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With 187 entries, the €2,200 Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed at the 2018 World Series of Poker Europe (WSOPE) saw some tense and thrilling moments and it was eventually Hong Kong’s Yan Shing ‘Anson’ Tsang (cover image) who took down the event to win his maiden WSOP bracelet.
Tsang cruised to the finale where he defeated Ilya Bulychev heads-up to walk away with the winner’s payday of €91,730, while Bulychev had to settle for a runner-up prize of €56,684. Both players had stayed in the lead right from the beginning and while Tsang leading the way coming into Day 2, Bulychev had entered Day 3 second in chips.
“Actually, I play Hold’em, PLO and all the mixed games, but the mixed games was the first time that I played in Las Vegas. PLO and Hold’em tournaments I play quite a lot,” Tsang said, after his win.
Currently placed fourth on the Hong Kong All-time money list, with live earnings crossing $2.4 Million, Tsang wasn’t the one to consider an ICM deal after sailing to the final table and preferred to play it out. “Yes, I always play for the win. I think there is an edge for me, because some players may be very concerned about ICM.”
Who did Tsang find to be the most formidable opponent? “My countryman, Hokyiu Lee, and both the Swedish guys were very good,” he said, referring to Swedish pros Alexander Norden and Ludvig Sterner.
Tsang, who announced his plans to enter the €25,500 Super High Roller event next, added, “To be honest, you can see that the results of the Asian players are really good in the past two years. Asia has a lot of good poker players, and they start to travel around for poker tournaments. I am happy to be with them together. A lot of them are really good. Danny Tang, Michael Soyza and Pete Chen are very good and I think more bracelets are coming for the Asian players.”
35 players came back on Day 2 where 29 of them would cross the money line. After Michal Mrakes, James Chen and Ronald Keijzer made their exits empty-handed, Tomasz Gluszko found himself hitting the rail on the money bubble.
The remaining players were guaranteed a sum of €3,147. Ryan Riess (14th for €4,742), Allen Kessler (16th for €4,034), Anthony Zinno (15th for €4,034), Jan-Peter Jachtmann (19th for €3,518), Shaun Deeb (20th for €3,518) and Chris Ferguson (22nd for €3,518) were among the notables who fell out before the final table.
Ilya Bulychev (1,513,000) from the Russian federation entered the final table as the chip leader, followed by Anson Tsang (1,139,000) and Ludvig Sterner (1,133,000).
Final Table Chip Counts
1. Ilya Bulychev – 1,513,000
2. Anson Tsang – 1,139,000
3. Ludvig Sterner – 1,133,000
4. Hokyiu Lee – 995,000
5. Jason Gray 827,000
6. Alexander Norden – 747,000
7. Gisle Olsen – 701,000
8. Quan Zhou – 420,000
Final Table Recap
Action was swift on the final table and the first two eliminations were witnessed within just the first eight hands. Alexander Norden, who is a phenom in online high stakes PLO cash games, departed in eighth place after he 3-bet preflop with pocket aces and then moved all in on a king-queen-queen flop. Unfortunately for him, Ilya Bulychev called him with a flopped full house. Norden couldn’t improve and hit the rail.
Next to go was Gisle Olsen who ran his kings against Tsang’s trip fours. Tsang raised to 60,000 from the cutoff and Olsen 3-bet to 195,00 from the big blind. Tsang called and the flop came down . Here both Olsen and Tsang pushed all their chips in. Olsen tabled against Tsang’s and the board then saw the open on the turn and the on the river, ending Olsen’s run in seventh place, while Tsang collected the pot.
Hokyiu Lee was so short in chips that he was forced all in from the big blind with . Quan Zhou also bet from the dealer button and small blind Ludvig Sterner led out 149,000 when Zhou called. The came on the flop and Sterner checked to Zhou who put pressure by pushing in his stack of 25,000 in the middle. Sterner folded and Zhou tabled his hand. He held and was ahead of Lee’s bottom pair. The turn and the river kept things as they were sending Lee to the rail in sixth place.
Play slowed down then and it took another hour before Ludvig Sterner, who had gone short in stacks moved all in and at risk when he defended his big blind after a 140,000 raise by Jason Gray, who was seated under the gun. The flop brought the and Sterner bet out 130,000, while Gray retaliated by putting in 500,000 and Sterner moved all in. Gray snap-called and the players tabled their cards. Sterner tabled against Gray’s . The sealed Sterner’s fate rendering the on the river a mere courtesy.
Quan Zhou was the next to exit the final table. After Tsang’s raise to 140,000 with , Zhou called all in for 85,000 with . Gray called with the from the big blind. Gray checked the flop and Tsang bet 175,000. Zhou desperately needed running straight cards but the on the run and the on the river bricked his chances, sending him to the rail in fourth place.
Several hands later, Bulychev raised the pot from the button and Jason Gray 3-bet to 680,000 from the small blind. Bulychev moved all in and Gray called for 835,000. “Nice hand,” said Gray, and tapped the table when the cards were shown. He tabled against Bulychev’s . The board ran and Bulychev’s rivered flush relegated Gray to the rail in third place.
After losing a big pot without showdown in heads-up play Ilya Bulychev next faced a raise of 210,000 by Tsang and made the call to see the flop open . Bulychev checked and Tsang continued for 180,000. Bulchev check-raised the pot and Tsang moved all in, prompting Bulychev to make a snap-call. Bulychev held while Tsang tabled . The turn gave Tsang more outs with the nut flush draw and as his rail shouted out for a hearts to pair the board, the appeared on the river to complete Tsang’s nut flush. Bulychev had to settle for a runner-up finish as Tsang picked up his career`s first gold bracelet.
Final Table Results (EURO)
1. Anson Tsang – €91,730
2. Ilya Bulychev – €56,684
3. Jason Gray – €39,508
4. Quan Zhou – €28,100
5. Ludvig Sterner – €20,405
6. Hokyiu Lee – €15,134
7. Gisle Olsen – €11,469
8. Alexander Norden – €8,886
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Image/Content Courtesy: wsop.com