Harvey Mathews has captured his first World Series of Poker gold bracelet in Event #13: $3,000 Freezeout No-Limit Hold'em. Mathews defeated Gabriel Andrade heads-up in thrilling fashion to top the 720-player field and take home the first-place prize of $371,914.
In the last hand of the night, Mathews ran as good as he did throughout the final table but all that mattered to the Michigan native was getting that coveted piece of jewelry. Mathews had Andrade all in and at risk but was down to just six outs on the river. With his friends cheering from the rail, Mathews nailed a pair of kings and fist-pumped in excitement as the final card hit the felt.
"Obviously it feels amazing," Mathews stated in his post-tournament interview about how it felt to win a WSOP gold bracelet. "I used to come out every year back when I was younger but then I stopped coming after Black Friday. So it just feels great to be back here and to have success. This is pretty huge."
Mathews came into the day as the short stack but picked up the cards when he needed them the most. "I just ran absolutely insane, probably the most insane I've run in my entire life." But sometimes that's what it takes to win one of these large-field events.
As for what's to come from the newest WSOP champion, Mathews was quick to say that he's headed back home to Michigan this week to get back to work. "I do plan on coming back to Las Vegas for the Main Event. I don't have any plans for the money right now, I never really thought about it yet. But it'll be a lot of fun whatever I end up doing."
Event #13: $3,000 Freezeout No-Limit Hold'em Final Table Results
|1||Harvey Mathews||United States||$371,914|
|2||Gabriel Andrade||United States||$229,848|
|4||Girish Apte||United States||$118,815|
|5||Brandon Caputo||United States||$87,288|
|6||David Lolis||United States||$65,072|
|7||Craig Mason||United States||$49,238|
|8||Andrew Jeong||United States||$37,824|
|9||Freddy Heller||United States||$29,504|
Final Table Action
Day 3 began with seven players returning to the felt in hopes of capturing a WSOP gold bracelet. The players were hesitant at the beginning and the action was slow to start with many raise-and-takes over the first few hands. However, one sick runout and the action quickly picked up. Craig Mason found himself all-in on the turn with a set of fives against the top pair of Girish Apte. Unfortunately for Mason, Apte managed to river a straight, and Mason became the first casualty of the final table.
Just a few hands later, David Lolis found himself on the wrong side of the deck after flopping top pair. Andrade held an overpair to the board and staved off elimination, leaving Lolis with just two big blinds. Lolis went on to be eliminated in the next hand, which sent players on a two-hour break until the PokerGO stream would begin.
Once the players returned to the main stage, it turned into the Mathews show as he quickly went from the short stack to the big stack. Mathews started with a double-up through Brandon Caputo, then Apte bluffed off his stack into Mathews' straight. A few hands later, Mathews cracked Caputo's aces with a rivered flush and Caputo exited in fifth place.
Mathews continued to roll by making a backdoor flush and getting paid on the river by Apte's turned pair. Apte was down to just a couple of big blinds and could not survive the orbit. Michael Gathy ultimately sent Apte to the rail in fourth place when the blinds came around again.
Gathy came into the day second in chips and was looking to make history with his fifth WSOP gold bracelet in a no-limit hold'em event. Gathy pushed hard for the win, but it may have come back to bite him with just three players remaining. Gathy went for a big river bluff with king-high but Mathews sniffed it out with just a pair of fives. Gathy fell down to just 15 big blinds and soon found himself at risk with ace-eight offsuit. Unfortunately for him, Mathews once again woke up with a monster, showing ace-king suited. A king on the turn would end Gathy's run in third place, leaving Mathews and Andrade to battle heads-up.
Although Mathews started as the chip leader in the heads-up duel, Andrade continued to apply pressure and close the gap, nearly getting back to even. However, Mathews would not relinquish the lead and slowly started to pull away again. Once Andrade got down to his last 15 big blinds, the two players got all of their chips in the middle preflop. Andrade was ahead with ace-high but Mathews held two live cards. It took until the river for Mathews to spike a pair which brought an end to the match.
That wraps up the PokerNews coverage for this event but there is still plenty of action happening throughout the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino and we will be here to bring you all of the live updates.