The tournament rooms at the 2012 World Series of Poker were bustling on Tuesday, with five events in action at one point during the day. Canada will be well represented at two of the tournament final tables to be played on Wednesday and two more events will join the four that are at some stage of play.
Event #9 – $1500 No Limit Hold’em Re-Entry – Day Four
33 players came back to determine a final table on Tuesday in what is the largest tournament as of yet on the 2012 WSOP schedule. The $1500 No Limit Hold’em Re-Entry event, with its 3404 entries, built a $4.6 million prize pool and one of the final nine players today will take down a $781,398 bankroll boost.
Defending $50K Poker Players’ Champion Brian Rast headed the field at the start of the day with five Canadians – Jonathan Duhamel, Daniel Idema, Ashkan Razavi, Greg Mueller and Domenico Scalamogna – a part of the throng looking to bring Rast back to earth. Razavi and Mueller got off to excellent starts, with Razavi taking out Paul Wasicka and Mueller eliminating Anthony Leshnack, but Duhamel had his gear in reverse. He decided to battle against Rast with pocket Queens, only to see Rast’s A-3 hit on the 9-6-A flop. Down to 27 players less than two hours into play, Duhamel had gone from the Top Five to one of the shorter stacks in the tournament.
While Razavi continued his upward climb in chewing up Samuel Grafton, Duhamel would meet his tournament maker in a double elimination. After a limp from Barry Hutter and a call from Rast, the 2010 World Champion would push out a three bet, leaving only 100K behind him. Hutter moved all in and was called by Rast; Duhamel reluctantly put in his final chips and tabled his K-J, which was behind both Hutter (pocket tens) and Rast (A-Q). A Queen on the flop pushed Rast into the lead and neither Hutter nor Duhamel could catch up, knocking Duhamel out in 21st place and Hutter in 20th.
Three and a half hours into battle, the final 18 were determined. With only nine more eliminations to the final table, four of Canada’s sons were still in contention for the championship. Two would be eliminated over the next three hours, with Scalamogna departing in 18th place (by Day One overall chip leader Giorgio Medici) and Idema out in 14th place (also by Medici). Once Aviraham Lovton was dumped from the tournament in tenth place by Benjamin Reinhart, the final table was set:
2. Brian Rast, 2.415 million
3. Amanda Musumeci, 2.040 million
4. Duy Ho, 1.990 million
5. Benjamin Reinhart, 1.8 million
6. Ashkan Razavi, 985K
7. Greg Mueller, 820K
8. Dien Le, 775K
9. Derrick Huang, 760K
The final table begins this afternoon at 1PM (Pacific Time) with Razavi and Mueller with some work to do to contend for the title, but it is well within their reach to become the first Canadian bracelet winner of the 2012 WSOP.
Event #10 – $5000 Seven Card Stud – Final Day
While there were no Canadians among the sixteen players remaining in this event on Tuesday, there were still some notable names that took home some cash for their efforts. Nick Schulman (16th), Mike Sexton (15th), Yuval Bronshtein (14th), Max Pescatori (12th), Cyndy Violette (11th) and Eugene Katchalov (9th) all came up short of the final table but took home five figure paydays for their efforts.
In the end, John Monnette earned his second ever WSOP bracelet by defeating Huu Vinh in heads up play to take down $190,826. Also among the players at the final table were Perry Friedman (fourth, $53,470), Jeff Lisandro (fifth, $41,789) and Bryn Kenney (seventh, $27,062.
Event #11 – $1500 Pot Limit Omaha – Day Two
The 117 players who cashed in this tournament came back on Tuesday to work down to the final table, an audacious task that would last deep into the evening. Twelve Canadian men would come back to attempt to make that final table, but only one would be there when the lights fell for the night.
Marco Lang (105th) would be the first to walk out of the Rio with some cash in his pocket, followed by Jeffrey Brown (101st) and Aaron Duczak (100th, all earning $2488), Sorel Mizzi (93rd, $2697), Ryan Stauffer (86th), Calen McNeil (83rd, both earning $2933), Sean Patrick (68th, $3666) and Scott Greenhill (60th, $4177). Three more men – James Morgan (42nd, $5667), Martin Leclerc (35th, $6691) and Terrence Chan (26th, $8014) would make deeper runs, but it will be Brian Garbe who carries the Canadian banner into the arena on Wednesday.
Garbe, holding only 158K in chips in sixth place, will be looking up the leaderboard substantially when the final table plays today. Charles Tonne is the chip leader with 1.121 million in chips, with his closest competitor, Vincent van der Fluit, nearly 200K behind. The eventual champion will take home the WSOP bracelet and a $265,211 bounty for their efforts.
Event #12 – $10,000 Heads Up No Limit Hold’em World Championship – Day One
One of the two events with a Day One on Tuesday was the Heads Up World Championship fight, capped at 512 but drawing much less than that. In 2011, this tournament was a $25,000 buy in and pulled out 128 players; with the buy in this year scaled back to $10K, only 152 hardy souls stepped up to take part.
Three rounds were scheduled for play and several Canadian players were a part of the early eliminations. Matt Marafioti, who went on to the quarterfinals in this tournament last year, wasn’t able to get out of the first round this time around. Both Daniel Negreanu and Peter Jetten were one step away from reaching the Round of 32, but were eliminated (Negreanu by Jonathan Jaffe, Jetten by Steven Landfish). In fact, only one Canadian man will be taking away any money from the $1.428 million prize pool.
2011 WSOP bracelet winner Mark Radoja will look to take down his second career WSOP bracelet as he steps to table on Wednesday for his Round of 32 match against Douglas Polk. He’s joined by other notable names such as Antonio Esfandiari, Eric Froehlich, Brian Hastings, Andrew Lichtenberger, Brock Parker, Vanessa Selbst, Andrew Robl, Kevin Saul and Tommy Vedes who will vie for the $371,498 first place prize.
Event #13 – $1500 Limit Hold’em – Day One
730 players turned out for Day One of the $1500 Limit Hold’em tournament, an increase over last year’s 675 player field. Negreanu was in this one as well, but he would not be among the 222 players who will come back on Wednesday to continue the festivities. He’s joined by Terrence Chan, Tyler Bonkowski and Owen Crowe among those Canadians eliminated on Day One.
Tom Cage’s 50,500 in chips will lead the field to the line this afternoon when Day Two kicks off with Nepean’s Kalpesh Raichura in the Top Twenty with his 28,300 in chips. Joshua Biedak, Roland Kappel, Christopher Reynolds, Jaspar Brar, Jason Duong and Anh Van Nguyen will also join Raichura, albeit down the table a bit. The first prize for this tournament is $211,921 and, of course, the valued WSOP bracelet.
Event #14 – $1500 No Limit Hold’em Shootout and Event #15 – $5000 Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo – STARTING TODAY
If the above wasn’t enough poker action to get a player or fan juiced up about the 2012 WSOP, two more events will enter the fray this afternoon at the Rio with their Day One play. The $1500 NLHE Shootout is capped at 2000 players; last year, 1440 players turned out as Andrew Badecker took down his first WSOP bracelet. The $5000 Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo tournament is a scaled down version of last year’s $10,000 buy in event. In that memorable 2011 tournament, amateur Eric Rodawig denied Phil Hellmuth in his run at Bracelet #12 to take down the $442,183 first place prize.