There are only seven bracelets left to be won before things are packed up for the summer at the 2015 World Series of Poker, but there’s a lot left to be determined. Entire summers are made or drastically improved in the last few days leading up to the Main Event, and there are few better times of the year to catch fire than just before the biggest and most important tournament of the year.
Only one player claimed gold Thursday, in the extended conclusion of a $1,500 No Limit Hold’em event, but the day’s action set up what should be a monumental weekend leading up to the 2015 WSOP Main Event.
$1,500 No Limit Hold’em
The last few No Limit Hold’em events at any given WSOP tend to draw big crowds as those playing a limited schedule get into town to take one or two shots before diving into the Main Event and Event 59, a $1,500 No Limit Hold’em tournament, was no exception. A field of 2,155 necessitated a fourth day of action, and Alex Lindop couldn’t have been much happier to come back Thursday and finish the job.
After a wild Day 3 that drew a massive crowd around the secondary stage, thanks in large part to a deep run by 2006 WSOP Main Event champion Jamie Gold, Lindop was one of four players to come back on Day 4 and outlasted the other three on his way to $531,037 and the bracelet. He defeated Aurelien Guiglini, one of the longest-tenured employees of French online poker giant Winamax, heads-up to complete his path to victory.
Yorane Kerignard, also from France, nearly matched his cash from finishing 23rd in the 2014 WSOP Main Event in taking third in this tournament. Haixia Zhang, the 2014 WSOP Ladies Event champion who entered Day 4 with the chiplead, narrowly missed out on joining the likes of multi-bracelet winners Vanessa Selbst, Jennifer Harman, Barbara Enright, Susie Isaacs, Nani Dollison and Starla Brodie.
Lindop, 25, hasn’t had a ‘real’ job since he started playing poker at the age of 17. He’s just the second winner from the UK so far in 2015; England currently sits in a distant third in terms of bracelets all-time, behind the United States and Canada.
- Alex Lindop – $531,037
- Aurelien Guiglini – $330,578
- Yorane Kerignard – $229,787
- Haixia Zhang – $165,492
- Jamie Gold – $120,952
- Luis Freitas – $89,473
- Jason Robert Herron – $67,058
- Joshua Evans – $50,897
- Rick Alvarado – $39,085
$1,111 Little One for One Drop
The first of three potential winners to be crowned will likely come from the Little One for One Drop, and with most of the $.1 million prizepool still to be awarded and a tight race at the top it looks primed for a stellar finish.
Jason Caulk has the best stack going into Day 4 with 6,975,000 and Paul Hofer’s close behind with 6,355,000, but four other players are right there with them in the lead pack. Chris Hunichen, who’s third, has a habit of fighting through massive WSOP fields; he finished sixth in the 2013 Millionaire Maker and sixth again in a $1,000 bracelet event in 2014.
John Reading hopes to be the third two-time winner of 2015, having won the $1,000 Hyper Hold’em early in the summer, and he finished the night in fourth place. Most notable among the bottom half of the chip counts is two-time bracelet winner Brett Shaffer, who hopes to cut through a massive No Limit Hold’em field on his way to victory for the third straight year at the WSOP.
To get from 128 to 14 a lot of talented players were cut down Thursday. Jonathan Hilton (127th), Jared Hamby (116th), Dominik Nitsche (99th) and Rocco Palumbo (98th), all bracelet winners, went out early. Craig McCorkell (85th), Joey Weissman (78th), Hans Winzeler (72nd), Jonathan Little (67th), Men Nguyen (62nd), Marc-Andre Ladouceur (57th), Jordan Smith (53rd), Mohsin Charania (50th), Matt Stout (30th) and Xuan Liu (28th) were also Day 3 casualties.
The final 14 will be back at 2 pm PST to finish it out.
- Jason Caulk – 6,975,000
- Paul Hofer – 6,355,000
- Chris Hunichen – 5,205,000
- John Reading – 4,545,000
- Mario Lopez – 4,305,000
- Senovio Ramirez III – 4,165,000
- Raffaele Carnevale – 2,450,000
- Paul Mctaggart – 2,345,000
- Brett Shaffer – 2,315,000
- Rainer Kempe – 1,730,000
- Pim de Goede – 1,585,000
- Carlos Chang – 1,480,000
- Stephen Ma – 1,100,000
- Dustin Lee – 1,000,000
$1,000 WSOP.com Online No Limit Hold’em
The first ever online WSOP bracelet event, as expected, built the largest online prizepool since legislation was passed in Nevada and New Jersey. While most among the 905 who played and 100 who cashed remain as anonymous as their online handles, the final six players who’ll head to the Rio on July 4 to play it out for the bracelet and over $197,000 were revealed a few hours after the final table was set.
Craig ‘imgrinding’ Varnell has the chiplead with over 2.5 million going into the live final table. He’ll need to finish fourth or better for the biggest cash of his career, which came in a third place effort at the WSOP Circuit Main Event in Black Hawk, Colorado in 2014; he also has a WSOPC ring from that same series.
Anthony ‘casedismised’ Spinella has the second-highest career tournament earnings among this final six. He’s cashed twice already at the 2015 WSOP, and earned one of the biggest results of his career in mid-June, finishing fourth in a $1 Million Guaranteed event at the Venetian.
— Anthony Spinella (@holdplz) July 3, 2015
Ryan ‘stonerboner’ Franklin has an EPT final table to his name, having finished seventh in Vilamoura in 2009. He has six WSOP cashes so far in 2015, including results in the Colossus and Millionaire Maker, and his best finish to this point was 32nd.
Andrew ‘SLOPHOUSE’ Rose is the biggest wildcard at the final table, having already earned the biggest result of his career by making the top six. Rose’s previous best came in the 2011 WSOP Main Event, where he finished 604th, and he has only one tournament cash since October 2013. Hunter ‘GringoLoco72′ had deep runs in the Main Event and the Mixed Max at the 2014 WSOP, and played deep into both the Millionaire Maker and Split Format events earlier this summer.
David ‘TuttyBear’ Tuthill is the short stack among these six, but he’s also got the longest list of poker accomplishments. His biggest WSOP result came in 2014, when he finished 43rd in the Main Event, and the largest win of his career came in the WSOPC Caesars Palace Main Event back in 2013. Tuthill bubbled the final table of the $3,000 Six Max Pot Limit Omaha just over a week ago.
The final table will take place Saturday starting at 12 pm PST. Levels will be 40 minutes long for the duration of the tournament.
- Craig Varnell – 2,572,767
- Anthony Spinella – 2,013,330
- Ryan Franklin – 1,832,138
- Andre Rose – 1,104,863
- Hunter Cichy – 1,059,089
- David Tuthill – 467,813
One of only two Championship-level events left before the Main Event, the $10,000 HORSE has just 20 players left fighting it out for the bracelet. While the remaining field is rife with bracelet-winners and well-known pros, a relative unknown has the chiplead going into the final scheduled day of the tournament.
Andrew Barber has 12 career cashes at the WSOP, five of which have come in 2015, but no final tables coming into this tournament. He does have 574,000 going into Day 3, though, and while he’ll have to contend with the likes of 2010 WSOP Player of the Year Frank Kassela (547,000), Eli Elezra (413,000) and Don Zewin (407,000), who are all within striking distance, Barber has an excellent chance to do so in this event.
2005 WSOP Main Event champion Joe Hachem, Randy Ohel, Brandon Shack-Harris, Brock Parker, Barry Greenstein, Arash Ghaneian, Scotty Nguyen, Daniel Ospina and Phillip Hui, all bracelet-winners, help that contingent make up over half the remaining field.
Ghaneian won the $1,500 HORSE event earlier this summer, though his path to victory was fraught with stresses far outside the scope of the poker world.
The bubble was burst just before the last level of Day 2 started, and Scott Clements was the unfortunate one tabbed to be the last one to fall on the wrong side of that equation. John Cernuto (23rd) and Ismael Bojang (22nd) went out in the money during that final hour of play.
Day 3 begins at 2 pm PST.
- Andrew Barber – 574,000
- Frank Kassela – 547,000
- Eli Elezra – 413,000
- Don Zewin – 407,000
- Viacheslav Zhukov – 383,000
- Joe Hachem – 373,000
- Randy Ohel – 357,000
- Brandon Shack-Harris – 349,000
- Jared Bleznick – 295,000
- Brock Parker – 290,000
- Barry Greenstein – 287,000
- Arash Ghaneian – 268,000
- Georgios Sotiropoulos – 255,000
- Scotty Nguyen – 254,000
- Daniel Ospina – 232,000
- Jens Lakemeier – 230,000
- George Rechnitzer – 211,000
- Phillip Hui – 170,000
- Mark Gregorich – 132,000
- Matt Glantz – 118,000
$1,500 Bounty No Limit Hold’em
After blowing through players at an astounding pace on Day 1 Wednesday, the first ever WSOP Bounty event slowed down significantly in the later stages of Day 2. It’s going to be a race to see if 34 players can get down to a winner Friday, but one player in particular has a considerable head start.
Vojtech Ruzicka has 2,115,000 to start Day 3, giving him more than 175 big blinds and almost twice as much as Jack Duong, who sits in second with 1,139,000. No one else in the field even has 800,000 after two days, which bodes well for Ruzicka, who’s career highlight to this point was a victory in the 2013 EPT Deauville High Roller.
Dutch players Ruben Visser and Govert Metaal highlight the rest of the field, along with a pair of players in Stephen Graner and Conrad Monica who have WSOP final tables on their respective resumes.
The bubble burst very early on Day 2, with Joe Kuether (236th), Shankar Pillai (229th), Eddy Sabat (221st), Steve Dannenmann (219th), Eric Baldwin (195th), JC Tran (192nd), Zo Karim (163rd), Lee Childs (140th), Jamie Kerstetter (126th), Leif Force (89th) and Gavin Smith (84th) earning cashes.
The Day 3 action kicks off at 1 pm PST.
- Vojtech Ruzicka – 2,115,000
- Jack Duong – 1,139,000
- Peter Murphy – 747,000
- John Myung – 694,000
- Ray Yamasaki – 650,000
- Michel Abecassis – 622,000
- Jose DeLaGuardia – 605,000
- Vitezslav Pesta – 601,000
- Guarav Law – 583,000
- Jose Fernandes – 565,000
$1,500 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo
The very last $1,500 event of the 2015 WSOP took over a considerable portion of the Amazon Room in drawing 547 players, and that Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo event has 125 players going forward into Day 2.
Thomas Savitsky was the only player finish with more than 100,000, bagging 101,600 for a significant lead over the rest of the field. Bracelet-winners Vladimir Shchemelev (72,100), Steven Wolansky (66,500) and Toto Leonidas (62,400) finished the night in the top 10.
Todd Brunson, Allen Kessler, Jimmy Fricke, Owais Ahmed, John Monnette, Dan Idema, Naoya Kihara and Mike Matusow are just a few of the others still in the running for this title. At stake, apart from the bracelet of course, is a first place prize just north of $180,000.
They’ll be back at it starting at 2 pm PST.
- Thomas Savitsky – 101,600
- Yuebin Guo – 80,900
- Alexandr Orlov – 72,800
- Vladimir Shchemelev – 72,100
- Aleksandr Denisov – 67,900
- Steven Wolansky – 66,500
- William Miner – 65,900
- Carroll Hammer – 65,400
- Toto Leonidas – 62,400
Friday is the final day for new prelim events at the 2015 WSOP, and it’s going to be a big one. The $777 Lucky Sevens kicks off its first session at 10 am PST, with a second starting session starting, appropriately enough, at 7 pm. The $10,000 Dealers Choice Championship, the third event of its kind at the WSOP and the first with a buy-in of over $1,500, wraps up the pre-Main Event action with a 4 pm start time.
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