Erik Cajelais Holds Chip Lead Going Into Final Table at WPT Shooting Stars EventFriday, March 9th, 2012 by Ryan
When play started on Day 3 of the World Poker Tour’s Bay 101 Shooting Stars event, there were 20 players remaining. The plan for the day was to play down to the final six players which would make up the final table, and it took nine hours before the final 14 eliminations occurred. Out of the final 20 players who started the day, there was Scott Baumstein leading the way, but he had some tough competition to beat out including the likes of Jonathan Duhamel, J.C. Tran, Erik Cajelais, and Joseph Elpayaa just to name a few. When the day came to an end, it was Erik Cajelais who was sitting at the top of the leader board, partially due to one huge hand.
The hand that changed the day for Cajelais featured him up against a player in Taylor von Kriegenberg, who has already won a World Poker Tour event himself. The hand featured a huge pot in the middle of the table, and a flop staring back at the two players of J-9-4. Cajelais bet out 100k, which was called by Kriegenberg. The turn saw a nine come out, and the Jack that came on the river was what really turned up the action. Kriegenberg made the call of another bet from Cajelais, and Cajelais turned over K-J for a full house. This sent von Kriegenberg down to only 100k in chips, and he was sent home in 19th place soon after that.
This left three tables at the event, and the two remaining Shooting Stars found themselves in trouble in different situations here. Mike McClain sent Tran home just after they were set at three tables when McClain’s pocket fours held up against the A-8 of Tran. After three hours of play Duhamel was the final Shooting Star to see himself eliminated from the tournament when his A-6 couldn’t catch anything against the A-10 of Ubaid Habib. Both McClain and Habib picked up their $5k bounties, and this was actually the second bounty for McClain. This was the first time in the history of the event that there wasn’t a Shooting Star at the final table of the tournament.
Cajelais kept rolling from here, and when the action was down to the final two tables it was Cajelais holding the top spot. Out of the nine hours that the tournament took, four of the hours came when the players were attempting to find out who would be the final table bubble boy. All of the players decided not to take a dinner break, simply to attempt to get to the final table to call it a night. This hand finally came when Moon Kim was up against Amir Khaziri when Khaziri moved all in for under 500k. Kim called and showed pocket nines, but had to hold up against the A-K of Khaziri. The nines did hold, and Khaziri was sent home in 7th. The final table now looks as follows:
Erik Cajelais- 3,640,000 Ubaid Habib- 2,274,000 Moon Kim- 2,098,000 Andrew Badecker- 1,040,000 Joe Serock- 952,000 Joe Elpayaa- 908,000