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Event #44 Seven Card Razz

Day 1
Buy-in: $2,500
Players: 315
Prize pool: $724,500 going to the top 32

If you are not familiar with this variant of poker, you have to ask the question, 'What the heck is Razz?' Well, according to the WSOP, Razz is a variant of lowball. It is dealt out in a Seven-Card Stud format. The objective is to make the lowest five-card poker hand. Ace-to-five is the best possible hand in Razz. There you have it. Some call it very frustrating and stay out, others will not pass any chance to get a bracelet and jump on in.

A few of the not easily discouraged players who bought into this event are Perry Friedman, Shirley Rosario, Mike Sexton, Gavin Griffin, Kenna James, Billy Baxter, Shannon Elizabeth, Annie Duke, Clonie Gowan, Chip Jett, Barbera Lewis, Doyle Brunson, Cyndy Violette and Daniel Negreanu. They were part of the 315 player field on Day 1. That is pretty good when you consider the economic environment AND that the price of entry went up by a $1,000.

Not soon after they sat down, some got back up. Headed to the rail on Day 1 were Ester Taylor, Linda Johnson, Jeff Madsen, Carlos Mortensen, Huck Seed, Scott Seiver, Allen Cunningham, Frank Kassela, Dan Shak, Tony G and Bryan Micon. And by 3:00 AM this round was over with Day 1 seeing 118 remaining in the field. Here are the top 9 players with chip counts:
  1. Warwick Mirzikinian -- 59,400
  2. Eric Rodawig -- 55,000
  3. Yan Chen -- 52,700
  4. Herman Salazar -- 46,200
  5. Matthew Kelly -- 46,100
  6. H.G. Houston -- 44,100
  7. George Clark -- 43,000
  8. David Chiu -- 41,800
  9. Michael Kinney -- 40,000

Day 2

SPECIAL NOTE: The World Series of Poker wishes to provide the lastest update on the medical condition of three-time gold WSOP bracelet winner John "Miami" Cernuto. During today's Razz championship, Cernuto was rushed to the hospital and was treated for an ongoing medical ailment. Late this evening, Cernuto called the WSOP Media Relations Team. He wishes to inform the poker community that he is now feeling much better, but will remain hospitalized for at least another day or two, while tests are conducted. He also wishes to make it clear he did not suffer a heart attack, as was initially rumored. Cernuto is one of poker's most respected and beloved champions and the poker community wishes him a speedy recovery and a quick return to the WSOP.

Back for more of the same were the 118 survivors from yesterday. They sat back down at 2:00 PM and kept their cards close. The goal is to reach a table of 8, or to stop at 3:00 AM which under some circumstances has become a WSOP rule. Some who went out of the running were Mike Sexton, Thom Werthmann, Thor Hansen, John Phan, Daniel Negreanu, Chris Ferguson and David Sklansky. Things stopped for an unscheduled break while emergency assistance was given to John Cernuto. Now he did not suffer a heart attack, but was still hospitalized. It was determined that he suffered internal bleeding. Our prayers go out to John that he will recover quickly. (We are bold on this site as we will say things like 'prayer' and 'God' without caring what anyone else thinks.)

Payout schedule for the final table players:

  1. $188,390
  2. $116,405
  3. $76,260
  4. $52,772
  5. $38,470
  6. $29,472
  7. $23,669
  8. $19,880
  9. $15,569
A total of 13 players will move on to Day 3. Here are the top 9 with chip counts:
  1. Jeff Lisandro -- 438,000
  2. Steve Diano -- 302,000
  3. Don Zewin -- 300,000
  4. Kenny James -- 284,000
  5. Warwick Mirzikinian -- 191,000
  6. Ryan Fisler -- 190,000
  7. Bill Cole -- 182,000
  8. Michael Craig -- 102,000
  9. Nikolay Evdakov -- 88,000

Day 3 -- Final Table

Here are the summarized results as given by the WSOP:

Jeffrey Lisandro Wins Fourth WSOP Gold Bracelet – His Third Victory This Year
The 2009 World Series of Poker $2,500 buy-in Seven-Card Razz champion is Jeffrey Lisandro. Lisandro has now cashed six times at this year’s WSOP. Lisandro collected $188,390 for first place. He was also awarded his fourth WSOP gold bracelet. Lisandro’s combined WSOP earnings now total $2,578,137. This currently ranks 35th on the all-time list, one spot ahead of Chris Moneymaker. Lisandro won the biggest cash prize for any Razz event in poker history. Following his win, Lisandro departed the tournament are quickly. He explained that he was both tired and hungry, which is understandable. Lisandro is believed to have played more hours than any player at this year’s WSOP. He has put in many 14-hour days. Lisandro stated he has yet to have more than six hours of sleep on any night thus far, now four weeks into the WSOP. The defending champion from 2008 was Barry Greenstein, from Rancho Palos Verdes, CA. He entered this year’s event, but did not cash.

Razz is a variant of lowball. It is dealt out in a Seven-Card Stud format. The objective is to make the lowest five-card poker hand. Ace-to-five is the best possible hand in Razz. Razz was first introduced onto the WSOP schedule in 1973. It has been included on the tournament schedule every year since, except 1976.

The buy-in for this event increased by 66 percent over last year -- from $1,500 to $2,500 this year. This increase likely contributed to a slight reduction in attendance. However, the total prize pool increased and was the richest Razz event payout in poker history. The tournament was played over three consecutive days. Lisandro came to the final table on Day Three ranked first in chips. He was never seriously threatened by anyone at the final table. Through the conclusion of Event #44, the 2009 WSOP has attracted 43,629 entries. $86,052,382 in total prize money has been awarded to winners.


Lisandro's winning hand went as follows. Lisandro had 10 8 4 4 9 7 J and Craig held 6 8 A A 8 J K. Lisandro completed and Craig raised with a call from Lisandro. Craig led on 4th street with Lisandro calling. Craig finally pushed the remainder of his stack to the middle and it was called. When all was said and done, the 10 9 8 7 4 low became the newest bracelet for Lisandro.


Jeffrey Lisandro

  1. Jeffrey Lisandro -- $188,390
  2. Michael Craig -- $116,405
  3. Ryan Fisler -- $76,260
  4. Warwick Mirzikinian -- $52,772
  5. Eric Rodawig -- $38,470
  6. Kenna "Cowboy" James -- $29,472
  7. Steve Diano -- $23,669
  8. Allen Bari -- $19,880
  9. Don Zewin -- $15,569