Benefield confident of decisions on the felt, still making up his mind off of it

5 November 2013

David Benefield had some of the biggest lay downs in the early stages of the World Series of Poker Main Event final table, but he also showed that he wasn't afraid to put his chips to use.

After folding pocket 10s to Michiel Brummelhuis's four bet (Brummelhuis had aces), he moved all in over the top of JC Tran's button raise holding just king-deuce suited.

"JC is opening the button a ton," said Benefield. "I expect maybe he's opening the button 60 percent or something."

Unfortunately for Benefield, Jay Farber found ace-king in the big blind and called Benefield's shove and the Texan was eliminated in eighth place, claiming $944,650.

"I spent a lot of time trying to construct ranges for what I thought my opponents would have and how they would react to my moves with various stack sizes," said Benefield. "With the math that I ran, that's a very profitable all in. I don't regret it; I think it's the right play, but it just didn't work out this time."

While he doesn't lack for confidence or question his judgment at the poker table, he doesn't carry the same certainty about things away from the table. When asked what he plans to do next, Benefield responded: "I wish I knew."

David Benefield showed his introspective side after exiting the WSOP Main Event in eighth place.

David Benefield showed his introspective side after exiting the WSOP Main Event in eighth place. (photo by Vin Narayanan, Casino City)

Benefield has given up pursuing poker as a full-time profession, despite the fact that has nearly $2.2 million in live tournament earnings. Instead, the 27-year-old former poker pro has returned to school, studying political science and Chinese at Columbia University.

"Right now I'm going to finish school and still kind of play poker casually," said Benefield, who finished eighth in the Main Event after starting the day as the table's short stack. "I think that it will always be a part of my life. I don't really like playing full time, it's really stressful. But when I get to play during the summer, occasionally, or a couple other tournaments throughout the year, 10 hours a week online, I always feel reinvigorated."

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