Breaking Down the Action:
  • Early Drama Sees Powerful Players Plummet
  • Shorr and Carroll Bow Out but Kay is OK
  • Lazrus Praises ‘Great Tourney’ as Day 4 Looms

5 Minute Read

Daniel Lazrus is a three-bet behind the chip leaders in the WPT Lucky Hearts Poker Open after Day 3

A busy Day 3 of the World Poker Tour Lucky Hearts Poker Open saw big names fall and others rise as just 16 players remained at the close of play. Of the 87 starters to the Day 3 action, it was Joshua Kay who bagged the most, grabbing the chip lead with over 11 million chips.

Kay will have plenty of competition on Day 4, however, as WSOP bracelet winners such as Daniel Lazrus and Jeremy Ausmus are chasing him down.

Early Drama Sees Powerful Players Plummet

While the overnight chip leader Jacob Ferro got off to a good start, inflicting some pain on Galen Hall, who would later bust in 36th place to Ferro after losing a flip, others near the top of the leaderboard weren’t so fortunate. A swathe of players busted before the dinner break, with less than 50 players going for a hearty meal. Belgian four-time WSOP winner Michael Gathy was one of them, crashing out in 50th place.

Things were even quicker for the next set of players to be heading for the cash desk, with Bin Weng, Min Zhang, and Jaime Cervantes among those who busted before the final 40 players were reached. That meant a change of blinds, with hour-long levels extended to 90 minutes for the remainder of the day, with play then heading towards just 16 survivors.

Jake Daniels got a vital double up when his queens held, but he fell victim to the ladies a few hands later as his pocket sixes couldn’t catch up with Daniel Beers’ own queens. Cherish Andrews got off to a bad start, but a double-up with pocket kings against ace-queen helped her eventually ladder to 25th place, one further than the other surviving female player Loni Hui.

Shorr and Carroll Bow Out but Kay is OK

Shannon Shorr came into the day as one of the most experienced players on the seat draw. He lost his seat, however, busting in 35th place. The same fate befell former WPT Main Event winner James Carroll, who lost a monster pot to Ferro when Carroll’s hand lost out to Ferro’s second nut flush on the flop to bust shortly afterward.

Nitis Udornpim was one of the unlucky players to miss out on the latter stages of the event, as he lost his stack in two hands against Alexander Yen. First, Yen’s ace-five held when at risk against Udornpim’s king-queen. Then, for the latter’s tournament life, Yen’s ace-king held against Udornpim’s king-eight as the WPT Champions Club member departed.

Joshua Kay (11.8 million) had the chip lead when the bags came round at the close of Day 3, with Alexander Yen (11 million) and Nicholas Verderamo (9.65 million) taking the other podium places. While Jeremy Ausmus (6.6 million came in fifth, the player ahead of him was much closer to the top of the leaderboard.

Lazrus Praises ‘Great Tourney’ as Day 4 Looms

That man, who was going nowhere on Day 3, was the winner of the WSOP’s ‘Millionaire Maker’ event in the summer, which earned him a second bracelet and the top prize of $1,000,000. Daniel Lazrus, flying high since winning an online WSOP bracelet earlier in 2021, took out both Andrew Brinkley and Lazaro Hernandez in one hand with ace-king to vault up the leaderboard and crack the 100 big blind mark for the first time in the tournament. He’s a big fan of the Lucky Hearts Poker Open.

“It seems to be the second biggest ever WPT event if you exclude the $5k they had last year,” he said, “It’s a really good sign for the current state of poker.”

Lazrus is in a great position to get his name on the WPT Mike Sexton Champions Cup but is taking nothing for granted.

“I love coming to this hotels tournament series,” said the two-time WSOP bracelet winner. “[There are] some good players left, but I think I have a chance to make a real run at this.”

With Lazrus coming into Day 4 in fourth place with 9.6 million chips, he is just a big pot off the chip lead with ten players to depart on the penultimate day. Play is scheduled to stop with six players remaining, as is tradition on the World Poker Tour. Will Lazrus or fellow multiple WSOP bracelet winner Jeremy Ausmus be among that number? Seated on different tables when play resumes (Lazrus has both first and second in chips at his table), we may well see great drama before the final table is formed.

WPT Lucky Hearts Poker Open End of Day 3 Chipcounts:

Position Player Country Chips
1st Joshua Kay U.S.A. 11,825,000
2nd Alexander Yen U.S.A. 11,050,000
3rd Nicholas Verderamo U.S.A. 9,650,000
4th Daniel Lazrus U.S.A. 9,600,000
5th Jeremy Ausmus U.S.A. 6,600,000
6th Jake Ferro U.S.A. 5,150,000
7th Matt Bond U.S.A. 4,325,000
8th Omar Lakhdari Algeria 4,300,000
9th Anton Wigg Sweden 3,650,000
10th Saber Penayo U.S.A. 2,550,000


Joseph Ellison

Joseph is a dedicated journalist and horse racing fanatic who has been writing about sports and casinos for over a decade. He has worked with some of the UK's top bookmakers and provides Premier League soccer tips on a regular basis. You'll likely find him watching horse racing or rugby when he isn't writing about sport.

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