We've just had our second double elimination in the last few hours, and this one has taken the tournament life of the final Frenchman left standing.
It began with Arnaud Mattern opening to 60,000, and Alex Dovzhenko three-bet shoved for 455,000. When the table folded around to Elio Fox, he announced a cold four-bet -- all in with his big stack. That brought it back to Mattern, and he quickly announced, "I'm all in," as well! That closed that closed the action, and it put he and Fox at risk.
As the cameras established their shots, the cards had to be held, but Mattern didn't want to slowroll. "I have them," he said. Fox asked again to make sure, and Mattern nodded. "I have them."
Mattern was smiling at the situation in front of him, poised to drag what was possibly the largest pot of the tournament. He was at risk for 1.455 million, but the news would soon turn sour. The dealer rolled out a devil of a flop, and just like that, Fox sprang into a huge lead with two to come. The turn was a big sweat for Mattern, and now the smirk returned -- although this smirk was a bit different than the showdown smirk. A more nervous smirk.
Dovzhenko was drawing dead, and he wasn't too happy about it.
Mattern needed to find the case ace or any diamond to drag the pot.
That's as blank as it gets, and Fox is going to spend the next few minutes stacking chips. Dovzhenko falls in 11th place, Mattern in 10th, and it's now Fox in front of the pack. He was fifth from the bottom when we had 16 players, but he now finds himself sitting behind about 3.9 million chips.
It's worth noting that this is Mattern's third consecutive cash in this WSOPE Main Event. In 2009, he ran top 23rd place (£25,918), and last year, he topped that with a 12th-place showing, good for £54,114. He's done even better this time around, but it's likely not going to feel good. He'll have to settle for €90,000 and a one-year delay on his final table appearance.
We're down to nine players, and we need to combine, but there's a hand in progress at the main table as we speak...