The Controversial Poker Hands at 2012 WSOP Main Event

The World Series of Poker Main Event has always been an exciting affair. Although the main event in WSOP 2012 has come to an end and the final table decided, the tournament was rife with unexpected happenings. This year, there were more than a few controversial poker hands that changed the outcome of the tournament.

Koronknai and Baumann’s Controversial Hands

This is one of the hands that has been discussed and disputed over the course of the event. Poker pundits claim that it will forever be a debatable topic due to its sheer nature of unexpectedness.

On Day 5, Andras Koronknai opted to, from the small blind, move all-in for two million after Baumann chose to open 60,000. At this time, Gavin Smith scooted from the blind. Koronknai folded his dead cards on the assumption that the game was complete. He attempted to retrieve his cards when he learned of his mistake. Although, he could retrieve one, the other he could not.

Dennis Jones, Director of Tournament, was called over, as was a floor person, to make a decision based on the explanation of the dealer. After Jones consulted with Jack Effel, Vice President of WSOP, it was decided that Koronknai would not be removed from the game but that Gaelle Baumann would receive 60,000 chips from him.


Elimination of Kevin Pollak on Queens to Queens

Actor Kevin Pollak had previously emceed the premier season of the Celebrity Poker Showdown. Although, the actor did have more than a basic knowledge on poker games, he has never, actually, set out to participate in a WSOP event. This year was his first at WSOP 2012.

As several celebrities crashed out of the tournament, Pollak continued his winning streak, which came to an abrupt halt against a hand of Kirill Rabtsov. From the big blind, Pollak opted for an all-in for his remaining 369,000 after 52,000 was raised by Rabstov. Both players had two Qs each and onlookers were certain that the hand would be a chopped pot. But, Rabstov hit two hearts over the river and Pollak was eliminated. He left the area amid applause.

Baumann’s Elimination Against Koronknai’s Hand

This year, at the WSOP, a lot of attention was drawn to the exceptional poker skills of the female players, notably Gaelle Baumann and Elisabeth Hille. Everyone expected that after seventeen years, a female player would, at last, grace the final table at WSOP 2012. After Hille crashed out with $590,442, all eyes were on Baumann.

Ironically, it was Koronknai who was playing against Baumann. From the hijack seat, Baumann opted for an all-in worth 5.2 million. Michael Esposito surrendered from the big blind after Koronknai called for the small. Baumann had A-9 while Koronknai was holding A-J. The flop fell to 3-Q-Q and the turn revealed an 8 and a K, which signaled two things – Baumann’s exit from the tournament and the players of the final table.

Critics believe that Koronknai should have been eliminated from the event on Day 5 when he mucked his hands playing against Baumann. Nevertheless, the WSOP 2012 has ensured that Gaelle Baumann will now be a formidable name in the poker industry.

The third day of the main event witnessed some good hands being played. Click here to read more about it.


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