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WSOP 2009

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Event #57, $10,000 Main Event, End of Day 5 Report

World Championship
World Series of Poker Main Event
No-Limit Hold’em
Buy-In: $10,000
Number of Entries: 6,494
Players Remaining: 185
Total Net Prize Pool: $61,043,600
Number of Places Paid: 648
First Place Prize: $8,546,435
July 3--November 10, 2009

Day 5 Headlines

  1. World Series of Poker Continues – 185 Dreams Remain Alive in Main Event
  2. Warren Zackey (Johannesburg, South Africa) is the New Chip Leader Going into Day Six
  3. Many Well-Known Poker Players Still Alive – including Tom Schneider, Phil Ivey, Fabrice Soulier, Bertrand “Elky” Grospellier, Blair Hinkle, Jeff Shulman, Antonio Esfandiari, Dennis Phillips, Peter Eastgate, Joe Sebok, Blair Rodman, David Benyamine, J.C. Tran, Kenny Tran, Prahlad Friedman, Chris Bjorin, and Joe Hachem
  4. Two Former World Champions Still Alive in Main Event – Peter Eastgate and Joe Hachem
  5. Two November Nine Finalists Still Alive in Main Event – Peter Eastgate and Dennis Phillips

The Main Event Continues

The 2009 WSOP Main Event continued with the play and conclusion of Day 5. The day included a deep run into the money, as the tournament field size was more than cut in half. All 407 players who started play were already guaranteed $27,469 in prize money. Now, after ten days and 40 hours of tournament play, all finishers are guaranteed at least $36,626 in prize money.

Day 3 began with 407 players. The day ended with 185 survivors.

Prize money payouts increase at various intervals. Every player still alive in the tournament (185th place and higher) is now guaranteed at least $36,626 in prize money.

This was the 45th day of the WSOP. Play continues for three more days, plus the finale to be played in November.

Tomorrow (Sunday) begins at noon and is expected to include five levels of play.

Play on Day 4 began on July 12, 2009 at 12:05 pm.

Humorous Moments at the WSOP

About an hour into play, Assistant Tournament Director Jimmy Sommerfeld announced to all players and spectators: “The player who just busted off Table 34, Seat 5 – you left your shoes.” The player did not return to claim his property. A size 10 pair of Salvatore Ferragamo sandals remains unclaimed at the WSOP lost and found.

As players bust out, tables are broken down and consolidated. This requires players to pick up their own chips and transfer to new tables. Deep into Level 18, a player was walking across the room and accidentally bumped into a camera crew. Two full racks of assorted chips crashed to the floor and rolled off in different directions. There was a mad dash by the player and tournament staff to recover the stray chips. After a few minutes, all chips were gathered and the player finally took his new seat. Mischievous-minded Jimmy Sommerfeld decided to have some fun at the player’s expense. As the player was re-stacking his chips into neat rows, Sommerfeld put on his best stone face. He informed the player that any chips that hit the floor would be ruled technically out of play. After a momentary expression of shock, the player quickly figured out he was the target of a gag and play resumed.

Sommerfeld continued his folly. After players were allowed back into the tournament room following a 20-minute break, Sommerfeld jokingly announced to the crowd who were strolling slowly back in, “Cards are back in the air in 15-seconds!” After a few screams of panic and players dashing madly to re-take their seats, Sommerfeld smiled and announced the players still had two minutes to take their seats.

Play on Day 5

Defending champion Peter Eastgate survived. He remains very much alive in the 2009 Main Event. He is presently in 82nd place, which is slightly ahead of the pack. It’s been another incredible run for the Danish poker pro. On Day 2, he was down to just 8,000 in chips, but went on a monster rush during the final hour and ended up with about an average-sized stack. On Day 3, he held steady and also finished the day. On Days 4 and 5, Eastagte remained alive with an average stack, seemingly taking a low-profile strategy to the reaching the final table. Eastgate is primed to make the best run by a defending champion since Greg “Fossilman” Raymer’s 25-place finish in the 2005 Main Event.

It should be noted that Eastgate was ranked 12th (out of 79 players) after Day 5 last year, and went on to win the championship.

Former world champions who continued play on Day 4 included – Bobby "the Owl" Baldwin (1978), Dan Harrington (1995), Joe Hachem (2005), and Peter Eastgate (2008). Baldwin and Harrington were eliminated. Hachem and Eastgate both survived.

Players competed for three complete levels. Play ended after Level 20. When play resumes tomorrow at Level 21, blinds will be 8,000-16,000 with a 2,000 ante. The average stack size is 1,053,081.

Day 5 started with a field of 407 players and ended with 185 survivors. This means only about 2.8 percent of the original 6,494 starters survived past the fifth day.

Seven females started the day. Entering Day 6, only two females remain alive. They are Nichoel Peppe (Long Beach, CA) who is in 35th place. Leo Margets (Barcelona, Spain) is in 135th place. Note: Nichoel Peppe’s name is spelled correctly.

More about Nichoel Peppe: She is a professional poker player, who has been playing in live games for about five years. Her normal cash game is $5-10 NLHE at the Bicycle Club Casino in Los Angeles. She is 30-years-old and is newly married to fellow poker pro Tad Jurgens, whom she met in a poker room. Jurgens took second place in this year’s $1,500 HORSE event. He also lasted until the third day of the Main Event, coming up short of the prize money.

Actor Lou Diamond Phillips was eliminated on the final hand of the day. He ended up finishing in 186th place.

Two time WSOP gold bracelet winner and 1995 world champion Dan Harrington was eliminated in 252nd place.

Former gold bracelet winner Keith Lehr was eliminated in 266th place.

Two-time WSOP gold bracelet winner Vitaly Lunkin was eliminated in 346th place.

Four-time WSOP gold bracelet winner and 1978 world champion Bobby Baldwin was eliminated in 352nd place.

Two-time WSOP gold bracelet winner Thor Hansen was eliminated in 387th place.

Players who survived Day 5 will return to continue their quest for the 2009 world poker championship gold bracelet and $8.5 million in prize money on July 13th, starting at noon.

Play on Day 5 ended at 6:45 pm.

Day 5 Chip Leader (Warren Zackey)

The chip leader is Warren Zackey, from Johannesburg, South Africa. He began the day with 732,000 in chips and ended up ranked in first place going into Day 6. Zackey is a 42-year-old business owner who sells plumbing supplies.

Zackey cited Fellow countryman Raymond Rayme’s third-place finish in the 2007 WSOP Main Event as an inspiration. The broadcast of Rayme’s accomplishment was shown multiple times on ESPN in South Africa, which created more interest in the game and the WSOP. Last year, the number of South Africans who came to the WSOP amounted to 23. This year, there were 32, according to officials with the Piggs Peak Casino.

Zackey won his seat via a tournament held at the Piggs Peak Casino, located in Swaziland (a nation adjacent to South Africa). There are four major tournaments held there each year. Zackey won his $10,000 entry in May.

A Short Interview with Warren Zackey

Question: How much of an inspiration was Raymond Rahme’s final table appearance at the WSOP two years ago?
Zackey: Poker took off 100 percent after that. Rahme made many players start playing in poker tournaments in South Africa. He was excellent for the country.
Question: So, how did you get to play in the WSOP?
Zackey: I am from Johannesburg. I came second in the All Africa series, which is the biggest poker tournament in Africa. I won a seat into the WSOP at the Piggs Peak Casino. I decided to take my chances, instead of selling it away.
Question: Is this your first time to play at the WSOP?
Zackey: Yes. It’s brilliant. Excellent. If I tell somebody in South Africa what it is like, they are not going to believe me. They have to come here. Las Vegas is unbelievable.
Question: How did you end up with the chip lead?
Zackey: I got some really good hands….I tripled up on the first day. I doubled up again and again (on the next two days). I think I started with 730,000 today and then went up from there.
Question: If you win the Main Event and collect over $8.5 million, are you going to go back selling plumbing supplies?
Zackey: No, I have a family. I’d go back to it.
Question: What does your family think about this?
Zackey: My wife follows me. My kids follow me every step of the way. My wife is with me in Las Vegas. My children are (back home) following on the Internet.
Question: What do you expect to happen over the next few days?
Zackey: I’m not too sure. I will think about it tonight. But I am going to take it easy unless I get some decent cards.

Here’s how the previous end-of-day chip leaders have fared:

  • Day 1-A: Redmond Lee (London, UK) – eliminated, did not cash
  • Day 1-B: Brandon Demes (Tempe, AZ) – eliminated, did not cash
  • Day 1-C: Joseph Cada (Shelby Township, MI) – currently in 104th place
  • Day 1-D: Troy Weber (West Terre Haute, IN) – eliminated, did not cash
  • Day 2-A: Andrew Gaw (Philippines) – eliminated, did not cash
  • Day 2-B: Amir Lehavot (Weston, FL) – CASHED IN 226th PLACE
  • Day 3: Bertrand Grospellier (Nancy, France) – currently 82nd place
  • Day 4: Matt Affleck (Seattle, WA) – currently in 7th place
  • Day 5: Warren Zackey (Johannesburg, South Africa) -- TBD

WSOP Main Event (Cashing Records)

MOST LIFETIME CASHES IN MAIN EVENT:

10 – Berry Johnston
7 – Doyle Brunson
7 – Humberto Brenes
7 – Jay Heimowitz
7 – Phil Hellmuth (updated to include this year’s cash)
7 – Mike Sexton (updated to include this year’s cash)
7 – Bobby Baldwin (updated to include this year’s cash)

MORE ON BERRY JOHNSTON:

Berry Johnston’s cashes in the Main Event include:

113th in 2007
16th in 1996
21st in 1995
17th in 1992
5th in 1990
29th in 1989
32nd in 1987
1st in 1986
3rd in 1985
3rd in 1982

MOST CONSECUTIVE CASHES IN MAIN EVENT:

4 – by three players

Theodore Park (2005 – 2008) *did not cash this year
Bo Sehlstedt (2004 – 2007)
Robert Turner (1991 – 1994)

Notable Players

Here is the current status of all former WSOP world champions who played in this year’s Main Event. Six champions have/will cash. However, only two former champions remain still alive:

  • 1972: “Amarillo Slim” Preston – eliminated on Day 2
  • 1976/1977: Doyle Brunson – eliminated on Day 1
  • 1978: Bobby Baldwin – CASHED IN 352nd PLACE
  • 1983: Tom McEvoy – eliminated on Day 1
  • 1986: Berry Johnston – eliminated on Day 2
  • 1987/1988: Johnny Chan – eliminated on Day 2
  • 1989: Phil Hellmuth – CASHED IN 436th PLACE
  • 1993: Jim Bechtel – eliminated on Day 3
  • 1995: Dan Harrington – CASHED IN 252nd PLACE
  • 1996: Huck Seed – eliminated on Day 1
  • 1998: Scotty Nguyen – eliminated on Day 2
  • 2000: Chris “Jesus” Ferguson – CASHED IN 561st PLACE
  • 2001: Carlos “the Matador” Mortensen – eliminated on Day 3
  • 2002: Robert Varkonyi – eliminated on Day 2
  • 2003: Chris Moneymaker – eliminated on Day 1
  • 2004: Greg “Fossilman” Raymer – eliminated on Day 3
  • 2005: Joe Hachem – STILL ALIVE (137th place, with 540,000)
  • 2006: Jamie Gold – eliminated in Day 1
  • 2007: Jerry Yang – eliminated on Day 1
  • 2008: Peter Eastgate – STILL ALIVE (83rd place, with 927,000)

Here is the current status of all current and former WSOP “Player of the Year” champions who played in this year’s Main Event:

Here is the status of those players with notable results from this year’s WSOP:

  • David Bach (HORSE World Championship winner) – eliminated on Day 2
  • Alex Bolotin (“Ante-Up for Africa” championship winner) – eliminated on Day 3
  • Darryll Fish (cashed 7 times at this year’s WSOP) – eliminated on Day 2
  • Jeffrey Lisandro (won three gold bracelets this year) – eliminated on Day 3
  • Ville Wahlbeck (finished 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 6th in four events) – eliminated in Day 4
  • Greg Mueller (won two gold bracelets this year) – eliminated on Day 4
  • Phil Ivey (won two gold bracelets this year) – STILL ALIVE (currently in 45th place, with 1,380,000)

Here is the status of notable non-pro celebrities from this year’s Main Event:

  • Chuck Pachenco (movie producer) – CASHED IN 612th PLACE
  • Jason Alexander (actor) – eliminated on Day 3
  • Scott Ian (musician with band “Anthrax”) – eliminated on Day 3
  • Shane Warne (world famous cricket player) – eliminated on Day 3
  • Torrie Wilson (female wrestler) – eliminated on Day 1
  • John Salley (former NBA basketball player) – eliminated on Day 1
  • Patrick Bruel (French actor and singer) – CASHED IN 428th PLACE
  • Lou Diamond Phillips (actor and singer) – CASHED IN 186th PLACE
  • Marlon Wayans (actor) – eliminated on Day 2
  • Jordan Farmar (NBA basketball player) – eliminated on Day 3
  • Sam Simon (Hollywood writer and producer) – eliminated on Day 3
  • Joseph Kahn (music video producer) – eliminated on Day 1
  • Ray Romano (actor) – eliminated on Day 1
  • Sully Erna (musician) – eliminated on Day 1
  • Shannon Elizabeth (actor) – eliminated on Day 1
  • Brad Garrett (actor) -- eliminated on Day 1
  • Jennifer Tilly (actor) – eliminated on Day 1
  • Orel Hershiser (former major league baseball player – eliminated on Day 1

Historical Footnote: The highest Main Event finish by a celebrity was actor and comedian Gabe Kaplan, who finished 13th in the 1991 championship. The highest Main Event finish for a (non-poker) celebrity was actor Telly Savalas, who finished 21st in the 1992 championship.

Here is the current status of last year’s “November Nine” (2009 Main Event Final Table participants). Three of the nine players will cash:

Of the remaining players who are still alive going into Day Six, 68 are international (non-American) players. This represents 37 percent of the field.

  • US – 117 players remain
  • UK – 14 players remain
  • Canada – 12 players remain
  • Australia – 6 players remain
  • France – 5 players remain
  • Germany – 5 players remain
  • Italy – 4 players remain
  • Finland – 3 players remain
  • Denmark – 2 players remain
  • Netherlands – 2 players remain
  • Spain – 2 players remain
  • Argentina – 1 player remains
  • Austria – 1 player remains
  • Bulgaria – 1 player remains
  • Israel – 1 player remains
  • Norway – 1 player remains
  • Panama – 1 player remains
  • Peru – 1 player remains
  • Turkey – 1 player remains
  • St. Kitts – 1 player remains
  • South Africa – 1 player remains
  • Slovakia – 1 player remains
  • Russian Federation – 1 player remains
  • Romania – 1 player remains

Daily elimination percentages are as follows:

DAY ONE: 68 percent of the original starters in this tournament survived the first day / 32 percent were eliminated.
DAY TWO: 31 percent of the original starters survived the second day / 27 percent were eliminated from the start of day amount.
DAY THREE: 12 percent of the original starters survived the third day / 60 percent were eliminated from the start of day amount.
DAY FOUR: 6.2 percent of the original starters survived the fourth day / 48.2 percent were eliminated from the start of day amount
DAY FIVE: 2.8 percent of the original starters survived the fifth day / 55 percent were eliminated from the start of day amount

Female Participants in the 2009 Main Event

(Note: The WSOP recognizes that player characteristics such as gender, race, etc. do not warrant special mention. However, since many members of the media wish to know details about female participation and status, the staff is providing this information for media use.)

The number of female participants in this year's Main Event is estimated to be 187, which amounts to 2.8 percent of the field. There is no official record since entrants are not designated by their gender. However, it has been customary to count every player at the start of Day One and take an unofficial head-count of female players.

Here are the highest-female finishers (by year) in the WSOP Main Event (Note: Only players who finished in-the-money were recorded):

No female cashed in the Main Event between the years 1970-1985.

1986 – Wendeen Eolis (25th)
1987 – None
1988 – None
1989 – None
1990 – None
1991 – None
1992 – None
1993 – Marsha Waggoner (19th)
1994 – Barbara Samuelson (10th)
1995 – Barbara Enright (5th)
1996 – Lucy Rokach (26th)
1997 – Marsha Waggoner (12th)
1998 – Susie Isaacs (10th)
1999 – None
2000 – Annie Duke (10th)
2001 – None
2002 – None
2003 – Annie Duke (47th)
2004 – Rose Richie (98th)
2005 – Tiffany Williamson (15th)
2006 – Sabyl Cohen-Landrum (56th)
2007 – Maria Ho (38th)
2008 – Tiffany Michelle (17th)

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