Another Championship bracelet has been won, this time in Omaha hi-lo, and another five events continued or began on Wednesday, the 15th day of the 2015 World Series of Poker (WSOP). Here’s everything you need to know to get caught up on the day’s events:
Kevin MacPhee Headlines $1,500 Hold’em Final Five
It was a long day at the tables for the five players who were among the 35 who began the day and were still playing 13 hours later. Event #20: $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em will be going to a fourth day to finish out the final table and determine who will win the $460,640 top prize along with the gold bracelet.
Headlining the final five is Kevin MacPhee who spends a lot of his time in Canada so he can play online poker. He will return with the second-shortest stack with 1,720,000. Benjamin Zamani leads with 4,535,000 followed by Natasha Barbour with 3,770,000. U.K.’s Paul Ephremsen is the only non-American to return on Thursday, and he’ll do so with 2,695,000. The final spot goes to Wenlong Jin with a short stack of 1,115,000.
Now that there are only five players remaining, they are all guaranteed to cash for six figures. Fifth place will collect $103,857. They’ll be back at 1 p.m. to resume play.
Daniel Alaei Wins Fifth Bracelet in $10K Omaha Hi-Lo
The one bracelet awarded on Wednesday was in Event #21: $10,000 Omaha 8 or Better Championship. With 18 players remaining at the start of the day, led by Prince of Docness, there were plenty of eliminations that needed to occur to crown a champion before the day was through.
Out of the 18 players to return in the money on Day 3, there were 20 previous bracelets between them. The first to go was Erik Seidel who earned a min-cash for finishing 18th, followed by Eli Elezra and Bart Hanson. Other notable players on Day 3 included Jeremy Ausmus (ninth — $36,688), Mike Wattel (seventh — $57,748), Anthony Zinno ($74,262), and Scott Clements (fourth — $129,235).
Most notable of all was Daniel Alaei who came from behind to beat Kyle Miaso heads up for the bracelet. Alaei is one of those players who has found tremendous success in tournament poker, but has somehow slipped under the radar and his name does not carry as much recognition as it arguably should. This is Alaei’s fifth WSOP bracelet, and he also has a WSOP Circuit ring and a WPT win as well. At 30 years old, Alaei very nearly became the youngest player to reach five WSOP victories, but is just a few months older than Allen Cunningham when he did the same.
With five bracelets, Alaei joins some elite company in the poker world. His most recent win earned him $391,037, pushing him well above the $4 million mark in lifetime WSOP earnings.
Calgary’s Jay Dragland Holds the Lead in $1,000 Hold’em
Event #22: $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em has been a Canadian affair. When Day 1 concluded, Surrey, B.C.’s Kyle White was leading the field, and now Day 2 has concluded with Calgary, Alberta’s Jay Dragland at the top of the heap.
If you’ve played any major poker series in Calgary, you’ll remember Dragland with his Hawaii-print hat and constant jokes. He and a group of his friends are some of the best poker players in the city. He’ll return for Day 3 with a strong advantage in the 22-player field. He bagged 946,000 chips Wednesday night, and his nearest competitor is James Dorrance with 812,000.
Two other Canadians are also among those to advance to Day 3, and one is Sam Greenwood — one of our eight Canadians to watch this summer — with 272,000. Jeffrey Mulder will also return with 247,000.
Jonas Mackoff — another Canadian named as one to watch — very nearly made Day 3 but was the last player eliminated of the day. This is his first event of the series and he finished a respectable 23rd for $9,306. Here are all of the Canadians who collected a prize in Event #22 on Wednesday:
|159||Feng Wen Chen||$2,119|
The final 22 players will be back on Thursday at 1 p.m. They will play to a winner if they can do so within 10 levels, otherwise there’ll be a Day 4 added on. Check back with PokerNews Canada to see how our three Canadians fare on Day 3.
Pham Leads Again After Day 2; Three Canadians Cash in 2-7 Lowball
40 players returned to the felt on Wednesday looking for glory in Event #23: $1,500 No-Limit 2-7 Draw Lowball. With only 28 paying spots, 12 players would go home on Day 2 empty-handed.
When play was called for the day, three players still had chips in front of them. Christian Pham, who led the chip counts after Day 1, still has the biggest stack with 695,000. Pham, who has three WSOP cashes to his name, is looking to go wire-to-wire in the chip lead to score the first bracelet of his career.
Also making it to Day 3 play was a quasi-Canadian, Daniel Ospina in a close second with 680,000. Ospina was born in Calgary, Alberta but is currently residing in and representing Colombia. Ospina, looking to win his first WSOP bracelet after nine lifetime cashes, will be playing 680,000 on Day 3.
Rounding out the final three is American Matthew Smith, also looking to win his first bracelet after 11 cashes. Smith will be playing 271,000 going into Day 3 action.
25 people have already taken some cash away from this tournament, including three sporting the Maple Leaf. Mike Leah finished in seventh for $8,381, while Owen Crowe took 11th for $4,881. Nicholas Verkaik was the top Canadian stack after Day 1, but finished in 12th for $3,858.
Leah fell in a double elimination by chip leader Pham. Leah shoved from the hijack spot for 53,000 (about seven big blinds) and was called by Alexandr Denisov on the button, leaving himself only a few chips behind. When action folded to Pham in the blind, he wanted to see Denisov’s remaining chips before announcing all in himself. Denisov quickly called for his last 14,000.
When Pham patted, and Leah and Denisov both drew one, it was clear Pham was dealt a solid hand. Pham showed down a ten-nine while Leah was drawing to an eighty-five and Denisov to an eighty-seven. Leah flipped over a red ace for an ace-low and Denisov revealed another eight to pair sending the pot to Pham's pat hand. Pham extended his chip lead by eliminating both players.
Some other notable players to cash follow.
Cards are in the air at 2 p.m. to determine which of the final three will win their first WSOP bracelet.
Giddy-up H.O.R.S.E. Boedeker Leads After Day 1; Three Canadians in Top 20
Event #24: $1,500 H.O.R.S.E. marks the first example of the five-game mixed tournament at this year's series. One of the most popular mixed games, H.O.R.S.E. tests poker skills in a variety of ways. Limit hold'em and limit stud test high-game skills in two different formats while Omaha hi-lo and stud hi-lo test split-pot skills. Rounding the rotation off is the pure lowball, stud format of razz.
At the top of the chips counts is American Christopher Boedeker looking for his first WSOP cash with 67,800. American Brian Tate and German Tim Reusch are also over 60,000 chips in second and third spot, respectively.
Canada fielded a strong team for the H.O.R.S.E. and 11 are still in contention at the end of Day 1. Leading off the Canadians is Samuel Ngai in fourth spot at the end of Day 1. Ngai just cashed his first WSOP tournament, getting a minimum cash in Event #18: $1,000 Turbo No-Limit Hold’em. Also in the top 20 for Canada are Jaehwa Son with 42,100 and Mike Watson, who is coming off his recent sixth place finish in the six-handed event earlier this year, 38,700.
There are a few other notable Canadians in the mix. 2010 Main Event Champion Jonathan Duhamel made it through the day with 20,600 chips while author of A Poker Player’s Guide to Mixed Games as well as a series here on PokerNews Canada about last year's Dealer's Choice format (required reading for anyone looking at either of the dealer's choice tournaments this year), Kendrick Lo, takes 12,900 into Day 2. Greg Mueller and Daniel Negreanu also both survived Day 1, bagging less than 10,000. Other Canadians to bag chips are below:
Day 2 action in the H.O.R.S.E. kicks off at 1 p.m. local Vegas time Thursday with ten levels of play scheduled.
Canada’s Best Return for Day 2 of $5K 8-Max Hold’em
Wednesday marked Day 1 of Event #25: $5,000 No-Limit Hold’em 8-Handed, and it came to a close with 198 of the 493 entrants still playing. With a prizepool of more than $2.3 million, first place will award $567,724 to go with the gold bracelet.
Local Las Vegas pro Dan Smith leads overall with 191,400, and field has plenty of notable players in the mix. Among them are Shaun Deeb (163,300), Anthony Zinno (151,400), Robert Mizrachi (91,900), Jonathan Little (87,600), Mark Newhouse (86,300), Davidi Kitai (73,600), Brian Rast (66,100), Greg Merson (47,900), and many others.
Many of Canada’s best players are also returning for Day 2, and a few have some big stacks. The best of our country is that of Shawn Buchanan with 128,700, followed by Griffin Benger with 116,500. The rest of the Canadians are Gregory Hartwick (94,500), Sorel Mizzi (79,200), Mark Radoja (73,000), Kris Lee Steinbach (70,600), Eric Cloutier (68,200), Noah Vaillancourt (53,900), Ioannis Pentefountas (45,500), William Molson (25,400), Ian Chan (21,100), and Matt Marafioti (20,100).
Just 56 players will earn a prize in this event, so there is still a lot of play before the money bubble. The 198 players remaining will return at 2 p.m.
Details and photo courtesy of the WSOP Live Blog.