Phil Ivey and the UK’s James Akenhead make the November Nine final table
After a gruelling final day at the Rio, this year’s November Nine has emerged and it looks set to be the most exciting WSOP Main Event final table in years, perhaps of all time.
Seat 1: Darvin Moon, USA, 58,930,000
Seat 2: James Akenhead, UK, 6,800,000
Seat 3: Phil Ivey, USA, 9,765,000
Seat 4: Kevin Schaffel, USA, 12,390,000
Seat 5: Steven Begleiter, USA, 29,885,000
Seat 6: Eric Buchman, USA, 34,800,000
Seat 7: Joe Cada, USA, 13,215,000
Seat 8: Antoine Saout, France, 9,500,000
Seat 9: Jeff Shulman, USA, 19,580,000
Yes, you read that right; Phil Ivey has made the WSOP Main Event final table. After a phenomenal year that has already included two bracelets this summer (bringing his total to seven bracelets) the man many consider to be the world’s best has come through a field of 6,494 players to make the final table.
Though he had been well positioned from 100 players down, Ivey hit a rocky start to yesterday’s play, losing a series of big pots to drift down the leaderboard. He displayed great patience and experience however to get back into contention and finally sealed his place in the November Nine after calling Jamie Robbins’ K-Q shove with A-10, the Ace-high holding up to win a big pot. Despite his chip disadvantage Ivey has unsurprisingly been installed as the bookie’s favourite to win the event, Betfair placing him at 2/1.
In great news for UK poker James Akenhead managed to survive a rocky day to make the final table as the short stack. It was so close to tears for the new Full Tilt pro however when he ran K-Q into pocket Aces with just 14 players left. An amazing flop of K-Q-J fired Akenhead into the lead though and he got a healthy double-up which saw him through.
Akenhead gained a following in the poker community at the 2008 WSOP when he finished 2nd in a $1,500 NLHE event for over $500,000. Poker oracle Neil Channing has already stated that Akenhead may go on to be the UK’s best player of all time – and he could be a potential world champion come November.
The monster chipleader Darvin Moon has a great story behind him also. A self-employed logger from the deep heart of America this is his first major tournament and, according to him, the trip to Vegas was his first time on an aeroplane! Despite his claims that he has just been lucky and picking up cards at the right time Moon clearly has some skills to rack up an almost 2:1 chiplead on his nearest rival.
It’s going to be a great spectacle at the famed Penn & Teller theatre inside the Rio, Las Vegas when it all starts again on Saturday November 7th. Stick with PokerPlayer for all the latest updates in the meantime as the anticipation to crown a new world champion builds.