The biggest bubble of the World Series of Poker has all but burst, with 19 players left in the $50,000 HORSE tournament, 16 of who will be paid at least US$72,914.
Amongst the players still in contention to claim the Chip Reese Memorial Trophy are 2007 HORSE champion Freddy Deeb, David Bach, Gus Hansen, Huck Seed, Steve Billirakis, Erik Seidel, and Todd Brunson, along with Australia’s Tong G.
There were plenty of big name players that fell on day three including defending champion Scotty Nguyen, day one chip leader Hasan Habib, Patrik Antonius, Jon 'PearlJammer' Turner, Chris Ferguson, Erick Lindgren, Doyle Brunson, David Benyamine, Barry Greenstein, Phil Ivey and Australian Jason Gray as the field dropped from 53 players to just 19 hopefuls.
Gray’s day would be relatively short as he busted just an hour into day three. Tony G spent the vast majority of the day in a holding pattern, bouncing between 400,000 and 550,000 but seemingly not being able to get any true forward momentum happening.
The G took a hit with a couple of hours left to play, dropping to 300,000 in chips, but he resuscitated his hopes late in the day finishing not far short of average at 650,000 good for 12th place out of the remaining 19.
Four players are currently 400,000 chips ahead of the rest of the field with chip leader Vitaly Lunkin, Erik Sagström, former champion Freddy Deeb, and David Bach in the lead group.
Russian Lunkin is on the verge of greatness, having already captured the bracelet in the $40,000 buy-in event, he now sits chip leader with 1,527,000 in chips. It would be a mind-blowing achievement if he captures bracelets in both of the highest buy-in events on the schedule.
Swede Erik Sagström with 1,315,000 in chips is second and on track for his career best cash. If either Sagstrom or Lunkin capture the title, they will become the first non-US based player to capture the HORSE world championship.
They will have to deal with a former-champion hell bent on becoming the first man to repeat, with Freddy Deeb sitting not far off the pace in the counts with 1,300,000. He’s joined by fellow American David Bach in fourth at 1,265,000.
With the quality of the field and the nature of tournament poker it won’t take much for any of the remaining players to wheel in the leaders and contend for the title. All the action gets back underway tomorrow at 7:00am AEST. The tournament can be followed live on PokerNews or via a daily summary of the action right here on PokerNetwork.
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