WSOP Main Event: Joe Hachem updates

Updates on Joe Hachem in Day 2B will be published here all day long

by Ali Lightman


Joe's stack is now up to $111 000.

He raised from the button with QJo and and found a caller in the big blind, who had an unlit cigarette between clenched teeth and a furiously jiggling leg after sending a huge chunk of chips across the table in the previous hand.

(He had top pair with KQ and called an all-in raise from a short stack, watching in horror as his opponent, with AcQc, sucked out a backdoor flush.)

And this wasn't to be his pot either.

The flop came Jd 7s 2s, giving Joe top pair.

Both checked and the turn was 10h. Joe bet $4 000, was called, and the board paired on the river, 10c.

The temperature round the table shot up a few hands later. There was more than $20 000 on the table, and it was Joe on the button and the leg jiggler, still chewing on his cigarette.

The flop was 3h Ad 4s, and when the small blind checked Joe announced "I'm all in." In case Jeannie hadn't heard from the rail Joe stood up and said "this is it babe".

His opponent folded and Joe told the table he'd been holding AcKc.

There's only an hour left to play tonight and restrictions have been imposed which prevent us from sweating the players anymore. It's to give the tv crews more room.

So I wished Joe goodnight and goodluck on my way out the door and asked him a favour.

I'm playing the $1 000 No Limit Event tomorrow, did Joe have any advice?

Sweet man that he is he took me into a huddle and gave me instructions. Which I'll share, but not tonight.


It was what the railbirds have been waiting for all day.

"Pass the sugar!"

Joe has taken down three large pots in a row to put him on $100 000, after being card-dead for much of the evening.

I got back to his table after the dinner break (having left him on $59 00) and Joe extended his arms, "Ali, I need some love."

It would be have churlish to refuse. One bear hug and a kiss later (and more than a little bit thrilled) I saw the World Champion fire into action.

The button bet $4 000, the small blind folded and Joe in the big blind just called.

The flop came down 7h Kc 10h.

The button player bet out again, making it $4 000, and again Joe called.

The turn was 3d, which both players checked.

The river was Ad, and the button bet out again, $6 000.

Joe flipped K J and the button folded.

As he stacked up his chips I felt an energy surge in him from ten feet away.

And on the next hand he did it again.

In the small blind he called a bet of $3 000 to see the flop, which came Ad 3h 7c.

The big stack Jeremy Roberts bet $4 000 and Joe called, to see the turn card come 2h.

Both players checked for a free river card which was the Js, and Joe won the hand with A 10.

Then it was Joe's button, and after action was folded around to him Joe bet out $3 000. He was called in the big blind, and the flop was 10s 9c 3h.

Joe bet $5 000 and was called again. When the turn card came As, the big blind made it $6 000.

The river was 2d. Joe flipped red Queens to take his third pot in a row.

A few moments later, Gerry Semper was busted out. Having started so promisingly, with $112 000 when he joined the table, Gerry has been leaking chips all day.

He put his remaining stack in pre-flop when he found KK but sadly for the funny family doctor, he ran his cowboys straight into Aces.


Another grinding session has come to a close for Joe who described this round as "misery".

"I only had one hand" he told me before heading for dinner.

It was Joe's big blind and the under the gun player limped. Gerry Semper, the doctor from Curacao, made it $2 000, which the small blind called.

When it came around to Joe he fired $11 200 at the pot and both players folded.

He's taken the blinds with pre-flop bets, and seen a couple of flops but had to muck his hand when he was raised.

As if they could could feel Joe's frustration at the cold deck, his wife Jeannie and her cousins Marlene and Samantha made a rare appearance at the rail, followed by Joe's brother Tony and cousin Billy, who both busted out earlier.

Joe has minimised his losses and is only down $2 000 from the start of the Level.

He went to to dinner with $59 000 in front of him, saddened that fellow WSOP champion Greg Raymer was busted out minutes earlier.

The chips have all been heading in one direction, into the stack of Jeremy Roberts from Arkansas who is table chip leader with more than $200 000.


Level 9 has been frustrating for the World Champion, who has dropped $25 000 and is down to $61 000.

"It's disgusting, I lost with tens twice, and when I had KK I only picked up the antes."

I reminded him about huge win with 73 (see below) and he agreed, "yeah, that's been the highlight so far today."

Out in the hall by the press room I bumped into Steve Dannenman, who Joe defeated with 73o at the WSOP least year, and couldn't resist telling him Joe had busted someone else out with it today.

"No way" laughed Steve, "did he really?"

Joe has been tangling with another PokerStars player at his table, Igor Holdaiy and coming off second best.

Igor has boosted his starting stack of $18 450 to a more comfortable $46 300. Most of it came from an all-in showdown when Igor's A2o hit the flop of 4d 2s 2c, and sent another player home.


Joe Hachem has just busted out another player with his magic hand, 7 3.

As every poker player knows he won the 2005 WSOP bracelet when his 73o made a straight.

Today they were suited, and he made a flush.

It was a battle of the blinds. The small blind completed and Joe checked, and the flop came Ks 5c 4d.

Both players checked the flop and the turn was 6s.

Rick Basham, from Destin Florida, bet $2 000 which made Joe think.

"Are you slow playing me" he said, before calling.

The river card was the Js.

Rick looked down at his last $13 000 and pushed them all in, revealing middle pair with his 6d 10d.

Joe flipped over his 7s 3s, and the crowded whooped.

"You like that 7 3, huh?" came the shout from the rail.

"It's been good to me" he smiled, pulling in pot a of some $32 000. He now has $62 000.

10 2 will forever be known the Doyle Brunson since he won back to back world titles on the hand. Aces and 8s became the dead man's hand, as Wild Bill Hickock was shot dead holding them back in 1876.

Most players I know would fold 7 3 instantly but I, for one, will think twice before throwing away a Hachem.


The banter is as fast as the action around table 121 since a new player, from Curacao, took the seat vacated by Greg Sellmeyer in Level 1.

"Hello everybody" he said as he unloaded $112 000 on the table. "I'm Gerry".

It took Gerry five minutes to figure out that he was three seats away from the World Champion.

The moment he recognised Joe he cracked up.

"I'm laughing like a clown, I'm sorry" he said. "I just realised who you are"

"Welcome to the table" came back from Joe, the other big stack with about $85 000.

On his break Joe described Level one as uneventful. He lost $15 000 on one hand, when he had an open-ended straight draw against top pair, and didn't hit.

But Joe has made that back with a series of small wins, and a larger three-way pot just before the break when his pocket 9s made a set on the river.

Gerry didn't waste any time getting involved, putting in a $5 000 pre-flop bet and provoking cries from around the table.

"You're at the wrong table" said Joe, "we're making it $1 600 to play."

"Next time I'll ask permission first" said Gerry, "but I thought these were worth $5 000" as he flipped KK and took the pot.

True to his word the next hand Gerry made only $2 000 to go, and on a Jack high flop asked "what should I bet? Is $4 500 ok?"

It was certainly enough to get rid of the caller and give Gerry his second pot.

"Thanks" said Joe. "We are a friendly table, and we appreciate you wanting to be part of our family."

Fiztgerald "Gerry" Semper got straight As for drama at school and it shows.

The 38 year old family physician has only been playing poker since October.

"But I have read eight books".

Read about Hachem's arrival at Day 2B here.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in World Series of Poker