The dust has now settled and we all know the names who will be in the final table come October, after ten days of play and a field of 6,598 players being reduced to that fortunate nine. There were tens of thousands of hands played during the ten days; however one of them will stick in the memory for some time.
This hand was not talked about because of a bad beat or because the pot was huge…this was talked about because of what that hand could have been worth to both players.
Baumann Vs Koroknai
Probably the most memorable of all and for reasons not normally expected from memorable hands, this hand quite possibly cost Baumann the chance of becoming the first woman on the final table in over 25 years.
Baumann opened with a minimal raise to about 60,000 chips, the action then folded right around to Andras Koroknai who pushed all in with about 2mil, Gavin Smith who was on the big blind behind Koraknai folded and Koroknai mucked his hand allegedly not realizing that Baumann was in the hand.
Once he realized he did try to retrieve his cards but one was already mixed into the pack and as such irretrievable. The dealer called a WSOP representative to the table and explained to him what had happened, the representative then called over the tournament director and once he was informed of what had taken place he took some time to think.
Gavin Smith even found it difficult not to laugh at how hard the decision was being made out to be. However after some deliberation Jones announced to the table that Koroknai would only forfeit chips to the amount of Baumann’s bet (60,000), which was much to the surprise of the table. Smith even quipped “really?”
Baumann was also a bit perplexed at the ruling so Jones eventually called up the Vice President of the WSOP Jack Eiffel. After a two minute long conversation Jones put way his phone and announced that his ruling will indeed stand stating to Koroknai “You’re not losing your tournament life”.
Jones explanation to the table was that the decision was a difficult one but the integrity of the tournament was a major factor in his decision. Baumann showed KK, only Koroknai knows what he held.
Right Or Wrong?
The ruling has caused quite some controversy in poker circles, many players stating that he should have lost all of his chips. Whether it was accidental or he quickly saw the eagerness of Baumann to make the call and mucked his cards quickly will never be known. However, many feel that this hand could and probably should have propelled Baumann to that final table.
Poker is about exploiting your opponent’s weaknesses, was that not a weakness from Koraknai that he didn’t know who was still in hand? However, as it stands, he is on the final table and she is not, and if by October he is crowned the winner of the WSOP Main Event, he will look back on this hand knowing that he got extremely fortunate.