Hellmuth Leads in Cannes, Reaching for Bracelet 13 and POY Crown
The final table of the WSOP Europe is set, with chip leader Phil Hellmuth vying for his 13th bracelet and his first player of the year crown.
The star-studded final table will be streamed live starting at 2 p.m. in Cannes (8 a.m. ET) on ESPN3.com and Eurosport. The coverage is expected to reveal hole cards on a 15-minute delay. ESPN will broadcast the main event this fall.
Hellmuth is followed closely in chips by Ukranian Sergii Baranov. The rest of the field includes Joseph Cheong, who finished third in the 2010 WSOP Main Event, three Frenchmen—Stephane Albertini, Stephane Girault and Paul Tedeschi—Jason Mercier of the US and Christopher Brammer of the United Kingdom.
The €10,450 buy-in event attracted a field of 420. First place pays €1,022,376.
A week ago, Antonio Esfandiari took the lead in the player of the year race after he won the the €1,100 buy-in no-limit hold’em re-entry tournament for his third bracelet.
But his lead is in jeopardy, and Hellmuth could lock up the award if he wins the WSOPE Main Event. In Las Vegas this summer, Hellmuth won the $2,500 seven card razz event, made two other final tables and cashed six times. In Cannes, he has already cashed three times.
October Niner Greg Merson still has a few different ways to earn the player of the year title, according to Bluff magazine. If Hellmuth does not win in Cannes, Merson must win or finish second in the Main Event in Las Vegas.
Merson could also become POY if he finishes fourth, but he needs Hellmuth not to finish in the top three and Cheong not to win in Cannes.
Cheong, who sits in 19th in the POY race, could take the title if he wins in Europe, Merson does not finish third or better and Hellmuth does not finish in the top three.
In order for Esfandiari to win POY, neither Merson nor Hellmuth can finish in the top four of their respective events and Cheong cannot win in Cannes.