It’s Tight at the Bottom in WPT World Championship

WPT World ChampionshipThe early stages of Day 5 at the season-ending World Poker Tour (WPT) World Championship should make for very interesting viewing as 19 players return with only 18 places paid at The Bellagio in Las Vegas.

Of course, all of these survivors – from an initial field of 152 – in the $25,500 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em event will be aiming to secure the top prize of $1,196,858 from the $3,660,500 prize pool.

However, the day will begin during level 19, with the blinds at 8,000/16,000 and a 2,000 ante, so – with 18th place paying $40,266 – expect the likes of Parisian Philippe Frenchman Ktorza is the most at risk, but, in all honesty, even States star Barry Shulman (353,000) and Russian Rinat Bogdanov (278,000) are too close to the bottom to feel safe for any length of time.

Guillaume Darcourt Isn’t Even Safe in 11th

In fact, with the average chip count at 800,000, not even 11th placed Frenchman Guillaume Darcourt is certain to stay in contention for too long without doubling up as his 571,000 chips stack amounts to just under 36 big blinds.

Meanwhile, at the top of the leaderboard is California’s Hafiz Khan, who holds 1,966,000 chips – or about 123 big blinds – although, again, that’s not a massive advantage as the levels move up fairly rapidly.

He will also face tough competition from new Team PartyPoker Pro Marvin Rettenmaier after the London-based German bagged up 1,870,000 in chips, as well as American quintet Nick Schulman (1,315,000) – a former Full Tilt Poker Pro – Trevor Pope (1,300,000), Wil Wilkinson (1,197,000), Moon Kim (1,194,000) and Michael ‘The Grinder’ Mizrachi (1,168,000).

Joe Serock Still Eyeing Up Player of Year Crown

Additionally, with New Mexico’s Serock still hoping to catch Will ‘The Thrill’ Failla at the top of the WPT Player of the Year, this should make for one thrilling day as Season 10 approaches its conclusion.

There were, of course, some other big-name pros who failed to cash, including Antonio Esfandiari (21st), Noah Schwartz (22nd), Sam Trickett (25th), Mikhail Lakhitov (26th), David Steicke (27th), Viacheslav Igin (28th), JP Kelly (36th), David ‘Doc’ Sands (37th) and Matt Waxman (40th).

WPT World Championship Final 19 Players

1. Hafiz Khan (USA) – 1,966,000 (approximately 123 big blinds)

2. Marvin Rettenmaier (Germany) – 1,870,000 (117 BBs)

3. Nick Schulman (USA) – 1,315,000 (82 BBs)

4. Trevor Pope (USA) – 1,300,000 (81 BBs)

5. Wil Wilkinson (USA) – 1,197,000 (75 BBs)

6. Moon Kim (USA) – 1,194,000 (74 BBs)

7. Michael Mizrachi (USA) – 1,168,000 (73 BBs)

8. John Esposito (USA) – 1,080,000 (68 BBs)

9. Steve O’Dwyer (USA) – 1,079,000 (67 BBs)

10. Matt Juttelstad (USA) – 935,000 (58 BBs)

11. Guillaume Darcourt (France) – 571,000 (36 BBs)

12. Barry Shulman (USA) – 353,000 (22 BBs)

13. Rinat Bogdanov (Russia) – 278,000 (17 BBs)

14. Joe Serock (USA) – 244,000 (15 BBs)

15. Tom McCormick (USA) – 186,000 (12 BBs)

16. Farzad Bonyadi (USA) – 182,000 (11 BBs)

17. Ron Coury (USA) – 135,000 (8 BBs)

18. Josh Arieh (USA) – 127,000 (8 BBs)

19. Philippe Ktorza (France) – 86,000 (5 BBs)