Thursday was a memorable day for US poker pro John Hennigan for a number of reasons, thanks to event 46 at the World Series of Poker – the $50,000 buy-in prestigious Players’ Championship: he bested a 101-strong field that included many of the most notable names in global poker; he was awarded the Chip Reese Memorial Cup, his third WSOP bracelet and $1,517,767 in prize money – his second seven-figure win in a glittering career; and he was successful in his third attempt to claim the honours in this highly respected event.
With a prize pool of $4,896,000 this was always going to be an event that attracted big names, despite the high buy-in, and it did not disappoint.
After five hazardous and gruelling days of top-level, diverse poker just eight players returned, led by the remarkable Brandon Shack-Harris, who has racked up a first, a second and a third in WSOP events already this year.
Low stack man Allen Kessler was the first to bust, forming the official 7 player table, which included Hennigan, Shack Harris, Jesse Martin, Abe Mosseri, Chun Lei Zhou, Frank Kassela and the sole woman player, Melissa Burr.
Down to three players, Hennigan, Jesse Martin and Shack-Harris fought it out for over five hours. It was a dangerous time for Hennigan until he scored a major double up in PLO that enabled him to survive and then rapidly build his stack as Martin was eliminated.
Hennigan, by now holding a very large chip lead, immediately starting hammering away at his last opponent, Shack-Harris, grinding him down until he was able to dispatch him in the NLHE round.
Shack-Harris was no doubt disappointed not to gather up another bracelet, but he would definitely have found consolation in a runner up prize of $937,975, adding to his already bulging bank balance from this year’s WSOP tournament.
For Hennigan there was little respite; he immediately registered for the $10,000 Limit Hold”em event and hardly missed a beat.
The other final table pay-outs were:
Jesse Martin – $594,570
Abe Mosseri – $402,696
Chun Lei Zhou – $286,122
Frank Kassela – $212,829
Melissa Burr – $165,435