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LAS VEGAS — Florida poker professional John Dolan has been eliminated from the World Series of Poker after trying to make a move to gain more chips before minimum bets rendered his stack useless.
Dolan, a Bonita Springs resident, was bounced from the no-limit Texas Hold 'em tournament in sixth place on Saturday night after gambling with a queen and a five.
"There's probably a few spots that I might have missed, but all in all I'm not disappointed with how I played," said Dolan, 24.
Jonathan Duhamel, a 23-year-old poker pro from Canada, called with a pair of fours. The fours held through five community cards and Duhamel took the last of Dolan's chips.
Dolan won $1.77 million for sixth place.
Duhamel and John Racener outlasted 7,317 players at the World Series of Poker main event and will play heads up to determine the $8.94 million crown.
Duhamel took an overwhelming chip lead early Sunday after picking off a bluff by 24-year-old Joseph Cheong that tested Duhamel for all his chips.
Duhamel called and immediately flipped pocket queens, while Cheong tabled an ace-seven. Duhamel's hand held and he moved to more than 170 million chips.
Cheong was eliminated by Duhamel a few hands later with a queen high.
Duhamel began the day with the chip lead and ended it with an overwhelming stack — more than three-quarters of all the chips.
His opponent Monday night will be Racener, a 24-year-old professional from Port Richey, Fla.
Earlier, Jason Senti was eliminated at the World Series of Poker in seventh place after losing an about-even race to 24-year-old Joseph Cheong.
Senti lost the last of his chips in the no-limit Texas Hold 'em tournament with an ace-king despite catching two kings on the flop to move squarely ahead of his opponent.
Cheong caught running straight cards to match his pocket tens and save him from losing the vast majority of chips.
Senti won $1.36 million for seventh place after coming into the final table with the least chips.
The hand was the second hand to eliminate a player by giving him the lead from behind, then taking it away on the last card.
Two players were eliminated Saturday afternoon and evening after more than three hours of no-limit Texas Hold 'em at the World Series of Poker.
Canadian poker player Matthew Jarvis came one card from doubling his stack through Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi but was eliminated in eighth place.
Cuong "Soi" Nguyen, the oldest finalist at 37 and the table's only amateur, was the first eliminated after gambling with an ace-king combination just before minimum bets were set to rise. He lost against Jason Senti's pocket queens.
Senti was nearly eliminated just before players took their second break of the day, but consecutive diamonds gave him a flush and brought the players far closer in chips than at the start of play.
"It's good and bad," Mizrachi told Mike "The Mouth" Matusow, after Matusow pointed out that Senti's rivered flush was worth more than $400,000 — the difference between seventh and sixth place.
After 90 hands and more than four hours on the felt, Mizrachi had a chip lead with about 53 million chips, just ahead of 23-year-old Jonathan Duhamel who started the day with a dominant lead over the rest of the field, including 24-year-old John Dolan of Bonita Springs.
The chips don't have any monetary value, but are required to remain in the running for the $8.94 million top prize. Each player needs to lose all his chips to be eliminated from the tournament that started with 7,319 entrants paying $10,000 each to buy in.
But Mizrachi's win over Jarvis, Senti's aggressiveness throughout the first three hours and Cheong's consistent play early altered the dynamics of a game where community cards make all the difference.
Short on chips, Jarvis moved all-in with a pocket pair of nines, and Mizrachi called with an ace and a queen. The first three community cards brought two queens, giving Mizrachi a three-of-a-kind and leaving Jarvis few options to win the hand.
A nine on the turn turned the tables, giving Jarvis a full house and putting the table's most famous professional on the ropes, with less than a one-in-five chance of winning the hand.
A river ace gave the 29-year-old Mizrachi a better full house, sending his onstage supporters into a frenzy at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
"As soon as I got short, I realized that I'm the guy that everyone's coming after," Jarvis said afterward, tearing up in front of reporters. "I've got to put the pressure back on the big stack. You've got to play for the win — you can't put scared chips in there."
Jarvis won $1.05 million for placing eighth.
The gamble — Jarvis and Mizrachi were about even to win before the community cards were dealt — was Mizrachi's attempt to put himself in good position to cap off what would be an unprecedented series.
He is looking to win the main event after winning the series' first of 57 open tournaments, a $50,000 buy-in mixed game championship worth $1.56 million. A test of all-around poker skill, the Poker Players Championship is considered the series' most prestigious tournament behind the main event.
Just before the players broke for dinner, one Mizrachi supporter briefly chanted: "Bracelet, bracelet."
Senti, a 26-year-old poker professional, trounced Nguyen in ninth in an about-even scenario. Senti hit a queen on the flop for a three-of-a-kind, protecting his hand, when Nguyen, a medical supply company manager, hit a king on the river to make a pair.
Nguyen said he wasn't afraid to bust first because getting any further would have been "gravy."
"I wasn't afraid, because nobody expected me to get this far anyways," he said. "Hey, I lost for a raise, and I'm OK with that."
Nguyen won nearly $812,000 for his finish, but did not add to his winnings as each player was paid the ninth-place jackpot back in July.
Senti wagered all his chips four times in the first 15 hands but never found a challenger.
The tournament resumed 111 days after the nine finalists last played together.