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Hellmuth Leads WSOPE Main Event Final Table
Poker icon Phil Hellmuth put on a masterful performance on Day 4 of the 2012 WSOPE Main Event to secure the chip lead heading into the final table.
The veteran poker pro proved he could still run with the young guns by busting elite online player Kyle Julius in a highlight-reel hand on his way to ending the day with a monster stack of 3.4 million chips.
Hellmuth headlines a pro-heavy final table that includes Joe Cheong, Jason Mercier, Sergii Baranov and English online sensation Chris “NigDawG” Brammer in addition to French players Stephane Albertini, Stephane Girault and Paul Tedeschi.
The day began with 24 players chasing the title of European poker champion but it took less than eight hours to set the final table.
Pros Andy Frankenberger, Liv Boeree, Max Silver, David Benyamine and Joe McGowan all hit the rail in the first few levels of play.
Hellmuth Gunning for 13th Bracelet, WSOP Player of the Year
Around the mid-way point of the day Hellmuth and Julius played a massive hand that gave the Poker Brat the chip lead.
Julius put a massive amount of pressure on Hellmuth by shoving for 298,000 on the river of a 9♠ 7♣ 5♦ A♥ 3♣ board. Eventually Hellmuth made the call with A♣ 5♣ and Julius was forced to show his huge bluff with Q♣ T♣.
Hellmuth shipped the huge 500,000-chip pot and took over sole position of the chip lead with 2.5 million. He never really looked back and would eventually finish with 3.4 million.
It’s been an exceptional WSOPE for Hellmuth as he’s already cashed three times (the Main Event will be his fourth) for over $40,000.
There will be a lot on the line for Hellmuth tomorrow. He could potentially win his 13th WSOP bracelet and become the first poker player in history to win the North American and European Main Events.
If he finishes better than fourth he will also pass Antonio Esfandiari and take the lead in the 2012 WSOP Player of the Year race. He can lock up the contest by winning the bracelet.
The potentially historic final table begins tomorrow at 1:45 p.m. CET.
Here are the chip counts heading into the final table:
- 1. Phil Hellmuth – 3,434,000
- 2. Sergii Baranov – 3,339,000
- 3. Joseph Cheong – 1,966,000
- 4. Stephane Albertini – 1,162,000
- 5. Christopher Brammer – 851,000
- 6. Stephane Girault – 664,000
- 7. Jason Mercier – 652,000
- 8. Paul Tedeschi – 543,000
Update: We've got the live stream up on our site. It should work in most areas.