Online poker stars Jared ‘The Waco Kidd’ Hamby and Steve ‘gboro780’ Gross both scored the biggest victories of their live poker careers yesterday by winning gold bracelets at the 2013 World Series of Poker.
Jared Hamby snuck onto the final table of the $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em event as one of the short stacks and was playing catch-up for the majority of the final day of action.
Even as his heads-up battle with Peter Hengsakul started he was at a massive chip disadvantage but thanks to some solid play and a bit of luck was able to claim his first major poker title as well as the first place prize of $525,272.
Hamby has accumulated almost $2 million in live tournament winnings and was one of the world’s best online poker pros before the events of Black Friday but admitted to being overwhelmed after winning his first WSOP bracelet.
“I’m obviously elated, I’ve been through a lot to get here,” Hamby said.
“This has been a life goal of mine.
“When I saw that king (to win the final hand) it was like nirvana, it was like a bracelet for the first time in my life it was there for me and after that it was cloud nine.”
Only a few hours later Steve Gross was able to record his own breakthrough victory in the $5,000 Six-Handed Pot-Limit Omaha event, dramatically turning around his fortunes at the 2013 World Series of Poker.
Before the PLO event Gross had entered fifteen events at the 2013 WSOP and failed to cash in a single tournament but the first place prize of $488,817 and his maiden WSOP bracelet more than makes up for his previous heartbreak.
Gross was one of the players who were most affected by the events of Black Friday.
The twenty-seven-year-old made up to $6 million playing online poker and was a winner of the Card Player Magazine’s Online Poker Player of the Year award but wasn’t able to convert his success on the virtual felt to live tournaments.
An emotional Gross was clearly over-the-moon to record his first live tournament victory.
“I’ve been disappointed not to have a big live result up to now, so this feels great,” Gross said.
“I have envisioned this moment, but to actually be here is just awesome.”
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