Hellmuth, Cheong Star in Final 24 of WSOPE Main Event

Phil Hellmuth
Phil Hellmuth

Joe Cheong overcame numerous swings to finish as the overall chip leader on Day 3 of the 2012 WSOPE Main Event.

The former November Niner will have his hands full tomorrow, however, as pros Jason Mercier, Phil Hellmuth, Christopher Brammer, Toby Lewis, Scott Seiver and Liv Boeree all booked a seat in the penultimate day of the tournament.

Cheong amassed 1.3 million chips by the end of play, which was slightly better than Paul Tedeschi who grabbed 1.07 million chips for second.

Cheong has a history of blowing up in the late stages of tournaments so he’ll have to avoid that scenario tomorrow if he wants a spot at the final table.

British online grinder Brammer is fourth with 956,000 chips and right behind him is U.S. poker superstar Mercier with 824,000.

Hellmuth (741,000), Max Silver (656,000) and Timothy Adams (577,000) are also among the top 10 chip leaders.

Steve Dannenman, David Benyamine and Andy Frankenberger are also still in the tournament but they'll be playing from the short stack tomorrow.

Day 3 began with 77 players in the hunt for a bracelet but only 24 players will see the light of Day 4.

Jesse Sylvia
Jesse Sylvia: bubble boy.

WSOP Main Event Chip Leader Sylvia Busts on Bubble

None other than October Nine chip leader Jesse Sylvia was the final player to be eliminated without getting paid in the 2012 WSOPE Main Event.

Sylvia was short-stacked on the bubble and moved all-in with A 9 and was called by Joe Cheong with T T.

The board ran out K 9 2 6 K and, despite a good sweat, Sylvia hit the rail in 49th place.

On the bright side, Sylvia has a great shot at recouping his loss in that other final table in October where first place is $8.5 million.

A number of players busted shortly after the bubble burst with Daniel Negreanu, Justin Bonomo and Eugene Katchalov coming up short.

Last year’s winner Elio Fox put on an impressive defense of his title outlasting 381 players eventually finishing in 39th place.

French favorite Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier busted in the final level of the day when he had the misfortune of shoving pocket tens into his opponent’s pocket aces.

Grospellier busted in 25th place, painfully close to making Day 4.

Action resumes tomorrow at 12 p.m. CET as the final 24 players attempt to set a final table of eight.

Here’s a look at the top 10 chip counts at the end of Day 3:

  • 1. Joe Cheong – 1,381,000
  • 2. Paul Tedeschi – 1,071,000
  • 3. Sergii Baranov – 1,055,000
  • 4. Christopher Brammer – 956,000
  • 5. Jason Mercier – 824,000
  • 6. Phil Hellmuth – 741,000
  • 7. Max Silver – 656,000
  • 8. Curt Kohlberg – 607,000
  • 9. Timothy Adams – 577,000
  • 10. Joe McGowan – 518,000
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