After a shorter than expected day on the felt, the Event #51: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em Monster Stack is now down to a final table of nine with Switzerland's Hugo Pingray in the lead.
The penultimate day of play saw 62 players return to battle it out knowing they were already guaranteed $21,758, however each player's eyes would be locked on the $1,327,083 first prize awaiting the eventual victor. Once cards hit the air, play would begin at an incredibly fast rate as player after player headed to the rail to leave the field cut down to just 36 by the first break.
Once play resumed, the pace continued to excel as the tournament was swiftly cut down. The pace was so fast that players were sitting behind - excuse the pun - monster chip stacks that saw just the standard size pots taking minutes to chip up. A call to color-up kept hitting a brick wall since all the 100,000-denomination chips were already in play, however a plethora of 50,000-denomination chips were finally added to the fray to make play more manageable as just 13 remained on dinner break.
Several eliminations and several doubles saw the final 10 move to the unofficial final table when Steven Levy lost a race. The final 10 then passed chips back-and-forth for nearly two hours before Swede Robert Gustafsson couldn't peddle his short stack and longer when his lost to Thayer Rasmussen's when he made a four card straight to leave the final table lined up as follows:
|Seat||Player||Country||Chip Count||Big Blinds|
France's Hugo Pingray is the overall chip leader with 22.7 million after snatching several pots late in the day from overnight and majority-of-the-day chip leader Sean Drake who sits second overall with 20.975 million. Rasmussen (15.475 million), Joseph McKeehen (12.925 million) and Zachary Gruneberg (11.85 million) round out the top counts while the lone female Lynne Beaumont sits with an impressive 7.925 million also.
The final nine will return at 3:00 p.m. (PDT) on Monday afternoon to battle down until one can be crowned the Event #51 Champion and recipient of $1,327,083 after besting a massive 7,862-player field.
The PokerNews Live Reporting Team will be back live in the Amazon Room to provide extensive hand-for-hand coverage of the Event #51: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em Monster Stack final table live from the 2014 World Series of Poker!