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WSOP 2010

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Peter Gelencser wins WSOP Gold Bracelet in Event 7

By Nolan Dalla on 04-Jun-2010

2010 World Series of Poker Presented by Jack Link’s Beef Jerky
Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino
Las Vegas, Nevada
Official Report
Event #7
Limit Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw Lowball
Buy-In: $2,500
Number of Entries: 291
Total Net Prize Pool: $669,300
Number of Places Paid: 30
First Place Prize: $180,730
June 1-3, 2010

Tournament Headlines

Peter Gelencser Wins First WSOP Gold Bracelet

22-Year-Old Hungarian Collects $180,730 in Prize Money

Gelencser Becomes Second Hungarian Gold Bracelet Winner in History After Peter Tarply Won in 2009

2010 WSOP Hosts Largest Deuce-to-Seven Poker Event in History

Is Lowball the Game of the Future? Attendance Increases 16 Percent Over 2009

Overview

The biggest Deuce-to-Seven Lowball poker tournament in history was won by Peter Gelencser. He won poker’s most coveted prize -- the WSOP gold bracelet.

Gelencser is a 22-year-old professional poker player from Budapest, Hungary. This was third time to cash in a WSOP tournament. Gelencser collected a first-place payout totaling $180,730. He becomes only the second player from Hungary ever to win a WSOP gold bracelet. The first to win was Peter Tarply, who was victorious in the Six-Handed No-Limit Hold’em Shootout held last year.

Deuce-to-Seven Lowball is an odd game. The goal in Lowball is to get bad cards and make bad
hands. Aces, kings, queens, and pairs are the Lowball player’s worst nightmare.

Triple Draw Lowball was first introduced at the WSOP in 2002. John Juanda won the first Triple Draw tournament. In 2003, Men 'the Master' Nguyen won the event. The game took a three-year hiatus from 2004-2006 and returned in 2007, with a $1,000 buy-in event. Hence, this is only the sixth Triple-Draw Lowball event ever played at the WSOP.

This game is rarely played anywhere except at the very highest levels. It’s rarely spread inside public card rooms -- either as cash games or tournaments. In fact, the WSOP is one of the few places where this poker variant is offered.

Among those who cashed were former WSOP gold bracelet winners Pat Poels, Ted Forrest, Eli Elezra, Greg Mueller, Hoyt Corkins, and David Singer.

The runner up was Raphael Zimmerman, from Missoula, MT.

The Champion – Peter Gelencser

The $2,500 buy-in Limit Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw Lowball champion (Event #7) is Peter Gelencser, from Budapest, Hungary.

Gelencser is 22-years-old. He was born in Budapest.

Gelencser speaks Hungarian and English.

Gelencser first saw the WSOP being shown on television in Hungary. He became fascinated with poker and began playing with friends at the age of 16.

Gelencser is a professional poker player. He has been playing full time since the age of 18 – concentrating mainly in online poker.

Gelencser has already accumulated more than $500,000 in career tournament winnings. His big breakthrough came two years ago at the Spring Poker Festival, where he won the European Challenge Main Event.

Gelencser’s first cash was in an online tournament. His first live tournament cash was in March 2007. Many European casinos allow players age 18 and up to play.

Gelencser collected $180,730 for first place. He was presented with his first WSOP gold bracelet.

According to official records, Gelencser now has one win, two final table appearances, and three cashes at the WSOP. His career WSOP earnings now total $214,535.

Gelencser becomes the second gold bracelet winner from Hungary in WSOP history. Peter Traply was the first winner, last year. Gelencser stated there is a bit of a rivalry between many of the Hungarian players, although they are very close as friends and tend to support each other at major tournaments.

Gelencser’s favorite form of poker is Mixed Games. He prefers playing games other than Hold’em.

Winner Quotes

On what winning the WSOP gold bracelet means: “I’m shocked….My dream is to win a gold bracelet. This means everything to a poker player. It is the best accomplishment in poker.”

The Final Table

The final table consisted of only one former WSOP gold bracelet winner – four-time champ David Chiu.

Three different nations were represented at the final table: Hungary, Japan, and the United States.

The final table began seven-handed.

Final table participants ranged in age from 22 to 54. The youngest player ended up winning.
The runner up was Raphael Zimmerman. He is a professional poker player from Missoula, MT. This was Zimmerman’s fourth first time to cash in a WSOP tournament. He made it to the final table of this same event last year, finishing sixth. Zimmerman is something of a renaissance man. He is an avid poet and novelist. His writings can be seen at: www.angelrafael.livejournal.com.

The third-place finisher was Don McNamara, from Menlo Park, CA. This was his third time to cash at the WSOP.

The fourth-place finisher was four-time WSOP gold bracelet winner David Chiu, from Las Vegas, NV. This was his second cash at this year’s WSOP. He now has 50 in-the-money finishes, which ranks ninth on the all-time list.

The fifth-place finisher was Jameson Painter, from Goodfield, IL. Unfortunately, he did not receive the ultimate birthday present. Although this was his 27th birthday, Painter had to settle for $34,843. This marked Painter’s first WSOP cash in Las Vegas. He had previously made a final table on the WSOP Circuit.

The sixth-place finisher was Shunjiro “Shun” Uchida, from Las Vegas, NV. He is originally from Japan. This was his sixth time to cash at the WSOP.

The seventh-place finisher was Tad Jurgens, from Phoenix, AZ. He is a poker pro who has now cashed 14 times at the WSOP. His wife Nichoel Peppe (Jurgens) was one of the top female finishers in last year’s WSOP Main Event.

The final table officially began at 5:30 pm and ended at 12:50 am. The final table clocked in at 6 hours, 20 minutes.

Other In-the-Money Finishers

The top 30 finishers collected prize money. Aside from those who made the final table, former WSOP gold bracelet finishers who cashed in this event included – Farzad Bonyadi, Eli Elezra, Greg Mueller, Patrick Poels, and David Singer.

Odds and Ends

This is the 837th gold bracelet event in World Series of Poker history. Note: This figure includes every official WSOP event played, including tournaments during the early years when there were no actual gold bracelets awarded. It also includes the 11 gold bracelets awarded at WSOP Europe (to date).

The final table was played on the ESPN Main Stage. This was the first non-televised event this year on the Main Stage. The set was used for the $50,000 buy-in Poker Players Championship, which ended a few days earlier. Despite plenty of open seating, spectator interest in the event was scarce, due largely to the Draw Lowball format being relatively difficult to follow, if sitting in the audience.

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.

Gelencser requested that the national anthem of Hungary be played at his WSOP gold bracelet ceremony.

WSOP Lowball Records

Poker Hall of Fame inductee Billy Baxter holds every conceivable record in the Lowball game category. He has dominated this form of poker in a manner that is unprecedented for any player in any game. Perhaps only poker legend Bill Boyd, who enjoyed similar domination in Five-Card Draw poker (which is no longer spread at the WSOP) can arguably rival Baxter’s complete mastery of a single game. Some would also suggest Phil Hellmuth’s 11-gold bracelets confirms a similar level of mastery. But Baxter is clearly in a category of his own when it comes to Lowball poker.

All of Billy Baxter’s seven WSOP gold bracelets were won playing various forms of Lowball.
Billy Baxter holds 16 WSOP cashes in Lowball events, the most of any player in this form of poker. To give some perspective of Baxter’s excellence, the current second-place leaders in Lowball career cashes are Bobby Baldwin and “Oklahoma Johnny” Hale, each with 9.

Event History

Deuce-to-Seven Lowball is rarely played anywhere except at the very highest levels. It’s rarely spread inside public card rooms -- either as cash games or tournaments. In fact, the WSOP is one of the few places where this poker variant is offered.

Deuce-to-Seven Draw Triple Draw Lowball means the worst, or lowest ranked, hand wins the pot. The very best possible 2-7 lowball hand is 2-3-4-5-7 of mixed suits. An ace counts as a high card. Flushes and straights count against the player. While a wheel (A-2-3-4-5) is the perfect hand in standard lowball, in Deuce-to-Seven it is usually a losing hand since the straight counts against the player. Players may draw up to three times to make their hand.

There is some difference of opinion as to where and when this game originated. Since the 1930s, variations of lowball have been spread throughout California and Nevada. According to poker theorist David Sklansky, Limit 'Double-Draw' Lowball was first spread at the (now defunct) Vegas World during the early 1980s. Others cited a game called “Ten-Handed Triple-Draw Lowball” as the forbearer of Triple Draw, which was played at 'Amarillo Slim's' Super Bowl of Poker tournaments in Reno and Lake Tahoe during the period 1979 through 1984. Since ten-handed poker could only accommodate perhaps three or four players at most due to the number of cards needed to complete a hand, reducing the number of cards (to five) enabled more players to sit in the game.

The most convincing theory about the origin of Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw Lowball comes from Doc Jennings, who claims to have spread a five-card variant of the game in and around Fort Smith, AR, during the late 1980s. However, Berry Johnston claims to have first played the Triple Draw in Oklahoma during the 1970s. One thing is clear: When Mississippi legalized casino gambling in 1991, Doc Jennings took Triple-Draw Lowball to the Hollywood Casino in Tunica, which eventually became a cash game offered regularly inside the card room. This was the first time the game was officially sanctioned inside a licensed casino. Players who gravitated to this game over the years included Keith Lehr, Berry Johnston, Robert Williamson III (all former gold bracelet winners), and others.

Triple Draw was first introduced at the WSOP in 2002. John Juanda won the first Triple Draw tournament. In 2003, Men 'the Master' Nguyen won the event. The game took a three-year hiatus from 2004-2006 and returned in 2007, with a $1,000 buy-in event. Hence, this is only the sixth Triple-Draw Lowball event ever played at the WSOP.

Last year's event attracted 257 entries. Entries increased by 13 percent to 291 players. This was the largest Limit Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw Lowball tournament in poker history.

Tournament Play

The tournament was played over three consecutive days, from June 1-3, 2010.

The final hand of the tournament came when Gelencser’s 9-7-4-3-2 (a 9-7 low) topped Zimmerman’s 8-6-5-3-6. Zimmerman bricked on the last draw, catching an ugly six, which made a pair – a bad thing in Lowball.

Gelencser was cheered on to victory by several Hungarian supporters. The Main Stage was empty, except for the Hungarian contingent who were rewarded for their commitment.

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