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WSOP Update - Day 16

12 July 2006

Lee Watkinson won his first bracelet, Carlos Mortensen finished just short of making his third final table of the 2006 World Series of Poker (WSOP), and Joe Hachem has made it to the final 22 after navigating a field of 590 in the $2,000 Pot Limit Hold'em Event.

Event # 16 – $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha
Lee Watkinson shed his "always-the-bridesmaid, never-the-bride" reputation with his first major tournament win on Tuesday night, claiming Event # 16 to win his first WSOP bracelet and $655,746.

Watkinson has finished second in several major tournaments, including a 2004 WSOP Pot Limit Omaha event. He faced Mike Guttman in a heads-up battle for over two hours, finally making a straight to beat Guttman's pocket Jacks to claim the title.

2005 champ Rafi Amit was looking to repeat as champion, but finished fourth when his two pair was busted by Watkinson's straight.

"It's not exactly what I wanted, but I tried to make a play and it didn't work out that well," Amit said.

Amit appeared to have all the momentum going into the dinner break after doubling up through Mark Dickstein, avoiding Dickstein's wrap draw to see his pocket aces turn into a full house with three fours on the board.

"I always say, as long as I'm in, my chances are still alive," said Amit, who came back from being the short stack at the beginning of the day to make a run for a repeat title. "I can count with my two hands the number of people who can play (Omaha) as good as me."

Hasan Habib, who won a WSOP bracelet in Seven-Card Stud Hi/Lo two years ago, failed to grab his second, finishing fifth when he flopped top and bottom pair when Amit flopped top two pair.

Mickey Appleman, a four-time WSOP bracelet winner, finished ninth.

The event featured a truly international field, with four Europeans, an Aussie and three Americans.

Event # 17 – $1,000 No Limit Hold'em
While Carlos Mortensen fell just short of making his third final table at this year's WSOP with a 10th place finish last night, Humberto Brenes will be making his 22nd career WSOP final table appearance when play begins this afternoon at 2 p.m. PST.

Brenes and John Phan are easily the most well-known players in the field. Brenes owns two WSOP bracelets and the 2002 Jack Binion World Poker Open to his name. He has made several World Poker Tour Appearances, and has cashed in 37 WSOP events.

The Costa Rican is well known for his jovial manner and for singing at the table. Brenes won both of his bracelets in 1993, winning Limit Hold'em and Pot Limit Omaha events. Brenes will start the day in fourth chip position.

Phan, meanwhile, has over $2 million in career earnings, including one WSOP and one WPT Championship final table appearance. Phan starts the day in second chip position, with the rest of the field consisting largely of unknown players.

Mike Halford, the short stack, has five WSOP cashes, including two final table appearances. Halford's last final table came 10 years ago in a Limit Hold'em event. Jon Friedberg, who starts the day in eighth chip position, has cashed in six WSOP events, including one this year, and is making his first WSOP final table. Thang Luu is making his second WSOP final table after finishing third in the 2005 casino employee's event, and Kevin O'Donnell, who made a WPT final table at the 2005 Legends of Poker, is making his first WSOP final table.

Starting Chip Stacks

Michael Pomeroy - $1,325,000

John Phan - $747,000

Tom Hawkingberry - $675,000

Humberto Brenes - $564,000

Thang Luu - $314,000

Corey Chaston - $229,000

Kevin O'Donnell - $222,000

Jon Friedberg - $189,000

Mike Halford - $89,000

Event # 18 - $2,000 Pot Limit Hold'em
Twenty-two players remain out of 590 who entered Event # 18, with play scheduled to resume this afternoon at 2 p.m. PST. This one could be a late finish, as a champion will be crowned today.

2005 Main Event champion Joe Hachem, who fell just shy of his second WSOP bracelet in a heads-up match with Dutch Boyd in the Short Handed No Limit Hold'em event earlier in this year's WSOP, is again in contention, entering the day 12th chip position.

John Sagle has a dominating chip lead, holding $225,000, more than double second place. Other players in contention include Harley Hall (fifth with $71,000), Jim McManus (13th with $51,500), and Kirill Gerasimov (14th with $40,500).

H.O.R.S.E., Senior's Event Begin Today
Event # 19, the $1,000 Seniors No Limit Hold'em championship begins today at 11 a.m., while the highly-anticipated $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. championship is set to begin at noon.


AT OffSuite
In his previous life, Aaron Todd was a sports journalist by day and a poker player by night. He can now be found covering the poker beat for Casino City and making horrendously unsuccessful bluffs in his home game.
Write to Aaron at aarontodd@casinocity.com.
WSOP Update - Day 16 is republished from CasinoVendors.com.
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Best of Aaron Todd
Aaron Todd

Home-game hotshot Aaron Todd was an editor/writer at Casino City for nearly eight years, and is currently the Assistant Director of Athletics for Communications and Marketing at St. Lawrence University, his alma mater. While he is happy to play Texas Hold'em, he'd rather mix it up and play Omaha Hi/Lo, Razz, Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw, and Badugi.

Aaron Todd

Home-game hotshot Aaron Todd was an editor/writer at Casino City for nearly eight years, and is currently the Assistant Director of Athletics for Communications and Marketing at St. Lawrence University, his alma mater. While he is happy to play Texas Hold'em, he'd rather mix it up and play Omaha Hi/Lo, Razz, Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw, and Badugi.