LAPT Punta del Este: Big guns misfire

How much sympathy can you have for a poker player who'll sit down at a table in Las Vegas in November and walk away with at least $900,000?

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As a member of the so-called November Nine who will contest the 2008 World Series main event final table, David "Chino" Rheem is such a player. He's guaranteed a million-dollar payday from that brief excursion to Sin City (and probably a lot more), but here in Punta del Este, where he's been brushing up his skills before returning to the big dance, he's just been busted by an opponent holding six-four. Ouch.

What's more, Chino actually had the guy dominated with a pretty mighty holding of his own. OK, so nine-six isn't all that mighty, but it's a huge favourite against that six-four. Chino had got a touch short -- the result of running into aces in a huge pot during level two -- and shoved pre-flop with that nine high. He probably feared the game was up when his opponent made a value call, but then probably expected a double up when he saw what he was up against. But a four flopped and Chino was done.

Still, hold the sympathy, and hold the judgment. We'll hope and expect much more from the PokerStars player in Vegas in a couple of months.

Another World Series success story who won't have fond memories of Uruguay is Brandon Cantu, who busted shortly before Chino when he ran tens into pocket kings.

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The PokerStars player from Washington also had a fine run in Vegas last month, cruising to 20th place in the main event for $257,334. But his day in Latin America is also done and he was seen stalking out of the Mantra resort an hour or so ago.

Updated chip counts can be found HERE. We'll be playing until the end of level six before dinner is served. At time of writing, 296 players remain from the 351 who started.