2008 World Series: The turn card
If the World Series of Poker could be described in the terms of just one poker hand, today they are dealing the turn card.
After some feisty pre-flop action that lasted for four day ones and a couple of day twos, we finally saw the flop and associated betting during days three, four and five, with thousands of players either missing their draws or having their big pairs busted. At the other end of the spectrum, there are 79 players hoping to go all the way to showdown, and their hands will be better defined by the the action today.
It still won't be over, but we are going to thin the field from 79 players down to 27, by which point we should have a much better idea of who is going to be betting big once the river has been dealt. Showdown won't be until November, but this thing is well and truly taking shape.
Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin has come all this way and isn't the kind of guy to fold at this stage. His seemingly unstoppable charge to the final table took a stumble late yesterday, but he is returning this afternoon with 795,000 in chips and as good a chance as any to continue a fine run. Chip leader overnight was PokerStars player Mark Kettingham, from whom we'll be hearing much more today.
PokerStars player Mark Ketteringham
Likewise Andrew Brokos, a PokerStars qualifier from Boston, who we met before the tournament had even started and who is starting day six with more than four million in chips. Brokos runs a non-profit debate league for school kids in Massachussetts, but there's no arguing that this has been one profitable trip to Vegas. After qualifying on PokerStars, Brokos is now on for at least $77,200.
PokerStars qualifier Andrew Brokos
We will also be keeping close tabs on all the other PokerStars qualifiers and players that have become well known to us all over the previous week. They include David Rheem, Chris Klodnicki, Cristian Dragomir, Brandon Cantu, Jonathan Plens, Garrett Beckman, Geert Jans, Phi Nguyen, Larry Wright, Ylon Schwart and Brian Tatum. Follow their progress with us.
Play starts today in level 24, with blinds at 15,000-30,000 (4,000 ante). Tournament director Jack Effel has issued the familiar instructions to shuffle up and deal, and they have done just that.
Welcome to day six.
The latest chip counts on PokerStars players will appear HERE as we have them. PokerStars winners to date can be found HERE. They have already won close to a million bucks, but the totaliser is ticking ever upward.
Remember, you can check out the fine work of our video blog team here in Las Vegas over at PokerStars.tv. There's also details of a daily freeroll tournament in celebration of the official launch of that video platform. Yesterday, the video blog team met Cristian Dragomir, from Romania, who chatted about his spectacular tournament to date and how it is help fuelling a poker boom back home.
Watch WSOP 08: Christian Dragomir Day 5 on PokerStars.tv
Also please e-mail us at email@example.com if you know any of the qualifiers still in the field and want to give us some stories about them or track their progress. We'll do our best to keep in touch.