Council Bluffs, Iowa (April 20, 2015) — History was made on Monday at
Horseshoe Casino in Council Bluffs, Iowa when Michelle Chin became the
first-ever female champion of a World Series of Poker Circuit Main
Event. Chin bested a star-studded final table to take home her first
gold ring and $88,126 in first-place prize money. Chin's victory also
earns her a seat in the National Championship which will occur in
Cherokee, North Carolina July 29-31.
Chin, a native of Taiwan, made her journey to the States 12 years ago.
She currently resides in Wichita, Kansas where she was at one time a
restaurant owner. Despite currently being between jobs, Chin wishes to
be classified as a recreational player rather than a professional.
Chin burst onto the tournament poker scene earlier this year, scoring
her first recorded cash with a victory in the WSOP Circuit Choctaw
Ladies event. Just a few months later she managed to cement her spot in
poker history becoming the Circuit's first female champion. Chin
admitted to primarily playing cash games and said she decided to play
the Main Event to try something new. Chin came into the final table as
the commanding chip leader and made a habit of consistently applying
pressure to her opponents. She retained her chip lead as the final four
players returned for Day 3 and eliminated each of her three remaining
competitors in 45 short minutes.
“It feels really great," Chin said after her victory. "This is
probably at most the 10th tournament I’ve ever played in my life. It’s
just awesome to make history.”
Following her victory, Chin was surprised and excited to learn of her
status as the Circuit's first female champion in its 11-year history.
“It means a lot to me [to be the Circuit’s first female Main Event
champion]," She said. "There aren’t too many women in the poker
community. We like to see more and more women play because it is a fun
game. No matter what sex you are you should be able to enjoy it. It
means a lot to me. I hope I encourage a lot of other girls to come out
The first casualty of the day came just ten minutes into play.
Harvey's Lake Tahoe Circuit Main Event champion Jesse Wilke came into
the day looking for his second Main Event title of the season, only to
fall at Chin's hands in fourth place for $29,317. Circuit regular and
ring winner Michael Sanders was the next player to go, failing to hold
after a preflop all in against Chin. Sanders collected $39,624 in prize
money. This left Mike Lang to battle Chin during heads up play. Lang had
a significant chip disadvantage and, despite a valiant effort, was
unable to gain any ground against Chin's domination. On the final hand,
Chin's pocket sevens rivered a set against Lang's pair to seal the deal.
The Council Bluffs Main Event drew a grand total of 235 entries over
two starting flights. This allowed for a total prize pool of $352,500.
The top 24 players in the field made the money with a min-cash worth
$3,254. Some of the notable names to make the money include Nathan
Bjerno (24th), two-time defending champion Blair Hinkle (20th), all-time
ring leader Alex Masek (17th), 2011 WSOP bracelet winner Eric Rodawig
(14th), and two-time ring winner Chris Karambinis (11th).
Final table results:
1st: Michelle Chin - $88,126
2nd: Mike Lang - $54,468
3rd: Michael Sanders - $39,642
4th: Jesse Wilke - $29,317
5th: Greg Jennings - $22,021
6th: Michael Jensen - $16,797
7th: Tom Moss - $13,007
8th: Gregory Beaufait - $10,223
9th: Richard Fitzgerald - $8,153
Full results are available on WSOP.com.