Thursday, June 11, 2015 7:24 PM Local Time
Ben Zamani Wins First Gold Bracelet and $460,640 in Event #20 of the World Series of Poker
Zamani avenges a runner-up finish from less than one week ago, vaults into Player of the Year contention
Natasha Barbour finishes second, earns $284,911 consolation prize
MEET THE LATEST WSOP GOLD BRACELET WINNER:
Name: Ben Zamani
Residence: Boca Raton, Fla.
Occupation: Professional poker player
Number of WSOP Cashes: 14
Number of WSOP final table appearances: 2
Number of WSOP gold bracelet victories: 1
Best previous WSOP finish: 2nd (Event #14, $1,500 no-limit hold’em shootout, less than one week ago)
Total WSOP earnings: $764,350
The above stats include Zamani’s Event #20 victory
Las Vegas (June 11, 2015) — Ben
Zamani carded his first World Series of Poker gold bracelet victory
Thursday at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The win,
which came in a $1,500 no-limit tournament, earned Zamani $460,640 as
well as avenged a runner-up finish he carded less than a week ago in a
$1,500 shootout event. With his spot in the winner’s circle cemented,
Zamani now owns two cashes at the 2015 Series totaling more than
$600,000 and vaulting him into Player of the Year contention.
like his previous runner-up finish, Zamani held control of the $1,500
event during its late stages. This time, though, he didn’t let it slip.
On the final hand, he caught heads-up opponent Natasha Barbour in a
bluff. Barbour moved all in with nothing but 10 high and Zamani called
with trip aces. The river came and went and Zamani, on the verge of
tears, left the ESPN main stage in disbelief. His rail later explained
the passion Zamani has for the game, how much the bracelet means to him
and how devastated he was following the runner-up finish a few days
prior. Having reached his crowning achievement, there was nothing left
for Zamani who politely posed for winner’s photos along with some of his
is 28 years old. Though born in Germany, he is American and resides in
Boca Raton, Fla. His most-recent deep run marks his 14th and largest
#20 was the 20th of 68 bracelet events on the 2015 WSOP schedule. The
tournament’s 1,844-player field marked an attendance increase of more
than 15 percent year-over-year. In all, the prize pool totaled
$2,489,400 and paid the top 198 players. Notable in-the-money finishers
include four-time WSOP Circuit ring winner Caufman Talley (10th,
$26,337), two-time gold bracelet winners Andy Frankenberger (14th,
$20,786) and Greg Mueller (102nd, $3,385), Chris Lindh (34th, $11,003),
bracelet winner Taylor Paur (42nd, $9,111), six-time Circuit ring winner
Valentin Vornicu (64th, $5,551), Matt Affleck (83rd, $4,231), Melanie
Weisner (97th, $3,783), Joe Kuether (139th, $3,061) and Shannon Shorr
tournament played out over a four-day stretch with the latter half of
the final table consuming all the action on Day 4. At the day’s start,
five players remained in contention including two-time WSOP final
tablist Kevin MacPhee (fourth, $142,070) and Barbour, who hoped to
become the first female gold bracelet winner of the 2015 WSOP.
Here’s a look at the tournament’s final table results:
1st: Ben Zamani - $460,640 + WSOP gold bracelet
2nd: Natasha Barbour - $284,911
3rd: Paul Ephremsen - $196,986
4th: Kevin MacPhee - $142,070
5th: Wenlong Jin - $103,857
6th: Garrett Beckman - $76,922
7th: Jared Griener - $57,729
8th: Oluwashola Akindele - $43,888
9th: Kevin Benoit - $33,781
EVENT FUN FACTS:
- The final table featured no WSOP gold bracelet winners
- The 1,844-player field was made up of 1,791 males and 53 females
Ben Zamani’s official WSOP player profile page is available HERE.
Final results, live reporting log, photos and official winner photo are available HERE.
Live stream archive of the event is available HERE.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:47 PM Local Time
Natasha Barbour calls from the small blind and Ben Zamani makes it 710,000 to go from the big blind. Barbour announces a reraise and makes it 1.6 million total. Zamani snap four-bets as he says "two point nine".
Barbour grabs a stack of chips and then calls. There's nearly six million in the pot in what is sure to be the defining moment of the tournament.
The flop comes and Zamani quickly pushes forward some chips for a bet of 950,000. Barbour snap-calls.
The turn is the and Zamani taps the table softly. Barbour thinks for a moment and then announces that she is all in. Zamani holds up his cards and turns them over as he announces a call.
Zamani has trips, and Barbour is drawing dead. The dealer puts out the on the river and Zamani's rail rushes him to celebrate the victory.
Natasha Barbour finishes in second place, winning $284,911.
Congratulations to Ben Zamani who wins his first WSOP bracelet! This comes right on the heels of a second place finish earlier this WSOP in the $1,500 No-Limit Hold'Em Shootout. He takes home $460,640 for his win here today.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:39 PM Local Time
Ben Zamani calls from the small blind and Natasha Barbour checks her option from the big blind. The flop comes and Barbour check-calls a 215,000 bet from Zamani. The turn is the and both players check.
They check again on the river and Barbour takes the pot down with for a pair of sevens.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:35 PM Local Time
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:34 PM Local Time
Natasha Barbour opens to 425,000 and Benjamin Zamani calls, with the flop coming .
Zamani check-calls Barbour's 550,000 c-bet and both players tap the table on the turn.
The river comes and Zamani checks for a third time, prompting a bet of 550,000 from Barbour. Zamani calls instantly and tables for the low end of a straight.
Benjamin Zamani - 8,000,000
Natasha Barbour - 5,800,000
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:32 PM Local Time
Benjamin Zamani opens to 385,000 and Natasha Barbour defends her big blind to see the flop fall .
Barbour check-folds to a 460,000 wager from Zamani.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:31 PM Local Time
Natasha Barbour opens to 425,000 and takes down the blinds and antes.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:30 PM Local Time
Benjamin Zamani limps in and Natasha Barbour checks her big blind option.
The flop is and Barbour check-calls a bet of 165,000 from Zamani. Both players check the turn, and Zamani takes it down with a bet of 400,000 after the falls on the river.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:20 PM Local Time
Back in action here in the Mother Ship!
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:07 PM Local Time
With ten minutes left in the level, the two remaining players have decided to take the 20-minute break a little early. Play will resume shortly with Benjamin Zamani sitting on 7,100,000 for a slim lead over Natasha Barbour's 6,700,000.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:06 PM Local Time
Natasha Barbour raises to 320,000 from the button and Paul Ephremsen calls from the small blind. Ben Zamani folds out of the big blind.
The flop is and both players check. The turn is the and Ephremsen leads out for 375,000. Barbour raises to 800,000 and Ephremsen announces that he is all in for a total of 1,865,000. Barbour instantly calls.
Ephremsen flops top pair but he is behind as Barbour has the over pair with her kings.
The river is the and Barbour's rail celebrates as the tournament is now head-up. Paul Ephremsen is eliminated in third place for $196,986. Zamani and Barbour are nearly dead even in chips with Zamani holding a slight chip lead.
Paul Ephremsen - Eliminated
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:02 PM Local Time
Ben Zamani raises to 360,000 from the button and wins the blinds and antes.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:01 PM Local Time
Ben Zamani calls from the small blind and Natasha Barbour checks from the big blind. The flop is
and both players check. The turn is the
and Barbour folds to a bet of 205,000 from Zamani.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:01 PM Local Time
Ben Zamani gets a walk in the big blind.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:00 PM Local Time
Ben Zamani opens from the button to 355,000. Natasha Barbour thinks for a little while but folds. Paul Ephremsen calls from the big blind. The flop comes and Ephremsen check-calls a 390,000 bet from Zamani.
The turn is the and both players check. The river is the and Ephremsen leads out for a million even. Zamani calls.
"Ace," says Ephremsen as he tables .
"No good," says Zamani and turns over for a pair of eights.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 2:50 PM Local Time
Paul Ephremsen folds his button, Benjamin Zamani opens to 410,000 from the small blind, and Natasha Barbour defends her big blind with a call.
The flop is and both players check to take the on the turn. Zamani tries a 330,000 wager but he releases after Barbour raises to 1,100,000.
Natasha Barbour - 4,600,000
Benjamin Zamani - 5,100,000
Thursday, June 11, 2015 2:48 PM Local Time
Natasha Barbour opens to 320,000 from the button, but Paul Ephremsen takes the pot down with a three-bet to 830,000.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 2:47 PM Local Time
Paul Ephremsen gets a walk in the big blind.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 2:47 PM Local Time
Paul Ephremsen limps in from the button, Benjamin Zamani surrenders his small blind, and Natasha Barbour checks her big blind option.
The dealer fans the and Barbour check-calls a bet of 275,000 from Ephremsen. Both players check down the turn and river, with Barbour's for a pair of sixes better than Ephremsen's for bottom pair.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 2:45 PM Local Time
Natasha Barbour opens to 320,000 holding the button, Paul Ephremsen calls from the small blind, and Benjamin Zamani does the same from the big.
On the flop Ephremsen checks over to Zamani, and he bets 215,000. This forces two quick folds and Zamani takes it down.