No fewer than eight events were on the schedule Wednesday at the 2019 World Series of Poker with two players grabbing bracelets – one for the first time ever and one for the first time in a long time – and one of the WSOP’s best stories of the last five years continued to shine against poker’s elite.
Big 50 Field Dwindles Down to ‘Just’ 127 Players
From a record-shattering field of 28,371 players, just 127 remain in the Big 50 with Amer Torbey leading the way. The Venezualan finished Day 3 with 32,500,000, which put him just ahead of David Rasmussen, who finished with 32,125,000.
There are just a handful of familiar faces still in contention for the $1.14 million first place prize. Dioga Veiga, who won a bracelet last summer, sits in third. Jason Wheeler, Allen Cunningham, Danny Wong, and Toto Leonidas all return to Day 4 on Thursday.
Wednesday marked the first time that all remaining players were playing on the same day. The 1,597 players who survived Day 2A, 2B, 2C, and 2D were combined into day 3. The day was not without problems. The 1,770 bustouts on Day 3 made for long payout lines and caused multiple pauses in play.
Some of the players who were sent to those lines on Wednesday included Ryan Hohner (155th – $7,169), Isaac Baron (166th -$7,169), Amit Makhija (211th – $6,054), Ismael Bojang (245th – $6,054), Kenny Tran (381st – $5,144), Scott Davies (424th – $4,397), Christian Soto (431st – $4,397), Ari Engel (513th – $3,782), and Asher Conniff (591st – $3,782).
Action resumes at 11 AM PT and is scheduled to continue until just six players remain.
Top 10 Chip Counts
- Amer Torbey – 32,500,000
- David Rasmussen – 32,125,000
- Diogo Veiga – 30,700,000
- Andrei Konopelko – 30,200,000
- John McAvoy – 30,000,000
- Evan Johnson – 29,400,000
- Cavan Chan – 29,050,000
- Sebastien Vincent – 29,000,000
- Jesse Solano – 24,000,025
- Danny Ehrenberger – 23,800,000
Jeremy Pekarek Wins $600 Deepstack
The $600 Deepstack was a two-day tournament that took three days to complete, but that was no problem for 30-year-old poker pro Jeremy Pekarek. He beat out the 6,150-player field to win $398,281 and his first WSOP bracelet.
Finding himself in the winner’s photo with a WSOP bracelet is ar different from where Pekarek was not that long ago.
“Two years ago I was broke and taking the bus to work, and I was trying to fight just to stay and play poker,” said Pekarek. “This is what I really wanted to do, but I wasn’t able to admit that I wasn’t really good enough to do it. Being able to accept that and take on the challenge, take responsibility for my own skill and move forward was key, I feel like, to getting here.”
Pekarek beat Dan Kuntzman heads-up to claim the victory. Kuntzman walked away with $245,881. Pekarek saved most of his heavy lifting for three-handed play. The only two players he eliminated at the final table were Kuntzman and third place finisher Juan Hernandez.
The event, which had 30-minute levels on Day 1, was originally scheduled to take just two days but the overflow crowd from the Big 50 pushed the field well past anticipated numbers, necessitating a third day of play.
Final Table Payouts
- Jeremy Pekarek – $398,281
- Dan Kuntzman – $245,881
- Juan Hernandez – $182,173
- Benjamin Underwood – $135,959
- Noomis Jones – $102,216
- Tan Nguyen – $77,418
- Paul Jain – $59,075
- John Skrovan – $45,418
- David Elet – $35,183
A Third Bracelet for Scott Clements in $1,500 Dealers Choice
Scott Clements has six second-place finishes in his WSOP career and as the final table of the $1,500 Dealers Choice event played down to a winner on Wednesday, Clements was determined to avoid adding a seventh.
Clements won his third career bracelet by beating Timothy McDermott heads up. The 37-year-old father of three had previously won bracelets in 2006 and 2007.
“I was pretty cocky back then, when I won the first two right off,” Clements said. “Plus, I’ve got three kids, so I can give them all a bracelet.”
His first two bracelets came in Omaha Hi-Lo and Pot Limit Omaha, but Clements didn’t really on his mastery of the four-card game when choosing which games to play throughout this tournament.
“I usually just tried to pick whatever people looked like they didn’t want to be picked. I felt pretty comfortable in most of the games,” Clements said. “I’m not always right, and sometimes I’m just lazy and I take whatever the last person picked if I can’t think of anything better. I didn’t have any specific scenario but I kept picking what I thought people were not as good at.”
Final Table Payouts
- Scott Clements – $144,957
- Timothy McDermott – $89,567
- Michael Ross – $58,718
- Naoya Kihara – $39,377
- Wes Self – $27,027
- Benny Glaser – $18,996
Shannon Shorr Leads Stacked $5K NLHE Final Table
Eight times in his WSOP career, Shannon Shorr has made the final of a WSOP event and failed to bring home the bracelet. All of that could change on Thursday though, as Shorr leads the final six players in the $5,000 No Limit Hold’em event. He has a talented group of players chasing him though.
Serbia’s Ognjen Sekularac sits second with 2,000,000 and Ali Imsirovic is right behind him with 1,955,000. Maria Ho (720,000), Daniel Strelitz (705,000), and Arsenii ‘josef_shvejk’ Karmatckii (510,000) make up the bottom three stacks. Those five players combine for fewer than the 6,020,000 that Shorr will start play with on Thursday.
Action resumes at Noon PT and will be streamed live on CBS All Access for fans in USA, Canada, and Australia and on PokerGO for fans in other countries.
Final Table Chip Counts
- Shannon Shorr – 6,020,000
- Ognjen Sekularac – 2,000,000
- Ali Imsirovic – 1,955,000
- Maria Ho – 720,000
- Daniel Strelitz – 705,000
- Arsenii Karmatckii – 510,000
Ajay Chabra Leads $1,500 No Limit 2-7 Final Table
Just six players are left out of 296 runners in the $1,500 No Limit 2-7 event and Ajay Chabra takes a commanding chip lead to Thursday’s final table.
Chabra bagged up 1,031,000 which is almost double that of his nearest competitor, Jerry Wong who finished with 535,000. Steven Tabb, who finished 22nd in this event last summer, starts the final table in third with 522,000.
There were 63 players at the start of play on Wednesday and only 44 made it into the money. Rep Porter was the bubble but Brian Yoon, Jony TUrner, Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth, Jennifer Harman, Shaun Deeb, and Frank Kassela all managed to pick up a cash.
Final Table Chip Counts
- Ajay Chabra – 1,031,000
- Jerry Wong – 535,000
- Steven Tabb – 522,000
- Yuval Bronshtein – 378,000
- Michael Sortino – 350,000
- Bjorn Geissert – 170,000
$1,500 HORSE Draws 751 Runners; Mark Castagnini Leads
It might not seem like a big bump compared to the fields of the Big 50 or the $600 Deepstack, but 751 players jumped into the $1,500 HORSE event to give it a 20-player boost last year.
Mark Castagnini finished Day 1 with 74,700 which put him just ahed of Jean Gaspard (72,100) and Clayton Mozdzen (71,500).
Andre Akkari, Jesse Martin, Matt Grapenthien, Ylon Schwartz, Shawn Buchanan, David Bach, Anthony Zinno, and Phillip Hui are just some of the notables who managed to move on to Day 2.
Top 10 Chip Counts
- Mark Castagnini – 74,700
- Jean Gaspard – 72,100
- Clayton Mozdzen – 71,500
- Chris Klodnicki – 68,500
- Laurent Manderlier -65,9001
- David ‘ODB’ Baker – 65,100
- Don Zewin – 61,400
- Raul Paez – 61,000
- Tony Ma SOUTH – 60,800
- Mark Gregorich – 60,300
John Smith Continues to Dominate $10,000 Heads Up Championship
There are just 16 players left in the $10,000 Heads Up Championship event but all eyes are squarely on one competitor: John Smith.
In 2016 and 2017, Smith finished runner-up in this event. In 2014 he finished 11th. Along the way he beat the likes of Ryan Riess, Chance Kornuth, Dietrich Fast, Alex Luneau, Antonio Esfandiari, Phil Ivey, Leo Fernandez, and Eric Froehlich to advance. This year he started things off by dispatching Scott Seiver in the first round.
Phil Hellmuth was the last player eliminated on Day 1, losing to Jake Schindler in the wee hours of Thursday morning.
There will be eight matches at the start of Day 2:
- John Smith vs. Jimmy Dambrosio
- Jan Lakota vs. Sean Swingruber
- Ricky Guan vs. Cord Garcia
- Matthias Eibinger vs. Zachary Clark
- Kristen Bicknell vs. Brian Rast
- Richard Tuhrim vs. Ben Yu
- Simon Burns vs. Keith Lehr
- Ole Schemion vs. Jake Schindler
Richard Hasnip Leads After Day 1 of $1,500 Six Max NLHE
The final event to start on Wednesday was the $1,500 Six Max No Limit Hold’em. There were 1,832 runners for this one, an increase of 169 players over 2018. Finishing the first day with the chip lead was Britain’s Richard Hasnip with 559,000
Chance Kornuth, David Benyamine, Asher Conniff, Shaun Deeb, Jeff Madsen, Anatoly Filatov, Adrian Mateos, and Brian Yoon, are some of the notables moving on to Day 2. Just 289 players survived and action gets underway on Thursday just 14 eliminations shy of the money.
Top 10 Chip Counts
- Richard Hasnip – 559,000
- Bruce Uselman – 490,000
- Johan Guilbert – 476,000
- Alex Lee – 475,000
- Kainalu Mccue-Unciano – 444,000
- Uri Reichenstein – 424,000
- Linglin Zeng – 419,500
- Hans Joachim – 416,500
- Farhad Davoudzadeh – 402,500
- Stephen Graner – 394,000