2019 WSOP Main Event: Morrone Leads After Day 4; Super Bowl Winner Seymour Bags Big

2019 WSOP Main Event: Morrone Leads After Day 4; Superbowl Winner Seymour Bags Big

The atmosphere late on Day 4 of the World Series of Poker Main Event couldn’t be any more different than just 24 hours earlier.

Gone was the excitement and camaraderie among the 1,286 who secured themselves a $15,000 payday. Instead, the tournament was underlined by an exciting tension that came with players realizing that their Main Event journeys will stretch into a fifth day. Not all players will say it, but every remaining hopeful will be thinking that they could win the WSOP Main Event.

Each one of the 354 players through to Day 5 knows that they have a long way ahead of them to win the Main Event and will be looking up the leaderboard when play resumes on July 10th at noon.

That leaderboard includes soe big names with big stacks, such as Day 3 chip leader Preben Stokkan (2,900,000), former American footballer and three-time Super Bowl winner Richard Seymour (2,750,000, lead photo), former WSOP bracelet winners Antonio Esfandiari (2,583,000) and Craig McCorkell (2,580,000), Romain Lewis (2,368,000), Dario Sammartino (2,302,000), Todd Brunson (1,151,000), Mike Matusow (726,000), and 2013 WSOP Main Event runner-up Jay Farber (436,000) to name just a few.

Top 10 Chip Counts After 2019 WSOP Main Event Day 4

#PlayerCountryChip CountBig Blinds
1Dean MorroneCanada4,980,000208
2Lars BondingDenmark4,040,000168
3Michael MessickUnited States3,925,000164
4Warwick MirzikinianAustralia3,900,000163
5Henrik HecklenDenmark3,862,000161
6Mihai ManoleRomania3,781,000158
7Robert HeidornUnited Kingdom3,700,000154
8Sean MillsUnited Kingdom3,692,000154
9Christopher WynkoopUnited States3,563,700148
10Andrew BrokosUnited States3,518,000147

O Canada! Morrone Leads the Way

As well as a long list of notables still in with a shot of taking home the $10,000,00 first prize, Dean Morrone is the current chip leader after winning his way into the Main Event for just $100. The Canadian with only just over $10,000 in lifetime earnings, has more than tripled that already, with every player remaining in the Main Event guaranteed $34,845.

Morrone started with just 365,000 in chips but bagged an impressive 4,980,000 at the end of the night, which will be good enough for 208 big blinds when play resumes.

"I can't believe this is real life. I've watched this tournament on TV over the years, always just manifested me playing it, it's all coming into effect. [...] To be able to play with the big boys; it's really exciting."

After finding out he had the chip lead, Morrone had the following to say: "It feels like an absolute simulation, I can't believe this is real life. I've watched this tournament on TV over the years, always just manifested me playing it, it's all coming into effect.

"I've got the most unreal support group of family at home. They have been sending me all the energy in the world. To be able to play with the big boys; it's really exciting.

"I qualified through 888poker in for $100 online, so even a min-cash is really huge to me. Anything past that is going to be extra, so I can't wait for tomorrow!"

There were several key hands for Morrone right off the bat, as he flopped a few sets that all held.

"Later on the day, an older gentleman gifted me about 120 big blinds, drawing dead on the flop. That was an absolutely huge pot for me; it catapulted me over three million, and I haven't looked back since."

And his plan now he's bagged the chip lead? "Try to go to bed [and] store as much energy as possible; it's going to be a long day."

Dean Morrone
Dean Morrone leads after Day 4 of the 2019 WSOP Main Event

Twelfth Time's a Charm for Manole

Fellow qualifier Mihai Manole also bagged a healthy stack with 3,781,000 in chips. Manole won his seat online back in February.

"I went from the $100 step to the $1,000 Sunday step. The second time I played it this year, I made it. It felt good to have it locked up.”

One of the reasons he was happy to get it out of the way early stemmed from having dug deep in the past without success.

"I never had chips in eleven times. This is the first time I’ve had chips, so it’s becoming interesting."

“Last year I didn’t qualify, but two years ago I invested like $12,000 in satellites, and I won the seat in the final satellite for a $12,500 package,” he explained. “So, it was nice to have it right away this year.”

Yesterday he told PokerNews that he had played the Main Event eleven times and cashed only once.

"I finished in 122nd place for $52,718 in 2012,” he explained. “I never had chips in eleven times. This is the first time I’ve had chips, so it’s becoming interesting.”

Mihai Manole

Fourteen Years On, A Hachem Deep in the Main

Although no former Main Event champions made it through to Day 5 - more on that later - there will be a Main Event-winning surname in the chip counts after Daniel Hachem, son of 2005 champion Joe Hachem, bagged for Day 5.

After his father ran ace-king into aces yesterday, Daniel Hachem not only secured his third WSOP cash - and second of the summer - but saw out the day with a stack of 2,450,000.

Daniel Hachem

Eliminations on Day 4

Once play resumed at midday, the eliminations came thick and fast as short stacks got their chips in with the hope of scoring an early double to continue on their Main Event journeys.

Notable players bagging themselves a $15,000 min-cash included eight-time bracelet winner Jeff Lisandro (1,271st), three-time bracelet winner Michael Gathy (1,248th), 2014 WSOP APAC Main Event champion Scott Davies (1,191st), John ‘The Razor’ Phan (1,139th), Ben Zamani (1,135th), and 2015 Main Event fourth-place finisher Max Steinberg (1,116th).

Other players to cash on Day 4 included 2015 Main Event third-place finisher Neil Blumenfield (953rd - $17,135), Big 50 champion Femi Fashakin (917th - $17,135), 2019 bracelet winner David “ODB” Baker (873rd - $17,135), and 2016 Main Event third-place finisher Cliff Josephy (759th - $20,200).

Another 2019 bracelet winner Anatolii Zyrin cashed in his first WSOP Main Event less than a fortnight after winning his first bracelet in the $1,500 Omaha Eight-or-Better event. Zyrin finished 719th for $20,200.

Barny Boatman (466th - $30,780), Bertrand Grospellier (425th - $30,780), and Jean-Robert Bellande (415th - $30,780) were all late eliminations. Bellande fell with pocket aces against the pocket queens of Dario Marinelli after calling the latter's hand (a set of queens on the flop) before making the call on the river anyway.

Three Former Champions Depart

At the start of the day, three former champions were left, but sadly all three would bust before the day was over.

Chris Moneymaker got his last twenty big blinds in with an open-ended straight draw against the set of Ron West that held to send the 2003 champion to the rail in 687th place for $20,200.

Then came two-time Main Event champion Johnny Chan. He held a pair of eights on a six-three-deuce board and got it in against Eric Froehlich. Froehlich held a flush draw, and a fifth heart came on the turn to send the winner of ten WSOP bracelets to the rail.

That left Qui Nguyen as the last reigning champion left in the field. He seemed to be cruising until the set of Sean Mills cracked his kings. He doubled up soon after that but eventually was sent to the rail by start-of-day chip leader Preben Stokkan.

Nguyen held pocket fives, but Stokkan's sixes held to send the 2016 champion to the rail, ensuring that there will be a first-time winner of the Main Event this year.

Chris Moneymaker
Chris Moneymaker finished in 687th place for $20,200

Play resumes on July 10th at noon with the plan for the day to play five more levels. PokerNews will bring you continued WSOP Main Event Live Updates courtesy of our reporting team on the tournament floor.

Main Event recaps sponsored by Global Poker.

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European Executive Editor

Will Shillibier is based in the United Kingdom. He started working for PokerNews as a freelance live reporter in 2015 and joined the full-time staff in 2019. He graduated from the University of Kent in 2017 with a B.A. in German, and then studied for a NCTJ Diploma in Sports Journalism at Sportsbeat in Manchester.

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