Day 22 of the 2015 World Series of Poker was an extremely busy one as four gold bracelets were awarded, including the popular Monster Stack. Fortunately our handy recap will catch you up on everything you need to know. Let's get to it.
Ivan Luca Takes Down Event #30 to Become Argentina's First Bracelet
Event #30: $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em started on Sunday with 2,150 players. Three days and 31 levels were not enough, however, as Argentina's Ivan Luca and the Czech Republic's Artur Rudziankov were still left standing in the battle for the bracelet.
They returned to the felt on Wednesday as a Day 4 was needed for a winner to emerge. The Argentinian began with about a 2.6:1 chip lead, but it quickly evaporated when Rudziankov doubled up on the 12th hand of the day. Luca, though, battled back to reclaim a sizable chip lead. Rudziankov made a final stand with , but was trailing Luca's . The board ran out , giving both players aces and jacks. Luca's ten kicker played, clinching the victory.
"I took it very steady, one step at a time,” Luca told the WSOP afterward through a translator. “I built my bankroll. This was the first year I had enough money and confidence to take a shot at the WSOP.”
Final Table Results
|2||Artur Rudziankov||Prague, Czech Republic||$219,976|
|3||Travis Case||Los Angeles, CA||$152,907|
|4||Pierre Horaud||Pointe-A-Pitre, France||$110,123|
|5||Bruce Angeski||Sacramento, CA||$80,485|
|6||David Chase||Alameda, CA||$59,538|
|8||Kai Yang||Plano, TX||$33,868|
|9||Omri Sabach||Tel Aviv, Israel||$26,008|
Perry Shiao Goes from Poker Dealer to 2015 WSOP Monster Stack Millionaire
Event #28 of the 2015 World Series of Poker, the famed $1,500 buy-in Monster Stack – the seventh-largest poker tournament in history with 7,192 entrants – saw the final nine players return Wednesday night to battle it our for a share of the $9,709,200 prize pool, and when the dust settled 25-year-old Florida poker dealer name Perry Shiao emerged victorious to capture the $1,286,942 first-place prize. He also captured a gold bracelet it what was only his second WSOP event.
Shiao, who began the final table as the second-shortest stack, persevered and made it all the way to heads-up play, which he began at a 3-1 chip disadvantage, against 31-year-old Canadian investor Eric Place.
"I stayed sharp," said Shiao. "He obviously knocked out somebody and chipped up. I didn't look much into it that he had a bigger advantage than me. I believe I'm a great heads-up player and as you can see I put a lot of pressure on him."
Indeed he did. Shiao managed to erase the chip deficit and pulled out to a lead of his own. In what would be the final hand of the tournament, which happened in Level 44 (1,000,000/2,000,000/300,000) on Hand #139 of the final table, Place opened for 4 million and Shiao called to see a flop of . Shiao led out for 4.5 million and then wasted little time in calling when Place shoved all in.
Place had flopped top pair, but he needed to dodge the flush draw of Shiao. That proved easier said than done as the dealer promptly burned and turned the to seal the deal.
Final Table Results
|1||Perry Shiao||Pembroke Pines, FL||$1,286,942|
|2||Eric Place||Willington, NS, Canada||$796,834|
|3||Asi Moshe||Tel Aviv, Israel||$594,397|
|4||Kevin Kung||Newport Beach, CA||$445,166|
|5||Christian Rodriguez||Boynton Beach, FL||$335,938|
|6||Josh Wallace||Somerville, MA||$255,351|
|8||Caio Toledo||Campinas, Brazil||$150,783|
|9||Hoyt Corkins||Glenwood, AL||$117,092|
Jason Mercier Takes Down $5K 6-Max Event to Capture Third WSOP Bracelet
On Wednesday, Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier was having what he deemed the worst summer ever. Less than 12 hours later, in the early hours of Thursday morning, things had turned around. That's because Mercier took down Event #32: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em 6-Handed for $633,357 and his third WSOP gold bracelet.
"It feels great; I mean it feels good any time you win a live poker tournament, especially when you win a ton of money and a gold bracelet," Mercier said after the win.
Day 3 of Event #32: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em 6-Handed – a tournament that originally attracted 550 runners and created a prize pool of $2,585,000 – saw 20 players return to action, more than a dozen of which had to hit the rail before the final table was reached. Among them were Noah Vaillancourt (19th - $20,059), Jennifer Tilly (14th - $25,022), Tuan Le (12th - $32,028), Jorryt van Hoof (9th - $42,032), and Jose "Nacho" Barbero (7th - $56,637).
"The whole final table was tough," Mercier reflected. "When you're looking at seventh place for $56K and first is $633K, you really don't want to mess up. One big hand and you could be out. Three-handed was a really tough battle. I was fortunate enough to win a few key pots. It was definitely a tough final table. Everyone was trying to win, and luckily it was me."
Final Table Results
|1||Jason Mercier||Davie, FL||$633,357|
|2||Simon Deadman||Nottingham, UK||$391,446|
|3||Mike Gorodunsky||St. Louis, MO||$246,867|
|4||Dario Sammartino||Nova Gorica, Italy||$163,604|
|5||Igor Dubinsky||Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine||$111,672|
|6||James Obst||Adelaide, Australia||$78,428|
Benny Glaser Denies Brock Parker 4th Bracelet in Event #33
Event #33: $1,500 Limit 2-7 Triple Draw Lowball – a tournament that attracted 388 players and created a prize pool of $523,800 – saw 16 players return to action on Day 3, all with their eyes set on the $136,215 first-place prize.
Among those to fall before the final table were Christopher McHugh (16th - $5,473), Dutch Boyd (11th - $7,008), Marc Friedman (9th - $9,208), Steve Billirakis (8th - $12,419), and star-of-the-day chip leader Toby Mulloy (7th - $12,419).
At the final table, Turner was the first to fall courtesy of Noah Bronstein, and then Brock Parker, who was looking to win his fourth gold bracelet, dispatched Andrew Brown in fifth place. Parker then sent Russia's Sergey Rybachenko to the rail in fourth, before Glaser busted Bronstein in third to set up a heads-up match with the final two fairly even in chips.
However, within 30 minutes, Glaser got the ball rolling and quickly picked up momentum. Unfortunately for Parker, he couldn't stop the freight train. In the final hand of the tournament, when Parker was down 13-1, Parker raised to 80,000 and Glaser called before they drew two and three respectively.
Glaser checked, Parker bet, and Glaser check-raised to 80,000. Parker three-bet all in for 120,000 and Glaser called before standing pat. Parker then drew a single card on the two subsequent draws.
Glaser tabled , but Parker was drawing live with . Parker squeezed the last card, which ended up being a useless .
"It means a lot, just the prestige, the accomplishment," Glaser said of the win. "It's amazing, something you just dream of. It feels quite surreal right now because I've been dreaming about it for so long. So happy, so proud."
Final Table Results
|1||Benny Glaser||Southamption, GB||$136,215|
|2||Brock Parker||Silver Spring, MD||$84,132|
|3||Noah Bronstein||Kirkland, WA||$54,092|
|4||Sergey Rybachenko||Moscow, Russia||$35,869|
|5||Andrew Brown||Valatie, NY||$24,487|
|6||Jon Turner||Henderson, NV||$17,201|
Final 32 Players Advance to Heads-Up Portion in Split Format Hold'em
After 10 levels of nine-handed play on Day 1, and seven levels of six-handed action on Day 2, 873 entries in Event #34: $1,500 Split Format Hold'em are down to just 32 players, meaning the heads-up portion of the tournament is set to commence on Day 3.
Among those to finish in the money on Day 2 were Asher Conniff (72nd - $2,828), Aaron Massey (64th - $3,064), Jim McManus (57th - $3,417), Fernando Brito (41st - $5,185), and Sameer Aljanedi (33rd - $6,128).
Listed below are the matches for Day 3. Only one player will from emerge each group of four to reserve a seat at the eight-handed final table slated for Day 4 on Friday.
#1. Jonas Christensen (481,500) vs. #32. Innes Young (60,000)
#16. James Czarnecki (205,500) vs. #17. Hunter Cichy (181,500)
#2. Toby Lewis (393,000) vs. #31. Bryce Landier (66,500)
#15. Andre Boyer (213,000) vs. #18. Ryan Milisits (178,000)
#3. Michael Michnik (383,500) vs. #30. Jeff Blankarn (79,000)
#14. Chris Bolek (226,000) vs. #19. David Vamplew (160,000)
#4. Matt Iles (360,500) vs. #29. Preite Gastono (85,000)
#13. Idan Raviv (228,000) vs. #20. Harold Evans (155,500)
#5. Chris Csik (352,000) vs. #28. Erwann Pecheux (86,000)
#12. Diogo Cardoso (245,000) vs. #21. Nelson Resendiz (148,000)
#6. Gavin O'Rourke (309,000) vs. #27. Michael Cooper (90,500)
#11. Arkadiy Tsinis (251,000) vs. #22. Travell Thomas (134,500)
#7. Andrew Gaw (282,500) vs. #26. Thomas Sobolewski (91,000)
#10. Andy Witek (252,000) vs. #23. Vojtech Ruzicka (131,000)
#8. Isaac Kawa (262,000) vs. #25. Kevin O'Donnell (101,000)
#9. Aron Dermer (254,000) vs. #24. Matheus Schell (104,000)
Play will resume Thursday at 1:00 p.m. local time.
Joshua Turner Leads the Final 29 in the $3K H.O.R.S.E.
Over two days, 20 levels are in the books for Event #35: $3,000 H.O.R.S.E. and the starting field of 376 still has a ways to go until a champion is crowned as 29 players will return on Thursday for Day 3.
The top 40 made the money and notable finishes thus far include Scott Bohlman (30th - $6,631), David Bach (31st - $6,631) and Matt Grapenthien (36th - $5,563).
Here's a look at the Top 10 chip counts entering Day 3:
Top 10 Day 3 Chip Counts
|9||Larry St. Jean||260,000|
Others still in the hunt include Daniel Idema (225,000), Marco Johnson (200,000), David Oppenheim (185,000), Joe Hachem (144,000), Dan Kelly (80,000), Mike Leah (61,000) and Ted Forrest (42,000).
Genge Leads Day 1 of Event #36: $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha
Day 1 of Event #36: $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha attracted 978 players and created a prize pool of $1,320,300, which will be distributed to the top 117 players with $266,874 reserved for the eventual winner. After 11 levels of play, just 140 remained in contention with Greg Genge and his stack of 199,000 leading the way.
Notables who'll return for Day 2 include David Paredes (126,500), Christian Harder (118,400), Tom Schneider (70,000), Mohsin Charania (67,800), Brandon Cantu (64,200) and Scott Seiver (44,200).
Among those to fall on the opening day were Jeff Madsen, David Williams, Erick Lindgren, Mike Sexton, Shannon Shorr, and defending champ Brandon Paster.
Top 10 Day 1 Chip Counts
Day 2 will commence at 1 p.m. local time on Thursday.
Gabriel Andrade Leads $10K Six-Max Championship
Kicking off on Wednesday was Event #37: $10,000 No-Limit Hold'em 6-Handed Championship, a favorite among many in the no-limit hold'em crowd. The tournament drew 259 entries and after 10 levels on Day 1, only 102 players remain.
Here are the top 10 chip counts entering Day 2:
Top 10 Day 2 Chip Counts
Many notables remain in the field, including last year's runner-up Jeremy Ausmus (47,400) and defending champion Joe Cada (40,200).
Play is set to resume Thursday at 2 p.m. and another 10 levels should thin the field into the money.
Meanwhile, two new events will kick off on Thursday – Event #38: $3,000 No-Limit Hold'em at 12:00 p.m. and Event #39: $1,500 10-Game Mix at 4:00 p.m.
*Lead photo courtesy of WSOP.com