It’s taken 25-year-old Maryland poker pro Dan Kelly four years to achieve his second World Series of Poker bracelet, but he pulled it off over the weekend in event 43, a $1,500 buy-in Limit Hold’Em competition that attracted a field of 657 and raised a prize pool of $886,950.
Although Kelly has played in many a major tournament since winning his first bracelet and $1.3 million in 2010, a second piece of jewellery has eluded him despite 22 WSOP cashes and five final tables.
That all changed when he survived a star-filled entry field, a hard-nosed final table that included five-time bracelet winners Jeff Lisandro and David Chiu, and a heads up against California pro Yegor Tsurikov to claim the main prize of $195,167.
It was no mean feat, given a field that included names like Terrence Chan, Jeff Schulmnan, Daniel Negreanu, Eric Buchman, Humberto Brenes, Barry Greenstein, Marcel Luske, Rep Porter and Greg Mueller.
Brandon Shack-Harris, who is playing a remarkable WSOP this year, added to his first and second finishes in previous events with a third in this contest, earning $78,335 and opening the way for the Kelly vs. Tsurikov heads up.
Right from the start, Kelly leveraged his significant chip lead to wage an aggressive and skilled war on his less-experienced opponent, but Tsurikov rarely backed off, making for a watchable finale.
In the end, Kelly’s growing chip stack and unrelenting aggression sent Tsurikov home with the runner up prize of $120,501, with the other pay-outs at the 300-hand long final table looking like this:
Sean Berrios $57,536
Jesse Katz $42,857
David Chiu $32,338
Jeff Lisandro $24,683
Bryce Landier $19,051
Ron Burke $14,856