The hard-stop rule came into effect during last night’s head-up encounter between Frenchman Fabrice Soulier and Canadian Shawn Buchanan in the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship – event #37 – at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
With both players having survived the day’s 10 levels, play was called to a halt with Vegas-based Soulier way out in front on 6,290,000 chips to Buchanan’s 910,000 – much to the annoyance of the gathered railbirds, one of whom shouted that “this is the stupidest rule ever!”
Now, the 10-level rule was brought in to keep players fresh, but it is easy to sympathise with that particular fan as Buchanan will begin this evening’s play with only about 3.8 big blinds in his stack.
However, rules are rules – even if the French contingent booed loudly when tournament director Robbie Thompson announced that play had ended in an event that attracted 240 competitors.
Soulier was most likely annoyed by this decision, but British Columbia’s Buchanan was probably thrilled to hear the announcement as they chase the gold bracelet and $609,130 winner’s cheque from a $2,256,000 prize pool.
Still, they both know they are guaranteed at least $376,458 for finishing as runner-up when the action re-starts tonight in the Amazon Room for a heads-up clash that could last just a few minutes or a couple of hours.
It was almost all over late last night in the tournament that is made up of limit hold’em, Omaha hi-low split-8 or better, seven-card Razz, seven-card Stud, and seven-card Stud hi-low split-8 or better.
But Buchanan held on when playing limit hold’em. He checked in the big blind after Soulier – on the button – had limped in. The flop showed Ad-As-Ks and both checked to witness the 4s come on the turn. Buchanan moved all-in for an additional 230,000 as massive chip leader Soulier called.
Buchanan showed Qd-5d to be up against Soulier’s 9d-4d. Just one card could give the Frenchman the title, but the river came the 5s and Buchanan doubled-up to ensure he’ll return with his bracelet hopes still alive.
Final two players and chip counts in the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship:
1. Fabrice Soulier (France) – 6,290,000
2. Shawn Buchanan (Canada) – 910,000
Final placings from 3-10 and payouts in the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship:
3. Andrey Zaichenko (Russia) – $247,799
4. Daniel Ospina (Colombia) – $180,750
5. Thomas Dwan (USA) – $134,480
6. Matthew Ashton (UK) – $101,813
7. Michael Binger (USA) – $78,328
8. Jacobo Fernandez (USA) – $61,160
9. Max Pescatori (USA) – $48,436
10. Kyle Loman (USA) – $48,436