William Tonking was just eliminated from the 2014 Main Event. He finished in 4th place, earning $2,849,763.
For Tonking, a professional poker player from Flemington, New Jersey, tonight was a tale of two tournaments. He entered the final table ranked seventh in chips with 15,050,000 in his stack. He got off to a roaring start by winning the first hand, and he continued that momentum for the next few hours. At one point, he gained the chip lead and was the first player across the 50 million chip mark. Tonking and Dutch player Jorryt van Hoof battled back and forth for the chip lead for quite a while, but then the players moved in completely opposite directions. Van Hoof continued to climb, taking a clear lead for much of the night, while Tonking's stack slowly but surely got smaller over the second half of the finale's opening session.
"It was great. I was running good and playing good," Tonking explained in his post-tournament interview. "(Then) I got into some tough spots. Just like everybody else."
The death knell came in a hand against Martin Jacobson at about 3:30 am in front of a weary but loyal audience still watching the action at the Rio. Tonking moved all in with , and Jacobson called with . The board gave Tonking hope. The flop was , giving him a flush draw, holding a club. Then, the turn was the , giving him an inside-straight draw. The river was a complete brick, though, and Tonking was eliminated.
"It was great to finish fourth. I mean, I finished fourth in the Main Event, so what can I say," Tonking stated as he looked dejectedly downward towards the floor, making no attempt to hide the mix of pride and disappointment.
This is Tonking's fourth WSOP cash, and it is by far the biggest tournament score of his career.
Here are the final table results so far:
1st - - $10,000,000
2nd - - $5,147,911
3rd - - $3,807,753
4th - William Tonking - $2,849,763
5th - Billy Pappaconstantinou - $2,143,794
6th - Andoni Larrabe - $1,622,471
7th - Dan Sindelar - $1,236,084
8th - Bruno Politano - $947,172
9th - Mark Newhouse - $730,725