2012 The World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event is the fifth largest poker tournament in history, featuring at its start a whopping 6,598 tournament players. The last nine met at the final table on Sunday 28 October, giving viewers 3 days of nail biting, breath baiting, thrills, spills and utter disaster at the highest level Texas Hold'em can offer.
Starting out third in line, with 28,725,000 in chips, and odds of 9/2 to win, Greg Merson, the high school dropout from Maryland, US, cracked down on seven of his compatriots and one Hungarian, leaving the table with a crushing $8,531,853 at just 400 hands into the final game.
Ladbrokes' top bounties on the heads of the players featured players Robert Salaburu at 11/1, Michael Esposito at 11/1, and Jesse Sylvia at 33/1, who fell in 8th, 7th and 2nd place respectively. It just goes to show that not even the experts can really tell what will happen in this game of chance, skill, and strategy.
Despite the rise in female poker players over the past ten years, out of the 6,598 original players, only 211 women entered the tournament, just 3.2% of the total number. However, the two ladies closest to making the final table, were Elisabeth Hille of Norway (11th place) and Gaelle Baumann of France (10th place), both taking $590,442, the biggest ever payouts for females in the main event.
Despite the almost exclusively American line on the final table this year, the WSOP is an true international opportunity, open to all through online satellite poker tournaments since 2003. Whether you’re a pro or an amateur, if you can put up the initial fees, you're in with a chance to win millions of dollars and extreme fame and fortune back at home. Why wait? Get practicing!
Check out this amazing WSOP infographic provided by the team at Ladbrokes Poker for further information.