Spades}{q-Diamonds} and received Mizzi, who held the {k-Hearts}{j-Hearts} in the big, called off. The {k-}{6-}{6-} flop gave Mizzi the lead, and another king on the turn improved him to a full house. Mizzi doubled on the hand, and it ended up being the start of a heater. Within 40 minutes he would eliminate Marchese, Katz, and Sippl, which left just three players remaining in contention.

At that point, Seiver moved all in with the {a-Clubs}{q-Hearts} and was flipping against Mizzi’s {10-}{10-}. The board ran out {4-Hearts}{6-Hearts}{5-Spades}{k-Clubs}{7-Clubs} and Mizzi’s pocket pair held to send Seiver home as the bubble boy. Mizzi and Cheong then negotiated a chop and concluded the tournament.

For more information on the tournament check out

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