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WPT Championship Day 2

Roland De Wolfe Takes Chip Lead Into Day 3 of World Poker Tour Championship Event

Two rooms, 479 players, no money in sight. Welcome to day 2 of the 2007 WPT Championship, aka, "hump day." For the still-massive field gathered in the Fontana Bar and poker room, the run for the record-breaking $3.9 million first-place prize centered on two things: accumulate chips and survive five 90-minute levels of tournament action.

Following the coloring up of the $25 chips, play started at 12:20 p.m. with $400-$800 blinds and $100 antes.

The talent-rich field, which attracted large crowds at both the Fontana Bar and poker room, generated a plethora of tough table draws. In one of the earliest big-name matchups, Joe Hachem doubled up with a fours-full-of-sixes boat against David Oppenheim's queen-high flush. The win put Hachem around $95,000 and dropped Oppenheim to $53,000.

While Oppenheim survived the hit, a number of notables fell during the day's opening levels, including John D'Agostino, Harry Demetriou, Todd Brunson, Gavin Smith, Daniel Negreanu, and defending champ Joe Bartholdi.

As his fellow pros hit the rails, Sam Farha bolted up the leader board. Seated at the same table as Freddy Deeb and Kirk Morrison (the day 1B chip boss), Farha notched a lucrative win when, holding J 7, he called an opponent's all-in reraise (J 5) on a J 7 4 flop. The two pair held, and Farha raked a pot that put his stack over the $370,000 mark.

With the WPT Championship title vacated, several other pros positioned themselves to make deep runs.

Patrik Antonius battled for the majority of play at a table that featured Martin de Knijff, Amnon Filippi, Tex Barch, Dewey Tomko, and "Miami" John Cernuto. Despite the dangerous draw, Antonius dragged enough pots to finish the day in the top 15 on the leader board.

Another European pro who experienced success on day 2 was Roland De Wolfe. The WPT and EPT event champion scored perhaps his biggest win in a hand against J.C. Alvarado. On a K Q 2 board, and after a series of raises, De Wolfe moved all in, and eliminated Alvarado after his K Q topped Alvarado's 5 2 flush draw.

For Phil Hellmuth, two key hands helped propel him into the top three chip counts. First, the 10-time WSOP bracelet winner raked a $50,000-plus pot courtesy of a nut straight besting top two pair. Hellmuth followed up the win, and crossed the $400,000 mark, when a flopped set of queens netted him over $60,000 from David "Chino" Rheem.

At 8:40 p.m., and with all the action moved to the Fontana Bar, tournament officials placed a three-hand cap on play. Five minutes later, day 2 of the 2007 WPT Championship concluded.

The top three chip counts at the close of action were as follows:

1. Roland De Wolfe - $535,000
2. Phil Hellmuth - $528,100
3. Sorel Mizzi - $499,300

Other pros moving on include Steve Wong, Paul Wasicka, Lee Markholt, Anna Wroblewski, Marcello Del Grosso, Daniel Alaei, Kirk Morrison, Isaac Haxton, Gavin Griffin, David Oppenheim, David Levi, Chip Reese, Freddy Deeb, Amir Vahedi, and Joe Sebok.

Some notables who failed to advance were Barry Greenstein, David Sklansky, Chau Giang, Mike Matusow, Marcel Luske, Gus Hansen, John Phan, David Ulliot, Allen Cunningham, Erick Lindgren, Doyle Brunson, and Joe Hachem.

For a complete list of chip counts and eliminations please click here.

The 2007 WPT Championship resumes at noon, when the 220-plus remaining players return for day 3.

Stay tuned to for live updates, chip counts, videos, photos, and daily recaps.

Quote of the Day: "Why did you have to wake him up?" - Freddy Deeb questioning Sam Farha's decision to strike up a conversation with Mike "The Mouth" Matusow.


15 years ago

Go Hellmuth take this down!