Tony Miles had plenty of reason to smile on Friday night after taking over the WSOP Main Event chip lead with three players left.

Michael Dyer started Day 9 of the World Series of Poker Main Event with nearly 40% of the chips in play with just five opponents standing between him and $8.8 million and the title of World Champion. After six hours of play on Friday night, just three players remain but Dyer is suddenly staring up from the bottom of the chip counts after a day that saw Florida-based poker pro Tony Miles take control.

Miles went 57,500,000 and the fourth biggest stack at the start of play to 238,900,000 and the chip lead after eliminating a former world champ and putting a major dent in Dyer’s stack.

Aram Zobian Eliminated in Sixth Place

The shortest stack at the start of Day 9, Aram Zobian was still guaranteed at least $1.8 million but cem in hoping for more. A blind versus blind battle, however, ended any hope he had of laddering up on Friday night.

With blinds of 500,000/1,000,000 (150,000), action folded to Zobian in the small blind and he moved all in for 1,735,000 with 8d6d and Dyer called from the big blind with Ah8c. The board ran out KcQd2h7hTh to eliminate Zobian from the tournament in sixth place. Following his bustout, Zobian talked about what the overall experience of making the final table of the Main Event and how a score that big will change things for him.

“I would say it was intense, fun and amazing. I met a lot of people, I played a shit ton of hands, considering it was Level 38, 76 hours in the last few days,” said Zobian. “It will change my life significantly. I don’t think I’ll go too crazy, but I’ll definitely do a lot of traveling, buy a nice new car, help out family, donate some to charity and just improve my overall quality of life.”

Joe Cada Eliminated in Fifth Place

In the modern era of the WSOP Main Event, a repeat winner seems almost impossible. Navigating through 7,000+ player fields once is difficult enough and doing it a second time didn’t seem possible until 2009 Main Event champ Joe Cada made this year’s final table. All of that came to a halt though thanks to a coin flip situation.

From UTG, Cada raised to 2,200,000 with ThTs before Miles three-bet to 6,900,000 with AhKc. Cada responded by moving all in for 47,650,000 and after spending several minutes contemplating his decision, Miles called. The Ks9h8d flop put Miles ahead with a pair of kings, but the Qd turn gave Cada straight outs. The river 9s paired the board and left Cada pondering what could have been and a fifth-place finish.

Tony Miles Takes the Chip Lead from Michael Dyer

About 45 minutes after eliminating Cada, Miles put his newfound chips to work against Dyer. John Cynn raised to 2,100,000 from UTG with, Miles called from the button with 3d3h and Dyer called from the big blind with 4c3c. After the Ks4h3s flop, Dyer and Cynn checked and Miles bet 4,300,000. Dyer check-raised to 14,300,000, Cynn folded and Miles called. The turn was the 5c and Dyer bet 21,400,000 and Miles called again. Dyer then checked after the Kc river and Miles be 27,400,000 and Dyer called instantly. That put pushed Miles into the chip lead with 182,625,000 to Dyer’s 129,950,000 and dramatically changed the dynamic of the table.

Nicolas Manion Eliminated in Fourth Place

At one point on Friday, Nicolas Manion started to make a valiant charge towards Michael Dyer’s chip lead but after losing 25% of his stack in a hand with Dyer and another 50% of his remaining stack to John Cynn, Manion was left scrambling. A final confrontation with Cynn would end up being the end of his tournament.

Cynn opened from the button to 3,800,000 with KcKs before Manion moved all in from the big blind with AsTd and Cynn called. Manion found no double-up on the Qc6c3s2d6h run out and he was eliminated in fourth place, ending play for the night.

“What a long day. Had some good hands, had some bad hands here we are we ran out of luck,” Canion said. “I have no regret on how I played my hands. I picked my spots and chose the hands that I felt were the right place to get all in and this is what happens when you run ace-ten into kings. Sometimes you can’t just run like god anymore.”

Final Three Chip Counts

  1. Tony Miles – 238,900,000
  2. John Cynn – 128,700,000
  3. Michael Dyer – 26,200,000

Action resumes Saturday at 5:30 pm PT with the ESPN broadcast beginning at 6 pm PT.