Less than 24 hours ago we started Day 8 of the World Series of Poker Main Event. The task at hand was simple: eliminate 18 players and get down to the November Nine. It would turn out, however, to be no easy feat as it took almost 18 hours of cards before everything was said and done. With an almost $9 million first place prize on the line, no one wanted to be the next one to bust, and it took a variety of beats, flips, and coolers to get down to our final table.
The first casualty of the day was Johnny Lodden, a slot online indonesia Team Pro from Norway. Matt Affleck raised under-the-gun, and Lodden shoved for slightly over 10bb on the button with 88. Affleck took some time to consider the situation before calling with AT, and we were treated to a standard race. It was a safe flop for the pocket pair, but the turn brought one of the remaining T’s in the deck and Lodden was sent home in 27th place for $317,161.
The next to fall would be one of the many remaining Matthews in the field as Matthew Bucaric failed to fade a flush draw. Minutes later Mads Wissing was also eliminated in a blind versus blind pot. He got it all in with William Thorson with top pair versus bottom pair, but he was sent home in disappointing fashion when Thorson was lucky enough to turn two pairs. Ronnie Bardah was the final victim before the break, running AK into AA and failing to go runner runner after missing the flop.
Robert Pisano may have made it to the first break, but he pretty much did it with a chip and a chair. After overcalling a 3 bet in the big blind with AK, he turned top pair while Jonathan Duhamel turned a straight. All the money went in and Pisano was shocked and disappointed to see what his opponent held. He returned to the table after the break and put his remaining two big blinds past the line in the dark. He got better than he could have hoped with a random hand as his J9o flopped an open ended straight draw, but he did not hit and busted at the hand of Pascal LeFrancois in 23rd place.
Fast forward to just past the second break which came after William Thorson, Redmond Lee, and Patrick Eskander all busted in 22nd, 21st, and 20th, respectively. Hasan Habib was the short stack at that point, but Michiel Sijpkens would be the one to bust in 19th and cause a redraw for tables. Scott Clements did not benefit from this redraw as he ended up 3bet shoving over an open with AQ only to be 4bet isolated by Matthew Jarvis’s AK. He would not spike his three outer and ended up hitting the rail in 18th for $396,967.
David Baker and Benjamin Statz would both bust shortly after Clements and collect the same prize. The most heartbreaking elimination of the night would come after the dinner break, however. Two players with fantastic chip stacks and a serious chance to make the final table battled in a hand that saw several chips go in preflop. Duhamel raised in the cutoff and he 4 bet when he was re-raised by Affleck on the button. Affleck called and the flop came down T97. Duhamel check/called Affleck’s flop bet, but he was in a bad spot when a Q fell on the turn and Affleck moved all-in. Duhamel went into the tank for almost five minutes before finally calling with JJ, and Affleck turned over AA, a huge favorite to win themonster pot.
It’s well documented that favorites do not always win, however. Duhamel, down to a mere ten outs, was ecstatic to see an 8 fall on the river, and all at once Affleck’s dreams were shattered. In a display of emotion, Affleck hid his face in his hat and silently wept as he fought to take in what just happened. He blindly shook hands around the table and left the room as his chips were slid over to a very lucky Duhamel. Affleck received $500,165 for his 15th place finish.
In the hour following, three more people were eliminated: Hasan Habib, Duy Le, and Adam Levy in 14th, 13th, and 12th place, respectively. Down to 11 players and a mere 2 away from the final table, play tightened dramatically. No one wanted to be the next one out and hands took a long time. At one point, John Racener and Jarvis played a 13 minute pot!
It was almost two hours later before we saw another elimination, and LeFrancois was the unfortunate victim. LeFrancois called a raise on the button with QJs, and Joseph Cheong 3 bet in the small blind. LeFrancois must have been convinced that Cheong was trying to steal the pot with aggression so he pushed all-in over Cheong’s squeeze, but unfortunately his read was wrong. Cheong showed KK and when the community cards fell, he turned a set to secure LeFrancois’s elimination. LeFrancois won’t be winning another bracelet this year, but he took home $635,011 as a consolation prize.
Cheong’s bust meant that we were on the November Nine bubble, and it took an incredible 6 hours to finally eliminate one last person. At one point Brandon Steven, who had been on a short stack pretty much all day, opened for AK and called Jarvis’s shove for his entire stack. It turned out Jarvis had the same hand, however, so they chopped the pot and everyone was disappointed the day wasn’t finally over. These same players would meet for another all-in showdown a little over an hour later, however. Steven got dealt AK again, but this time Jarvis held QQ and the chance to burst the bubble. The sleepy crowd waited with bated breath as the community cards fell, but Steven could not win the flip. He was eliminated in 10th place for $635,011.