03 March 2020 (Hammond, Ind.) - Shiva Dudani won his second World Series of Poker Circuit ring Monday night after he took down the $1,700 Main Event at the Horseshoe Hammond WSOP Circuit, earning $258,078.

The tournament started Friday, February 28, and attracted 989 players. The total prizepool was $1,498,335 and the top 149 players made the money. Not only did Dudani score his largest career WSOP cash of $258,078 for the win, and he also earns a seat at the 2020 Global Casino Championship.

"I'm so excited, it's so nice to win a tournament, especially as big as this one, and in Chicago, it means a lot to me." Dudani, who has resided in Chicago for the last eight years, said about the victory.

Dudani, who described himself as a PLO specialist to WSOP officials, spoke about the difference between playing PLO and tournaments.

"It's more adjusting to the table, here. I had aggressive players to start on my left, so I thought I should play tight to start. Then I had a big chip lead, and I wanted to play as aggressively as I could. In tournaments, the momentum keeps changing, things keep changing."

Dudani contend in  a heads-up battle against a dangerous Casey Carroll, who finished third in this event here last October, and the stacks were deep and nearly even at the start.

"I thought it would take a long time. He's a good player. I thought it was going to be a very long match, so I thought, 'Let's get comfortable,' and try to give myself the best shot to win." Dudani stuck to his game plan, and though it was a grind, he eventually wore down the talented Michigan native Carroll to notch the victory.

Final Day Action 

Seventeen players returned to the felt for Day 3, and both of the Day 1 chip leaders found themselves out of the tournament immediately, as Day 1a chip leader David Jackson (17th - $13,862) and Day 1b chip leader Giedrius Bagdonas (16th - $13,862) were both unable to rally short stacks at the start of the day. William Webb (15th - $16,925), two-time ring winner Jake Bazeley (14th - $16,925) and twelve-time ring winner Josh Reichard (13th - $16,925) all busted in quick succession shortly afterward. 

Gregory Wilson (12th - $20,876) was coolered by Firas Sadou to bust next, then a short-stacked Tom Bouziden (11th - $20,876) was unable to win a flip against Day 2 chip leader Evan Bethyo to fall one spot shy of the final table.


Final Table Action

Voytek Glab started the final at the unofficial final table as the short stack, and found no traction as his jacks were cracked by the ace-nine of Hussain Sajwani to fall in tenth. Nicola Ditrapani would follow Glab out the door a few minutes later in ninth, then two hours would pass before the next elimination. Sajwani had dwindled down to fifteen big blinds when he ripped it in with eights, only to run into Dudani and his kings to bust.

Firas Sadou would exit in seventh when his pair of threes couldn't overcome the pocket sevens of [B]Patrick Steele[/B]. Next to exit was the start of Day 2 chip leader Bethyo.

Bethyo lost a massive pot with top pair against the flopped set of Bryan Skreens to get short, and despite a few double-ups, he succumbed in sixth after he lost with king-jack to the ace-ten of Dudani.

Sachin Bhargava, who never seemed to get any real traction at the final table, did manage to find a few ladders before falling in fifth place.

Steele already had an excellent start to his year, taking down the Mid States Poker Tour (MSPT) Cleveland Main Event in January for $124,461 and a place in the MSPT's Hall of Fame. He nearly added a WSOP Circuit Main Event ring to his coffers, holding the chip lead at various times at the final table, but ultimately fell in fourth after his ace-jack couldn't overcome Dudani's ace-queen in a battle of the blinds.

In October's WSOP Circuit Hammond Main Event, Skreens was able to earn a ninth-place finish, and his second consecutive appearance at the Main Event final table went significantly further in this iteration, but he ultimately fell in third when his last fifteen big blinds went in the middle with ace-eight. Carroll called with king-queen, and both a king and a queen on the flop to stop Skreens two spots shy of his first WSOP Circuit ring.


Marathon Heads-Up Match

Dudani started heads-up play with a slight chip lead over Carroll, but the duo would trade that lead several times over the next few hours. Dudani would spike a set on Carroll to jump to a 2:1 lead, then Carroll would take a few pots down uncontested. Dudani reclaimed his 2:1 lead when he got paid off with a flush, then Carroll clawed his way back to nearly even again. The blinds began to catch up with the pair, however, and in Level 35 (150,000/300,000/300,000), the two found themselves locked in the last hand of the tournament.

Dudani called a raise from Carroll on the button with jack-ten, and found trip jacks on the flop. Carroll, who held ace-queen, also hit the flop with a queen. All the money went in on the turn, and Carroll was unable to find another queen on the river. Carroll, who finished third in this tournament last year, was down to just four big blinds at one point with seven players left. He was able to nearly complete a legendary comeback story, but ultimately had to settle for second place and a $159,494 payday.

Full results
Live Updates for the event

Here are the Main Event final table results:

1: Shiva Dudani - $258,078
2: Casey Carroll - $159,494
3: Bryan Skreens - $119,616
4: Patrick Steele - $90,543
5: Sachin Bhargava - $69,197
6: Evan Bethyo - $53,394
7: Firas Sadou - $41,602
8: Hussain Sajwani - $32,723
9: Nicola Ditrapani - $26,010

This concludes the WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond series, but tune into the Ameristar St. Charles Circuit Series