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WSOP22: India’s Nathan Rao Makes Day 3 in Event #49, Neel Joshi & Abhinav Iyer Cash; Jonathan Patore & Menikos Panagiotou Win Bracelets on Day 25

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  • Atmadeep Ghosh June 25, 2022
  • 5 Minutes Read

Day 25 of the 2022 World Series of Poker (WSOP) was a disclaimer to the action-filled weekend that follows. Two events played down to a champion on Friday, and another five bracelet events kept the tournament area at the Bally’s and Paris Las Vegas buzzing with activity.

Cyprus’ Menikos Panagiotou returning to live poker after years, bested a field of 695 entries in Event #48: $1,500 Eight Game Mix 6-Handed to become the first player from his country to win a Wsop bracelet and collected $180,783 in prize money!

Frenchman Jonathan Pastore denied Stephen Song his career-second bracelet in Event #46: $5,000 6-Handed No-Limit Hold’em; and won his maiden bracelet and $771,765 in prize money. PokerGuru Ambassador Kartik Ved fell out in 103rd place on Day 2, cashing $8,807 (~₹6.89 Lakhs).

Event #47: $1,000 Seniors Championship saw intensive action as the survivors from Day 1A & 1B converged for Day 2, and the 1,439 returning field was trimmed to 198 players by the time bags were brought out. Ben Sarnoff (3,155,000) bagged an impressive chip lead for Day 3.

Event #49: $2,000 No-Limit Hold’em is another event on the verge of announcing a winner. Day 2 had 310 players taking their seats, and only 39 survived the day`s play. Lucas Tabarin (4,240,000) will return on the final day as the chip leader. The event was of much interest for the Indian rail as three players had carried stacks from Day 1. While we reported Young Guns Neel Joshi and Abhinav Iyer in the Day 1 recap, we missed Nathan Rao, who was erroneously reported as an American in the day-end chip counts by WSOP, and he had a smashing run on Day 2. Rao entered the day twelfth from the top and further consolidated to finish sixth in the chip counts with 2.35 Million; with this, Rao is assured of cashing at least $12,905, which will supersede his previous personal-best finish.

The two other Indians, Neel Joshi and Abhinav Iyer, couldn’t find the same momentum. Joshi finished 58th for $9,190 (~₹7.19 Lakhs), and Iyer fell out in 156th place for $4,355 (~₹3.40 Lakhs).

Abhinav Iyer & Neel Joshi
Abhinav Iyer & Neel Joshi


The most expensive event of the 2022 WSOP, Event #50: $250,000 Super High Roller No-Limit Hold ’em, had 56 players sounding off the action on Day 2 – all eyeing a final table berth. Only eight players made the cut, with Alex Foxen (24,150,000) headlining the star-studded final table courtesy of his encounter with Nick Petrangelo on the money bubble. One of the day`s most talked-about moments was Daniel Negreanu`s blowout after receiving a brutal bad beat at the hands of David Peters. Read all the details of the incident below.

The most affordable event on the schedule, Event #51: $400 Colossus, lived up to its reputation as one of the biggest crowd-pullers at the WSOP. The event fired up to a spectacular start, logging in 5,869 entries on Day 1A, and only 684 survived through to Day 2. With Day 1B left to play, that number will surely be crushed. Kao “Flexx” Saechao (1,514,000) bagged the most massive stack, with Mary Dvorkin (1,388,000) lurking close in second place. Paawan Bansal was the only Indian reported in the day-end chip counts, and the former The Closer runner-up finisher bagged an average stack of 385,000, putting him 348th in chips among the surviving field. More Indian participation is expected on Day 1B on Saturday.

Schuyler Thornton (220,400) topped the end of Day 1 chip counts in Event #52: $2,500 Nine Game Mix 6-Handed. The event registered 465 entrants, and only 210 advanced to Day 2.


Event #47: $1,000 Seniors Championship – Day 2

After an action-packed 12 hours of play, Day 2 of Event #47: $1,000 Seniors Championship is now in the books. The 1,439 returning players from Day 1A and Day 1B took their seats today, and by the end of the day’s play, only 198 were left standing.

Ben Sarnoff bagged an impressive 3,155,000, making up for 126 BBs, making him the start of Day 3 chip leader. Not too far behind is Ukraine’s Valerii Lubenets, with 2,810,000.

A host of notables are still in contention for the title assuring highly intense poker action to look forward to on Day 3. Headlining the lot is Australian Jeff Lisandro (580,000), a six-time WSOP bracelet winner with over $5 million in live earnings.

Some other prominent players who will be joining Lisandro on Day 3 include the 2012 Seniors Championship winner Allyn Shulman (1,130,000), Ken Aldridge (965,000), Neil Blumenfield (650,000), Carol Fuchs (640,000), and Kathy Liebert (635,000).

The remaining players are assured at least $4,703, while all eyes will be on the $694,909 top prize and the shiny WSOP bracelet. Day 3 starts at 10 AM (PDT) on June 25.

Top Ten Chips Counts at the End of Day 2

  1. Ben Sarnoff – 3,155,000
  2. Valerie Lubenets – 2,810,000
  3. Jan Pettersson – 2,600,000
  4. Mike Landers – 1,995,000
  5. Patricia Devinem – 1,935,000
  6. James Clarke – 1,920,000
  7. Keith Littlewood – 1,802,500
  8. Jeffrey Sims – 1,725,000
  9. Andres Korn – 1,710,000
  10. Michael Campitelli – 1,650,000


Event #49: $2,000 No-Limit Hold’em – Day 2

The headline of our wrap-up report from Day 24 of the 2022 WSOP should have been India’s Nathan Rao bagging the 12th most enormous stack of 451,000 among 310 survivors in Event #49: $2,000 No-Limit Holdem. But unfortunately, with WSOP erroneously reporting Rao as an American player (a mistake that the otherwise diligent team repeated on Day 2), we missed mentioning him in our previous WSOP wrap up report.

However, as the Indian player is still among the top stacks in the field, we have an opportunity to rectify our mistake. Though not much of his journey was featured in the event`s live coverage, Rao did win a massive pot against Clement Cure during Level 21, boosting his stack to 1.7 Million. He ultimately ended the day with the sixth most giant stack of 2.35 Million.

Rao has about ten recorded live cashes, with scores in the 2017 Deltin Poker Tournament and the 2020 India Poker Championship. His career biggest score is the HK$40,500 he won from his runner-up finish in Event #3 HK$ 2,700 + 300 No-Limit Hold’em at the 2017 Macau Poker Cup 27. Rao is yet to collect a WSOP score, but since he`s already made Day 3 in the event, he is assured to cash for at least $12,905 that will supersede his previous personal-best finish.

Young Guns Neel Joshi (289,000) and Abhinav Iyer (234,000) had also carried stacks to Day 2, but both failed to proceed to Day 3. Joshi finished 58th for $9,190 (~₹7.19 Lakhs), while Iyer placed 156th for $4,355 (~₹3.40 Lakhs).

Day 2 played out seven levels, and the 310-player starting field was reduced to just 39. Brazil’s Lucas Tabarin emerged as the end-of-day chip leader with a stack of 4,240,000.

Jack Corrigan (3,910,000) and Ioannis Angelou Konstas (3,751,000) bagged the following two big stacks.

Heidi May (2,005,000), Tyler Cornell (q1,830,000), Dmitry Yurasov (1,475,000), and Dalibor Dula (1,305,000) are some former bracelet winners who bagged and tagged for Day 3.

Brett Apter (43rd for $12,905), Georgios Sotiropoulos (47th for $10,830), Damian Salas (51st for $10,830), and Eric Baldwin (71st for $7,885) are among the notables who finished in the money on Day 2.

The 39 remaining players will return for Day 3 tomorrow, i.e., June 26, at 1 PM (PDT).

Top 10 Chip Counts at the End of Day 2

  1. Lucas Tabarin – 4,240,000
  2. Jack Corrigan – 3,910,000
  3. Ioannis Angelou Konstas – 3,751,000
  4. Valdemar Kwaysser – 2,945,000
  5. Adam Geyer – 2,745,000
  6. Nathan Rao – 2,335,000
  7. Kyle Montgomery – 2,175,000
  8. Heidi May – 2,005,000
  9. Tyler Cornell – 1,830,000
  10. Evan Sandberg – 1,755,000


Event #50: $250,000 Super High Roller No-Limit Hold ’em – Day 2

It took a grueling 14 hours on Friday for the 56-player returning in Event #50: $250,000 Super High Roller No-Limit Hold ’em to whittle down to the final eight.

The two-time GPI POY, Alex Foxen (24,150,000) (81 BBs), commands the overall chip lead heading into Day 3. He took charge after eliminating Nick Petrangelo on the money bubble. The subsequent big stack belongs to Martin Kabrhel, who has 17,800,000 (59 BBs).

Foxen has already cashed five times at the ongoing series, including an FT finish in Event #16: $3,000 No-Limit Hold ’em (5th for $133,300). Given his overwhelming chip lead for the final day, he is the hot favorite to finally clinch that elusive WSOP bracelet and the massive $4,563,700 up-top.

Four former bracelet winners are still in contention: Phil Ivey, Dan Zack, Adrian Mateos, and the short-stacked Sam Soverel. While it seems like Foxen is poised to win his maiden bracelet, the star-studded final table will not make it easy for him.

Day 2 saw a flurry of eliminations. However, the standout story of the day was that of Daniel Negreanu. After already firing a second bullet in the $250,000 buy-in Super High Roller, Negreanu started the day with half the starting stack. He was faring well before coming out at the receiving end of a brutal bad at the hands of David Peters. He moved all-in with his against Peters’ , putting his tournament life at risk. All pre-flop odds which favoured Negreanu plummeted as the board ran , giving Peters a runner-runner flush. Fun-loving Negreanu did not take this well as he stood up from his seat; he smashed his vlogging equipment on the wall before leaving the tournament area.

Another elimination that stood out was that of the infamous Ali Imsirovic, who has been in the news for allegedly cheating in live and online tournaments. The accused cheater made a boat with his on a board and moved all-in for the remaining 1,800,000, only to be snap-called by Adrian Mateos who turned a bigger boat with his .

Henrik Hecklen (9th for $414,815) was the last player to be eliminated on Day 2.

The eight finalists will return at 2 PM (PDT) on Saturday, June 25, where they will play down until only one player is left standings. Each of them has locked in $488,095, with a whopping $ 4,563,700 and the WSOP gold bracelet reserved for the ultimate champion.

The final day’s action will be live-streamed on PokerGO, with the broadcast scheduled to start at 4 PM (PDT).

Alex Foxen
Alex Foxen


End of Day 3 Chip Counts

  1. Alex Foxen – 24,150,000
  2. Martin Kabrhel – 17,800,000
  3. Chris Hunichen – 12,375,000
  4. Brandon Steven – 7,850,000
  5. Phil Ivey – 7,300,000
  6. Adrian Mateos – 6,950,000
  7. Dan Zack – 4,375,000
  8. Sam Soverel – 3,200,000


Event #51: $400 Colossus – Day 1 A

The lowest buy-in event of the series – and also one of the biggest crowd-pullers, Event #51: $400 Colossus lived up to its reputation as a flood of players made their way into the event on Day 1A – the first of two starting flights. By the time the late registrations got over, a massive field of 5,869 entries had been clocked in, and only 684 survived the marathon 17 hours of play.

Kao “Flexx” Saechao (1,514,000) bagged the most massive stack for Day 2 on Sunday, with Mary Dvorkin (1,388,000), Jason Kolpin (875,000), Brian Weaver (864,000,) and Mark Marcellus (722,000) next on the day-end chip counts list.

At least one Indian player made it to Day 2 – Paawan Bansal – and he bagged an average stack of 385,000, putting him 348th in chips among the 684 survivors.

Paawan Bansal
Paawan Bansal


The event played down to the money with 881 places paid, and all the survivors have locked in a min-cash of $700. Having made Day 2, Bansal has assured himself his second ITM finish at the 2022 WSOP.

Brian Weaver (864,000), Marle Spragg (236,000), Olympic Boxer Audley Harrison (150,000), and Francisco Valencia (133,000) are notables who will be returning on Day 2 with above-average stacks.

Notables who fell out without reaching cash included former WSOP Main Event champions Joe Cada and Greg Raymer, Pat Lyons, Alex Outhred, Ryan Depaulo, and Jeff Boski.

The $400 buy-in event has already collected a $1,936,770 prize pool, with the Day 1B flight expected to expand the prize pool even further.

The Day 1B flight will start at 10 AM (PDT) on Saturday, June 25, giving yet another chance to all players who could not cash the event and others a chance to get in on the action. The survivors from the two flights will converge for Day 2 at 10 AM (PDT) on Sunday, June 26.

Kao Saechao
Kao Saechao


Top 10 Chip Counts at the End of Day 1

  1. Kao “Flexx” Saechao – 1,514,000
  2. Mary Dvorkin – 1,388,000
  3. Brett Silverman – 903,000
  4. Jason Kolpin – 875,000
  5. Brian Weaver – 864,000
  6. Mark Marcellus – 722,000
  7. Roger Edelen – 710,000
  8. Gabe Ramos – 670,000
  9. Gabriel Andrade – 650,000
  10. Joey Gargiulo – 598,000


Event #52: $2,500 Nine Game Mix 6-Handed – Day 1

Event #52: $2,500 Nine Game Mix 6-Handed drew 456 players on Day 1, and after ten levels of play, only 210 survived the day’s onslaught. Introduced last year, this is just the second year for this format, and it sure was a success with much better attendance than last year’s 319 entries.

The format requires players to compete six-handed in a nine-game mix that includes No-Limit Hold’em, Seven Card Stud, Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better, Razz, Pot-Limit Omaha, Limit Hold’em, Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo 8 or Better, 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw and 2-7 No Limit Draw.

Schuyler Thornton (220,400) claimed the Day 1 chip lead, with Nick Guagenti (209,200), Scott Bohlman (208,200), David Williams (206,500), and Dane Coltman (200,400) rounding out the top five stacks of the day.

Chance Kornuth (176,400), Mike Gorodinsky (158,400), Defending Champion Nicholas Julia (151,200), Jeff Madsen (127,900), Daniel Negreanu (125,600), and Brad Ruben (77,000) are among the former bracelet winners who bagged their stacks for Day 2.

The $2,500 buy-in event created a $1,014,600 prize pool, and the top 69 places are assured a min-cash of $4,018. The eventual champion will take home $219,799 and the gold bracelet.

With the money bubble closing in, the action will intensify on Day 2 as the 210 survivors return to the yellow section of Bally’s Event Center at 2 PM (PDT) on June 25.

Schuyler Thornton
Schuyler Thornton


Top 10 Chip Counts at the End of Day 1

  1. Schuyler Thornton – 220,400
  2. Nick Guagenti – 209,200
  3. Scott Bohlman – 208,200
  4. David Williams – 206,500
  5. Dane Coltman – 200,400
  6. Peter Ippolito – 183,900
  7. Joey Couden – 182,600
  8. Chance Kornuth – 176,400
  9. Mike Gorodinsky – 158,400
  10. Nicholas Julia – 151,200


Content & Images Courtesy: PokerGO, PokerNews & WSOP

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