Day 3 Completed
Day 3 Completed
The most prestigious Pot-Limit Omaha tournament on the annual poker calendar is gearing up for the big showdown as the final table of Event #45: $25,000 Pot-Limit Omaha High Roller is set with seven players remaining. Three former bracelet winners will aim to add one more to their collection during the 2019 World Series of Poker and the lion's share of the $6,602,500 prize pool is still up for grabs in the record-breaking event when a champion will be crowned at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino.
Out of 278 entries - 48 more than the previous record field in 2018 - it is Stephen Chidwick that soared to the top of the leaderboard throughout eight hour-long levels. The British poker pro headed to Las Vegas later than usual after the birth of his first child and entered his first WSOP event of the summer at the last minute in the first break of Day 2. One day later, Chidwick is in prime position to claim his maiden bracelet after bagging up 12,975,000.
Alex Epstein already knows like what it takes to overcome a tough field at the 2019 WSOP as he scored his first bracelet at the start of the series in Event #8: $10,000 Short Deck No-Limit Hold'em. He will be second in chips with 10,800,000 and a huge gap follows to third-placed Robert Mizrachi, who enters the final day with 5,525,000. Mizrachi will aim for his fifth bracelet, a feat that his brother Michael accomplished just a few days ago.
James Chen was the dominating chip leader in the first few levels of the day, but late clashes with Chidwick reduced his stack to a comparatively meagre 3,100,000. If he manages to spin up his stack, a maiden bracelet for both him and his home country of Taiwan awaits.
Wasim “Wes” Korkis (4,225,000), eight-time WSOP bracelet winner Erik Seidel (2,950,000) and Matthew Gonzales (1,100,000) round up the final table line up. Korkis is a cash game player that takes part in his first major PLO tournament and he has already locked a payday of $197,637. Gonzales will record his seventh cash of the series and he was previously featured on the final table of Event #29: $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship, in which he finished 7th for $54,043.
The final table will get underway at 12 noon local time on the main feature stage, also commonly referred to as the 'Thunderdome' and two seven-figure scores, as well as the coveted gold bracelet, will be up for grabs at returning blinds of 100,000/200,000.
Among those to bust on the penultimate day were Aussie Poker Hall of Famer Joe Hachem, Dan Smith, all-time tournament money list leader Justin Bonomo, Paul Volpe, Anson Tsang and online wizards Laszlo “omaha4rollz” Bujtas and Niklas “Lena900” Astedt.
Event #45: $25,000 Pot-Limit Omaha High Roller Final Table
|Seat||Player||Country||Chip Count||Big Blinds|
|1||Erik Seidel||United States||2,950,000||15|
|3||Robert Mizrachi||United States||5,525,000||28|
|4||Stephen Chidwick||United Kingdom||12,975,000||65|
|5||Matthew Gonzales||United States||1,100,000||6|
|6||Alex Epstein||United States||10,800,000||54|
|7||Wasim Korkis||United States||4,225,000||21|
Action of the Day
The remaining 39 players were barely back in their seats when the first seat open occurred in quick succession. Joe Hachem was felted in the first hand and he was soon followed to the rail by Michael Drummond, Eddie Ochana, Dan Smith and Justin Bonomo. Lion Boulos ended up all in with aces versus aces and Joni Jouhkimainen turned a straight with his two kickers. Just a moment later, Ryan Laplante also had his aces cracked and headed to the payout desk.
Niklas Astedt saw his hopes of a deep run destroyed by pocket aces, as Alex Epstein flopped two pair and a straight draw followed by a full house on the turn. Laszlo Bujtas departed at the same time and Benoit Galland made it three casualties in two minutes to whittle the field down to the last three tables. The second level of the day had not been completed by then and the elimination of Jouhkimainen vaulted James Chen into the top spot.
Chen increased his stack to one-fourth of the chips in play after taking a big pot off Anson Tsang, and Stephen Chidwick turned a flush against Lautaro Guerra to start his rise up the leaderboard. The High Roller regulars Sean Winter and Paul Volpe vanished in quick succession and Tsang's bid of a second Omaha bracelet was cut short after he was sent to the rail by Chidwick. Tsang flopped the world with top pair, an open-ended straight draw and flush draw. However, Chidwick aces were accompanied by a five and a seven, which both hit on turn and river to give the Brit a full house.
Evan Krentzman and Ben Tollerene were joined on the rail by Veselin Karakitukov and Esther Taylor, who had previously reached the final table of this very event in 2016 and 2017 respectively. Karakitukov failed to hold up with aces versus kings and James Chen held up with a pair against the straight draw of Taylor to reduce the field to one table.
Nine hopefuls headed into the dinner break and another two would run out of chips in the following two hour-levels. Ryan Tosoc got short, doubled and then busted on his second all in showdown against Stephen Chidwick. A few minutes later, Ka Kwan Lau sent his chips over to Alex Epstein and Chidwick pulled into the lead by claiming two pots against Chen.
Tune back in when a new Pot-Limit Omaha High Roller champion will be crowned at the 2019 WSOP, as the PokerNews team will provide all the action from start to finish with six and seven-figure paydays on the line.
James Chen limped under the gun and Erik Seidel checked his big blind.
The flop was . Seidel checked and Chen bet 200,000. Seidel check-raised pot to 1,000,000 straight and Chen re-raised and Seidel was all in for 1,310,000.
The turn and river changed nothing and Seidel's two pair held to double up late on Day 2.
Alex Epstein raised to 400,000 first to act and picked up calls from James Chen in the cutoff and Stephen Chidwick in the small blind. The flop came and the action checked to Chen, who made it 750,000 to go. Chidwick check-raised to 1,900,000 and that won yet another pot for the Brit.
Action was on a river of a with 1.5m chips in the middle. Stephen Chidwick, out of the big blind, bet pot or 1,530,000 and his opponent James Chen was tanking.
He eventually called and Chidwick showed for sevens and fives with a queen kicker. Chen looked aghast and turned over for sevens and fives with a ten kicker and handed over a chunk of chips to Chidwick.
After a brief discussion with tournament staff and the production team, it has been decided that the action for tonight will conclude at the end of the current level even if seven players remain.
In a limped battle of the blinds, Alex Epstein and Wasim Korkis checked the flop and Epstein check-called a bet on the turn for 300,000. Epstein then checked the river and Korkis wasted little time before placing a bet of 800,000.
"You played this hand very strange," Epstein remarked almost immediately. He gave it more than two minutes of consideration while riffling his chips and eventually made the call.
Korkis rolled over for the nut straight and Epstein mucked face up.
Ka Kwan Lau raised to 560,000 and Alex Epstein defended his big blind.
The flop came and Epstein check-jammed with Lau calling.
Ka Kwan Lau:
"Too many outs?" asked Epstein who held straight and flush draws.
The turn was the but the river improved him to a flush and sent Lau to the rail.
Ryan Tosoc raised to 440,000 with around 650,000 behind and Stephen Chidwick in the big blind double-checked the stack size of Tosoc before making the call. On the flop, Chidwick checked and called the shove of Tosoc to set up the following showdown.
Chidwick was in the lead with his pair of queens and Tosoc needed an ace or back door spades and straight cards to remain in contention. Instead, the turn left him drawing dead and he tapped the table in defeat. A meaningless came on the river and Tosoc grabbed his belongings to head to the payout desk and collect $116,656 for his efforts.