MAIDEN BRACELET FOR SAFIYA UMEROVA AT WORLD SERIES OF POKER
After playing professionally for only a year, Safiya bests a stellar field to score her biggest win yet.
Safiya Umerova (28) is clearly a singularly focused woman, admitting that having discovered the game of poker she has devoured every book on it that she can find, listened attentively to advice from other players, and taken part in as many cash games and tournaments as she can with the goal of playing professionally and ultimately becoming one of the top players out there.
All that dedication paid off this week when the Los Angeles player, who went professional only a year ago, won the $1,500 buy-in NLHE Shootout event at her first World Series of Poker to score her biggest (and only second) series cash of $264,046 and her first bracelet – only the second awarded to a woman player this year.
The event attracted a stellar field of 1,050 entrants, creating a $1.41 million prize pool, but by the last day just 12 players were left, including aces like Sam Greenwood, Vanessa Selbst, Niall Farrell and Erkut Yilmaz.
When the final table of nine was reached, Umerova was second only to Brit pro Niall Farrell in chip counts, and thats pretty much how things stayed as the finalists were whittled down to the heads up between the duo, where Farrell held 4.135 million chips against Umerovas 3,710,000.
Initially the more experienced Farrell took control and started to extend his lead, but Umerova was having none of it and staged an impressive comeback through several double ups to take the lead away from him.
After that the advantage switched between two very determined players several times before Umerova managed to hold on and turn the advantage into a victory, sending Farrell home with a runner-up reward of $163,158 – his fifth cash at this years WSOP.
The rest of the final table cashed:
Michael mixer United States $ 118,109
Yuliyan Kolev bulgaria $ 86,513
Damian Salas United States $ 64,129
Raymond Ho United States $ 48,115
Daniel McAulay United Kingdom $ 36,543
Daniel Tang United Kingdom $ 28,101
Alexander Lakhov Russia $ 21,881