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One woman player remains as WSOP Main Event field down to 57

When the World Series of Poker’s Main Event began play on July 7, the first of the 6,865-player field took to the tables.

On Monday, just 57 players still have dreams of taking home the top prize in the $10,000 buy-in No Limit Hold’em World Championship.

Among the group entering play on Day 7 is just one woman, Erika Moutinho of Easton, Conn. With 2.075 million in chips, she sits in 40th place, trailing chip leader Ryan Lenaghan of New Orleans, who has 12.865 million in chips.

The entire starting field included 242 female players, 3.5 percent of the total.

Moutinho hopes to match Barbara Enright’s 1995 feat of being the only woman to reach the final table (she finished fifth).

The best finishes in recent years by a woman were by Maria Ho, 38th in 2007, Tiffany Michelle, 17th in 2008 and Leo Margets, 27th in 2009.

Chip leader Lenaghan is originally from Mobile, Ala., and has been playing professional poker for roughly two years. A graduate of Louisiana State University, Lenaghan has recorded about $120,000 in World Series of Poker earning, most of which has taken place on the tournament’s Circuit events.

Ben Lamb continued his remarkable World Series of Poker run Sunday, ending Day 6 play in second place with 9.98 million in chips.

Lamb, who lives in both Las Vegas and Tulsa, Okla., took over first place in the World Series of Poker’s Player of the Year standings Sunday, based on the fact he’ll place in the top 100 finishers in the Main Event.

Lamb is enjoying one of the best runs ever experienced by a player at the tournament. He won his first-ever gold bracelet in the $10,000 buy-in Pot Limit Omaha Championship on June 24, earning $814,436. He also has second-, eighth- and 12th-place finishes and has won more than $1.3 million total.

One of Sunday’s other hot players was Sunday was Phil Collins of Las Vegas.

Collins a 26-year-old professional poker player originally from Rockford, Ill., and a graduate of the University of South Carolina, was the first player to crack 10 million in chips Sunday and held the lead several times during the day.

Collins ended the day ranked fifth with 7.24 million in the chips.

Among the players eliminated Sunday was Joseph Cheong of La Mirada, Calif., who was the last remaining member of the 2010 Main Event final table still in the running for a seat in 2011.

Cheong, who finished third a year ago and won $4.3 million, came in 114th position this year, collecting $54,851.

Other notable players eliminated Sunday were former Player of the Year Allen Cunningham, who went out in 69th and won $108,412 and Jean-Robert Bellande of Las Vegas, who became known to the nonpoker following public when he was a contestant on the reality television series “Survivor.”  Bellande placed 65th and also won $108,412.

Every player remaining in the tournament is now guaranteed to receive at least $130,997 in prize money.

By the start of play Tuesday, the field will be 27 players — three tables of nine.

Sometime in the early morning hours Wednesday, the nine-player final table will be determined with the participants returning to the Rio in November to play for the top prize of $8.7 million. Eight of the nine final players will win in excess of $1 million.

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