WSOP Main Event: Antoine Saout, Buchman out

wsop2009_thn.gifOne would think with America's longstanding relationship with France that this sort of thing wouldn't happen. After all, the French gave America--and, specifically, Eric Buchman's home state of New York--the Statue of Liberty. It's a gift-giving relationship, for the love of Pete.

But in the last couple of hours, Buchman and France's Antoine Sout got into more than a couple of tangles and played some hands that lasted for minutes on end. It finally came to a head at about twenty 'til 5am.

With the blinds at 500,000/1,000,000/150,000, Buchman raised to 2.5 million. Saout re-raised 6.5 million more. With barely an ounce of consideration, Buchman re-raised all-in. Saout took his time, but eventually called. With the cards on their backs, here's what we saw.

Buchman: A♥Q♣
Antonine Saout: A♦K♣

Buchman had Saout covered, but only by about nine million chips. The board, T♥7♣K♦K♥6♦, offered some drama, but not enough to tell a long story. Buchman was resigned to his fate. When the chips were pushed across the table, Saout had the biggest chip lead of any player so far today.

Here's how the players stacked up after that hand.

Darvin Moon--56,000,000
Eric Buchman--9,800,000
Joe Cada--40,000,000
Antoine Saout--89,000,000

Buchman, however, was not ready to go away. Ten minutes later, he got all-in against Darvin Moon. Buchman was behind but not by enough.

Moon: A♣7♠
Buchman: T♣K♦

Buchman made trip kings by the river and doubled up.

Then, barely a minute had passed before Moon came in for a raise, Buchman shoved over the top, and Moon called. The roles were reversed this time.

Moon: K♦J♦
Buchman: A♦5♣

This time, it was Moon's turn to catch up. He flopped a gutshot, turned his pair, and held up against Buchman.

Buchman's fourth place finish earned him $2,502,890.

Here were the chip counts going into three-handed play.

Moon: 75,925,000
Cada: 39,225,000
Saout: 80,650,000

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"My expectation was to go deep in this tournament and I did. I didn't expect to win it. It could have gone a lot worse when I had kings against aces," Buchman said. "I think I played well. I'm disappointed, but I'm okay."

We're now 17 hours into final table play. Buchman said, looking back, he didn't think it affected him.

"I guess it does for some people [affected their game] but I don't think it changed my decisions," he said. "I'm used to playing for long hours. I've played for almost two days before."

Now, Buchman heads off to get some sleep and figure out what to do with his $2.5 million.

"I'll just play more poker," he said. "At least it's over. I feel better about that."

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in World Series of Poker