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For those who think that professional poker players have it made and their life travels straight down easy street, this year’s Caesars Indiana Main Event proved otherwise.  It became more of a contest to see who could stay fixated on the game than who had the most skill as some players ended up playing poker for 27 out a possible 35 hours. 

The format broke down like this: Players went an excruciating 16 straight hours in the first day to trim 99 players off the count of 117 that began the tournament.  Then the final 18 grinded out another 11 hours until the champion was crowned.

While there were no major stars out of the 18 to make it to the final two tables, there were some notables such as poker hottie Beth Shak and Robert Cheung.  However, neither of these players would make it much farther as both finished in the lower end of the money.  This hurt extra bad for Cheung as he was the chip leader going into the final day.

The 9 who were able to make it to the final table and their chip counts read as follows:

Seat/Player/Chips
1. Benjamin Hock  87,999
2. Wilbur Futhey   198,000
3. Dale Poynter   213,000
4.Steven Merrifield  19,000
5. Jason Mann   203,000
6. Doug Carli   52,500
7. Giovanni Marcacci  136,500
8. Michael Iacovone  55,000
9. Jerry Martin   40,000

Things kicked with Michael Iacovone busting out pretty quickly and Jerry Martin following him not soon after.  With two of the short stacks gone, attention turned to Giovanni Marcacci who was all-in against Benjamin Hock.  Marcacci’s pocket 4’s were no match for Hock’s jack pair and Giovanni left the table with $22,258.

Jerry Mann was the next person to go out when Dale Poynter’s set of 6’s bested his kings.  Hock’s name would come up again but in a bad way as he went busted out at fifth. 

Doug “Rico” Carli, who holds the record for most WSOP Circuit final table appearances, wasn’t going to extend his stay at this one much longer as his dwindling stack was put to rest by Wilbur Futhey.

Now the final three were set and here’s how their positions looked:

Player/Chips
Wilbur Futhey  544,000
Dale Poynter  341,000
Steven Merrifield  300,000   

Poynter became the aggressor out of the three as he went all-in 9 different times throughout the final leg of play.  He suffered some bad beats though and his last all-in against Merrifield would be his undoing as Merrifield paired aces against Poynter’s king-high. 

Now it was just Merrifield and Wilbur Futhey.  Futhey held the chip lead with 620,000 to 555,000.  During heads-up play, Wilbur was able to drain Steve Merrifield’s chip stack slowly.  Then, Wilbur made a straight with A, K and Merrifield couldn’t answer.

Wilbur Futhey was the new WSOP Caesars Indiana champion and $180,290 richer for his efforts.  The retired toy salesman had only won $67,143 in previous WSOP and Circuit winnings.  He nearly tripled that with this win.

Here are the full results for the final table

Place/Player/Money Earned
1. Wilbur Futhey  $180,290 
2. Steven Merrifield  $94,597 
3. Dale Poynter  $55,645 
4. Doug (Rico) Carli  $44,516 
5. Benjamin Hock  $33,387 
6. Jason Mann  $27,823 
7. Giovanni Marcacci  $22,258 
8. Jerry Martin  $16,694 
9. Michael Iacovone  $11,129