Veteran Alabama player Herbert Tapscott has pocketed $264,400 for taking down event #8 at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) in Las Vegas.
A record-breaking 967 players started the $1,500 buy-in Omaha Hi-Low Split-8 or Better tournament to create a $1,305,450 prize pool, with the biggest chunk going to Tapscott after he overcame California’s Gavin Griffin in a 120-minute heads-up clash that left the runner-up with $163,625.
The third and final day of this competition lasted almost 14 hours before 71-year-old Tapscott was crowned champion by defeating tough opponent and Triple Crown winner Griffin – just six minutes before the scheduled close of play for the event.
Champion Easily Beats Previous Best
Tapscott’s previous best cash came back in January of 2010 when picking up $25,369 for winning the WSOP Circuit’s $500 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em event at Harrah’s Tunica – so this triumph equates to more than 10 times that!
Day 3 started out with 20 players still in contention, even though the previous day was only meant to end once the nine-handed final table had been reached.
However, Tapscott still had to outlast players such as Griffin, Florida’s John Racener (sixth for $41,121), Vegas’ Dutch Boyd (18th for $9,712) and New Jersey’s Allen Bari (15th for $11,957).
The final hand of the event saw Griffin, on the button, raise to 200,000 and Tapscott make the call to see a flop of Q♥ 8♦ A♦. Griffin – who had been chopped down on the previous hand – was all-in for his last 65,000 chips and, of course, Tapscott called to show Q♣ 4♥ 10♠ 7♠ while Griffin revealed A♠ 2♦ 3♠ 6♥. The 9♦ turn and J♥ river gave Tapscott a straight to secure the top prize and gold bracelet.
Bryan Jolly Out in Ninth
Bryan Jolly, of Texas, was the first player to exit after the final table had been set, hitting the rail in ninth place for $18,837. Vegas-based Can Kim Hua had been tormenting Jolly pretty all day and was the man to complete the job over two hands.
Jolly limped in for 30,000, Hua called from the button, small blind Tapscott folded and big blind Ashly Butler checked. The 2♠ 4♠ J♠ flop saw Butler check to Jolly, who bet 30,000, with both opponents calling to see the 7♠ on the turn.
Butler and Jolly both checked, while Hua bet 60,000 – prompting Butler to go into the tank before folding, as did Jolly, who was left with only 195,000 chips. Just a few more hands were played before he was hitting the rail.
The final hand saw Jolly bet 30,000 on a flop of J♠ 10♦ K♦ – leaving him with just 10,000 chips – before Hua had him all-in. Jolly called to show A♣ A♠ 2♠ 5♠ for a pair of aces as well as a backdoor flush draw. However, Hua showed A♦ 3♦ K♥ 2♠ for a pair of kings, the nut flush draw and even a straight draw. The 2♦ turn completed Hua’s flush while the J♦ river was unimportant.
Raymond Davis Hits Rail in Eighth
California’s Raymond Davis picked up eighth place and $24,111 after being knocked out by Thayer Rasmussen, of Florida. Davis called all-in for 10,000 after Rasmussen had raised to 80,000. Michael ‘Boonie’ Kleist had also called but folded after Rasmussen led out for 40,000 on a K♥ 6♥ 4♥ flop.
Rasmussen showed A♥ 3♥ 4♣ 2♠ for the nut flush, while Davis revealed K♦ K♣ 8♦ 6♠ for top set. Although behind, Davis could stay alive if the board paired. However, the 10♥ turn 7♠ river were no good to him.
Thayer Rasmussen Exits in Seventh
Rasmussen didn’t hang about too much longer after that, though, exiting in seventh place for $31,278. He raised all-in for 95,000, to be called by button Griffin and small blind Hua. Big blind Racener, with only 105,000 chips left, gave it some thought but decided to fold.
The 10♥ K♣ 5♠ flop saw both check, while Hua bet 100,000 and Griffin called after the 2♦ turn. The 9♠ came on the river and Hua bet 100,000, only for Griffin to quickly throw in 200,000 to put extra pressure on Hua. He did, however, make the call to leave himself with only 45,000 chips.
Griffin revealed Q♥ J♦ 10♦ 8♦ for the nut straight to eliminate Rasmussen, who had shown A♦ 4♦ 3♥ 8♥, while a frustrated Hua was reluctant to show his cards before finally tabling A♥ Q♣ 2♣ 2♥ to leave him and Racener in deep trouble.
John Racener Knocked Out in Sixth
Racener was, in fact, the next to hit the rail in sixth place for $41,121. Griffin, in the cut-off seat, raised to 100,000 and small blind Racener called, as did big blind Tapscott. The 2♣ 6♣ 8♣ flop saw Racener bet 50,000 and both opponents called.
The 5♦ turn prompted Racener to shove all-in for his last 10,000 chips, with both opponents again calling. Racener tabled A♣ 2♥ 6♠ 9♠, Griffin showed A♥ 3♥ K♦ 10♦ and Tapscott revealed 2♦ 3♦ 8♦ Q♠.
The J♥ arrived on the river to give Griffin the low half of the pot with the nut low, while Tapscott collected the high after making two pair, eights and twos. Racener, meanwhile, had two pair, sixes and twos, to be eliminated.
Fifth Spot for Michael ‘Boonie’ Kleist
Iowa’s Michael ‘Boonie’ Kleist was next to go in fifth place for $54,855 – losing all his chips over two pots to Griffin.
The first saw Kleist, who had opened, call a three-bet from Griffin to see a flop of 2♣ J♣ 3♦. Kleist check-called another bet to see the 10♠ turn before both checked the J♥ river. Griffin showed A♠ 2♦ 8♣ 9♠ for the pot to leave Kleist with only 50,000 chips.
The second hand saw big blind Kleist isolated by Griffin, who raised to scare off every other player. Griffin showed A♣ K♦ 3♠ 8♦ while Kleist revealed Q♥ 6♦ 9♣ 2♠ before the board ran out K♥ 10♦ 6♠ 7♣ A♦ to hand Griffin two pair, aces and kings, for the knockout.
Can Kim Hua Takes Fourth
Fourth place and $74,306 went to Hua. Under the fun, he began the action by raising to 120,000. Only big blind Griffin called to see a 10♥ 5♠ 9♥ flop, which then saw him lead out for 60,000. Hua made the call for the 8♣ turn and Griffin put him all-in for his last 45,000 chips.
Hua called to show A♠ Q♣ 5♥ 7♠ for a pair of fives, while Griffin tabled Q♥ J♦ 3♠ 8♠ for the nut straight. The K♥ river confirmed Hua’s exit, ensuring that Griffin held a healthy chip lead as the event became three-handed.
Ashly Butler Misses Heads-Up
Butler, of New Orleans, just missed out on the heads-up action when being knocked out in third place for $102,373. On the button, Griffin called before Tapscott raised it to 160,000. Butler then called all-in for his last 150,000. Griffin also called before he and Tapscott checked down the 10♠ Q♥ 2♦ Q♦ A♦ board.
Butler opened with 10♣ J♣ 9♥ 6♥, Griffin showed 8♠ 9♠ 9♣ 4♣, and Tapscott revealed A♣ K♦ 7♣ 3♠ for the pot and knockout.
Day 2 had started with the first goal being to make the cash, with New York State’s Dan Santoro the first to exit, in 117th place for $2,480, after the money bubble had been burst.
Phil Hellmuth Cashes in 52nd
Thereafter, several star pros exited, including Robert Mizrachi (115th for $2,480), Chris Klodnicki (107th for $2,480), Men Nguyen (99th for $2,689), David ‘Bakes’ Baker (63rd for $4,164), Shaun Deeb (62nd for $4,164), Todd Brunson (61st for $4,164), Phil Hellmuth (52nd for $4,817), Daniel Negreanu (45th for $4,817), Dan Shak (40th for $5,639) and Ryan Lenaghan (24th for $7,989).
Meanwhile, Day 1 saw the likes of Phil Ivey, Eric Baldwin, Xuan Liu, David Benyamine, Allen Kessler, Mike Leah, Owais Ahmed and Andrey Zaichenko hit the rail as the field was cut down to 220 players.
2012 WSOP Event #8 Top 10 Payouts
1. Herbert Tapscott (USA) – $264,400
2. Gavin Griffin (USA) – $163,625
3. Ashly Butler (USA) – $102,373
4. Can Kim Hua (USA) – $74,306
5. Michael ‘Boonie’ Kleist (USA) – $54,855
6. John Racener (USA) – $41,121
7. Thayer Rasmussen (USA) – $31,278
8. Raymond Davis (USA) – $24,111
9. Bryan Jolly (USA) – $18,837
10. David ‘Wes’ Self (USA) – $14,908