WSOP 2016: The Highs of the Weekend WSOP 2016: The Highs of the Weekend

Six men walked away with gold bracelets, prize money and bragging rights over the weekend as half a dozen World Series of Poker events came to a close.

Recap: Event #33: $1500 Summer Solstice No-Limit Hold’em

21 year old professional poker pro Adrian Mateos from Madrid, Spain won his first gold bracelet of this year’s Series by taking down Event #33, beating a field of 1,840 players to take the win.

He has now won two gold bracelets on two continents—in 2013 he took down the WSOP Europe Main Event Championship in France.

Mateos collected $409,171 in prize money after defeating runner up Koray Aldemir from Austria.

“My goal is to win,” said Mateos. “I want to win whenever I play. However, sometimes that doesn’t happen. If I can’t win, then I want to learn something and improve as a player. That can be just as important for me.”

Poker pro Chris Moorman, who recent signed up as a Team 888poker Ambassador, finished in the money in 13th place.

Recap: Event #37: $1500 Pot-Limit Omaha

Maryland amateur poker player, Jiaqi Xu who originally hails from China, dominated the final table in Event #37 to take $212,128 and the gold bracelet.

This is the first bracelet for Xu who now has eight WSOP cashes over his career. Jeffrey Duvall from the UK finished as runner up winning $131,073 in prize money. This is only the second ever cash for the Brit.

“The cards fell my way at the right time,” Xu said. “I knew that if I could get deep I would have a chance and things went right for me.”

A notable in the money finish was Daniel Negreanu who busted out in 34th place.

Recap: Event #38: $3000 6-Handed Limit Hold’em

Rafael Lebron from Puyallup Washington owned the field as he won Event #38 with the top prize of $169,337. Georgios Zismopoulos from Greece finished as runner up.

It’s been quite the week for Lebron who finished second in Event #30 Six Handed PLO just four days prior.

Despite starting the final day with the lowest chip count, Lebron fought fiercely against formidable opponents, including WSOP bracelet winner and Limit Hold’em specialist Matt Matros and last year’s Main Event winner Joe McKeehen.

When asked about the stiff competition, Lebron said: “I wasn’t the best player at the final table at all. I might have been the worst. But, I got lucky. This was my day. I only play about once a year … I’ll come back again next year, as long as I haven’t spent all the money.”

Other notable in-the-money finishers include Jason Somerville who busted out in 17th place and Ian Johns in 14th who has already won two gold bracelets this Series.

Event #39: $10,000 6-Handed No-Limit Hold’em Championship

Aussie poker pro Martin Kozlov took down Event #39, collecting $665,709 in prize money—winning the first gold bracelet of his career in what was an electrifying final table. The runner up finish went to Davidi Kitai from Brussels, Belgium.

On winning, Kozlov said: “I usually just play cash games. But sometimes I also play a few tournaments especially when I am feeling it. This year at the series, I’ve been feeling it. Winning this tournament is very satisfying. It’s tough. It’s prestigious. It’s some of the best players out there.”

Kozlov faced tough competition against a table of gold bracelet winners: Davidi Kitai (3 bracelets), Justin Bonomo (1 bracelet), Chris Ferguson (5 bracelets) and Nick Petrangelo (1 bracelet).

Ex Full Tilt Exec Chris Ferguson drew much attention as he sat at the final table (ultimately finishing fourth). Although he had supporters on the rail, boos and jeering were also heard, particularly from Daniel Levy who did not stay quiet on the matter.

“I think it’s very important that the community sends [Ferguson] a message and he understands that he’s not welcome here. I don’t want any kind of violence, but he should know people think he’s a piece of shit and he shouldn’t be here. He’s not welcome,” he stated afterwards according to an article on

Event #40: $2500 Mixed Triple Draw Lowball (Limit)

Phoenix poker pro and co-founder of notable poker training site DeucesCracked Christopher Vitch collected the top prize of $136,854 in Event #40 along with the first gold bracelet of his career. Runner up went to Siegfried Stockinger from Austria who collected $84,572. This rounds out a great WSOP for Vitch who finished in 3rd place earlier in the series in Event #8.

“I’m a cash game player. I don’t play that many tournaments….I used to come out and play the cash games here. I’d rarely play the tournaments. But then when I came out last year, I got bitten by the bug. To me, it’s not about the money. I looked at the World Series and I wanted to win a bracelet. That was my focus.”

Busting out in 26th place, Jason Mercier fell short once again of winning his third bracelet of the Series; however, he is currently leading the “Player of the Year” points race.

Recap: Event #42: $3000 Shootout No-Limit Hold’em

Phillip McAllister, a 22 year old poker pro from Winchester in the UK won his first WSOP bracelet and $267,720 in prize money as he won a tough battle to claim the Event #42 title. Kyle Montgomery finished as runner up taking home $165,450.

On winning McAllister said: “It’s about the money. But the bracelet’s amazing, as well. This is pretty amazing, the more I think about it.”

This is the seventh time McAllister has cashed at the WSOP, but up until now they had all been min-cashes. However, 2016 got off to a good start for the Brit who finished third in the Caribbean Adventure Championship.

Finishing in fourth place was Maria Ho, the well known poker pro who is currently moonlighting as the GPL’s LA Sunset Team Manager. This is the 37th time Ho has cashed at the WSOP giving her more than $1.2 million in WSOP earnings after collecting $87,487 for her latest deep run.

Finishing today

Event #43: $10,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo Split-8 or Better Championship finishes up today with Justin Bonomo leading the final twelve. He is currently sitting pretty with 1,287,000 chips. George Danzer sits not too far behind with 1,049,000.