Every year the World Series of Poker beckons to the huddled masses of poker players yearning to be champions and wear the crown – the coveted gold bracelet. Year after year professional poker players and semi-pros pay their dues, with many never achieving poker glory, and a very few winning gold time after time.
The names become familiar over time as they play in one event after another, even if they have never won an event, their names ring a bell, those tournament players who never give up on their dream.
There are those players who go to the WSOP to grind the lucrative cash games and never enter a tournament. There are also the cash game players that enter a couple of smaller buy-in events if they do well in the cash games. And, once in a blue moon, something remarkable happens - someone we have never heard of, comes out of Kansas to win a championship – someone like Dung “Gomer” Nguyen.
Event #38 was due to start at noon and as Gomer was walking down the hall at the Rio on his way to the cash games he met a friend who told him he should play the $1,500 NLH event. Nguyen declined, he thought the field was too big at 2,534 players and the buy-in was too steep for his limited bankroll. His friend wouldn’t give up and said he would even put up half of the buy-in. Finally Gomer relented and agreed to a 50/50 partnership with his buddy.
Knowing he had only a 10% chance of making the money, the amateur player from Wichita took his seat. Almost from the get-go, Gomer was never really in jeopardy, maintaining a decent chip stack as he went deeper and deeper until he made it to the ESPN Main Stage as the chip leader at the final table.
Gomer dominated the final table for six-hours and eventually got down to heads-up with a 3-1 chip lead against Theo Tran. The decisive hand came down when Tran was all-in with his dominant against Gomer’s . When the board ran out with the , the rail (and one friend from the hallway) erupted in joy as Gomer won his first gold bracelet and $607,200. Congratulations Dung Nguyen for proving even a rookie can win a title!
Watch Dung Nguyen being interviewed after his win.
Final Table Results:
Read more about Event #38 at PokerNews Live Reporting.
Find out how Dung Nguyen got to Kansas from Vietnam and other interesting tidbits at WSOP.com.