Phillip Hui is the latest winner of a gold bracelet at the 2014 World Series of Poker. Hui topped a field of 457 players in the $3,000 buy-in Omaha High-Low event. He collected first-place prize money totaling $286,976 and his first WSOP gold bracelet.
Just as memorable as the win was the manner in which the poker pro, based in San Antonio, Texas, engineered the biggest victory of his career. To say this was the most incredible comeback of the series so far might be an understatement. Hui was low on chips at several points during the final table, no more so than when heads-up against Zachary Milchman when the Floridian had Hui outchipped by about an 18 to 1 margin. Yet Hui was able to reverse the tide and dominated the final half hour of the tournament on his way to a huge celebration with fellow Circuit grinders.
Indeed, Hui has been a steady performer on the WSOP Circuit for the past four years. The poker pro has won four gold rings, which is the ultimate achievement for the series which takes place around the country. Hui's previous wins took place at Harvey's Lake Tahoe, Cherokee (Oklahoma), Harrah's Atlantic City, and Harrah's Philadelphia. Also of note is Hui's close relationship with another gold bracelet winner, Loni Harwood, the breakout female performer of last year's WSOP.
"This is everything. This is what we play for," Hui said when asked about the significance of winning a gold bracelet. "I had a big package, but bricked the first 25 of 30 tournaments that I played. Your mind's not right when you are coming into the last week of the series. It's unreal. I feel like I'm in a movie."
Milchman, a 28-year-old poker pro from Delray Beach, Florida seemed destined for what would have been his first gold bracelet victory. However, virtually nothing went right for the player in the closing stages of the tournament, leaving the aspiring champ in an utter state of disbelief. Milchman, who won a WSOP Circuit gold ring at the annual event held at the Palm Beach Kennel Club in 2013, managed to collect a consolation prize amounting to $177,609.
This final table offered a bit of everything. Play began with Ismael Bojang, a German up and comer who had already made one final table this summer, holding a substantial chip lead. However, the chip lead changed multiple times during the eight-hour finale, none more dramatically so than Hui completely turning the tables on Milchman at the very end.
"I just never gave up. I waited for a good hand and then had a good run at the end. At one point earlier, I was [down to two big blinds]," Hui said. "I looked down and saw J-9-9-9. In that spot, you just normally go with it. But that was when we were at 11-handed. I folded and then I got the re-draw and got to see six free hands [before posting a blind again] and went back up from there." The final table featured a bracelet winner and 2004 WSOP Main Event Championship runner-up David Williams as well as a more recent gold bracelet winner, Jordan Morgan, who continues enjoying an impressive summer series. Finally, the final nine players had two talented East Coasters who have long been on the unofficial “Best Player without a Bracelet” list -- John D’Agostino and Matt Glantz. Both will have to wait a little longer for their first win, as they were eliminated relatively quickly in the finale.This $3,000 Omaha High-Low event generated a prize pool of $1,247,610. The top 54 players each earned a payday. Some of the notable players who cashed include Naoya Kihara (54th), Brandon Shack-Harris (34th), Chino Rheem (23rd), Mike Leah (19th), Justin Bonomo (18th), Melissa Burr (13th), and Don Zewin, who bubbled the final table in tenth place.Here are the final table results from the $3,000 Omaha High-Low event:1st: Phillip Hui - $286,9762nd: Zachary Milchman - $177,6093rd: Michael Bees - $118,0364th: Ismael Bojang - $87,5945th: John D’Agostino - $65,7366th: David Williams - $49,8177th: Matt Glantz - $38,0898th: Jordan Morgan - $29,3569th: Joe Mitchell - $22,793