One of the worst feelings in poker is being eliminated on ‘the bubble,’ playing through the vast majority of the field only to fall just short. Whether it’s the difference between being in or out of the money in a nightly tournament at your local casino, or being on the precipice of a televised final table with monumental prizes just out of reach, landing directly on ‘the bubble’ is always a major letdown.
Even the best poker players in the world are not immune from such an outcome. And when it comes to the biggest buy-in tournament of the 2023 World Series of Poker, the $250,000 Super High Roller, the bubble doesn’t get much bigger.
With 69 entries, only 11 players were going to walk away with a payday – a minimum of $411,940. The top prize awaiting the eventual champion is a staggering $5,293,556, along with the gold WSOP bracelet.
After the elimination of Henrik Hecklen brought the field down to 12, hand-for-hand play began.
As play got deeper into the night on Saturday inside Horseshoe Las Vegas, a few players were teetering on the brink, between a cash and going home down with their pockets $250,000 lighter. Brandon Steven, who enjoyed the dream scenario by doubling up with pocket aces against Phil Ivey‘s pocket kings just before hand-for-hand play, doubled up again when his won a race against Dan Smith‘s pocket nines.
Ivey managed one double up after losing his cooler hand against Steven, but the 10-time WSOP bracelet winner ultimately ran his into Martin Kabrhel’s pocket queens in the big blind to fall out in 12th place.
Two further eliminations happened before play came to an end for the night, and the final nine players will return at 2 p.m. local time to vie for one of the biggest prizes of the summer.
WPT Champions Club member Chance Kornuth holds the chip lead heading into Day 3. Here’s how the remaining field stacks up.
- Chance Kornuth – 22,450,000
- Martin Kabrhel – 18,400,000
- Artur Martirosian – 18,225,000
- Alex Kulev – 12,600,000
- Chris Brewer – 8,525,000
- Dan Smith – 7,800,000
- Steven Veneziano – 6,775,000
- David Peters – 4,925,000
- Brandon Steven – 3,225,000