Excitement is mounting at the approach of this year’s World Series of Poker Main Event, due to be held in Las Vegas between October 30th and November 1st – as you’d expect from a tournament with a top prize of a staggering $8 million dollars and at least $1 million for each of the runners-up.

The prize money’s reached these height because, in keeping with the huge numbers attending this year’s record-breaking WSOP, no less than 6,737 entered the $10,000 buy-in. Main Event.

After a long and hard 7 days’ play in the summer the field was thinned down to the nine men who will meet at the end of October and try to win poker’s biggest prize. Here are the finalists.

Cliff Josephy
51 year old Josephy may be the oldest player but he’s also the chip leader with 74.6 million. He’s also got form in the Main Event having cashed in in both 2008 and 2015.

Qui Nguyen
Although he has the second highest number of chips with 67.925 million, Nguyen’s  career winnings to date are just $52,986 and his previous best-ever was coming 54th in a 2009 $1,500 No Limit Hold’em event.

Gordon Vayo
Third up is this 27-year-old San Franciscan who brings 49.375 million chips to the final. It’s his first Main Event but it could be the culmination of a very good year for him.

Kenny Hallaert
It’s Hallaert’s second year in a row at the final table and he comes into it with 43.325 million chips. His biggest previous success has been winning $210,962 at EPT Deauville five years ago.

Michael Ruane
A real novice, Ruane’s career winnings in WSOP events only amount to $24,438. But, going into the final with 31.6 million chips, he’s in a reasonably strong position.

Vojtech Ruzicka
If he comes out on top Ruzicka will make WSOP history by being the first ever Czech to win the Main Event. With career winnings of over $1.1 million and 27.3 million chips he’s certainly a strong contender.

Griffin Benger
One of two 888Poker qualifiers in the Main Event and boasting 26.175 million chips, Benger has already won one $1 million prize at the Shark Tank session in London in 2014.

Jerry Wong
New Yorker Wong has 10,175 million chips and is another player used to winning the big prizes. To date his live poker winnings amount to $1,317,539 and his biggest single success came when he took home $725,000 in the 2013 PCA.

Fernando Pons
The Main Event’s second poker888 qualifier is a long shot to win due both to his inexperience –  his biggest live tournament cash prize has been just $4,059 – and the fact that he’s taking just 6.15 million chips into the final.

As to who’s going to claim the $8 million first prize, Josephy must be favourite thanks to his chip advantage but don’t write off other big hitters like Ruzicka, Vayo and Benger.  But we’ll just have to wait till November 1st to know for sure.