2007 World Series: Part 6 – Final Table Coverage

July 18, 2007

“I’m feeling like a lion,” said Raymond Rahme, quite fittingly for a man from South Africa. “It is going exactly as I planned: I’m up about one million from my starting stack today.”

You might think the “it’s going to plan” line is just a throw-away comment, but for Rahme, he means it – and he proved it, pulling out a piece of paper from his pocket. It was the payout structure sheet.

“I got this on the day I arrived, and ever since then I have written on it where exactly I want to be at each stage. I update it, of course, as we go along, but right now you can see I am about right.” He pointed to the spot on the sheet where, among the hastily scribbled notes, he was indeed where he wants to be.”

On the sheet, a number of crosses had been put next to the fourth place. What does that mean? “My strategy will be to move when the next person busts, leaving four players. Then I am guaranteed $1.8 million and I shall go after the win.”

Is he not a little concerned by Jerry Yang’s huge stack? “No, I’m not worried at all about him – he should be worried about me!”

Rahme confided that on the hand that Alex Kravchenko doubled through Khan, he would have made the best hand. “When Alex moved in, I had Q-9 and was willing to call, but Khan moved all in with his 3-3. It was a typical internet move, really, and I had to let it go. Of course, a Q and a 9 came on the flop and I would have made two pair!”

Finally, as Rahme headed back into the room after a 20-minute break, we couldn’t resist telling him there were those in the media room who reckon he is a dead ringer for Crocodile Dundee.

“Hardly,” he said, “I’m scared of crocodiles!”

Just minutes after they sat back down, Rahme won a huge pot – knocking out Britain’s Jon Kalmar in fifth place. He raised with J-J, only for Kalmar to move all in over the top with A-K. Rahme said he was feeling like a lion, and called. The board came 9-6-10-3-3, giving Rahme all of Kalmar’s 15 million or so chips. As a result, he soars past the 30 million mark and is now in prime position to battle with Jerry Yang.

Kalmar takes home $1,255,069, and what a difference a week makes. He won his seat for the Main Event in the last satellite at The Rio – and that was after blowing most of his bankroll in the events leading up to it. In fact, he was so disheartened he nearly flew back to Britain early, but the cost of changing his flight was too much!

Across the table, Tuan Lam has been one cool customer through the fireworks around him. In the first fifty-five hands, Tuan raised pre-flop six times, taking the blinds and antes five of those times. Raymond Rahme took down the sixth pot when he bet 2.0m on the flop. Tuan also called one raise and took down the pot on the flop. All of that is good for 19.915m, now in third behind Raymond but quite a distance from Jerry Yang’s 73.0m.

Harrah’s officials and security brought in the $8.25m first prize into the room, and Tuan couldn’t take his eyes off of the monster pile. Dollar bills have been in the middle of the cash bricks, but I doubt anyone will be able to find that out until he is holding them. Tuan and Raymond have moved up from $525,934 to at least $1,852,721.


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