While many may have thought that the 2021 World Series of Poker concluded with Koray Aldemir’s dominant run to the World Championship, there are some odds and ends that remain to be cleared up. One tournament on the schedule yet is the $250,000 “Super High Roller” No Limit Hold’em event, which naturally was a star-studded affair. It also saw a strange occurrence in a contract signed between the players that might have been difficult to enforce.
“Contract” to Counter Potential COVID Infection Signed
After seeing players withdraw from the Championship Event because of potential COVID infection, the players in the Super High Roller took a different tack that might have been difficult to enforce. Because of the fact that the players were putting up $250,000 (and some would put in another buy in after being eliminated from the re-entry tournament), a majority of the players signed a contract that, if they became ill during the tournament, they would be refunded by ICM count their money. In essence, it was an insurance policy for the players that, if they had COVID symptoms arise during the tournament that would prevent them from coming back to play, they would get a part of their money back from the prize pool by what their chip stack dictated.
While it has not come into play (and hopefully will not be necessary), it would be difficult to see this “contract” enforced. Once the Super High Roller players paid their $250,000 to the WSOP cage, that money is no longer theirs – it becomes the property of the WSOP to award as the tournament played out. Furthermore, the WSOP was not a part of any of the contract discussions nor did they sign on to the deal that the players put forth. Thus, it may have been a symbolic statement by the participants in the tournament more so than any binding contract that would have been enforced.
Fortunately (so far)…the “contract” has not been enforced because nobody has come up ill.
Adrian Mateos Rides Hot Streak on Day 2 to Chip Lead
25 players came through the Day 1 festivities, and they saw some new faces on the felt to start Day 2. Eight more players would come to the cage before the start of Day 2 and before the end of late registration to get back into play, including four newcomers to the battle. Those who came back for a second taste – or for a first run – including Jake Schindler, Cary Katz, David Peters, Seth Davies, Nick Petrangelo, Orpen Kisacikoglu, Keith Tilston, and Nilesh Patel, as they looked to run down the white-hot Michael Addamo to start the day.
The start of the action on Friday in the Super High Roller also set the prize pool for the tournament. With the new entries, a total of 33 entries were received in the tournament. It established a prize pool of more than $8.2 million, but only five men (alas, only men entered this tournament) will take a piece of the pie home with them. The eventual champion of this tournament earns a payday of $3,265,362 and, oh yeah…the WSOP bracelet that goes along with the victory.
Day 2 action did not treat the chip leaders well. Addamo may have come into the proceedings with the chip lead, but he would see those chips disappear quickly. After a raise from Stephen Chidwick, Addamo would defend his big blind to see a 10x 9♣ 5♣ flop. Addamo decided this was the time to make his move, pushing his shorter stack to the center against Chidwick, and the cards went to their backs:
Addamo: 8♣ 3♣
It was a neck-and-neck battle, with Addamo searching for a baby flush and Chidwick holding over cards and a potential straight draw for improvement. A six on the turn brought an additional straight draw for Addamo, but it nor the flush would come with the J♥ river to pair up Chidwick unnecessarily and send Addamo to the rail.
Adrian Mateos began his run at this time, albeit he was quite fortunate to even start the trotting process. Going up against Patel’s pocket Aces, Mateos could only muster pocket eights for the fight. But the “poker gods” smiled on Mateos, running out 6-10-7-7-9 to deliver an unlikely straight to the Spanish poker champion and knock Patel out of the event.
Mateos would also bring the tournament down to the unofficial final table. After seeing a J-10-4-3-10 board run out, Mateos would put out a bet that required an all-in call from Dan Smith to stick around. Smith would do this, but it turned out to be the wrong call; his A-4 had flopped bottom pair and made two pair on the turn, but Mateos’ Q-J had a higher pair and better two pair to win the hand and go to the unofficial final table in second place behind Peters.
After the dinner break, Mateos dominated the remaining players. He took the lead from Peters, who had been the first player to crack the 10 million chip mark, and punished Tilston to approach the 20 million mark. By the time that Christoph Vogelsang was eliminated on the money bubble by Tilston, Mateos had amassed more than half the chips in play:
1. Adrian Mateos, 25.5 million
2. Keith Tilston, 8.9 million
3. Ben Heath, 6.5 million
4. Seth Davies, 4.55 million
5. John Kincaid, 3.925 million
Much like Aldemir’s run to the World Championship, this tournament is Mateos’ to lose. With his dominant chip stack, it is going to be difficult for any of his four opponents to mount an offensive, especially if Mateos remains active and knocks out a short stack or two. The action will resume at 4PM (Pacific Time) and it will be a part of the streaming action at PokerGO.