Event #24
Seven-Card Stud High-Low (Eight-or-Better)
Buy-In: $3,000
Number of Entries: 236
Total Prize Money: $651,360
Date of Tournament: June 14-16, 2007

Click here to view the official results.

Tournament Notes:

  • The winner of the Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split World Championship was Eli Elezra. He is a 46-year-old poker player and investor from Henderson, NV. Elezra holds duel-citizenship and also has personal connections to his native Israel.
  • Elezra was born in Jerusalem. He once served as a commando in the Israeli Army.
  • Elezra’s victory was a real crowd pleaser. He’s been a regular WSOP attendee since 1999, yet had not won a gold bracelet until now. Elezra received a standing ovation from players when he was announced as the winner inside the expansive WSOP tournament room.
  • The heads-up match between Elezra and Scotty Nguyen was a poker entertainment at its very finest. The players started drinking beer together at the table and bantered constantly. The jovial nature of the proceedings masked what was a phenomenal heads-up confrontation. Elezra started off the duel with a 2 to 1 chip lead. But Nguyen reversed the lead over the next half hour and appeared primed to deliver a final knock-out punch. Elezra clawed back to even and then went on to win the tournament. His winning hand was an ace-high straight.
  • Elezra complimented Nguyen afterward, saying the former world champion was the one person he did not want to play against heads-up. “He is such a great player,” Elezra said. “To win this is amazing. But to win against a player like Scotty – that makes it all the more meaningful to me.”
  • First place paid $198,984. This was Elezra’s first WSOP gold bracelet after 11 in-the-money finishes. His previous best finish was sixth place. Elezra has won other majors, but this was the victory that mattered most.
  • Scotty Nguyen, a.k.a. “The Prince of Poker,” was the runner-up. The 1998 WSOP champion played a fabulous tournament and added his unique personality and flair to the finale. Despite ESPN’s cameras being off for a few days, the seating section inside the poker arena was filled to capacity. The crowd was divided in allegiance – as each player in his own way deserved to win.
  • Play at the final table lasted about five hours, during which 177 hands were played.
  • Elezra is known to gamble big. Following his victory, he revealed that he made a huge side bet with another poker player prior to the start of the World Series, getting 10 to 1 on his money that he would win a gold bracelet this year. Elezra posted $25,000 and promptly collected $250,000 for his win. Confident of victory, he also made several assorted side bets with other players prior to the start of the final table, which boosted his total cash prize win to over half-a-million dollars.
  • This was one of the most eclectic final tables in WSOP memory. Each of the final eight players was notable in some way in his respective field. Four of the finalists were former WSOP gold bracelet winners, with a combined ten titles between them.
  • Dutch Boyd is one of poker’s more controversial figures. He burst upon the scene during the 2003 WSOP and was featured widely on ESPN’s coverage that year. He has since won his first WSOP gold bracelet, victorious at what was perhaps the most exciting final table of last year’s WSOP against then-defending WSOP champion Joe Hachem. Boyd’s bid for bracelet number two came up short.
  • Canadian John Harkness took fourth place. He is well-known in the BARGE poker community (which is a group of a few hundred poker devotees who discuss poker online regularly and meet once a year in Las Vegas). Harkness is known outside the poker world as a noted film critic, the de facto “Roger Ebert of Toronto.”
  • Noted poker theorist David Sklansky finished in fifth place. This was Sklansky’s highest WSOP finish in six years. He is a three-time gold bracelet winner who has arguably contributed more to the education of poker players through his writings than any person in history.
  • Norwegian-born Thor Hansen has been one of the most consistent players at this year’s World Series. This marked his second final table and fourth time to cash. Hansen moved up to 13th on the all-time “Number of Cashes” list – with 38 times in-the-money (lifetime). He took sixth.
  • George Hardie, a true poker pioneer, went out in seventh-place. Hardie is best-known as the founder and former owner of the Bicycle Club Casino in Los Angeles, which at one time was the largest poker room in the world.
  • Marshall Ragir went out in 8th place. He is a consultant for a poker and digital gaming company. Ragir is also well-known as a winning sports handicapper.
  • “Miami John” Cernuto, the former air-traffic controller turned poker pro, cashed in this event (10th place). It was his second in-the-money finish at this year’s World Series. He moved up to ninth-place on the all-time “Number of Cashes” list, with 41.
  • Bruce Atkinson (a.k.a. “Senior Elvis”) hails from England. He has thrilled audiences for years with his wickedly entertaining Elvis impersonation, including performing songs at several WSOP events in recent years. Atkinson finished 14th in this tournament.
  • Poker commentator and goodwill ambassador Mike Sexton cashed again (third time) with his 18th-place showing. He now has 43 lifetime cashes, good for eighth-place on the all-time list.
  • Artie Cobb cashed again (21st). No surprise that it was a seven-card stud-related event. Cobb was once widely considered the best stud player in the world during the 1990s.