Istvan Briski leads WPT Seminole Rock N Roll Open final table

Paul Oresteen
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Posted on: November 28, 2023 3:45 pm EST

Day 4 of the World Poker Tour Seminole Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open resumed at noon with 15 players across two tables. After seven hours of action, nine players were eliminated and Istvan Briski holds a near 9 million-chip lead with 23.9 million chips.

Local mixed game player Sandy Sanchez forms the chase pack with 15.05 million. He has $157,800 locked up at a minimum after satelliting in for only $400. Another local, Fred Goldberg, made a late run to finish third in chips.

“My day is awesome, my friend Shawn Lucas went for a walk at 5:00am and then breakfast,” Goldberg said. “My day was a roller coaster, but I feel great. I got lucky a couple of times, I’m very grateful for that, but I got unlucky a lot, so that’s poker.”

Fred Goldberg celebrating.

Goldberg hit a key hand with pocket jacks when he was against kings. “I had jacks and I was planning on going all in, it didn’t matter,” he said. “I hit that jack and then I got to play my game.”

Rounding out the final table are Rayan Chamas, Darryll Fish and Matt Bond. Chamas echoed Goldberg’s rollercoaster metaphor. “I started as table chip leader, got up to tournament leader and within 20 minutes I’m one of the shortest stacks with ten people left,” he said. “Now I’m back and have chips – it’s all a rollercoaster.”

 Fish is the only WPT champion remaining but has a short stack. “It wasn’t a hard day, it was pretty smooth for the most part,” he said. “I had a couple of hands against Sandy, otherwise, it was like the other days, but I had pocket kings a lot less.”

“It was kind of weird, there was definitely a lull where nobody busted for a long time,” Fish added. “That’s just how it goes in tournaments, there’s ebbs and flows. Then at the end it went pretty fast.”

Fish’s plans for the evening after the early finish were, “I’m going to feed my cats and get some sleep.”

Bond returns as the shortest stack but made his first WPT final table. “I’m not done yet, but the monkey is off my back,” he said. “Kings have been awful for me; I lost every single time I had them the last two days. For me to be here, with losing those hands is pretty awesome.”

Huge money is up for play at Wednesday’s final table with nearly $550,000 separating sixth place from first place, plus a seat to the WPT World Championship at Wynn Las Vegas.

Eliminations

Gergely Kulcsar (15th) was the first player eliminated, followed by Niko Koop (13th), Viktor Kovachev (11th) and Luke Graham (7th) on Day 3.

Koop had a rough start to his day and never gained much traction. He got his final 15 big blinds in preflop with K-J, Chamas called with a suited ace and the board ran all rags to eliminate Koop short of the final table.

Kovachev got his stack in preflop with ace-king and Fish called with pocket tens. The board ran jack-high, Kovachev didn’t improve and Fish chipped up to nearly ten million.

The field combined to a single table of nine when Goldberg’s pocket jacks came from behind to beat Alejandro Olaechea’s pocket kings. Goldberg hit a jack on the flop, turned a full house and Olaechea went to the cage for $74,300.

Final table stream and counts

The final table kicks off at 2:00pm local time with a live streamed final table. WPT executive tour director Matt Savage and LearnWPT CEO Adrian Naggy will be on commentary.

Final Table Chip Counts

  1. Istvan Briskin – 23,925,000
  2. Sandy Sanchez – 15,050,000
  3. Fred Goldberg – 13,325,000
  4. Rayan Chamas – 11,000,000
  5. Darryll Fish – 4,625,000
  6. Matt Bond – 4,350,000

All photos courtesy of Word Poker Tour