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wsopc.jpgA strange event occurred at the final table of the first preliminary event of the World Series of Poker Circuit Event in Atlantic City last week when Lesley S. Thornburg, who held the chip lead at the time, was disqualified for bad behavior that persisted after several warnings from the tournament officials.

Thornburg had been a nuisance right from the start of day 1, as Nolan Dalla, WSOP Media Director, explained, saying that Thornburg had been conducting “a ceaseless display of of loud comments and baiting tactics lasting several hours.” His bad behavior had warranted him two warnings on day 1, but his unsportsmanlike conduct continued unabated on day 2. His conduct only got worse when he took the chip lead after a series of lucky wins. Thornburg was on the brink of elimination, but doubled up when his A-7 hit a 7 to defeat A-Q. Two hands later his pocket fours defeated pocket sevens when a four landed on the flop, and Thornburg eliminated Edward Sullivan from the tournament while taking the chip lead. Tournament offcials warned Thornburg several times to stack his chips properly, which he refused to do. His bad behaviorsoon grew beyond intolerable when he would haphazardly push his chips into the pot, creating a mess of confusion.

It was at this point that Thornburg was disqualified, as stated in Nolan Dalla’s report, “Fed up with the annoying and confusing antics, officials announced Thornburg’s immediate disqualification. Lesley Thornburg, a general contractor from Richmond, Va., earned $19,026 in prize money.”

Frank Panetta, a 76-year old retired real estate developer from Brick, New Jersey, would wind up as the champion, earning $76,104 for his first-place finish.

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