The 2015 World Series of Poker Main Event continued with Day 4, and the championship picture became clearer as 661 players began the day but only 237 remained after five two-hour levels. Two names raced out ahead of the pack as clear favorites for the chip lead late in the night, with Joe McKeehen bagging 3.122 million to edge out Upeshka De Silva's 3.067 million.
De Silva already claimed a bracelet this summer, taking down Event #45: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em for $424,577. The Texas native began the day with 667,000 and said he "played solid all day." He had 1.2 million by dinner, but it was after that things really took off for him.
"I ran unbelievably for like an hour," De Silva said. "Suddenly, I had 2.4 million. I ran really, really, really good."
One factor in De Silva's ability to chip up was an extremely aggressive dynamic with Yuri Martins Dzivielevski, who was three seats to De Silva's right. The two played numerous three-bet pots against each other as the night wound down. That's the norm, according to De Silva, as the two players have some history.
"We've played thousands of hands against each other," De Silva said after bagging. "He's a pretty good player online. We were both trying to run the table a little bit."
When two aggressive players butt heads, there's bound to be fireworks. According to the live updates, Dzivielevski got the better of the first. He did so by check-raising a flop in a three-bet pot, barrelling the turn, and jamming the river for 780,000. De Silva tanked roughly 15 minutes before laying down.
"I can't wait to see what he had," De Silva said.
The battles tilted in De Silva's favor when Dzivielevski opened to 30,000 and called a reraise to 82,000. The two saw a flop, and Dzivielevski check-called 79,000. He check-called 147,000 on the turn and 424,000 on the river, but De Silva showed him two aces and took the massive pot.
Before the WSOP began, De Silva boldly predicted to friends that he would win two bracelets, and he's put himself in good position to make it a reality after four days of the Main Event.
Elsewhere, chips were flying around the room at the various tables. Others who bagged big stacks included Brian Hastings (2.464 million), Mark Kroon (1.9 million), Matt Jarvis (1.406 million), Justin Bonomo (1.35 million), and Daniel Negreanu (1.335 million).
Top 10 Chip Counts
|2||Upeshka De Silva||3,067,000|
Among those to fall on Day 4 include past Main Event champions Joe Hachem (298th - $29,329), Ryan Riess (426th - $21,786), Jonathan Duhamel (565th - $17,282), and 14-time gold bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth (417th - $21,786).
Hellmuth's run came at the ESPN feature table in a huge race against fellow superstar Negreanu.
According to the live updates, with the blinds and antes in the 4,000/8,000/1,000 level, Hellmuth opened to 20,000 from the hijack seat. Lance Harris called from the small blind and Negreanu three-bet to 56,000 from the big blind. Hellmuth four-bet shoved for 295,000, Harris ducked out of the way and Negreanu called with the , racing with Hellmuth's . The board ran out , pairing Negreanu's king and ending Hellmuth's run.
Others who were sent to the rail on Day 4 include reigning WSOP Player of the Year George Danzer (280th - $34,157), Phil Laak (412th - $24,622), Shane Warne (597th - $17,282), Mukul Pahuja (486th - $21,786), Davidi Kitai (625th - $17,282), and past November Niners Scott Montgomery (246th - $34,157), JC Tran (434th - $21,786), and Andoni Larrabe (516th - $19,500).
When Day 5 commences at noon on Sunday, play will begin at Level 21 (8,000/16,000/2,000). The plan will be to play another five two-hour levels.