Notes from day three at the WPF main event

15 November 2006

Fan Favorite Farhad finished Seventh

The most popular player at the WPF Main Event final table was able to hang on from the short-stack to finish on the World Poker Tour television bubble.

Farhad Sinaei, who brought a crew of his friends to the final day at the WPF Main Event, outlasted three players to finish seventh and earn $175,000 in cash.

Every time Farhad entered a pot, his rowdy friends cheered on their man, standing on chairs to call for the cards he needed to survive. In one all-in attempt, Sinaei moved-in with 2-3 suited, spiking his two on the flop. It sent his crew into a frenzy.

"It was the time of my life," Sinaei said after busting.

A local semi-professional, Sinaei plays mostly No-Limit Hold'em and is a staple in the Foxwoods WPT Poker Room. He played last year's WPF Main Event and also competed in the Foxwoods Poker Classic last spring, but never managed to cash.

For this event, Sinaei entered three $1,000 satellites, finally earning his $10,000 seat in the final satellite tournament before the Main Event began. His investment paid off as Sinaei parlayed his $3,000 into several thousand.

"I never knew if I was going to make the final table of not," Sinaei said. "I tried to play my best and I got lucky a few times.

Sinaei was bounced from the tournament by Kathy Liebert. Moving all-in with A-K, Sinaei was called by Liebert and was in good shape after Liebert showed her A-8 suited.

Sinaei, who had a few lucky catches during the last rounds of the tournament, finally met his match, suffering a bad-beat when an eight appeared.

The seventh place finish is by far the biggest victory of his career. He said he plans to pay more poker in the coming months.

Liebert gets her revenge

The last time Kathy Liebert made it this far in a World Poker Finals Main Event Championship, it was one of the worst moments of her career.

In the very first WPT tournament Foxwoods hosted, Liebert finished on the television-bubble, coming in seventh after two bad-beats.

"It feels good to get over the hump," Liebert said. "Of course I wouldn't accept anything less than winning."

In the fall of 2002, Liebert made the final table of the WPF, the first time the WPT teamed up with Foxwoods for the televised tournament.

It was past four in the morning before the final six was decided due mostly to the slow structure and the level of experience her opponents had in that first event.

Competing against Howard Lederer, Layne Flack, Phil Ivey, and on Rose, Liebert held a massive stack and was in good position to make her first television appearance.

In her first decisive hand, Liebert called a sizable raise from Howard Lederer. Holding pocket eights, Liebert was delighted when the flop came K-8-blank. Both Lederer and Liebert put all their chips in the pot and Liebert was a sizable favorite with her set versus Lederer's K-Q. The turn and river gave Lederer a full-house, crippling Liebert and allowing Lederer to survive.

A few hand later, a tired Layne Flack limped in under the gun with a weak J-2. Four players called and Liebert looked down at pocket Kings. She made a sizable raise and only Flack called.

"He wanted to go to sleep so he called with his Jack-Deuce," Liebert said.

Flack flopped a Jack and moved all-in. Liebert immediately called and watched in horror as the turn and the river brought Flack a runner-runner flush. Betrayed twice by the cards, Liebert was out of the tournament in a respectable, but disappointing seventh place.

Flash forward to 2006.

Liebert, again possessing a sizable stack with seven players remaining, was one spot away from realizing a dream lost five years ago. This time, it was her chance to knock out a short-stack with a bit of a bad-beat.

Farhad Sinaei, the table's short-stack, moved all-in with A-K offsuit. After a bit of a deliberation, Liebert called and was in bad shape with A-8 suited.

This time, however, the turn was in her favor. An eight on the turn bounced Sinaei and gave Liebert her long awaited revenge.

Did she feel bad about the bad-beat?

"I just want to get all the chips, I don't care about knocking the bubble out or not," Liebert said. "No I don't feel bad, I want to make the final six. It always sucks to get knocked out, but that's poker."


Mucking McLane

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