There will be five players returning to the felt tomorrow for the final day of competition in Event #47: $1,000 Seniors No-Limit Hold'em Championship. Ben Sarnoff will be the odds-on favorite after a dominating Day 4 which saw him bag up more than one-third of the chips in play.
Sarnoff was one of the most accomplished players remaining in the tournament with over $434,000 in career earnings and he is well on his way to pushing that number even higher. The California native's only recorded tournament win came back in 2007 when he scored a $101,000 payday. Sarnoff has already locked up his career biggest score but will be hoping to add a piece of jewelry as well.
The only player remaining to have won a WSOP gold bracelet in the past is Kathy Liebert who is currently sitting third on the leaderboard. Liebert is well known in the poker community with over $6.4 million in career earnings and many six-figure scores on her resume. Liebert's lone bracelet title came in 2004 and she has been attending the WSOP since 1995, she mentioned at the table.
Eric Smidinger moved his way up to second place in the latter stages of the day and will be joined by Biagio Morciano and Charles Mitchell as the other players in search of the title.
Final Day Seating Assignments
|Seat||Player||Country||Chip Count||Big Blinds|
|1||Kathy Liebert||United States||29,100,000||49|
|2||Ben Sarnoff||United States||55,000,000||92|
|3||Charles Mitchell||United States||7,900,000||13|
|5||Eric Smidinger||United States||32,800,000||55|
Day 4 Action
There were 18 players who returned to the felt for Day 4 and the eliminations were fast and furious in the opening level. Valerii Luebents came into the day with less than one big blind and despite quadrupling up in the first hand, his stay was short-lived as he was eliminated on the second hand of the day. Many more followed him out the door as the field dwindled to just 11 players after the first level.
The unofficial final table was reached just moments before the players went on their first break of the day. Domenico Scalamogna was the short stack and was the first to hit the rail when the action resumed. Alexander Hill joined him just moments later when his flopped two pair was bested by Sarnoff's turned set.
Mark Pett entered the final table with an above-average chip stack but had a rough go at things in the first few hands. In fact, Pett struggled to even win a pot and soon found himself on the short stack. He eventually decided to flick in his last few blinds from the big blind with queen-high but could not connect on the board. Next in the pecking order for Sarnoff was Andres Korn who opted to try to make a move against the chip leader. However, Sarnoff had the goods with pocket aces and Korn's queen-ten was no match for it.
With the field down to six players, many were excited to see the end of the day fast approaching. Jan Pettersson was hoping to prolong the day but his short stack of just four big blinds was going to be tough to spin up. Eventually, he decided to get the last of it in from the big blind. Pettersson ran into the ace-queen of Smidinger on a queen-high flop and was unable to improve.
The final five players were ecstatic to make the final day with friends and family hoping to join them tomorrow. They will resume play at the start of Level 36 with the blinds at 300,000/600,000 and a big blind ante of 600,000. The cards will be in the air at 11 a.m. sharp on Monday and the will play until a winner is determined.
The lion's share of the prize pool will be up for grabs with each of the five players already guaranteed at least $186,541. The pay jumps are significant with the winner walking away with $694,909 and the WSOP gold bracelet.
The PokerNews live reporting team will be back on the tournament floor to bring you all of the live updates en route to crowning a champion.