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WSOP 2009

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Event #57, $10,000 Main Event, End of Day 6 Report

World Championship
World Series of Poker Main Event
No-Limit Hold’em
Buy-In: $10,000
Number of Entries: 6,494
Players Remaining: 64
Total Net Prize Pool: $61,043,600
Number of Places Paid: 648
First Place Prize: $8,546,435
July 3--November 10, 2009

Day 6 Headlines

  1. World Series of Poker Continues – Down to 64 in the Main Event
  2. Darvin Moon (Oakland, MD) is the New Chip Leader Going into Day Seven
  3. Many Well-Known Poker Players Still Alive – including Tom Schneider, Phil Ivey, Fabrice Soulier, Jeff Shulman, Antonio Esfandiari, Dennis Phillips, Joe Sebok, Blair Rodman, and Prahlad Friedman
  4. Defending World Champion Peter Eastgate Eliminated in 78th Place – Last of former Champions Finally Out
  5. Two November Nine Finalists Face-Off at Same Table on Day 6 – Peter Eastgate and Dennis Phillips Tangle in Re-Match, Phillips Survives
  6. Seven-Time Gold Bracelet Winner Phil Ivey (Las Vegas, NV) Currently in Third Place

The Main Event Continues

The 2009 WSOP Main Event continued with the play and conclusion of Day 6. The day included a deep run into the money, as the tournament field size was reduced by nearly two-thirds. All 185 players who started play were already guaranteed $36,626 in prize money. Now, after 11 days and 50 hours of tournament play, all finishers are guaranteed at least $90,344 in prize money.

Day 6 began with 185 players. The day ended with 64 survivors.

Prize money payouts increase at various intervals. Every player still alive in the tournament (64th place and higher) is now guaranteed at least $90,344 in prize money. After one more player busts out, survivors are guaranteed at least $108,047.

This was the 46th day of the 2009 WSOP. Play continues for two more days, plus the finale to be played in November. There will also be four gold bracelet events played at WSOP-Europe, to be held in London in September.

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

Play on Day 5 began on July 13, 2009 at 12:05 pm.

Playing on Day 1 – A, B, C, or D – Does it Matter?

Which of the four Main Event starting days is the most advantageous? The data has been run and the numbers are now in. Statistics from the past two years of Main Events show there is almost no correlation between the starting day and the odds of finishing in-the-money. Here are the numbers:

Day 1A: 121 cashes out of 1116 entrants --10.8 percent
Day 1B: 84 cashes out of 873 entrants -- 9.6 percent
Day 1C: 162 cashes out of 1696 entrants -- 9.5 percent
Day 1D: 281 cashes out of 2809 entrants -- 10 percent
Day 1A: 122 cashes out of 1299 entries -- 9.4 percent
Day 1B: 117 cashes out of 1158 entries -- 10.1 percent
Day 1C: 187 cashes out of 1936 entries -- 9.7 percent
Day 1D: 240 cashes out of 2461 entries -- 9.7 percent

Play on Day 6

Defending champion Peter Eastgate was eliminated late in the day, in the middle of Level 25. He ended up as the 78th-place finisher. He busted out with A-J against Billy Kopp’s 8-8. Eastgate initially connected with a pair of aces. But Kopp ended up making a heart flush, which eliminated the Danish poker champion. It was an impressive run for the Danish poker pro. Eastgate made the deepest run by a defending champion since Greg “Fossilman” Raymer’s remarkable 25-place finish in the 2005 Main Event.

Eastgate was the final former Main Event champion left standing in this year’s championship. 2005 WSOP champion Joe Hachem, who also started the day in contention, was eliminated in 104th place.

Players competed for five complete levels. Play ended after Level 25. When play resumes tomorrow at Level 26, blinds will be 25,000-50,000 with a 5,000 ante. The average stack size is currently 3,044,063.

Day 5 started with a field of 185 players and ended with 64 survivors. This means only about 1 percent of the original 6,494 starters survived past the fifth day.

One of the most interesting tables on Day 6 contained two final table players from last year’s Main Event. Peter Eastgate (1st place) faced Dennis Phillips (3rd place). The irony of déjà vu in this year’s Main Event was obvious to both players as they exchanged several comments about being back at center stage almost a year to the day of last year’s success.

Two females started the day. They were Nichoel Peppe (Long Beach, CA) who began in 35th place. Leo Margets (Barcelona, Spain) started in 135th place. However, their roles were reversed as Margets survived. Peppe busted out in 75th place. Leo Margets is now the only female player left in the field of 64. She is currently in 18th place.

The 2005 WSOP Main Event champion Joe Hachem was eliminated in 104th place. He busted out after missing a flush draw and received a rousing ovation from the crowd as he exited the ESPN main stage. Prior to busting out, Hachem was interviewed during the middle play on Day 6. He was asked about his goals for this event. “The only reason I keep playing is to make history,” Hachem said. “The money is extra. I want to be part of World Series of Poker history.”

Sarne Lightman, who presently lives in San Jose, Costa Rica, ended up as the 112th-place finisher. Lightman overseas operations of the Latin American Poker Tour, which will be entering its third season later this year.

Two-time WSOP gold bracelet winner Chris Bjorin (London, UK) was eliminated on this day and finished in 156th place.

Bob Riley (St. Charles, MO) was one of the most senior players still in contention coming into Day 6. The 70-year-old poker player finished in 168th place.

Players who survived Day 6 will return to continue their quest for the 2009 world poker championship gold bracelet and $8.5 million in prize money on July 14th, starting at noon.

Play on Day 6 ended at 12:45 am.

Day 6 Chip Leader (Darvin Moon)

Darvin Moon is the new chip leader after six days of play. He lives in the small eastern Maryland town of Oakland. Moon owns and operates a small logging company with other family members. Most of his days are spent in pine forests scattered throughout the Maryland panhandle. He is married and was cheered on by his wife, who was sitting in the crowd. This is Moon’s first time to play in the WSOP. It was also his first time to visit Las Vegas.

A Short Interview with Darvin Moon

Question: How did you get to the WSOP?
Moon: I won my seat at the casino in Wheeling (WV). We started going out there last year. I came in ninth one time last year. This time, I played three times (trying to qualify for a seat to play in the Main Event). I finished third the first time, and then busted out the next time. The third time, I won my seat.
Question: How long have you been playing poker?
Moon: About three years. I watch poker on TV a lot. And I pay attention to it.
Question: What is your usual poker game?
Moon: there are about 70 of us around who play around. We do benefits at places like the Elks Club, American Legion, and the fire departments. I also play in Wheeling (WV).
Question: You really came out of nowhere to seize the chip lead. How did you do it?
Moon: It’s easy to play when you get hands like I was getting. It’s just unbelievable. It’s like a dream. I got pocket aces and flopped trips, and someone was betting into me. But I had pocket kings one time and the other guy pushed all in over the top of me. I just mucked my hand pre-flop. I mean, he has to have aces. What else can he have? That’s just my style. I play tight. When I get them I bet and when I don’t, I fold.
Question: You must feel like a kid in a candy store here at the WSOP.
Moon: Oh yeah. I’m nervous. I mean, this is my first time in Las Vegas. It was my first time on a big plane.
Question: How did it feel to play on the main ESPN stage under the spotlight of television cameras?
Moon: It didn’t bother me at all. I mean, I am nervous. But I am more nervous out there than I am here. I focus on the cards and I am comfortable playing. I walk down that hall and everybody that’s won and everybody is big time and a name. And they walk right by you and you say, ‘wow, here I am playing with these guys. It’s a dream come true.
Question: Why are you wearing a New Orleans Saints (NFL) cap?
Moon: I like cheering for the underdog. They were underdogs for a long time. But now they are doing good and I am sticking with them. We are located right between Pittsburgh and Baltimore. It is mostly Steeler fans where I live. And I wear this hat to mess with them.
Question: Let’s say you get offered ninth place right now. You can make a deal and you will get $1 million for ninth, plus you get to be part of the November Nine. Would you take the imaginary deal?
Moon: No. No. Ninth place? I got my goals set. It’s not first. But it’s not ninth, either. I’ll be happy. I don’t care if I go out the first hand tomorrow. I’ve had fun. It’s been worth every minute of it. I just like to play and it’s unreal. It’s something I can’t even dream of doing, and here I am.

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 15th 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) – CASHED IN 122nd PLACE
  • Day 4: Matt Affleck (Seattle, WA) – CASHED IN 80th PLACE
  • Day 5: Waren Zackey (Johannesburg, South Africa) – currently in 51st place
  • Day 6: Darvin Moon (Oakland, MD) -- TBD

ESPN WSOP Broadcasts

ESPN has been broadcasting its WSOP coverage since 2003. This year, four events will be featured. These events include the $40,000 buy-in 40th Anniversary No-Limit Hold’em Championship, the World Champions Invitational, the third-annual Ante-Up for Africa charity tournament, and the Main Event.

Although the number of WSOP events receiving broad coverage has been reduced to four, the total number of broadcast hours is actually the same as last year. More coverage will be given to the Main Event, since the world championship receives the greatest amount of viewer interest.

The total amount of time the WSOP will be broadcast this year is 32 new and original hours of coverage.

Debut WSOP broadcasts on ESPN will remain in their customary Tuesday night time slot.

The 2009 WSOP broadcasts will begin on July 28th.

WSOP Main Event (Cashing Records)



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


4 – by three players

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:

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 third place)

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, 18 are international (non-American) players. This represents 28 percent of the field.

  • US – 46 players remain
  • UK – 3 players remain
  • Canada – 4 players remain
  • Australia – 1 players remain
  • France – 3 players remain
  • Germany – 1 player remains
  • Italy – 1 player remains
  • Finland – 1 player remains
  • Denmark – 1 player remains
  • Spain – 1 player remains
  • St. Kitts – 1 player remains
  • South Africa – 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
  • DAY SIX: 1 percent of the original starters survived the sixth day / 65.4 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.

Tere 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.

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