WSOP: Thibaut Durand Eyes Final Table for $1,500 No Limit Hold’em

Thibaut Durand surged ahead of the field late in Day 2.
Thibaut Durand surged ahead of the field late in Day 2.

The World Series of Poker $1,500 No Limit Hold’em (Event 51) saw one of the biggest fields for a $1,500 event with 2,781 original entrants. Only 349 players survived Day 1 and only 30 would see the end of Day 2. Thibaut Durand will enter Day 3 as the chip leader with nearly a half million chip lead on 2nd place following a series big hands late in the day.

Day 2 started with a lot of all-ins with around 30 players hovering around only ten big blinds. The top 297 players made the money. Approaching the money bubble, three players were eliminated on one hand and the tournament did not have to play hand for hand.

Amnon Filippi had trouble gaining momentum to start the day; he started with 80,000. Sitting in the small blind, the big blind raised to 6,000 and Filippi shoved for his last 11,000. The player on the button called and the big blind folded. Filippi tabled A 5 and his opponent tabled 8 8 to see the board run Q 7 3 Q 2. Filippi’s tournament was done with just above a min cash.

Joe Reitman, Annie Duke‘s boyfriend, reraised a player that raised from middle position for all of his chips. His opponent called and tabled 5 5 and Reitman needed help holding A J. The board ran 8 K 2 4 T and Reitman’s tournament was over.

In a crazy pot three players all moved all-in preflop. A late position player opened for 7,500, the cutoff raised all-in for 27,000 and Matt Brady moved in as well for 54,600. The initial raiser called and had both players covered and tabled T T. The cutoff had A K and Brady held J J. The board ran K 4 9 7 A giving the main pot to the cutoff and the side pot to Brady. He ultimately lost 2,000 in the whole ordeal and as the cutoff tripled up.

Josh Schlein jumped up the leaderboard during the final seven hands of play. He raised to 32,000 in early position and Georgios Kapalas called from the big blind. The flop came 8 8 6 and they both checked to see the Q on the turn. Schlein check-called a 45,000 bet from Kapalas to see the river 3. After a Schlein check, Kapalas bet 110,000 and Schlein went into the tank. He found the courage to call with only A J and Kapalas mucked his hand.

The remaining 30 players will return tomorrow at 1 p.m. PST to play down to a winner. The final table will be broadcast live on

Top Ten Chip Counts for Day 3 $1,500 No Limit Hold’em (Event 51)

  1. Thibaut Durand – 1,650,000
  2. Owen Crowe – 1,003,000
  3. Josh Schlein – 875,000
  4. Georgios Kapalas- 782,000
  5. Steven Levy – 657,000
  6. Jason Helder – 589,000
  7. Eric Lupovich – 548,000
  8. Diego Vilela – 425,000
  9. Rafael Belloso – 410,000
  10. Andrew Chen – 390,000
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Paul Oresteen

Senior Writer: Paul Oresteen originally joined BLUFF in 2008 as an intern. He covered two World Series of Poker’s before leaving to join After a two year hiatus Oresteen returned to BLUFF in November 2012. Since starting as a poker journalist Oresteen has covered the World Series of Poker, WSOP Circuit, World Poker Tour and European Poker Tour. He graduated from Georgia State University with a B.A. in Communications in 2008.
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