The 2016 World Poker Tour (WPT) Rolling Thunder Main Event reached its final table last night; just six players remain from the original field of 409. Russell Garrett goes into the final table as the chip leader with 3.686 million chips, followed closely by Harrison Gimbel, who has 3.315 million. The leader going into both Monday and Tuesday’s action, Ankush Mandavia, was unable to make it to Wednesday.
The final table is interesting in that, as WPT.com points out, the stacks are unusually deep. The average chip stack is 102 big blinds, about double what one would normally see at a six-handed World Poker Tour final table. WPT.com thinks some of it has to do with the fact that the tournament went to six-handed tables when the field was down to 36 players, which makes sense. When the tables get shorter, people start playing more hands and thus there is a better chance for quicker eliminations. The faster the final table is reached, the smaller the blinds are and thus the stacks are deeper.
WPT.com notess, though, that these deep stacks are unusual even when compared to past WPT events with the same structure. It really just boils down to a few players rolling through smaller stacks and enabling the tourney to hit the final table quickly.
Thus, even though two players, Hafiz Khan and Derek Wolters, look like they are in trouble as the small stacks (754,000 chips and 544,000 chips, respectively), they aren’t in as bad shape as they would normally be. 38 big blinds and 27 big blinds is not an ideal situation, but it could be a lot worse.
As for the former chip leader Mandavia, he just couldn’t get things going on Tuesday. He did eliminate Cy Williams in 14th place, but that only got his own chip stack up to 1.48 million late in the day. Despite his Day 3 struggles, though, Mandavia still nearly made the final table, getting knocked out on last hand of Level 22 in 8th place.
Of the six gentlemen remaining, there are a couple interesting stories. Mohsin Charania is going after his third World Poker Tour title. If he is able to accomplish the feat – and with 2.716 million chips he is in good position to do so – he would become the fourth player do hit the triple, joining Gus Hansen, Anthony Zinno, and Carlos Mortensen. Harrison Gimbel, in second place, reached the final table of this same event last year.
The tournament has gotten underway out in California; by the end of the night we will have a new (or repeat) World Poker Tour champion.
2016 World Poker Tour WPT Rolling Thunder Main Event – Final Table Chip Counts
1. Russell Garrett – 3,686,000
2. Harrison Gimbel – 3,315,000
3. Mohsin Charania – 2,716,000
4. Markus Gonsalves – 1,258,000
5. Hafiz Khan – 754,000
6. Derek Wolters – 544,000