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WSOP 2010

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Aadam Daya Wins WSOP Gold Bracelet

The winner of the $1,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em championship (Event #3) was Aadam Daya. He is a 31-year-old business analyst from Mississauga, Ontario (Canada). Daya collected a whopping $625,872 for first place. He was also awarded his first WSOP gold bracelet. Daya topped a huge field of 4,345 players and won the game’s most coveted prize. Played over Memorial Day weekend, this was one of the largest non-WSOP Main Event poker tournaments in history. In fact, only five live tournaments have ever attracted bigger turnouts.

It took five full days to play from thousands down to a single winner. Incredibly, this was Daya’s first time to cash in a WSOP tournament. He had previously cashed in a few small tournaments played in Las Vegas, but this victory was on an entirely different scale. The runner up was Deepak Bhatti, from Las Vegas, NV. Two players came close to making WSOP history in this event. Irving Rice (father) and Rich Rice (son) finished tenth and ninth, respectively – just one spot away from what would have been a WSOP first. No WSOP final table has ever included a father-son duo. All official Hold’em final tables are comprised of the top nine finishers.

The Champion – Aadam Daya

The winner of the $1,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em championship (Event #3) was Aadam Daya. He is 31-years and lives in Mississauga, Ontario (Canada).

Daya collected $625,872 for first place. He was also awarded his first WSOP gold bracelet.

Daya works as a business analyst in Toronto. He manages information technology systems for a large medical corporation.
Aadam Daya spells his first name A-A-D-A-M.

Daya was born in Toronto. His parents are from India by way of East Africa, which is where they immigrated from prior to settling down in Canada.

Daya plays poker as a hobby, he says. He does not play in many tournaments. He says he enjoys playing tournaments mostly “for fun.”
This marked Daya’s first time ever to cash at the WSOP.

At the poker table, Daya wore a dark t-shirt and black sunglasses.

Winner Quotes:

On what it means to win a WSOP gold bracelet: “It means I’ve accomplished something in poker that I’ve been trying to achieve for quite a while.”
On winning $625,872 in his first WSOP in-the-money finish: “This is going to make things a bit easier for me. But as far as changing my life it will not change me.”

On achieving the dream of winning a WSOP title: “I dreamed about it, obviously. But I did not expect anything like this.”

On balancing luck versus skill in this tournament: “I really think I got pretty lucky to get through so many players. I was fortunate and I played well, but I also got lucky at the right times.”

On his heads-up strategy against Deepak Bhatti, who ended up finishing second: “I was happy to play small pots and position against him.”
On his plans for the remainder of the WSOP: “I am sure I might play a few more events. But right now, I just want to enjoy this.”

On his immediate plans following his first WSOP victory: “I got a party to go to.”

The Final Table

The final table contained no former WSOP gold bracelet winners. This guaranteed a first-time champion.

Eight of the nine final table players were from the United States. However, the winner ended up being from Canada.

Final table participants ranged in age from 21 to 56.

The runner up was Deepak Bhatti. He is a 29-year-old poker player from Las Vegas, NV.

The third-place finisher was Gabe Costner, from Long Beach, MS. He is a stockbroker-turned-poker pro. He has been playing professionally since 2002. He has 26 major tournament cashes. This marked his second WSOP final table appearance.

The fourth-place finisher was William Mark Davis, from Mckinleyville, CA. He is a research associate. Davis cashed for the third time in a WSOP event. He holds three graduate degrees from UC-Berkley.

The fifth-place finisher was Nick Mitchell, from Webster, NY. Mitchell has previously won some major online poker tournaments. This marked his first time to cash at the WSOP.

The sixth-place finisher was Cory Brown, from Oklahoma City, who was playing in his first WSOP event ever. The 24-year-old who works in finance had the goal of “winning this gold bracelet and then retiring.” It appears he will have to keep his job, at least for now.

The seventh-place finisher was Isaac Settle, from Clovis CA. He is currently a student at Fresno State University. Settle previously left school for a few years to play poker, but wisely decided to return and finish his degree.
The eighth-place finisher was 24-year-old Dash Dudley, from Lansing, MI. He now plays poker professionally after spending most of his time as a student-athlete. His goal is “to win a gold bracelet this year.” Dudley previously won a Heartland Poker Tour championship.

The ninth-place finisher was Richard Rice, from Ft. Lauderdale, FL. He is a 56-year-old CEO. This was his first time to cash at the WSOP.

Other In-the-Money Finishers

Other former WSOP gold bracelet finishers who cashed in this event included – Men “the Master” Nguyen, Eric Baldwin, Chris Bjorin, Michael Carson, and Keven Stammen.

With this cash, his 66th, Men “the Master” Nguyen is currently ranked second on the all-time cashes list. He is nine finishes behind all-time leader Phil Hellmuth.

With this cash, his 51st, Chris Bjorin kept pace with Chau Giang and John Juanda on the all-time cashes list. They are currently tied for ninth place.
Odds and Ends

This was the sixth-largest live poker tournament in history.

The defending champion from 2009 was Travis Johnson, from North Hills, CA. He did not enter this year’s tournament.

The size of the field was so large that two starting days were necessary. Players were given the option of starting on either Saturday or Sunday. The $1,000 buy-in events will be played each weekend under the same format at this year’s WSOP.

The tournament began in grand fashion with WSOP Tournament Director Jack Effel standing tall and proud on the Pavilion Stage welcoming players to one of the first open events on this year’s schedule. 2009 WSOP Main Event champion Joe Cada was the featured guest. After welcoming players and wishing them luck, a large banner of Cada was unfurled, which was later moved into the Amazon tournament room alongside winner portraits of all former world champions.

The tournament was played over five consecutive days – which extended by default into a sixth day when the final table stretched into Thursday morning. The final table was played inside the Amazon Room, on an ESPN designated feature table. Despite the late hour, a large crowd of spectators watched most of the action. In fact, this was one of the more rowdy audiences in recent years. There was a large amount of drinking, cheering, and celebration.

The official WSOP gold bracelet ceremony takes place on the day following the winner’s victory (or some hours later when the tournament runs past midnight). The ceremony takes place inside The Pavilion, which is the expansive main tournament room hosting all noon starts this year. The ceremony begins at the conclusion of the first break of the noon tournament, usually around 2:20 pm. The national anthem of the winner’s nation is played. The entire presentation is open to public and media. Video and photography are permitted by both public and members of the media.
Daya requested that the national anthem of Canada be played at his WSOP gold bracelet ceremony. However, his ceremony will be held on Friday, June 4th.

Event History

A $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em tournament is customarily the first major event on the schedule with mass appeal. However, over the last two years, a $1,000 event has helped to launch the seven-week series. Last year, the lone $1,000 buy-in tournament was called the "Stimulus Special," aptly named in reference to concerns about the global economy at the time. While markets continue to be uncertain in many countries, there seems to be no doubt that the poker economy is continuing to thrive based on the turnout -- at least at the WSOP.

Last year’s similar tournament was the largest non-WSOP Main Event tournament in poker history. The previous record before that was set at the 2008 WSOP when the first No-Limit Hold'em competition ($1,500 buy-in Event #2) attracted 3,929 entrants.

LARGEST WSOP EVENTS IN HISTORY: Here’s a ranking of the six largest live poker tournaments in history:

8,773 players -- 2006 WSOP Main Event
6,844 players -- 2008 WSOP Main Event
6,494 players – 2009 WSOP Main Event
6,358 players -- 2007 WSOP Main Event
6,012 players -- 2009 WSOP Event 4
4,345 players -- 2010 WSOP Event 3

Tournament Play

The final hand of the tournament came when Aadam Daya was dealt Qd Qs against Deepak Bhatti’s Kh 5s. Bhatti nursed a short-stack for quite a while, but finally went out when he shoved with the weak hand and failed to top Daya’s big pocket pair. The final board showed Js 5h 4s Ac 3d, giving Daya the victory.

The final table officially lasted 10 hours and 20 minutes.

The tournament officially began on Saturday, May 29th at noon. The tournament officially ended on Thursday, June 3rd, at 12:40 am.

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