2016 WSOP: Brian Rast Wins $50k Poker Players Championship

As well as being one of the World Series of Poker’s most expensive tournaments, Event #55: $50,000 Poker Players Championship is also one of the Series’ most prestigious events with many of the game’s top professionals relishing the opportunity to showcase their card skills against one another across an eight-game mix that includes NLHE, PLO, 2–7 triple draw lowball, limit hold’em, Omaha 8, razz, seven-card stud and stud 8.
Prior to this year’s WSOP, just one player had managed to capture two bracelets in the format, namely Michael Mizrachi in 2010 and 2012. However, that number has now doubled after Brian Rast followed up his 2011 bracelet win with another victory last night at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
A total of 91 players entered the $50k buy-in event, up by 8% compared to the 84 players who did so in 2015, and after five days of action Brian Rast managed to emerge atop of the field to claim a 3rd career bracelet, as well as a huge first place prize of $1,296,097. Following an impressive performance which now pushes his career earnings to $17,779,199, the 34 year-old pro commented:
“I take poker pretty seriously, and what my legacy is or how I’m viewed by my peers is important to me as a form of professional respect. I do care about that, and from that aspect, what I was able to do here today was obviously something really special.”
Justin Bonomo held the chip lead going into the six-seated final table, and eventually Rast would progress all the way through to heads-up play against Bonomo, albeit at a 5-to-3 chip disadvantage. Several hours of intense action would subsequently ensue before the deciding hand was played during a no-limit hold’em round, with Bonomo (Q-J) moving all-in on an A-10-5-A-K board, only to be called by Rast holding A-10. Bonomo then had to settle for a runner-up finish worth $801,048, while the bracelet went to Rast, who later commented:
“I didn’t play perfectly all tournament. There were definitely a couple times, like I think early on in Day 3, the first level I played pretty bad — it’s like I wasn’t warmed up yet — I made a mistake, but it’s a long tournament, a forgiving tournament because of how many chips you get. I’m really, really happy with how I played overall, and I’m very, very, very happy with how I played at the final table.”
Final Table Results:
1: Brian Rast $1,296,097
2: Justin Bonomo $801,048
3: Eric Wasserson $545,772
4: Michael Mizrachi $380,942
5: Wil Wilkinson $272,558
6: Ray Dehkharghani $200,027

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