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Event #32: $1,000 Senior No-Limit Hold ‘em at the 2018 World Series of Poker (WSOP) turned out to become the biggest WSOP Seniors’ event ever, and after an exciting final table, one that saw many monster pots and surprising eliminations, Matthew Davis (cover image) won the event for $662,983! Dominating a field of 5,919 players who created a prize pool of $5,326,200, Davis reached the final table where he confronted Bill Stabler in the heads-up play enroute his victory.
Davis, who teaches statistics in Haywood, California, has a modest WSOP record, with only two previous cashes dating back to 2007 and 2009 for a total $7,459, but winning the event has just skyrocketed his earnings to a six-figure number.
Stating that he was elated beyond belief, Davis spoke about his victory. “I came and played my first WSOP event in 2007, and I managed to secure a little over a min-cash. And I was talking to my daughter afterward – she was in first or second grade – and she asked me how much I had to spend to enter the tournament, so I told her that it was a $1,500 event. So she said ‘Wow, Dad that’s kind of a big risk!’ And I was curious by what she meant by that, I mean she was only six or seven. So I asked her. And she said ‘Well Dad, you’re not that good at poker!’ “And now I have a bracelet!”
Amid the total player field, 101 survivors had reached Day 3, with all of them in the money for an assured $4,345. The event’s oldest player was 83-year old Andreas Dassopoulos (101st for $4,345).
The final table was announced after Thad Smith got eliminated in the ninth place for $59,074. Davis entered the final table with the third biggest stack of 6,010,000.
Final Table Recap
As the action began on the eight-handed final table, there were no major moves made till a set vs set situation led to the first all-in and call. On the flop , Bennett flopped a set of eights while Joseph Schulman made a set of fives. Both put their stacks in the middle and as expected, it was Schulman who hit the rail in the eighth place.
It was Bennett again who ousted the next player. When Frank Berry shoved from the hijack for 580,000, Bennett called from the button and Scott Hamilton-Hill called from the small blind. The flop opened . On this, Hamilton-Hill checked, Bennett bet 1 Million, and Hamilton-Hill folded. Berry tabled and Bennett turned over the . Bennett, who was leading with a flopped pair posed a threat to Berry who desperately needed to improve, but the turn and river did little to change the situation and Berry was busted out in seventh place.
Next up came any poker player’s nightmare. Davis raised to 260,000 from under the gun and Rachel Delatorre called from the big blind. The flop showed and Delatorre immediately pushed all her chips in and Davis snap-called. Both players tabled their cards, with Delatorre showing and Davis on ! With both players having the same hand, it seemed like a chop but Davis hit a one card flush on the rundown sending Delatorre out in sixth place.
Next up, Bill Bennett raised to 425,00 from under the gun and Davis called from the button. The flop came and Bennett announced a bet of 750,000, on which Davis called. On the turn Bennett shoved for over 6 Million. Davis snap-called barely covering his opponents stack, and both players tabled their hands. Bennett showed while Davis had . Bennett’s set of tens were trailing Davis’s flopped nut flush, and the latter won the pot when the popped up on the river, eliminating Bennett in fifth place.
Gary Friedlander who had entered the final table as the chip leader was the next to go. He moved all in for 3,375,000 from under the gun and Bill Stabler called from the big blind. Friedlander tabled and Stabler showed . The flop gave Friedlander a gutshot straight draw. On the Stabler got a pair and Friedlander who needed a three, didn’t find one on the river and bowed out in fourth place.
Down to three-handed play, Davis now started applying pressure and the only non-American player on the final table, New Zealand’s Scott Hamilton-Hill started to get short on stacks. Several hands later, Stabler raised to 525,000 from the button and Hamilton-Hill 3-bet shoved from the small blind for 1,625,000. Stabler called here, putting Hamilton-Hill at risk. Stabler showed and Hamilton-Hill tabled . Hamilton-Hill had the preflop advantage and Stabler was gasping to survive. The board ran out pairing Stabler’s nine and eliminating Hamilton-Hill’s in the process.
Heads-up, the pots kept getting bigger and Bill Stabler was losing out on his stack fast. On the final hand of the event, Stabler raised to 950,000 and Davis called. The flop came , on which Davis checked, and Stabler bet 1,500,000. Davis decided to check-raise all in and Stabler made the call. While Davis tabled for a flush draw, Stabler held for a pair of threes. The turn was and the river . Stabler, thinking he had won, wheeled around in celebration, however, his smiles disappeared when he saw that Davis had rivered a higher pair and won the bracelet!
Final Table Results (USD)
1. Matthew Davis – $662,983
2. Bill Stabler – $409,456
3. Scott Hamilton-Hill – $303,859
4. Gary Friedlander – $227,111
5. Bill Bennett – $170,973
6. Rachel Delatorre – $129,648
7. Frank Berry – $99,032
8. Joseph Schulman – $76,204
Content & image courtesy WSOP.com
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