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Steve Sung Defeats Phil Galfond to Claim WSOP $25,000 Six-Handed Title and $1.2 Million

  • Brett CollsonBrett CollsonRob KirschenRob Kirschen
Steve Sung Defeats Phil Galfond to Claim WSOP $25,000 Six-Handed Title and $1.2 Million 0001

Two new bracelets winners were crowned on Day 33 of the 2013 World Series of Poker. Steve Sung won Event #52: $25,000 No-Limit Hold'em (Six Handed), and Kristen Bicknell won her first gold bracelet, besting a field of 954 in Event #51: $10,000 Ladies No-Limit Hold'em Championship.

Two events started play on Sunday, including one of the most prestigious events at the WSOP, the $50,000 buy-in Poker Players' Championship. Sunday also saw the start of Event #54: $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em, and players in players in Event #53: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em returned for the second day of competition.

Event #51: $10,000 Ladies No-Limit Hold'em Championship

After Saturday’s Day 2, nine players remained in the Ladies Event, and they returned on Sunday for the official final table. When play was completed, Kristen Bicknell from Ontario, Canada was the last player standing. She earns her first WSOP bracelet and $173,922 for her victory.


PlaceNamePrize Money
1Kristen Bicknell$173,922
2Leanne Haas$107,616
3Julie Monsacre$67,331
4Shana Matthews$48,871
5Connie Bruce$36,078
6Eleanor Gudger$27,045
7Amanda Baker$20,572
8Chris Priday$15,858
9Cindy Kerslake$12,389

It took only 17 hands until the first elimination. Cindy Kerslake’s {j-Diamonds}{j-Spades} were outdrawn by Amanda Baker’s {10-Hearts}{10-Spades}. It was the second time pocket jacks had proven unlucky for Kerslake. On the final hand of Day 2, she held pocket aces, and was outflopped by Bicknell’s pocket jacks. The hand left Kerslake short-stacked heading into the final table.

The remaining eight women played for over two hours before the next elimination. Chris Priday, who was the chip leader in this event after Day 1 and was second in chips after Day 2, lost a flip against Connie Bruce to bust out in eighth place. Amanda Baker then finished in seventh. Baker was one of the most experienced players at this final table, with a WSOP Circuit ring on her resume. She was eliminated on a roller-coaster hand. Baker was all-in preflop with {a-Diamonds}{10-Spades} against Bicknell’s {a-Hearts}{q-Clubs}. The flop gave Baker the lead, but the turn gave it back to Bicknell, and the river was brick, busting Baker out of the tournament.

The next casualty was Eleanor Gudger, who also lost a flip. Connie Bruce followed her to the exit on the 100th hand of the day, and then Shana Matthews was eliminated in fourth. Matthews entered the final table as chip leader, but after moving all-in with a pair and a straight draw, she was called by Leanne Haas’ pocket kings and failed to improve. Julie Monsacre was eliminated just three hands later, leaving Bicknell and Haas to play heads-up for the bracelet.

Heads-up play lasted only seven hands, but took almost 40 minutes. The players had nearly even stacks after Monsacre was eliminated in third, but Bicknell quickly established a lead. In the climactic hand, both players flopped top pair, but Bicknell had Haas outkicked.

Kristen Bicknell won $173,922 and her first career WSOP bracelet for her victory. Her win marks the 10th bracelet for Canada at this year’s World Series (11, including Daniel Negreanu’s win in the WSOP Asia Pacific Main Event). Before 2013, Canadian players had only won 34 bracelets in the entire history of the Series, but after Sunday, that number is up to 45.

Kristen Bicknell
Kristen Bicknell

Event #52: $25,000 No-Limit Hold'em (Six Handed)

The prestigious $25,000 buy-in six-max No-Limit Hold’em event started on Friday with 175 players. After two days of play, only 18 remained, and they returned on Sunday to play the final three tables and determine a winner.

In the end, Steve Sung had outlasted a talented final table, including one of the best players in the world (Phil Galfond), to secure a seven-figure payday and his second WSOP bracelet.


PlaceNamePrize Money
1Steve Sung$1,205,324
2Phil Galfond$744,841
3Dani Stern$509,473
4Stephen Chidwick$353,780
5Max Lehmanski$249,291
6Richard Lyndaker$353,780

This event attracted a star-studded field. Among those who survived the first two days were Christian Harder, Marvin Rettenmaier, David “Bakes” Baker, David Benyamine, Jeff Gross, and Shannon Shorr. In this tough field, none of them made the official final table. Once Shorr busted in seventh place, the official final table was set with Max Lehmanski, Dani Stern, Richard Lyndaker, Stephen Chidwick, Phil Galfond, and Steve Sung.

Lyndacker was the first player to bust from the final table. He open-shoved for about eight big blinds with {a-Clubs}{8-Clubs}, and lost to Sung’s {a-Spades}{q-Hearts}. Lehmanski followed him to the rail about half an hour later, as his pocket sixes ran into Galfond’s pocket aces.

Stephen Chidwick then busted in fourth place. He was in good shape when the money went in preflop, holding pocket sixes against Dani Stern’s pocket fives. The river dealt Chidwick a cruel blow, however, bringing a five that gave Stern a winning set.

After a lengthy three-handed battle, Dani Stern was eliminated in third place, and Galfond and Sung were left to fight for the bracelet. The two WSOP bracelet winners engaged in a lengthy heads-up battle, and Galfond was unable to overcome a couple tough spots during the match. After Sung took a five-to-one chip advantage, Galfond got the last of his chips in preflop with {k-Spades}{q-Hearts} against Sung's {j-Clubs}{10-Diamonds}.

The {k-Diamonds}{10-Hearts}{j-Hearts} flop gave Sung bottom two pair, but Galfond had top pair, an open-ended straight draw, and a backdoor flush draw. The {6-Clubs} on the turn extinguished all hopes of a backdoor flush for Galfond, and it was all over when the {5-Hearts} completed the board.

Sung, who won the largest $1,000 no-limit hold'em event ever at the WSOP in 2009, added more than $1.2 million to his bankroll while collecting his second WSOP bracelet.

Event #53: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em

After two full days of play, Jonathan Cohen leads the remaining 25 players with 1,378,000 in chips. On Saturday, 2,816 players started Event #53. All but 320 busted out on Day 1, and only 297 get paid, so 23 players who started Day 2 left empty handed.

A number of well-known players returned for Day 2. Most of them were eliminated and will not return for Monday’s Day 3, including Thor Hansen (62nd place), Eugene Todd (81st), Can Kim Hua (119th), Barry Greenstein (128th), Chance Kornuth (134th), Ivan Demidov (149th), and Isaac Baron (158th).

Although Cohen has the largest stack, his victory is far from a forgone conclusion because there are a number of very talented players in the chasing pack. Established pros such as Mike Watson (707,000), David Vamplew (697,000), Tyron Krost (596,000) and Humberto Brenes (286,000) are joined by the big stacks Derek Dempsey (920,000), Sebastian Pauli (897,000) and Sean Wallace (844,000), while two female players in the shape of Kitty Kuo (308,000) and Loni Harwood (301,000) will look to become to first woman other than Vanessa Selbst to win an open event since Annette Obrestad won the WSOP Europe Main Event in 2007.

Play will resume at 1 p.m on Monday and will continue until one man (or woman) has won every chip in play. Tune into the PokerNews Live Reporting page on Monday afternoon to find out.

Event #54: $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em

A total of 2,200 players entered Sunday’s $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em event. By the end of the day, only 239 remained, led by Barry Hutter with 211,000.

Hutter will be joined by the regally named Marcus Aurelius (150,800), and Warwick Mirzikinian (111,700) as the only players to top the 100,000-chip mark, while last year's Main Event runner-up Jesse James Sylvia (83,000) is threatening with a late charge at the end of the night.

The day saw several professionals try to navigate the minefield known as Day 1 of these low buy-in events, with Olivier Busquet, Athanasios Polychronopoulos, Victor Ramdin, Tony Dunst, Matt Stout, Randy Lew, and Bryan Micon just a few of the pros eliminated before the money bubble burst.

The action will resume Monday at 1 p.m. local time, with the remaining 239 players returning to the Amazon Room to continue the chase for a gold bracelet. Check back with PokerNews then to follow all of the action live from the floor of the Rio, as the field plays ten levels in hopes of reaching the final table.

Event #55: The $50,000 Poker Players' Championship

The prestigious $50,000 Poker Players Championship kicked off in the Amazon Room Sunday evening. The world's best mixed games players hit the felt looking to join Chip Reese, Freddy Deeb, David Bach, Brian Rast, Scotty Nguyen and two-time winner Michael Mizrachi as champion of the event. By the time play had ended on Monday morning, only four of the 123 players had busted, making for a lot of play for the remainder of the tournament. Registration is still open until the beginning of play on Monday, and we're expecting a few more top pros to throw their hats in the ring.

For a full recap of the first day, check out the PokerNews Live Reporting blog.

On Tap

On Day 34 of the 2013 World Series of Poker, five events will be in action. One bracelet will be awarded as Event #53: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em will play down to a winner. Two more events return for Day 2. Event #54: $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em continues with 239 players, and Barry Hutter leads the field coming into Day 2 of Event #55: The $50,000 Poker Players' Championship.

Two events will also get underway for Day 1: Event #56: $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em and Event #57: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em.

Video of the Day

We see so many sets of headphones around the fields of poker tournaments, we set out to discover what is under those earbuds.

Be sure to follow our Live Reporting page for continuing coverage of every event at the 2013 World Series of Poker, and follow PokerNews on Twitter for up-to-the-minute news.

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