NV (June 4, 2011) -- The
first of two Seven-Card Stud (High) tournaments concluded today with the $1,500
buy-in Seven-Card Stud Championship, held at the 2011 World Series of
The new poker
champion is Eugene Katchalov, from New York, NY. He earned $122,909 in
prize money. Katchalov was also presented with the ultimate symbol of
achievement in the game of poker -- the WSOP gold bracelet. This marked
his first WSOP victory.
recaps of the action, final results and photos visit our event reporting
section by clicking here.
a 30-year-old poker pro, who is originally from the Ukraine. He
immigrated to the U.S. at age ten. Katchalov previously worked as a day
trader before taking up poker full time.
He enjoyed a
remarkable year at last year's WSOP. Despite not quite getting a victory,
he was the only player to make final table appearances in three $10,000+
buy-in events during the same year. In fact, that feat currently stands
as a WSOP record. Accordingly, Katchalov's victory this year was
highly-earned and well-deserved.
The runner up
was Alessio Isaia. He is a 24-year-old professional poker player from
Cuneo, Italy. He burst upon the poker scene only three months ago by
winning one of the largest poker tournaments ever held in his home
country. Isaia won a major event held in Venice, which included one of
the longest heads-up matches in poker tournament history. Isaia’s match
lasted more than eight hours. Isaia hoped to become the fifth Italian
player in history to win a WSOP gold bracelet, but came up short by one spot.
the tournament in impressive fashion. He made two dramatic
comebacks. The first momentum shift took place when play was
12-handed. Katchalov went on a rush and moved into contention as the
final table began. Then, he overcame close to a 3-1 chip disadvantage
heads-up and ultimately earned the victory.
finisher was a familiar face to those who watch the WSOP on television.
Last year’s gold bracelet winner Eric Buchman, who also finished fourth in the
2009 WSOP Main Event, took third place in his best Stud finish ever.
This was the
fifth official tournament event on this year’s WSOP schedule. The
tournament attracted 357 entries.
WSOP.com for the complete official report of EVENT
EVENT #5 CHAMPION – EUGENE KATCHALOV
The 2011 World Series of Poker $1,500
buy-in Seven-Card Stud champion is Eugene Katchalov, from New York, NY.
Katchalov is a 30-year-old
professional poker player.
Katchalov goes by the first name,
“Eugene.” However, his real first name
Katchalov was born in Kiev,
Ukraine. He immigrated to the United
States at age ten. Katchalov departed
his native country while in the midst of the 1991 revolution and dissolution of
the former Soviet Union.
Katchalov and his mother initially
settled in Brooklyn, NY.
Prior to playing poker for a living,
Katchalov was a day trader.
Katchalov visited Las Vegas for the
first time six years ago. He enjoyed a
significant cash in one of his first poker tournaments and decided to focus
more seriously on the game afterwards.
Katchalov’s skills gradually improved over time. In 2007, he enjoyed an enormous breakthrough
year in tournament poker, when he won $2.5 million.
Katchalov had a huge WSOP in
2010. But he did not win a gold
bracelet. He became the first player in
history to make final table appearances in three $10,000+ buy-in tournaments at
the WSOP. Katchalov had 3rd,
6th, and 7th place finishes, earning more than $500,000
in the process.
Katchalov plays in both tournaments
and high-stakes cash games.
Katchalov noted that he is close to
several other top poker pros. He wanted
to thank one player in particular – Nick Schulman who was very helpful in
giving tournament advice in recent years.
Katchalov finished 39th in
the 2009 WSOP Main Event.
Katchalov collected $122,909 for first
place with this victory. He was also
awarded his first WSOP gold bracelet.
According to official records, Katchalov
now has 1 win, 6 final table appearances, and 19 in-the-money finishes at the
Katchalov currently has $963,275 in
WSOP winnings. Katchalov’s worldwide tournament earnings now total about $6
Katchalov is to be regarded as a
professional poker player, since he works and plays poker full time successfully.
On his self-assessment as a Seven-Card
Stud player: “It is not one of my best
games. But I do have experience at it
because I play in a lot of (live action) Mixed Games. That’s where my Seven-Card Stud experience
comes from. I feel comfortable with the
game, in general.
On the competition he faced: “This was a tough final table. I did not think the tournament field was that
tough. But as we got closer and closer,
you see the game change as the field gets tougher.”
On what it takes to win a three-day
event: “It’s very, very tough. To sit here for three straight days and not
break down is not easy. I put in a lot
of work, and I am glad to see it pay off.”
On making three final tables in big
events at last year’s WSOP: “I think
anytime you play in a big event against many good players, you are always
learning something. I think I am picking
up new things all the time. I am sure
that helped me in this tournament, as well.”
On winning his first WSOP gold
bracelet: “I think I made 5 or 6 final
tables at the World Series over the years.
I made three final tables last year and was really, really close to
winning one. I came in this year really
excited to play. Now, I can’t describe
how happy I am to get that monkey off my back.
It’s also great to win a gold bracelet early in the World Series. It gives me confidence. So now, I am ready to go!”
THE FINAL TABLE
The final table was comprised eight
players. All Seven-Card Stud final
tables officially begin when the last table becomes eight-handed.
The final table contained two former
gold bracelet winners – Vasilis Lazarou and Eric Buchman.
The final table was comprised of
players from the following three countries – Great Britain, Italy and the
The runner up was Alessio Isaia.
He is a 24-year-old professional poker player from Cuneo, Italy. He burst
upon the poker scene only three months ago by winning one of the largest poker
tournaments ever held in his home country. Isaia won a major event held
in Venice, which included one of the longest heads-up matches in poker
tournament history. Isaia’s match lasted more than eight hours.
Isaia hoped to become the fifth Italian player in history to win a WSOP gold
bracelet, but came up short by one spot.
Second place paid $75,911.
The third-place finisher was Eric
Buchman, from Hewlett, NY. He finished
fourth in the 2009 WSOP Main Event and also earned his first WSOP title last
year, playing in the $2,000 buy-in Limit Hold’em tournament.
The fourth-place finisher was Jonathan
Spinks, from Exeter, UK.
The fifth-place finisher was Dennis
Parker, from Oswego, IL.
The sixth-place finisher was Kai
Landry, from New Orleans, LA.
The seventh-place finisher was Ali
Eslami, from Los Angeles, CA.
The eighth-place finisher was two-time
gold bracelet winner Vasilis Lazarou, from Las Vegas, NV. His two wins took place in 1990 and 1997.
The final table began at 4:15 pm
PST. The final table ended at 10:45 pm
PST. Hence, the final table lasted about
OTHER IN-THE-MONEY FINISHERS
The top 40 finishers collected prize
The defending champion was Richard
Ashby. He did not cash.
Only one former WSOP gold bracelet winner
cashed in this event -- in addition to those who made the final table.
Former gold bracelet winner Brett
Jungblut (2005 Omaha High-Low Split) finished 25th.
Doug “Rico” Carli finished in 16th
place. He is the all-time leader in WSOP
Circuit cashes, with 50 (2005 to present).
Five of the 40 paid positions were
comprised of non-American players.
results are to be included in the WSOP official records. Results are also to be included in the 2011
WSOP “Player of the Year” race.
ODDS AND ENDS
is the 897th gold bracelet awarded 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 16 gold
bracelets awarded to date at WSOP Europe (2007-2010).
tournament was played over three consecutive days.
The official WSOP gold bracelet
ceremony takes place on the day following the winner’s victory (or some hours
later when the tournament end very late).
The ceremony takes place inside The Pavilion, which is the expansive
main tournament room host to all noon starts this year. The ceremony begins at the conclusion of the first
break of the noon tournament. The
ceremony usually starts 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 is permitted by both
public and members of the media.
Eugene Katchalov’s gold bracelet
ceremony is set to take place on Sunday, June 5th. The Ukrainian National Anthem will be played
in honor of his victory.
Stud first debuted at the 1973 WSOP. Walter
Clyde “Puggy” Pearson was the first-ever Seven-Card Stud champion.
players in WSOP history own two gold bracelets in Seven-Card Stud. They are Johnny Moss, Bones Berland, Marty
Sigel, Ted Forrest, Mel Judah, Rod Pardey, Sr. and Men 'the Master' Nguyen.
Cobb and Men “the Master” Nguyen are the only players in WSOP history who won
three gold bracelets in Seven-Card Stud.
former Seven-Card Stud gold bracelet winners include two deceased poker legends
-- Stu Ungar and Chip Reese.
ago, Seven-Card Stud was the most popular game in casinos on the East Coast,
primarily in big poker markets including Atlantic City and Connecticut. In fact, Seven-Card Stud games outnumbered Hold'em
games several times over. Some East
Coast casinos did not offer Hold'em, since Seven-Card Stud was the primary game
of choice. But everything in changed in
2003, most crediting (or blaming) the cosmic shift on Chris Moneymaker's WSOP
victory, which instantly created millions of new players who became curious
about No-Limit Hold'em. Seven-Card stud
has been steadily declining in popularity ever since. However, it remains popular enough to merit
inclusion on the WSOP schedule. Its
close cousin - Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split, a.k.a. Eight-or-Better, is
actually more popular now as a tournament game.
It appears headed for Mixed Game formats, rather than multiple
stand-alone events based on steadily-declining participation.
year’s tournament drew 408 entries. This
year’s figure of 357 represents the first significant decline of any WSOP
tournament so far this year.
The tournament officially began on
Thursday, June 2nd, at 5 pm.
The tournament officially ended on Saturday, June 4th, at
2011 WSOP STATISTICS
Through the conclusion of Event #5, the
2011 WSOP has attracted 3,225 entries. $10,218,700
in prize money has been awarded to winners, so far.
the conclusion of this tournament, the nationality of gold bracelet winners has
the conclusion of this tournament, the national origin (birthplace) of winners
the conclusion of this event, the home-states of winners has been:
the conclusion of this tournament, the breakdown of professional poker players
to semi-pros and amateurs who won gold bracelets is as follows:
Players (3): Jake Cody, Cheech Barbaro,
(1): Sean R. Drake
(1): Sam Barnhart
the first five tournaments, there have been no repeat WSOP champions.
Note: Various categories and statistics will be
updated with each gold bracelet event as they are completed.