David Coleman has been having an excellent start to the 2024 tournament poker season, but David Peters is trying to keep pace with him. Peters, the victor in Event #1 of the 2024 PokerGO Cup, earned his second title during the series by taking down Event #6 on Friday evening at ARIA. In winning that tournament, Peters has now passed Coleman for the overall lead in the battle for the PokerGO Cup.

Even Battle from the Start

The 70-entry field had been whittled to the final six for action on Friday, with the pack tightly bunched together and no real advantage for any player. Leading the way at the start was Daniel Smiljkovic, who sat behind a stack of 1.96 million chips, but close behind was Peters with his own 1.88 million in ammunition. Brock Wilson made an appearance at the 2024 PokerGO Cup festivities, sliding in at third place to start the day’s play (1.575 million), while Morten Klein (1.315 million), Seth Davies (1.115 million), and a short-stacked Kristen Foxen (905K) rounding out the final table.

Indicative of the close nature of the leaderboard, the first elimination came only moments into play, and it wasn’t the shortie at the table. Wilson and Klein knocked heads on an A-K-3-Q flop and turn, with all the chips going to the center. Klein had flopped top pair with his A-J, but Wilson had turned a set of ladies with his pocket Queens. Needing a ten on the river to give him Broadway and better Wilson, Klein instead saw a measly four and was out in sixth place.

Next up for the Double Up Express was Foxen. She chose to go up against Davies on a Q-J-9-5 flop and turn and got Davies to call off her all-in bet. Foxen had outfoxed Davies; her Q-J had flopped Queens up, while Davies was drawing dead with his Q-10. The double-up pushed Foxen into second and left Davies on fumes; he would depart moments later, with Smiljkovic doing the dirty deed.

It Takes Two to Take Down Wilson

Wilson maintained the lead by knocking off Smiljkovic in fourth place, his pocket fours holding up over Smiljkovic’s A-Q on a nine-high board, and all the remaining competitors were close in chip counts. Foxen took over the lead for a short spell, but Peters would earn a double through her to seize the top rung of the ladder. It took both Foxen and Peters to knock off Wilson, with Foxen doubling through him and Peters administering the “killing blow” to send the duo off to heads-up play.

Peters held around a 2:1 lead (5.825 million to 2.925 million) over Foxen at the start of heads-up action, and the very first hand would decide the fates. Foxen, who is the only woman in the PGT Leaderboard at this time, pushed all in from the button and Peters immediately called her bet. Foxen’s J-10 was OK for a heads-up hand, but Peters had her covered with his A-4. Things got worse for Foxen when Peters flopped an Ace on the A-2-2 intro, and she was left drawing dead when a trey came on the turn. A particularly cruel Jack on the river gave Foxen a lesser two pair as Peters racked up the win and the overall PokerGO Cup lead.

1. David Peters, $315,000 (315 points)
2. Kristen Foxen, $204,750 (205)
3. Brock Wilson, $141,750 (142)
4. Daniel Smiljkovic, $105,000 (105)
5. Seth Davies, $78,750 (79)
6. Morten Klein, $57,750 (58)

With their performances, several players at the Event #7 final table bumped up into the race for the 2024 PokerGO Cup. Peters took over the lead in the race, sitting with 457 points, while Smiljkovic dropped in at #5 in the race. Foxen, Wilson, and Davies can also be found on the Top Ten, setting themselves up well for a run in the Main Event.

1. David Peters, 457 points
2. David Coleman, 347
3. Jonathan Little, 277
4. Daniel Smiljkovic, 261
5. Cary Katz, 252*
6. Dylan Weisman, 240
7. Kristen Foxen, 237
8. Justin Zaki, 232
9. Brock Wilson, 217
10. Seth Davies, 211

(* – defending champion)

The Main Event has completed its first day and worked down to the final table, with several players having the chance to pass Peters for the title. Davies, Zaki, Little, and Saliba are all in pursuit of John Riordan (Shanell Stokes is also at the final table but, along with Riordan, does not have a chance at the overall championship), but those four all have a chance to pass Peters to capture the overall PokerGO Cup. The major problem is that they will have to win the $25,000 Main Event, and the 272 points that go along with it, to be able to snatch the overall title from Peters.

Action will resume in the 2024 PokerGO Cup Main Event at 2 PM (Pacific Time) and the “live stream” (delayed per Nevada law) will appear on PokerGO one hour later.

(Photo courtesy of PokerGO.com)

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