2008 World Series: Four for the feature table

Whilst the backdrop of the Amazon Room and its surrounding halls and corridors has changed day by day as the field reduced in size one thing has remained constant – the feature table stage.

There’s a bar at the back of this is spectator monolith. It’s raised up to overlook the players and is sponsored by a major beer retailer. It also has a bar. Not surprisingly this is the place to be if you’re a spectator in the Amazon room. In fact, when the doors open and the railbirds flock back into the arena it’s not unusual to see people running for position like the first day of a shop sale. They’re made up of a potent mix of tourists, poker geeks and the friends of those playing under the lights. Cowboy hats, sandals, suntan and sunburn all over the place.

But the main table isn’t the only attraction to be seen from up here. Along with a few drinks, leaning over the back edge gives a superb view of the rest of the tournament area, the second feature table in particular.

This is where four PokerStars players sit, line abreast in seats three to four - Felix Osterlund, David ‘Chino’ Rheem, Jamal Kunbuz and Ylon Schwartz.

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Left to right: Felix Osterlund, David Rheem, Jamal Kunbuz, Ylon Schwartz

The presence of Ylon on this table raises a question we were trying to figure out ourselves before conceding it was more Team PokerStars Pro Bill Chen’s department. And that’s this... ‘What are the odds of a player not featuring on any feature tables – main or secondary – for the entire first five and a half days of the main event?’ because Ylon is finally making his first appearance there, with Mike Matusow on his immediate left.

This table is a quieter beast with few of the growls that emanate from the other side of the wall. But the PokerStars foursome wouldn’t remain that way for long. Shortly before the dinner break Felix Osterlund busted, the German taking the field down to size 37. By the dinner break that figure was down to 35, and that’s how many level 25 will start with.