Going into the final table as the chip leader in the £1,500 No-Limit Hold'em event at last October’s World Series of Poker
-Europe, Adam Junglen had one thing on his mind. He wanted to win an “Under 21” WSOP bracelet, a feat thus far only accomplished by Annette Obrestad. Still too young to play live in the U.S., Junglen was brimming with confidence as he came in to play that day, but a series of horrific beats at the final table sent him home all too soon, in sixth place. Now that his 21st birthday has passed, Junglen will finally get a chance to play the WSOP on U.S. soil this summer. Though it may be his rookie year at the series, this high-stakes tournament specialist is already a veteran when it comes to taking down huge fields.
Adam Junglen was born on October 19, 1987 and was first introduced to poker at age 15. Junglen was at a friend’s house installing some computer equipment when a small home tournament came together. Junglen used $5 of the $15 he was paid for his computer work to buy in and ended up winning the single-table tournament for about $35. Fascinated with the game, he ran out and loaded up on poker texts the next day. By age 16 he was positing on poker forums and befriending a number of successful online players including Jimmy “gobboboy” Fricke, Ray “exitonly4” Coburn and Shaun Deeb. After graduating from high school, Junglen knew he didn’t want to pursue a traditional four-year college career. In the year that followed, he obtained a computer networking certification and began an internship as a network technician at a data center but quickly learned that he didn’t want to spend his life in a cubicle. Luckily for him, he had built a solid online bankroll by multi-tabling SNGs and was already earning a good living playing poker.
Now playing full-time, Junglen transitioned from sit-‘n’-goes to NLHE tournaments. His game adapted well to MTTs and he found even greater success. In the summer of 2007 his online results absolutely exploded—on June 25th he finished third in the Full Tilt Poker $1K Monday for $33,875, and then on July 8th he came in second in the PokerStars $109 Rebuy for nearly $23,000. Only one week later on July 15th, he’d capture the granddaddy of all online tournaments, the PokerStars Sunday Million, defeating a 7,054-strong field to earn over $198,000.
Though Junglen was still under 21, he was already gaining live poker experience by playing at Indian casinos like Turning Stone in Verona, NY where the legal age was 18, and at major tournaments outside the United States. Junglen traveled to the Aussie Millions in 2007, cashing the Main Event in 55th place, and headed up to Canada where he made the final table of the Pot-Limit hold’em event at the Johnny Chan Poker Classic, finishing fifth. He also became a familiar face on the European Poker Tour, where he made the final table of the 2007 Barcelona Poker Open, finishing sixth for over $268,000. One year later, following his final-table finish at the WSOP-Europe, he headed out to Las Vegas and only minutes after turning 21, bought into his first World Poker Tour event, the Festa al Lago Classic at Bellagio. Though Junglen didn’t cash in that event, he did end up at his first stateside final table only a week later. Only a few blocks down the Strip, Junglen finished sixth in the $10,000 Main Event of the Caesar’s Palace Classic, earning a $147,818 payday.
Only a month ago, Junglen packed his bags and said goodbye to his Ohio hometown and drove 2,200 miles to Las Vegas, where he moved in with fellow online MTT grinder Shaun Deeb. The roommates live in Panorama Towers, a shiny condo building that has come to be known as a virtual “college dorm” for young, successful poker pros. Junglen can count David Williams, J.C. Alvarado, Antonio Esfandiari, and Jimmy Fricke among his neighbors.
Outside of poker, Junglen enjoys movies, spending time with friends, exercise, and the odd video game session. He’s looking forward to playing as many events as he can at the World Series of Poker this summer.
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