Breaking Down the Action:
  • Fast Start Reduces Play to One Table
  • Ferro Busts as Player of the Year Departs
  • Yen Leads But Stars Gather Behind Him

4 Minute Read

The WPT Lucky Hearts Poker Open will crown a winner tonight... but who will it be?

Alexander Yen bagged the chip lead on Day 4 of the World Poker Tour’s Lucky Hearts Poker Open as a top-quality final table of six players was reached in dramatic style. Yen may have ended the day as chip leader, but he will face stiff competition

Along the way, Jeremy Ausmus bubbled the final, while others missed out in even more exciting circumstances to leave half a dozen great players all battling it out for the WPT Mike Sexton Champions Cup.

Fast Start Reduces Play to One Table

A total of 16 players began the day, but only an hour and a half of the penultimate day passed before the final nine players were reached. WPTDeepstacks winner Jose Montes exited in 16th place for $49,825 before Matthew Zarcadoolas joined him on the rail for the same amount. With the bust-outs of Andrew Esposito (14th for $61,725), Joseph Crowley (13th for $61,725) and Matt Bond, (12th for $77,215) just 11 players remained, with two needing to depart to for the final nine who would play down to the official final table of six at the same felt.

Thomas Carroll busted the event in 11th place for $77,215 when he moved all-in with ace-king from under the gun and couldn’t hit against Jeremy Ausmus’ jacks on a board which brought the cards 6-7-8-9-T, giving Ausmus the superior straight.

It was an unlucky finish for Saber Penayo in the Lucky Hearts Poker Open as he crashed out in 10th place for $97,525. Penayo shoved with ace-eight but had the misfortune to run into the ace-king belonging to Nicholas Verderamo, and play was suddenly nine-handed as a re-draw brought everyone to the same table.

Ferro Busts as Player of the Year Departs

WPT’s Player of the Year for 2021 was Jacob Ferro, who started superbly in this event, being chip leader at the end of Day 2. Ferro survived Day 3 in good shape, too, but couldn’t do the same on Day 4, despite making it to the last table. Ferro was all-in and at risk with pocket eights, but Alexander Yen’s ace-ten hit a ten in the window to skittle the POY and former chip leader, in turn helping Yen ascend the leaderboard.

Jake Daniels was the latest superstar to bust when he left in eighth place for $124,365. Daniels had a big hand to commit his chips with, holding pocket jacks, but Anton Wigg’s kings saw the Swede hold with ease across the board as five cards came to bust Daniels, who exited to a polite ‘GG’ to his tablemates.

Only one player needed to bust, and it looked like it might be Algerian player Omar Lakhdari, but he doubled through Jeremy Ausmus with pocket eights holding against the latter’s ace-ten, and that put Ausmus in trouble with just nine big blinds. Ausmus couldn’t survive when all-in himself, drifting to just six big blinds.

Ausmus was all-in with ace-six, but Joshua Kay was priced in to call with five-three and made a straight on the river of a painful six, Ausmus cashing for $160,095 and sealing all of the other six players into final table seats.

Yen Leads But Stars Gather Behind Him

Alexander Yen managed to build a healthy chip lead by the close of play, piling up 27.7 million chips after busting four of the ten players who busted on the day. That chip leading stack for Yen managed to secure him a healthy lead over his nearest challenger, the overnight chip leader Joshua Kay (18.1 million) who also enjoyed a great day at the felt.

Elsewhere in the final six, Anton Wigg is one of only two non-American players, the Swede surviving in style to end the day as the only other player with an eight-figure chip stack. Wigg’s 16.9 million chips are well clear of Daniel Lazrus, with the two-time WSOP bracelet winner coming in fourth with 7.35m. Lazrus – as he told us yesterday – believes in his ability to win no matter how good the field is, and with 34 big blinds will still be a player to watch.

Two short stacks close out the final six, with WPTDeepstacks winner Omar Lakdhari in fifth with 4.8 million, with Nicholas Verderamo the short stack on 4.4 million.

With a top prize of $975,240 up for grabs and just $208,025 on offer for whoever busts first in sixth place, the final half-dozen players will battle for the WPT Mike Sexton Champions Cup from 2:00 pm EST with play being broadcast on the WPT’s YouTube channel on a 3-minute delay.

WPT Lucky Hearts Poker Open Final Table Chipcounts:

Position Player Country Chips
1st Alexander Yen U.S.A. 27,575,000
2nd Joshua Kay U.S.A. 18,150,000
3rd Anton Wigg Sweden 16,975,000
4th Daniel Lazrus U.S.A. 7,350,000
5th Omar Lakdhari Algeria 4,825,000
6th Nicholas Verderamo U.S.A. 4,425,000


Dave Consolazio

Dave Consolazio has been passionate about writing and sports journalism since his high school years. He has a degree in Broadcast Journalism from USC where he worked with the school's radio and television stations. His work has been featured in SportsbookReview, Sports Illustrated and SB Nation. Dave's experience ranges across multiple fields in the gambling industry. You can find his sports, casino, and poker articles in

Back To Top
Back To Top