Friday saw the start of the fifty-sixth event in this year’s 41st World Series of Poker, and with it fewer opportunities to win gold bracelets and tempting prizes, as only the Main Event now remains on the starter grid.
Events 52 through 56 are all now in various stages of completion, which means 5 more bracelets are yet to be picked up, with top pros like Tom Dwan, Phil Hellmuth and Phil Ivey all hoping to win the coveted symbols of success for reasons ranging from side bets to prestige and record collection.
A final table of six had finally been reached Friday night after three days of unrelentingly tough poker in event 52, the $25,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold'em Six Handed competition, which initially attracted a field of 191 top players.
Only 18 players were left at the start of Day 3 Friday afternoon, including aces such as Frank Kassela, Abe Mosseri, Daniel Negreanu, Jason Somerville, Isaac Haxton, Justin Bonomo, Eugene Katchalov and Carlos Mortensen.
A measure of how competitive a field this was can be gained by the fact that in the first level Daniel Negreanu, Abe Mosseri, and Isaac Haxton, along with Day 3 chip leader Bryn Kenney, were all out of contention.
Late night Friday the action had reached level 25 when the chips were bagged. The final six survivors were: Dan Kelly in the lead on 5,895,000; Frank Kassela (2,610,000); Shawn Buchanan (2,110,000); Jason Somerville (1,665,000); Mikael Thuritz (1,535,000) and Eugene Katchalov (475,000). The average chip stack as play closed was 238 7500.
The meteoric progress of 21-year-old Internet player Dan Kelly was one of the highlights of this event in Day 3; he started the day with the shortest stack yet managed to double up and then battle his way into a substantial lead against some formidable players, and as InfoPowa went to press controlled over 41 percent of the chips on the table when the action paused for the night.