From June 21 to 27, the poker tables at ARIA casino filled with action for the World Poker Tour’s Zynga Poker WPT500. There was plenty of opportunity to join with eight stating flights offered. In the aftermath, 1,932 entered for a very juicy prize pool of $ 966,000.
Navigating his way to the top was online player UK’s Ben Farrell defeating WSOP bracelet winner Nikita Luther at heads up.
This earned Farrell his first-ever live tournament major title and a large wad worth $ 155,000. In the WPT winner’s story, Farrell was ecstatic,
“It feels really good,” he says. “I’ve been working on my game mainly by talking with friends. I’m mainly an online player, so I haven’t had many results live. But I’ve had a lot of close runs, so I always knew that I’d eventually win a tournament. I just had to put in the volume and keep studying.”
Prior to his victory, Farrell cashed five times at the 2019 World Series of Poker. He reached the final table of Event 36: $3,000 No Limit Hold’em Shootout for $ 37,342.
Asians run deep
With the 2019 WSOP dragging in players in droves to Las Vegas, it was pretty much a norm to attend other events around the city. Just last week, the Mid-States Poker Tour Main Event at the Venetian drew 2,472 entries with many visiting Asians cashing in. China’s Linglin Zeng won it to make her just the second female in MSPT history to do so.
At the recently concluded Zynga Poker WPT500, Asians once again filled up a high number of the seats. Once the money was reached, several cashed however all eyes were on a couple of Indian pros namely, WPT Vietnam Main Event champion Dhaval Mudgal and WSOP bracelet winner Nikita Luther. For Mudgal, his hunt for a second title fell short in 54th place to earn him $ 2,700 while Luther staged a run that nearly gave her a first-ever WPT win.
Luther bagged up a large stack at the end of Day 1B stumbled a bit early in Day 2 however she was able to get back on track to eventually reach the final table. Though she was unable to close it out, falling just one spot shy to Farrell, she did pick up her first six figure payout of $ 109,300. Additionally, Luther improved on her previous WPT500 final table appearance at this same exact event in 2017 where she finished in 5th place.
Other Asians running deep were: Sung Joo Hyun (3rd), Ritesh Shah (8th), Yohwan Lim (17th), and Hong Zhang (21st).
Final 9 payouts
Prize pool: $ 966,000 – Buyin: $570 – Entries: 1,932 – ITM: 100
1st Ben Farrell – UK – $155,000
2nd Nikita Luther – India – $109,300
3rd Sung Joo Hyun – Korea – $75,000
4th Min Ji – UK – $55,000
5th Trey Morris – $40,000
6th Eduards Kudrjavcevs – Latvia – $30,000
7th Jakub Wojtas – Germany – $22,000
8th Ritesh Shah – India – $17,000
9th Jim Pennella – USA – $14,000