Jean-Robert Bellande just had two aces in his hand cracked again for the second time today and is a little upset about it. "When it's late in a tournament and people are playing tight, they're supposed to do something," said Bellande and he dropped to about 180,000 in chips.
Jean-Robert Bellande raised from the hijack seat and David Baker called from the cutoff seat. Mike Sexton called from the big blind as well and the three players saw the flop come down . Sexton bet out and Bellande called. baker folded.
The turn card brought the and both players checked. The river card completed the board with the and Sexton bet out. Bellande tanked and then made the call.
Sexton tabled the for two pair and a live ace. Bellande showed just the and then mucked his other two cards. He dropped to 240,000 while Sexton increased to 470,000.
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Play had barely started by the time Barry Hartheimer was eliminated at the outer table. We arrived at the table in time only to see Abe Mosseri discussing the hand with winner Tai Nguyen.
"If you know he had aces, how can you call?" Mosseri asked. "You' weren't getting the right price."
Nguyen simply responded, "I won the hand."
Hartheimer leaves with $17,138 in prize money.
The cards are in the air for Event No. 25. There's 23 players remaining and we'll be playing to a winner later tonight, or probably in the early hours of the morning. Get the coffee ready.
When we left last night, the players were seated thusly:
Seat 1: Mike Sexton
Seat 2: Oleg Shamardin
Seat 3: Sam Farha
Seat 4: Michael Chow
Seat 5: --empty--
Seat 6: Jean Robert Bellande
Seat 7: David Baker
Seat 8: Sergey Altbregin
Seat 9: John D'Agostino
Seat 1: --empty--
Seat 2: Eric Baldwin
Seat 3: James Dempsey
Seat 4: Barry Hartheimer
Seat 5: Michael Watson
Seat 6: --empty--
Seat 7: Steve Wong
Seat 8: Tai Nguyen
Seat 9: Abe Mosseri
Seat 1: Yuegi Zhu
Seat 2: Mikael Thuritz
Seat 3: John Cernuto
Seat 4: Chino Rheem
Seat 5: Steve Zolotow
Seat 6: Jose de Paz
Seat 7: Eugene Katchalov
Seat 8: --empty--
Seat 9: Tony Merksick
We're not going to lie: today is going to be a very long, very trying, very exhausting day for the players that go deepest in this event. Play is scheduled to start at 3pm local time with 23 players left in the field. We could easily be looking at 12 (or more!) levels of play to play down to a champion. When breaks are factored in and you consider that this is a split-pot game, it will probably be after 5am by the time we're done.
But we're confident that none of the 23 returning players will think too much about the length of the day if they're still standing at the end. Michael Chow is the player who starts atop the counts today. You might remember Chow from Event 4, $1,500 Omaha Hi/Lo, an event he won after defeating Dan Heimiller after a 3-hour heads-up match. Can Chow pull off an impressive double-win here today?
He'll have to get past a formidable field of 22 other competitors. See if you can find a soft spot by looking at the names in our Chip Counts page. We sure can't. It's going to be a slug-fest all the way to the bitter end. If you don't believe me, consider that yesterday was Eugene Katchalov was down to 1,000 in chips and posting the small blind during the 4,000-8,000 level. Today he starts with considerably more than 1,000 chips.
Cards are in the air at 3pm local time. Red Bull and greenies for the long night ahead start hitting our systems... now.