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Day 5 of the WPT Doyle Brunson Classic

Final Table Set; Eugene Katchalov is Chip Leader


The remaining 18 players returned today to battle down to the final six competitors. Those six will have the opportunity to return tomorrow and battle for the first-place prize of $2,482,605. Among them were four former WPT champions and a mountain of experience.Daniel Negreanu on Day 5

All eyes were focused on Daniel Negreanu, who came into the day with the chip lead, and the support of the majority of the rail. But just five hands into the day, Negreanu would lose his lead, and much of his momentum. Peter "apathy" Jetten moved all in for 252,000 and Ryan "daut44" Daut reraised to 500,000. Negreanu moved all in behind him and Daut called all in for his last 1,297,000. Jetten showed K J, Negreanu showed K K, but Daut was way ahead with A A. The board gave no help to either Jetten or Negreanu, and Daut more than doubled up to the chip lead. Negreanu took a big hit to his stack and Jetten was the first casualty of the day.

Mark Muchnik (17th) and Daniel Shiff (16th) were then quickly sent to the rail, making way for Todd Brunson's elimination. Brunson had been crippled in an earlier hand with Ray Davis, and he found himself all in and in dire need of an ace to beat Ted Kearly's pocket kings. Brunson couldn't hit on the river, and the son of the legend that this tournament was named for was eliminated in 15th place.

Negreanu stayed relatively steady with his short stack for a while, but he finally got it all in with top pair and a flush draw against Matt Casterella's two pair. Negreanu failed to catch up and he busted in 14th place, much to the disappointment of the fans that showed up to support him.

Jordan Rich on Day 5After Rodeen Talebi's elimination in 13th place, play grinded to a near halt. The short-stacks tried their best to speed up the process, but they seemed to have no problem drawing out to survive in a never-ending flurry of double-ups. It would take over an hour before the next player faltered.

Jordan "OctavianC" Rich raised to 120,000, and John Monnette called from the small blind. The flop came 10 8 5 and Monette led out with 210,000. Rich moved all in behind him and Monnette quickly called. Rich turned over Q J for a gutshot-straight draw, while Monnette showed 10 10 for top set. The turn brought the 9, putting Rich ahead. Monnette needed the board to pair to stay alive, but the 6 fell on the river putting him out of the tournament in 12th place and catapulting Rich into the chip lead.

Hand-for-hand play began on the final-table bubble, and Rich had no problem bullying his table until Bill Kontaratos finally fell in 11th place. The players then redrew for new seats; here were the chip counts heading into the final table:

Seat 1 -- Ken Rosen -- 1,405,000
Seat 2 -- Ted Kearly -- 2,750,000
Seat 3 -- Erick Lindgren -- 1,230,000
Seat 4 -- Raymond Davis -- 1,360,000
Seat 5 -- Jimmy Tran -- 1,350,000
Seat 6 -- Jordan Rich -- 4,185,000
Seat 7 -- Eugene Katchalov -- 2,110,000
Seat 8 -- Ryan Daut -- 3,575,000
Seat 9 -- David "Devilfish" Ulliott -- 1,590,000
Seat 10 -- Matt Casterella -- 625,000

Casterella had been riding his short stack for quite some time, but he was able to double up twice against Tran even though he was a huge underdog in both hands. First he cracked Tran's pocket queens with pocket fives, and then his J-10 offsuitErick Lindgren on Day 5 made a backdoor straight against Tran's set of kings. As a result of the suckouts, the tension at the table grew and finally boiled over when Lindgren got it all in.

Lindgren raised from the cutoff to 160,000 and Davis called from the button. Rich also called from the big blind and the flop came down 7 4 4. Rich led for 300,000 and Lindgren moved all in for 1,030,000. Davis got out of the way, and Rich went into the tank. He eventually made the call showing 10 7. Lindgren turned over 8 8 and was a big favorite to double up, but the turn card was the 10 leaving only two outs in the deck for Lindgren. The river was the 3, and Lindgren was sent to the rail in 10th place.

At this point, Rich had secured a massive lead with more than 9,000,000 in chips. His closest competitor was sitting on just under 3,000,000. Eugene Katchalov on Day 5Casterella had been short, despite his good fortune earlier, and finally got it all in against Davis' pocket tens. He failed to improve on his K-9 and finally went out in ninth place.

Tran had both given and received some of the harshest bad beats of the day. In the end, they finally caught up with him as his A-7 went all in preflop against the J-10 of Rich. Rich caught a jack on the turn and Tran's roller-coaster ride of a day finally came to an end in eighth place.

On the TV-table bubble, Katchalov started to make some moves, doubling up twice, once with A-5 against Daut's pocket jacks, and the other with pocket eights against Rich's pocket tens. This brought Rich back down to earth and finally gave him a contender he could see in his rear-view mirror.

Katchalov would ultimately be responsible for ending the day when he got into a classic race situation with Davis. Davis got it all in with pocket queens against Katchalov's big slick. The board came out safe for Davis until the ace on the river ended his tournament, making him the TV-bubble boy. This pot catapulted Katchalov into the chip lead for the first time.

Here are the final six players and their chip counts heading into tomorrow.

Seat 1 -- Ken Rosen -- 1,135,000
Seat 2 -- Ted Kearly -- 1,620,000
Seat 3 -- Jordan Rich -- 6,585,000
Seat 4 -- Eugene Katchalov -- 8,360,000
Seat 5 -- Ryan Daut -- 330,000
Seat 6 -- David Ulliott -- 1,900,000