Nick Schulman and Phil Ivey Cement Their Legend Status in 2024 WSOP History

2024 World Series of Poker - 2024 WSOP
World Series of Poker – 2024 WSOP – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

Nearly one third of the 99-entry strong 2024 World Series of Poker live tournaments has concluded at the Horseshoe and Paris Casino in Las Vegas. The latest batch of WSOP gold bracelet winners includes two of the biggest names there are in Nick Schulman and Phil Ivey, the latter of which brought a ten year draught to an end in order to claim his 11th victory.

2024 WSOP Latest Winners

USA Rules in Gladiators of Poker

Stephen Winters at 2024 WSOP
Stephen Winters – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

One of the bargain tournaments of the series certain to attract a ton of entries throughout various starting days was Event #20: Gladiators of Poker. With a price tag of just $365, a total of 20,647 entries boosted the prize pool all the way to $5,079,162. Some 757 players cashed for at least $1,040 and reaching the top 100 was sweetened with a payday of at least $3,200.

Jacky Wong and Fangxiad Zhang cashed for $3,740 each while Japan’s Yoshinori Funamaya made the pay jump to $4,410 for 86th place. Indian poker pro Gaurav Sood made it even further to collect $7,520 for the efforts while fellow countryman Sinha Gunisha cashed for $11,090 in 39th place. Lian Siqi from China was the best-placed Asian contender with 20th place for $16,770 with WSOP bracelet winners Men “The Master” Nguyen and Tamas Lendvai out next.

With the departure of Italy’s Mario Lopez in 10th place for $32,680, the final nine all represented the United States and made sure the bracelet stays on home soil. Simon Britton finished as the runner-up for $253,300 while Stephen Winters joined the winner’s circle and claimed a huge ROI with the top prize of $401,210.

Nick Schulman Wins Fifth WSOP Bracelet

Nick Schulman at 2024 WSOP
Nick Schulman – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

An entirely different player field emerged in the third High Roller contest of the series so far, Event #26: $25,000 High Roller No-Limit Hold’em (8-Handed). It was a decent turnout with 318 entries, which generated $7,473,000 in prize money of which the top 48 finishers collected at least $50,637 for their efforts.

Plenty of stars locked horns and cashed in this tournament and three players from China cashed: Zhiyuan Xu (40th for $50,637), Chongxian Yang ($14th for $75,801) and $25k Fantasy Draft pick Yingui Li (7th for $202,574).

None other than poker commentator and tournament crusher extraordinaire Nick Schulman took down his fifth WSOP bracelet in this high-stakes contest. At the start of the final table, he flipped with queens against the ace-king of Noel Rodriguez in a duel of the two chip leaders. Rodriguez was left with just two blinds but somehow survived while Schulman used his big stack to perfection.

Shaun Deeb (8th for $153,302) and Ben Heath (5th for $376,762) were among the big names to bust. The UK’s Dean Lyall fell in third place for $760,083 and Rodriguez laddered all the way to second for $1,111,897 while there was no stopping to Schulman. The top prize of $1,667,842 was his biggest WSOP cash and first bracelet in the Cadillac of poker, as the previous four victories were all in mixed game variants.

Tomoki Matsuda Reaches Final Table, Michael Christ Wins Maiden Bracelet

Michael Christ at 2024 WSOP
Michael Christ – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

With five cards instead of four, Event #27: $1,500 Big O drew a field of 1,555 entries for a prize pool of $2,075,925. The min-cash was $3,002 but four players chopped two min-cashes to ensure 236 participants ended up in the money. WSOP bracelet winner Renji Mao was among those to earn $3,002, as was Billy “The Croc” Argyros.

Tomoki Matsuda at 2024 WSOP
Tomoki Matsuda – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

Only one other player from Asia cashed in the event from there on but Japan’s Tomoki Matsuda made it all the way to the final table, in which he finished in seventh place for $43,681. Poker legend Sammy Farha had been eliminated just prior to that in 11th place for $20,129 while Michael Christ dominated from the top of the leaderboard.

Christ ended up as the winner for $306,884 for his first WSOP bracelet after defeating fellow American Matthew Beinner in heads-up, the latter of which took home $204,601.

Guofeng Wang and Haiyang Yang Fall Short of Victory

Evan Benton at 2024 WSOP
Evan Benton – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

There is definitely something to be said about the rise in popularity of poker in China, and the number of those visiting Las Vegas to compete for a WSOP bracelet has been steadily increasing throughout the last few years. Plenty of Chinese card sharks have come close to a win during the 2024 WSOP already with two of them reaching the final table in Event #28: $1,500 Freezeout.

Out of a field of 2,317 entries, 348 spots earned a share of the $3,095,865 prize pool with a min-cash worth $3,004. Jianfeng Sun, Hui Wang and Yutaka Yoshida were among those to cash for that amount, as was American / Vietnamese Duy Ho who frequently travels the Asian circuits. John Corr from Australia reached the top 100 and cashed for $4,464, as did fellow Aussie Ryan Otto.

Guofeng Wang at 2024 WSOP
Guofeng Wang – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

Hon Cheong “Ivan” Lee cashed for $5,018 while Taiwan’s Zong Chi He earned the pay jump to $5,708 in 78th place, which was also reserved for Yun Choi and Xiaotong Yu. Abhinav Iyer and Yu Jung Lo bowed out for $6,570 while Guoliang Wei hit the rail in 54th place for $7,649, only a few spots earlier than 17-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth (48th for $9,007).

Haiyang Yang at 2024 WSOP
Haiyang Yang – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

Xuming Qi and Renli Liu reached the top 40 to cash for $10,727 and Japan’s Ruiko Mamiya was the best woman in the field in 12th place for $24,094. Guofeng Wang in sixth place ($84,175) and Haiyang Yang in fourth ($149,145) came a few spots shy of the first Asian bracelet of this summer. WPT champion Balakrishna Patur finished as the runner-up for $274,972 while Evan Benton topped it all for the first bracelet and $412,484.

Ten Year Wait Ends as Phil Ivey Finally Wins Bracelet Number 11

Phil Ivey at 2024 WSOP
Phil Ivey – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

It was a small but elite field as one can expect in a WSOP $10,000 Championship Event and 149 players determined the winner in the Limit 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw variant. They had to go an unscheduled fourth day with three contenders remaining and ultimately, one of the all-time greats came out as the winner a few hours ago.

After ten years with ten WSOP bracelets to his name, Phil Ivey has captured number 11 after defeating Danny Wong and Jason Mercier. The win was worth $347,440 and he now sits in a lone second place on the all-time leaderboard, only chasing Hellmuth’s 17 triumphs. Mercier was denied his seventh title and he finished in third for $151,412 while Wong earned a runner-up prize of $225,827.

Motoyoshi Okamura at 2024 WSOP
Motoyoshi Okamura – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

The day prior, Japanese duo Motoyoshi Okamura and Naoya Kihara fell in 17th and 15th place respectively for $21,652 each to be denied a shot at a possible second bracelet for the time being. The likes of Steve Zolotow, Justin Saliba, and Philip Sternheimer also busted with defending champion Benny Glaser bowing out in fourth place for $104,825. But all that is just a minor footnote for this event, as Ivey has returned to winning days.

Canada’s Alen Bakovic Adds WSOP Bracelet to His Collection

Alen Bakovic at 2024 WSOP
Alen Bakovic- Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

When you combine the two most popular poker variants and slap a low price tag along with a WSOP gold bracelet up for grabs, it comes as no surprise that a large field of 3,351 entries emerged in Event #30: $600 Mixed NLHE / PLO. The $1,709,010 prize pool was distributed among 503 players with at least $1,201 awarded.

Yun Choi added another cash for the series albeit for the minimum and the same applied for Quan Zhou as well as Jeff Lisandro and Kartik Ved. Shifeng Zhang earned $3,473 for 56th place while a F Ye Zhang bowed out in 31st place for $7,629. Once the field combined to one table, China’s Jianqiang Yu was the last Asian player in contention and became the next casualty for a score worth $19,371.

Five Americans were aiming to secure the WSOP gold bracelet but came up short of that feat. Italy’s Sergio Benso (fourth for $75,518) and Latvia’s Olegs Buiko (third for $101,682) added international flair. Brian Keith Etheridge finished as the runner-up and Alen Bakovic, a Canadian with roots in Bosnia Herzegovina, added a WSOP gold bracelet to his WSOP Circuit ring for a career-best result of $207,064.

Akinobu Maeda Finishes Third As Nicholas Seward Captures Gold

Nicholas Seward at 2024 WSOP
Nicholas Seward – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

Within two tournament days, a field of 1,230 entries in Event #31: $3,000 6-Handed NLHE was whittled down to the final six with the biggest slice of the $3,284,100 prize pool still up for grabs. Long gone were payouts such as three-way chop of the $6,015 with four eliminations on the money bubble.

Some Asia-Pacific players who cashed were Alex Lynskey, Min Zhang, Kazuhiro Shirasawa, Jinho “YellOw” Hong, Peter Cross, and Sangwon Ko as they all finished outside of the top 100 spots. Yu-Chung “Nevan” Chang and Linglin Zeng both earned $6,568 while China’s Gang Zhao was the first with the pay jump to $6,977 in 83rd place.

Taiwan’s Justin Chi Jen Chu bowed out on the final six tables and collected $15,273, soon to be followed by big names such as Kenny Hallaert and Maria Ho. On the final four tables, Sung Joo Hyun and Chuanshu Chen both earned $23,071 for their efforts while Indian player Kavish Chouhan bowed out in 17th place for $29,216 soon after the three-table redraw.

Akinobu Maeda at 2024 WSOP
Akinobu Maeda – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

Colin Robinson, Sonny Franco, Ognyan Dimov and Anuj Agarwal missed the final day, which was set with the elimination of Onur Unsal in seventh place for $65,003. David Coleman was leading the way but a series of unsuccessful all-in showdowns sent the American High Roller out in fourth for $168,448. Japan’s Akinobu Maeda was the next casualty in $238,886 to once again narrowly miss a bracelet for Asia during the ongoing 2024 WSOP.

Ukraine’s Konstantyn Holskyi recovered from a mere two big blinds to reach the heads-up stage and was two cards away from an overwhelming lead against Nicholas Seward. However, lady luck was on Seward’s side, who earned his first bracelet and a massive $516,135 payday. Holskyi had to settle for $344,092, nearly ten times as much as his reported live scores on The Hendon Mob so far.

Repeat Victory for Richard Ashby; Fourth Place for MengQi Chen

Richard Ashby at 2024 WSOP
Richard Ashby – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

Three cards down, four cards up. Seven Card Stud is a poker variant that can rarely be found anymore outside of the WSOP and the bargain buy-in edition in Event #32: $1,500 Seven Card Stud drew 406 entries for a prize pool of $542,010. The top 61 finishers earned at least $3,037 with Adam Friedman and Arthur Morris first to head to the payout desk. Fellow $25k Challenge draftee Yingui Li from China also collected the minimum soon after, as did Hong Kong’s Edward Yam.

Kuen Wai “Jeffrey” Lo and Kazuhiko Yotsushika both earned $3,648 after exiting just before and after the three table redraw. The WSOP bracelet winners Owais Ahmed, Chris Wallace and David Prociak bowed out before the final nine bagged up for the night with one more Asian hope in the mix.

Hal Rotholz at 2024 WSOP
Hal Rotholz – Photo by WSOP / Pokernews

Hal Rotholz, who has been frequenting Asian live poker stops in the last few years, was the second casualty on the final table for $10,343 while two-time bracelet winner Brandon Shack-Harris exited in fifth place for $25,458. The four largest stacks at the start were left and China’s MengQi Chen had to settle for $35,880 in fourth place. Michael Noori then bowed out in third for $51,626, leaving two Brits to battle for gold.

Adam Owen pulled into a commanding lead without having Richard “Chufty” Ashby at risk of elimination but the latter battled back. Ashby had won this very same tournament in 2010 already and doubled his tally to deny Owen in second place ($75,805), claiming a top prize of $75,805.

The 2024 WSOP has already produced plenty of big name winners with nearly one third of the highly-sought after bracelets awarded. Who will be next to pose for the winner shot and which Asian card shark will finally break the duck this year?

Links: 2024 WSOP News, 2024 WSOP Live Updates

Complete Guide to Attending the 2024 World Series of Poker

*Article by Christian Zetzsche

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Tricia David

Tricia David has long experience as a recreational poker player and has been covering poker events since 2010 for numerous outfits in Asia. She spent one year working part time with Poker Portal Asia then became editor and lead writer for all event coverage of the Philippine Poker Tour (PPT). Under the PPT, she overlooked content for their website, and produced live updates on all their events. In addition, she served as the live and online events website content writer for the Asian Poker Tour. Currently, she does live events reporting in Asia for online news site Somuchpoker and is also one of their news contributors.

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