WSOP | Tournaments | Event Updates
Auto Refresh Rate:

2015 46th Annual World Series of Poker

Friday, June 19, 2015 to Sunday, June 21, 2015

Event #41: $10,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship

download official reportdownload official winner photo
  • Buy-in: $10,000
  • Prizepool: $1,043,400
  • Entries: 111
  • Remaining: 0


view updates for day:
Monday, June 22, 2015 2:28 AM Local Time

EVENT #41: $10,000 buy-in Seven-Card Stud High-Low World Championship
PRIZE POOL: $1,043,400

Max Pescatori Wins Seven-Card Stud High-Low World Championship

Italian Poker Pro Collects Fourth Career WSOP Gold Bracelet and Second of the 2015 WSOP

Milan-Born Legend Tops Tough Final Table with Stephen Chidwick, Daniel Negreanu, Gary Benson, Others.

50th Cash of Career at WSOP a Memorable Occasion for Pescatori


Name: Max Pescatori
Birthplace: Milan, Italy
Age: 44
Current Residence: Las Vegas, NV (USA)
Marital Status: Single
Children: None
Profession: Poker Pro
Number of WSOP Cashes: 50
Number of WSOP Final Table Appearances: 9
Number of WSOP Gold Bracelet Victories (with this tournament): 4 (2006, 2008, 2015, 2015)
Best Previous WSOP Finish: 1st (2006, 2008, 2015))
Total WSOP Earnings: $2,174,892
Personal Facts: Known by his nickname as “the Italian Pirate,” his last name actually translates into “fisherman”

[Note: All statistics above include the results of this tournament]

Max Pescatori has done it yet again. The famed poker promoter, player, and personality affectionately known to many as “the Italian Pirate” reeled in another huge catch, winning his second gold bracelet at the 2015 World Series of Poker.

Pescatori blistered a star-studded final table in the $10,000 buy-in Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split World Championship, which is the highest buy-in tournament for this game played annually anywhere in the world. The Milan-born poker pro topped a tough field of experienced pros and even a few legends in route to what was unquestionably one of the greatest victories of his career, besting 111 players on the way to added poker immortality and a $292,158 payday.

“I believed I could do it, because Stud is my best game,” Pescatori said afterward in a post-tournament interview. “Coming into the series, I thought this event was my best shot to win another gold bracelet. The win in Razz (gold bracelet number three) wasn’t the event I necessarily thought was my best chance, so that was nice to get it there. But I always thought Stud was the game where I could go deep. I even spent a lot of time beforehand studying and thinking more about the game.”

Pescatori ripped through a final table lineup that included Daniel Negreanu shooting for what would have been the seventh gold bracelet victory of his career. Negreanu, never one to mince words, even Tweeted at one point he felt confident this would be his lucky seventh. Pescatori apparently isn’t a Negreanu follower and didn’t see the Tweet.

Fresh off his third gold bracelet victory just two weeks earlier in the $1,500 buy-in Razz event, Pescatori added to his legendary status in Europe as most successful Italian poker player in history, which made for yet another memorable victory at the 2015 WSOP.

The win was even sweeter given Pescatori’s seemingly hopeless condition at one point when play was 4-handed. Pescatori was down to just three big bets at one stage and appeared destined for a respectable fourth-place finish. However, he managed to not just survive but double and triple up to the point where he was back in contention. After two eliminations, heads-up play began with longtime journeyman Stephen Chadwick, from England holding a 3 to 2 chip advantage, with deep limits. That gave Pescatori lots of breathing room. In fact, Chadwick ended up suffocating over the final 30 minutes of the tournament, seemingly helpless to stop Pescatori in a quest for his fourth win.

“This is a streaky game,” Pescatori said. “You need some luck of course. But if you can hang in there and then catch some cards, if you are determined you can make up a lot of ground in just a few hands. That’s what happened.”

Meanwhile, if poker has a proverbial radar, Stephen Chidwick has been both under it and far above it. The average poker fan likely doesn’t know nor have any knowledge of the professional poker player from England. However, poker insiders and those who have been attached to the game over the past decade not only know of Chadwick’s extraordinary talent, but realize he’s one of the game’s very best all-around players. When discussions come up about the best poker players not to have won a gold bracelet at the World Series of Poker, Chadwick’s name often gets mentioned. Unfortunately for him, that discussion will continue as Chidwick came very close but short, yet again.

Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split is often considered a purists game. It’s generally favored by more experienced players and is often associated with finesse, rather than aggression.

Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split was the first "split" game ever to be played at the WSOP, when it was first introduced 37 years ago. In 1976, Doc Green became the first Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split World Champion. Interestingly, he won $12,750 for first place that year, which is less than half what the bottom of the payout scale (16th place) earned in this year's event.

Since 1976, the list of event winners reads like a "Who's Who" of poker. Past winners include Johnny Moss, Doyle Brunson, Chip Reese, Mickey Appleman, Phil Ivey, John Juanda, Max Stern, Men "the Master" Nguyen, Mike Sexton, Artie Cobb, Vince Burgio, Cyndy Violette, Rich Korbin, Eli Elezra, Jeffrey Lisandro, and Frank Kassela.

Max Pescatori’s name now gets etched into the granite list of greats.

With this victory, Pescatori joined Brian Hastings as the other two-time winner at the 2015 WSOP. Hastings won his second gold bracelet victory just a day earlier. Hence, Pescatori becomes the 13th repeat winner in 40 completed events, so far.

Pescatori also moves into serious contention in the 2015 WSOP “Player of the Year” race. The contest appeared to be a two-player race between Hastings and Paul Volpe. However, the Italian poker pro now living in Las Vegas most of the time rockets himself close to the top of the leaderboard and is now a player to watch and enjoy the remainder of the series.
Not only does Max Pescatoru now have four gold bracelets – won in 2006, 2008, and two in 2015, he also crosses the $2 million mark in career WSOP earnings.

Perhaps just as impressive, Pescatori has never finished 2nd or 3rd in a WSOP event before. All four times he got into a three-handed confrontation, he ended up with the victory.

“I think I might be the only player in WSOP history who is a perfect 4-0 at three handed.”

A quick fact check reveals that to be correct, except for Bill Boyd, the legendary Five-Card Draw master from the 1970s, who was also a perfect 4-0 and never finished in any other spot than first place.

There were three former gold bracelet winners among the final eight players – Daniel Neggreanu (6 wins), Max Pescatori (3 wins coming in), and Gary Benson (1 win). Following Pescatori’s finish in the top spot, the descending order of results was as follows:

Second Place: With this runner-up finish, British poker pro Stephen Chidwick now has 33 cashes at the WSOP, including 9 final table appearances, and more than $1.5 million in winnings. Prior to this showing, his highest finish at the WSOP had been a 3rd-place finish in 2012. Second place paid out $180,529.

Third Place: Daniel Negreanu, originally from Toronto, Ontario (Canada) and now residing in Las Vegas, NV finished in 3rd place, which paid $113,062. This was his best showing since last year’s Big One for One Drop runner-up finish, which was the biggest financial score of Negreanu’s illustrious career in poker ($8.2 million). The 6-time gold bracelet winner was denied a chance to reach the plateau of seven wins or more shared by only 8 players in history. The Poker Hall of Famer (Class of 2014) ran cold at three handed and had to settle for what was his first final table appearance of this year’s series. Benson was an original inductee into the Australian Poker Hall of Fame.

Fourth Place: Aleksandr Denisov, from Moscow, Russsia finished 4th in what was his second final table appearance this year. He took 6th place in the $1,500 buy-in Deuce-to-Seven Lowball tourney. This was also his fourth cash overall at the 2015 WSOP. His payout amounted to $81,865.

Fifth Place: Gary Benson, a 57-year-old poker player from Sydney, Australia and longtime veteran of the WSOP was the first Aussie to win a gold bracelet, back in 1996. The professional gambler and businessman has since cashed 18 times since that debut victory. Benson came close to a second win but couldn’t quite leap into contention against some very stiff and experience competition. He earned $63,981 for 5th place. An amusing side note -- when Benson was asked during an interview how and where he learned to play poker, he answered, “the hard way of course, by losing my money.”

Sixth Place: Thomas Butzhammer, from Vienna, Austria finished 6th. He collected $51,022. Remarkably, this was his sixth time to cash at this summer series, and 11th in-the-money finish within the last three years.

Seventh Place: Richard Sklar has been enjoying a couple of successful years at the WSOP. The longtime professional gambler and golf hustler from Las Vegas just made his third final table appearance in two years (3rd, 9th, and now 7th). He earned $41,433 for another fine effort. Side Note and True Story: Sklar bought President Barack Obama into the 2009 WSOP Main Event. However, the President must have had other obligations and didn’t show up for the free seat.

Eighth Place: Alan Ledford, a professor from Wilmington, OH rounded out the final table as the 8th-place finisher. He collected 34,192 in prize money. This marked his first time to cash in a WSOP event.


Aside from the final table finishers, other notable gold bracelet winning players who cashed included – Phillip Hui (10th), Mark Leah (14th), Huck Seed (15th), and Phil Galfond (16th).


In 1986, this game was inexplicably omitted from the WSOP schedule. After some protest by Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split enthusiasts, it was reinstituted and has been included on the poker menu every year. Since 1995, every WSOP has included at least two Eight-or-Better events.

No player in WSOP history has ever won more than one gold bracelet in this game.


For this event’s results, visit:

For Max Pescatori’s official player profile page, visit:

For the Live Reporting Log for this event, please visit:

For photos from this event, please visit:

For official winner photo, please visit:

For the live stream archive of this event, please visit:

(Note: Will appear 48 hours after event concludes)

Monday, June 22, 2015 1:08 AM Local Time
Max Pescatori

Max Pescatori, Winner of Event #41

Stephen Chidwick is the bring-in showing the  . Max Pescatori completes showing the   and Chidwick makes it two bets. Pescatori makes it three bets and Chidwick calls.

Pescatori - (X)(X) /      / (X)
Chidwick - (X)(X) /      / (X)

On fourth street Chidwick check-calls one bet from Pescatori. On fifth street, Chidwick checks, Pescatori bets, and Chidwick check-raises. Pescatori goes into the tank and elects to three-bet, which Chidwick calls, leaving less than one bet behind. This goes in on sixth street, and cards are tabled.

Chidwick has    for a pair of kings, and Pescatori can only turn over    for a pair of tens. On seventh street, Chidwick pulls the   but Pescatori finds the last ten in the deck, the  , to give him the hand, the title, the $292,158 for first prize, and his second bracelet of the 2015 Series!

Stephen Chidwick

Stephen Chidwick - Eliminated in 2nd Place

Monday, June 22, 2015 1:01 AM Local Time

Stephen Chidwick brings it in with the   and Max Pescatori calls.

Max Pescatori - (x-x)/    /(x)
Stephen Chidwick - (x-x)/    /(x)

Chidwick bets fourth and fifth streets and Pescatori calls both bets.  Both players check sixth street, and Chidwick bets seventh street.  Pescatori calls.  "Two pair," Chidwick says, showing nines and threes.  Pescatori turns over     for a better two pair: kings and fives.

Max Pescatori - 2,110,000
Stephen Chidwick - 1,120,000

Monday, June 22, 2015 12:53 AM Local Time

Stephen Chidwick is the bring-in showing  . Max Pescatori completes showing the   and Chidwick makes it two bets. Pescatori then makes it three bets and Chidwick just calls.

Pescatori - (X)(X) /      / (X)
Chidwick - (X)(X) /      / (X)

On fourth street Pescatori check-calls one bet from Chidwick, and the same action occurs on fifth. On sixth street, Pescatori leads out for one bet and Chidwick calls.

On seventh street, Pescatori counts his stack before electing to check, and Chidwick thinks about the hand before electing to make one bet. Pescatori calls and Chidwick declares "sevens and an eight-seven low", to Pescatori's surprise as he says "I scoop!" and tables     for a pair of aces and an eight-six low. Chidwick grins wryly and mucks his hand.

Max Pescatori - 2,100,000
Stephen Chidwick - 1,230,000

Monday, June 22, 2015 12:46 AM Local Time

Showdowns are rare in this heads-up battle and Chidwick has won the second in as many showdowns of late.

Chidwick brings it in with the   and Pescatori calls.

Stephen Chidwick - (x-x)/    
Max Pescatori - (x-x)/    /(x)

Pescatori checks fourth street. Chidwick bets and Pescatori check-calls. Pescatori leads with a bet on fifth street and Chidwick calls. Pescatori checks on sixth street. Chidwick bets and Pescatori check-calls. Both players check seventh street.

Chidwick turns over     for two pair. Pescatori turns over an     and mucks the rest.

Playtika - Jason Alexander
Monday, June 22, 2015 12:24 AM Local Time
The players have agreed to forgo the 20-minute break scheduled to take place at this time.  The blinds have been raised and heads-up play continues.
Monday, June 22, 2015 12:22 AM Local Time
Level: 29
Blinds: 80k/160k,Bring-in:20k
Ante: 20k
Monday, June 22, 2015 12:15 AM Local Time

Max Pescatori pulled ahead through steady aggression with Stephen Chidwick folding most hands on fourth and fifth streets.  However, Chidwick just scooped a pot at showdown that brings the stacks back to roughly even.

Chidwick brings it in with the   and Pescatori completes with the  . Chidwick raises and Pescatori calls.

Stephen Chidwick - (x-x)/    /(x)
Max Pescatori - (x-x)/    /(x)

Chidwick bets fourth and check-calls on fifth street.  Chidwick then bets sixth street when he picks up a third three.  Pescatori calls sixth and another bet on seventh and the hands are turned up.

Chidwick turns over     for a full house and Pescatori flashes an   for trip eights before tossing his hand into the muck.

Stephen Chidwick - 1,685,000
Max Pescatori - 1,645,000

Monday, June 22, 2015 12:00 AM Local Time
Heads up play has started slowly, with no hands making it to showdown and being won with one or two small bets. Max Pescatori is the main beneficiary of this, and has turned his chip deficit into a slight chip lead at the moment. All is still very cagey though, and with both players having an average stack of arouind 14 big bets, this battle could be epic.
Sunday, June 21, 2015 11:43 PM Local Time

Daniel Negreanu

Daniel Negreanu

Short-stacked Daniel Negreanu brings it in with the   and has just 30,000 behind. Max Pescatori completes with the   and Stephen Chidwick calls with the  . Negreanu looks at his hole cards and thinks it over for a few seconds. Is this the hand he'll go all-in with? Turns out it is, as Negreanu moves all in for less than the current bet.

Max Pescatori - (x-x)/    /(x)
Daniel Negreanu - (x-x)/    /(x)
Stephen Chidwick - (x-x)/     - fold

There is a 20k side pot but all eyes are on the main pot. The rail is pulling for Daniel to triple up and go on a run. Pescatori and Chidwick check through fourth and fifth streets. Pescatori bets sixth and Chidwick folds.

Pescatori -    for kings and jacks.
Negreanu -    for eights and a low draw.

Negreanu needs an eight to scoop or a low card to chop. Instead, Negreanu collects the   and is eliminated in 3rd place for $113,062.

Max Pescatori - 1,420,000
Stephen Pescatori - 1,910,000
Daniel Negreanu - Eliminated

Playtika - Jason Alexander
Sunday, June 21, 2015 11:34 PM Local Time

Since the last update, Daniel Negreanu found himself the bring-in 3 out of the last 4 hands and was unable to play any of them. With antes as well, he found himself down to his last 45,000 chips and after paying the ante, was the bring in again showing the  . He put his last 30,000 in and both Max Pescatori and Stephen Chidwick called.

On fourth street both players checked, and they repeated this on fifth street. On sixth Chidwick led for one bet and Pescatori folded. Cards were tabled and on seventh street, Chidwick made a pair of twos but Negreanu made a low to chop the pot.

Negreanu -    /      /  
Chidwick -    / 9h]    /  
Pescatori - (X)(X) /      - folded on sixth street

Sunday, June 21, 2015 11:19 PM Local Time

Daniel Negreanu brings it in with the   and Max Pescatori completes with the  . Negreanu calls.

Max Pescatori - (x-x)/    /(x)
Daniel Negreanu - (x-x)/    /(x)

Pescatori bets fourth street and Negreanu raises.  Pescatori calls and leads with a bet on fifth when he pairs up. Negreanu calls. Pescatori continues with a bet on sixth and Negreanu calls.  Pescatori checks to Negreanu on seventh and Negreanu checks, holding up his cards as he does when he's missed.

Pescatori tables     for aces and no low. Negreanu kicks his cards in and we identify    before the dealer sweeps them into the muck.

Max Pescatori - 975,000
Daniel Negreanu - 370,000
Sunday, June 21, 2015 11:08 PM Local Time


Sunday, June 21, 2015 10:55 PM Local Time

Daniel Negreanu brings it in with the  . Max Pescatori completes with the  . Stephen Chidwick calls and Negreanu calls.

Stephen Chidwick - (x-x)/    /(x)
Max Pescatori - (x-x)/    /(x)
Daniel Negreanu - (x-x)/    - fold

Pescatori bets fourth street and both opponents call.  On fifth, Pescatori continues for 100,000. Chidwick calls and Negreanu folds.  On sixth, Pescatori bets and Chidwick calls.  On seventh, Pescatori checks and then check-calls a bet from Chidwick.

Chidwick tables     for a ten-high straight and scoops the pot, putting him above 2,000,000 chips again.

Stephen Chidwick - 2,100,000
Max Pescatori - 620,000
Daniel Negreanu - 630,000

Sunday, June 21, 2015 10:49 PM Local Time

Daniel Negreanu brings it in with the   and Max Pescatori completes with the  . Negreanu raises and Pescatori three bets. Negreanu calls.

Max Pescatori - (x-x)/    /(x)
Daniel Negreanu - (x-x)/    /(x)

Negreanu bets fourth and fifth streets and Pescatori calls.  Both players check sixth street.  On seventh, Negreanu bets and Pescatori thinks for ten seconds, then raises.  Negreanu shoots out of his chair.  "I had such a monster," he says.  "As monster as monster gets."

Negreanu sits back down and goes to work deciding what to do. After 15 seconds he says, "What's the difference, I'm not folding," and tosses in calling chips.

Pescatori turns over     for trip jacks.  Negreanu shows the case   for trip deuces.

Max Pescatori - 1,070,000
Daniel Negreanu - 765,000

Playtika - Jason Alexander
Sunday, June 21, 2015 10:38 PM Local Time

Max Pescatori is the bring in and Daniel Negreanu completes. Pescatori calls and the pair head down the streets. On fourth street Pescatori has the best hand showing and checks. Negreanu bets and Pescatori calls.

On fifth street Negreanu makes a pair and leads for one bet, with Pescatori calling. Action repeats itself on sixth street and the dealer pitches out the seventh street down cards.

Negreanu - (X)(X) /      / (X)
Pescatori - (X)(X) /      / (X)

Negreanu bets seventh street before looking at his card and Pescatori squeezes his last card before calling. Unfortunately for the Italian, Negreanu turns over     for trip threes, enough to get Pescatori to muck his hand.

Daniel Negreanu - 1,175,000
Max Pescatori - 540,000

Sunday, June 21, 2015 10:29 PM Local Time

Max Pescatori brings it in with the   and Negreanu completes with the  . Pescatori raises and Negreanu calls.

Max Pescatori - (x-x)/    /(x)
Daniel Negreanu - (x-x)/    /(x)

Pescatori bets his pair of sixes on fourth and Negreanu calls.  Pescatori bets fifth and on sixth street goes all in.  Negreanu calls and Pescatori reveals    for a straight and a seven-low.  "Already?" Negreanu asks, and realizes he's drawing dead.  Seventh is dealt but the pot belongs to Pescatori.

Max Pescatori - 650,000
Daniel Negreanu - 590,000

Sunday, June 21, 2015 10:21 PM Local Time

Daniel Negreanu is the bring-in and Max Pescatori folds. Stephen Chidwick completes and Negreanu calls.

On fourth street Negreanu is first to speak and checks. Chidwick fires out a bet and Negreanu calls.

On fifth street Chidwick is first to speak but checks. Negreanu fires one bet and Chidwick calls.

On sixth street Negreanu is again first to speak and check-calls one bet from Chidwick.

On seventh street both players check and showdown.

Chidwick -    /      /  
Negreanu -    /      /  

Chidwick scoops the pot with his two pair and moves to 2,000,000 in chips, whilst Negreanu drops to 975,000.

Sunday, June 21, 2015 10:06 PM Local Time
Level: 27
Blinds: 50k/100k,Bring-in:20k
Ante: 10k
Sunday, June 21, 2015 9:04 PM Local Time

The three remaining players are now on a 60 minute dinner break.

Playtika - Jason Alexander