2007 World Series: Moneymaker on Fire (in the poker sense)

by Simon Young

Chris Moneymaker is showing his table the sort of form that propelled him to that most exclusive of poker clubs - WSOP World Champions. After beginning the day here on 48,900 he has already topped 90,000 within the first level. And, as my our picture shows, even he did not expect that sort of flying start...

Chris Moneymarker: Gobsmacked

His rise came thanks to two huge pots. First he used some cunning speech play to force his opponent to lay down what was probably the best hand. We don't yet have full details of the hand, but the board included a Q, and 8 and an A on the river. Chris had been leading out the betting and been called all down the streets by one player. When the A fell he led out again.

"Have you got the nuts?", his opponent asks.

"Well I don't know, but I do know what you have - A-Q," Chris responds confidently.

"Will you show if I fold," the crestfallen chap says.

"Yes of course. I'm a nice guy."

The opponent duly folds, and Chris turns over J-8 for bottom pair. The other guy looked none too pleased.

© Neil Stoddart

That pot took Chris up to 65,000, and his next trick was to make a great read on a player trying it on. Chris, who bagged the WSOP in 2003 for $2,500,000, takes up the hand.

"I had Q-Q and raised under the gun to 4,000. A player in mid position called, so did the big blind. The flop came K-J-7, the big blind and I checked and the mid position player bet out 8,000. The big blind folded, but I just did not believe the bettor would be holding a K in that position, so I pushed. He folded!"

"So that puts you on about 80,000 now?" I ask while trying to count his stack.

"No, 90,000 - don't undercut me!" Chris joked.

Wouldn't dream of it, Chris.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in