Bodog.com Member Wins WSOP Bracelet
Team Bodog pro David Williams, the 26-year-old Texan who rocketed into stardom two years ago with his memorable runner-up finish at the 2004 World Series of Poker, has captured his first bracelet in poker's showcase event. Williams bested a field of 478 players to take the top prize in Event No. 10 of the 2006 World Series of Poker, the $1,500 Seven-Card Stud tournament. He earned $163,118 for the wín. "This is the greatest day of my life," Williams said. "I came so close to winning a bracelet in 2004 in the Main Event, and I've been thinking about this moment ever since. It's even better than I expected." "David continues to prove he's one of the best poker players in the world, and I'm sure this is just the first of many more WSOP bracelets he'll wín over his career," said Calvin Ayre, Bodog.com's Founder and CEO. "To have a title this early in this year's WSOP is exciting for all members of Team Bodog, and we're anticipating many more victories."
On his way to victory, Williams faced a final table filled with some of poker's most decorated and seasoned tournament pros, including poker legend Johnny Chan, who was gunning for his 11th WSOP bracelet, and "Miami" John Cernuto, a three-time WSOP winner. Also among the final eight were Jack Duncan, a 2002 world champion in Pot Limit Omaha, and John Hoang, an experienced tournament ace.
Williams, though, quickly took command at the final table on Friday with aggressive play against the veterans, gaining the chip lead early and never looking back. He eventually found himself heads-up against Hoang for the title with a sizable chip advantage, and after a little more than two-and-a-half hours of heads-up play, Hoang was severely shortstacked and forced to go all-in on 5th street with an ace high. Williams, with just a pair of fours, called and the small pair proved to be all he needed for the wín and career first bracelet.
Williams has now won a total of $3,670,823 in three WSOP appearances, earning him the distinction of being the youngest player on the World Series of Poker's "Top Ten" All-Time Money List. Williams ranks seventh on the list just behind poker greats Phil Hellmuth and T.J. Cloutier. Fellow Team Bodog member Josh Arieh, who has won two WSOP bracelets, is ninth on the list with $3,188,590 in earnings.
With his Seven-Card Stud wín, numerous final table appearances in Texas Hold'em events and a first-place finish in H.O.R.S.E. this past May at the World Series of Poker Circuit in Las Vegas, Williams has established himself as one of the top all-around poker players in the world. In just the past two years, the Team Bodog phenom has earned more than $5 million in tournament winnings.
Joining Williams and Arieh on Team Bodog for this year's World Series of Poker is the latest member of Bodog's pro team, Evelyn Ng. More than 500 other players who qualified through online satellite qualifiers at Bodog.com are competing for Team Bodog. Two online qualifiers from Team Bodog have already made a final table this year - Thomas Hunt of Las Vegas finished fourth in the $2,000 No-Limit Hold'em ($160,659) and David Solomon of Austin , Texas , finished sixth in $2,500 Short Handed No-Limit ($68,277). The WSOP started on June 25 and runs through Aug. 10.