Two days ago, 354 players registered for Event #19: $2,500 Limit Hold'em / Six Handed. Today, the final twelve players of that field returned to battle for a World Series of Poker bracelet. It was a back-and-forth day, but in the end it was British-player Darren Woods who emerged victorious to claim the $213,431 first-place prize.
Day 3 saw an eclectic mix of players return for their shot at WSOP glory. Among them was the only bracelet winner left in the field, Matt Matros; online superstar Richard “nutsinho” Lyndaker; and last year’s 107th-place Main Event finished, Matthew Schreiber. Unfortunately, those players were among first half of the day’s eliminations, and ultimately missed out on the final table.
First Six Eliminations
By the time we reached the final table, six players remained including Kim Nguyen, only the third woman to make a final table here at the 2011 WSOP. She was joined by a very familiar face in Russian pro Alexander Kuzmin, who took down the World Poker Tour Southern Championship in Biloxi, Mississippi back in January for $575,969. Rounding out the final table was Woods, Gabriel Nassif, Andrey Zaichenko, and Samuel Golbuff.
It didn’t take long before we had our first final-table elimination when Nassif’s failed to improve against the of Golbuff as the board ran out . The Parisian pro finished in sixth place, and received $27,720 for his efforts.
It took a long time before the next elimination, but it was bound to happen as the blinds just got higher and higher. With the blinds at 8,000/15,000, a short-stacked Zaichenko got the remainder of his chips in the middle preflop with against Woods' . The board ran , and Zaichenko was eliminated from the tournament in fifth place, taking home $39,317.
The next player to go was Kuzmin in fourth place ($57,236), whose stack slowly dwindled and was eventually gobbled up by both Woods and Nguyen, who ended up chopping Kuzmin’s final hand. Following the Russian out the door was Golbuff, who also grew shortstacked. He was eliminated in third place for $85,616, leaving Nguyen (1.5 million) to do battle against Woods (1.15 million) in heads-up play.
The Amazon Room was abuzz with excitement as the possibility of a woman taking down a WSOP Event was essentially a 50/50 proposition. Not since Vanessa Selbst took down the $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha tournament at the 2008 WSOP has a woman won an open event. Ironically, that event was number #19, the same event number assigned to this Event #19 $2,500 Limit Hold’em/Six-Handed.
Woods started the heads-up match with a bang, seizing momentum early and vaulting into the chip lead. From there, he never looked back as he patiently picked his spots and collected pot after pot. After about an hour and a half of heads-up play, the final hand developed when Nguyen raised on the button, Woods re-raised, Nguyen got the rest of her short stack in the middle, and Woods made the call.
Nguyen was in great shape to double, and the flop kept her in the lead. The on the turn was clean, and all signs pointed towards a double-up until the spiked on the river. Just like that, Nguyen was eliminated as the runner up, an accomplishment worth $131,900.
$2,500 Limit Hold'em / Six Handed Final Table Results
Congratulations to Darren Woods on becoming the latest WSOP Champion and third Brit to win a bracelet in 2011. That does it for our coverage from Event #19: $2,500 Limit Hold'em / Six Handed, but there are plenty of events to follow. Be sure to stay tuned to our Live Reporting section for all the updates, live, from the 2011 World Series of Poker.