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Poker Tournament » Live Poker Tournaments » World Series of Poker (WSOP) »


Saturday, August 4, 2007 | Francis Lee


The World Series of Poker main event  is the one event every poker player dreams of winning.  Attracting huge fields of players, with a large mix of amateur and professional poker players from around the world. The numbers were down on the previous years main event but still was the second largest ever turn out for a poker tournament with 6,358 entrants.  First place was set to win $8.5 million dollars, a little down on the amount last years winner Jamie Gold collected which was $12 million dollars, but still a life changing amount of cash to win.

The tournament was played over seven days with the entrants split into four groups to start with, A B C and D.  The four groups then became 2 groups on the second day, with the survivors of group A and B playing in Day 2 group A and the survivors of Day 1 groups C and D playing in Day 2 Group B.  On the third day all remaining players were put together into one single field.

When we reached the start of Day 3 there was only 797 players left in the event out of the 6,358 starting out, the top 621 finishers all cashed in so the atmosphere was tense to start with with the bubble fast approaching.  The most notable names not to make this day were, last years champion Jamie Gold going out early in the tournament, the 2005 and 2003 champions Joe Hachem and Chris Moneymaker also failed to make this day.

We reached the final table stage of the event at the end of day 6, Philip Hilm was leading the chase for the $8.5million jackpot, Hilm was holding just over $22 million in chips leading a very closely packed field.  Alex Kravchenko playing on his 3rd final table at this years WSOP was on the short stack with $6.5 million and still had time to climb up the rankings.  The final table chip rankings was a follows.

Final Table Chip Rankings:

  • 1st  Philip Hilm $22,070,000
  • 2nd Tuan Lam $21,315,000
  • 3rd Jon Kalmar $20,320,000
  • 4th Raymond Rahme $16,320,000
  • 5th Lee Childs $13,240,000
  • 6th Lee Watkinson $9,925,000
  • 7th Hevad “rain” Khan $9,205,000
  • 8th Jerry Yang $8,450,000
  • 9th Alex Kravchenko $6,570,000

The start of play saw Jerry Lang going on a great run winning numerous potsanlong the way, and on the 14th hand of play taking the chip lead, taking down a $11.3 million pot from Philip Hilm.  On the very next hand Yang raised pre Flop to $1,000,000 with :ad :kc Hilm in the small blind called with :8d :5d and the Flop came down :kd :jd :5c Hilm checked and Yang bet out 2million and Hilm called.  The Turn card came down :2h again Hilm Checked and Yang bet 4 million, Hilm came over the top All In for 16.3 million and Yang called.  The River came down with the :6c eliminating Hilm out in 9th place winning $525,934, an amazing turn around considering both players starting positions.  Yang furthered his chip lead taking down this $39 million pot.

Half a dozen hand later Yang claimed his second victim of the day knocking Lee Watkinson out in 8th place.  The whole table folded round to Yang in the small blind and he put in a £1million raise.  Lee Watkinson in the big blind came over the top All In for his remaining $9million in chips.  Yang called and found himself in a dominating position with :as :9d against Watkinson’s :ac :7h The board came down :6d :4h :2c :kd :js and Yang’s Ace high with a 9 kicker was good enough to take the pot boosting his chip count up to $55 million in chips.

Jerry Yang won his hatrick of knockouts on the 28th hand of play when Lee Childs in the small blind raised $720,000.  Yang came over the top All In with :js :8s and Childs called showing :kh :jc looking in a very strong position.  The Flop came down :6c :4c :4d strengthening Childs position.  Yang proved again to be the lucky man at the table hitting one of his two outs with the :8c coming down on the Turn.  Childs was looking for any club Jack or King to survive but the :9d on the River sealed his fate.

Play slowed down at this point with the big stacks not committing to many chips to each pot.  This left Alex Kravchenko and Hevad “rain” Khan to battle it out both on the short stack with around $6.4 million in chips.  Khan seemed to be winning the fight building up to around $9 million until Jerry Yang decided to join the action on the 56th hand of play.  Yang in mid position put in a $1.5million bet, Khan in the small blind re-raised the bet up to $6million. Yang called and the Flop came down :kc :4c :2d Khan instantly moved All In for his remaining $3.6 million and it was an easy call for Yang holding pocket Jacks, in the lead against Khan’s :as :qs The :3c and :3s gave Yang the $19million pot knocking Khan out in  6th place winning just under $1million dollars in prize money.

Jerry Yang had a huge lead in the chip rankings with $73 million in chips followed by Tuan Lam on $19.9 million.  Raymond Rahme and Jon Kalmr were just behind on around $16 million and Alex Kravchenko was on the short stack with $5 million.  All five players from this point onwards was guaranteed to take home at least $1.2 million dollars.

Four hands later Raymond Rahme knocked Jon Kalmar in a race with pocket jacks against :as :kh in a pot worth just over $26 million in chips.  The pocket Jacks held up with the board coming down :10c :9h :6h :3c :3h eliminating Kalmar out in 5th place taking the 1.2 million dollar prize.

The last four players saw the battle of the poker rooms with Jerry Yang and Alex Kravchenko wearing Full Tilt poker gear and Tuan Lam and Raymond Rahme wearing Poker Stars clothing.

It took just over 100 hands before we saw the next elimination, Jerry Yang’s big chip lead had been cut down to around $40 million in chips with the other 3 players all having around 25 million. The play was folded down to Kravchenko in the small blind and he raised it up to $2.1 million.  Jerry Yang in the big blind moved all his $40 million in chips into the middle holding pocket Eights. Kravchenko called with :as :kd and it was a race to the finish.  Yang hit a set of Eights on the Flop and things looked very bad for Kravchenko at this point.  The :4c on the Turn meant he was drawing dead on the River and he headed to the rail to collect his $1.8 million dollar prize.

Only a few hands later we were down to heads up.  Jerry Yang raised on the button to $2.6 million which was followed by a re-raise from Raymond Rahme to $8.6 million and Yang called.  The Flop came down :ad :jh :8h Raymond checked and Yang bet $10 million into the pot.  Rahme thought for a while before moving all his remaining $27 million in chips into the middle and Yang quickly called.  Rahme flipped over pocket Kings but found he was behind against Yang’s :ac :5s The King Rahme needed didn’t come on the last two cards eliminating him in 3rd place winning $3,048,025.

Heads up commenced between Yang and Lam and the battle for the bracelet and the World Championship crown was on.  Yang had an $80 million in chips advantage with Lam only having $23 million in total.

Both players started off slowly feeling each other out before making any serious moves.  It took just over 35 hands for it to be all over.  Yang raised on the button to $2.3 million and Lam moved All In for $22 million and Yang Called.  It was a race to the finish with Yang holding pocket Eights against Lam’s :ad :qd It was looking good for Lam after the Flop came down :qc :9c :5s giving him top pair.  The Turn :7d gave Yang more outs with a possible straight draw needing a Six.  The card room arena erupted when the River came down with the :6h giving Yang his straight and the World Championship crown.  Yang considered to be an amateur having only taken up playing poker two years ago and he won his seat to this year’s main event in a satellite in his local casino.  A great return for an enitial $200 outlay proving that anyone on there day has a chance at winning this event.

WSOP 2007 Main Event Final Result:

  • 1st Jerry Yang $8,250,000
  • 2nd Tuan Lam $4,840,981
  • 3rd Raymond Rahme $3,048,025
  • 4th Alex Kravchenko $1,852,721
  • 5th Jon Kalmar $1,255,069
  • 6th Hevad “rain” Khan $956,243
  • 7th Lee Childs $705,229
  • 8th Lee Watkinson $585,699
  • 9th Philip Hilm $525,934



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