Day 23 at the World Series of Poker featured the final tables of the $1,500 No Limit Hold ‘em and the $10,000 World Championship Omaha Eight-or-better. For the second day in a row only one new tournament began play. Our first final table of the day saw former Danish national table tennis team player-turned-coach Jesper Hougaard
steamroll the table on his way to a showdown with Cody Slaubaugh
. Each combatant was seeking their first bracelet in this back and forth $1,500 No Limit match. Our other final table featured participants carried 11 bracelets among them, but in the end it would be empty wristed David Benyamine
going against Greg Jamison
for their first ever title in World Championship of Omaha Eight-or-better. The only event starting today saw 2,720 bracelet hopefuls cram themselves into the Amazon, Brasilia and anywhere else there was felt and a dealer to battle it out for the chance to pick up honors of being Event 39 champion.
Here is a brief rundown of the events from Day 23:
Event #39 ($2,000 Pot-Limit Hold ‘Em)
Day 2 saw a highly improbable hand of a Royal Flush beating Four Kings, which suprisingly didn't bust out either player. A few celebrities entered this tournament including NFL star Jason Taylor (in his first ever live tournament) and Frank Coraci, director of "The Wedding Singer", "The Waterboy" and "Click" who made an impressive run, surviving all the way past the dinner break. Coraci outlasted Daniel Negreanu, Antonio Esfandiari, Greg Raymer, Phil Hellmuth and John Juanda. Top pros who find themselves among the 216 Day 2 players include Barry Greenstien, Humberto Brenes and Minh Nguyen. They will all be chasing chip leader Mike Zukler who has 113,000 in chips.
Event #39 Chip Counts and Live Updates.
Event #38 ($2,000 Pot-Limit Hold ‘Em)
Event #38 moved into Day 2 with Jan Van Halle, Ayaz Mahmood and Lee Watkinson as the chip leaders. Chris Bell. Robert Cheung, Michael Greco and three other hopeful players will also be at the final table on Sunday, aiming for the $244,583. The final table of Event #38 will be broadcast live on ESPN360.com.
Event #38 Chip Counts and Live Updates. Watch the Final Table Live on ESPN360.com.
Event #37 ($10,000 World Championship Omaha Hi-Low Spilt 8 or Better)
Eighteen players took the felt of the small stage to first battle it out to make the final table and then continue the pursuit of the 2008 World Champion of Omaha Eight-or-better crown. It only took four hours to eliminate the first nine players and leave the fans inside the Amazon Room a final table which featured five previous bracelet winners who had a total of 11 bracelets among them. David Benyamine made it down to heads-up action with Greg Jamison and his lead proved to be too strong as he sent Jamison packing and picked up his first ever gold bracelet.
For more in depth information on Benyamines first bracelet win, check out Best of the Best.
Event #36 ($1,500 No Limit Hold ‘Em)
Former Danish table tennis coach Jesper Hougaard looked to be on a nonstop collision course with the title as steamrolled the entire table on route to a heads up match with Cody Slaubaugh, the only player at the final table who did not engage Hougaard in a showdown prior to the heads-up match. Once heads-up, the assumption was that Hougaard would make quick work of the young Slaubaugh as he had a 7.5 to 1 chip advantage with 22 minutes to go until the dinner break. In those 22 minutes, Slaubaugh came out firing and reversed the chip disadvantage, taking a lead of over a million chips to dinner with him. After break, with a recharge vigor, the former table tennis standout came back and delivered the knockout blow when his pocket queens turned into a set and trumped Slaubaugh’s A-10. For his efforts Hougaard becomes the pride of Denmark as he has accomplished something for his home country that hall of famer Gus Hansen has been unable too – win a gold bracelet. With the win Hougaard picked up a check for $610,276 which inches him closer to Hansen’s Danish cash record.
For more on Hougaards road to the bracelet, see Flops of Fury.