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WSOP: $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. Day 2

Lyle Berman is the Chip Leader and Doyle Brunson is in the Top Ten



Day 2 of the $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. world championship at the 2008 World Series of Poker saw the first large chunk of the field meet their end in the tournament; while many players saw their hopes and aspirations for a final-table appearance grow. The limits in each of the five games contested were still quite low in relation to the average stack size, so rather than any one large pot causing a players’ ultimate demise, it was usually a slow death march that players took to the rail as they were chipped away piece-by-piece by one misfortune after another.

Among the major contenders to fall on day 2 were:

David Singer, Chris Ferguson, John Hennigan, Bruno Fitoussi, Eli Elezra, Howard Lederer, David Benyamine, Mike Sexton, Gus Hansen, Patrik Antonius, Todd Brunson, Mike Matusow, T.J. Cloutier, Ted Forrest, and last year’s defending champion, Freddy Deeb.

Greg RaymerOne player who hit the rail in an exceptionally painful way was Greg Raymer. In seven-card stud Alexander Kostritsyn held trip sixes against Raymer's trip nines on fifth street. Kostritsyn went on to fill up a boat while Raymer failed to improve. The result was Kostritsyn taking down a 100,000 pot and grabbing the chip lead with 315,000, while Raymer fell down to just over 70,000 in chips.

Kostritsyn went on to survive the day (71,500), while Raymer was sent spiraling downwards. He later found himself short stacked and sitting next to his nemesis, Mike Matusow. It looked like the two might actually be getting along, that was until Matusow eliminated Raymer. Raymer angrily ripped the 8 (the river card on his final razz hand) in half and then uncharacteristically stormed out of the tournament area in a fit.

Many players climbed the leader board during the day, but no ascent was more interesting than that of poker’s patriarch, Doyle Brunson. Brunson spent the day residing in the top ten, and he may very well be gearing up for a second final-table appearance, and what could be his eleventh and most memorable bracelet yet if he wins. Brunson sent a couple players to the rail during day, and he most notably busted one of the hottest players in the world of poker right now – David Benyamine:

Benyamine got all of his chips into the middle on sixth street during seven-card stud eight-or-better when Brunson called him down. Their cards:


Brunson: (7 6) 2 4 3 A (7)
Benyamine: (6 2) 7 6 5 K (X)

Lyle Berman Benyamine had the lead going into seventh street with a pair of sixes (high) and a low draw, but Brunson made a pair of sevens on seventh street, while Benyamine bricked out. Benyamine failed to make a low hand and his pair of sixes fell to Texas Dolly on the high end of things.

When played ended shortly before 3 a.m. only 67 of the original 148 players remained. Over half of the field had made their exit, quite a bit more than the unfortunate eight who left on day 1. Lyle Berman held the chip lead at day's end, as the only player in the field with over 500,000 (507,000). Day 3 will begin at 3 p.m. tomorrow and the players will vote on whether five or six more 90-minute levels will transpire on the third flight of play before things begin. The tournament is one day closer to crowning the player’s champion of the year.

Here is a look at the top ten chip counts:

Lyle Berman: 507,000
Patrick Bueno: 485,500
Barry Greenstein: 473,000
Minh Ly: 451,000
Chris Reslock: 435,500
Joseph Michael: 401,000
Erick Lindgren: 397,500
Justin Bonomo: 384,000
Daniel Negreanu: 374,500
Doyle Brunson: 366,000