The 53rd annual World Series Of Poker (WSOP) is in full swing. The first bracelet of the world’s most prestigious festival was awarded today in Event #1: $500 Casino Employees Event No-Limit Hold’em that got the annual series off to a flying start, drawing in an impressive 832 entries and generating a whopping $349,440. The event turned out to be a historic one as it was Katie Kopp who shipped it for a career-best $65,168 and become the first woman to win the traditional series-opener tourney.
- Entries: 832
- Prizepool: $349,440
- Places Paid: 125
- Min Cash: $805
Kopp’s run was a roller coaster ride as she was a short-stack for much of the final table. Down to 4-handed play, she held the shortest stack of 1.5 Million but soon began to rise and make her way back to the top. With a tremendous support from her mother Patty and her rail, she showed some bold moves and busted the last three players from the event to win her maiden WSOP bracelet.
Kopp first eliminated the start-of-Day 2 chip leader Shaun Colquhoun and then went to knock out Brandon West to enter the heads-up with Wyatt Frost, where she began as a favourite with a massive 5:1 chip lead. The heads-up lasted less than an hour, with Kopp dominating all the way and eventually winning the coveted title to win her career-first gold bracelet and a massive $65,168.
The final hand of the heads-up saw Frost (Ac 9s) move all-in for 7.5 Million, and Kopp snap-called with Ad Qs. The board ran out Kh 5s 5h 4c 8s, giving the coveted title and pot to Kopp.
Interestingly, Kopp who finished third in this event in 2018, was the first person to get busted from this tourney on Day 1. However, she did not give up and re-entered, which paid out handsomely – she became the first female poker player to win this traditional series-opener. How sweet! Isn’t?
Talking about the historic win and her family, Kopp said, “The feeling is so surreal being here with my mom,” she said. “We travel and deal together. My whole family plays poker. My grandpa taught us. My brother and sister both have rings, and even my nine and 10-year-olds know how to play.”
“My mom has been on her feet all day. She’s railed me, standing on her feet the whole time. My mom loves poker. This is so exciting for her. I mean me and my mom; my mom is my best friend”, she added
The top 125 players were paid out in this $500 buy-in tournament with Thomas Kubin becoming the first player to finish in the money. Day 2 of the event saw 82 runners returning for their shot at WSOP glory and grand prizes. Some notable to fall out on Day 2 just before the final table included the likes of Alfonso Dominguez (10th for $3,794), Kelli Phillips (12th for $3,043), Charles Nguyen (13th for $3,043), Kenny Hallaert (15th for $2,483), and Joseph Phillips (17th for $2,483).
Final Table Results (USD)
- Katie Kopp – $65,168
- Wyatt Frost – $40,273
- Brandon West – $28,356
- Shaun Colquhoun – $20,275
- Joe Chang – $14,725
- Vikram Vijay – $10,865
- Gonzalo Gonzalez – $8,147
- Arturo Jimenez – $6,210
- Kyle Dempsey – $4,813
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