For the first time in history, a World Series of Poker bracelet was won outside the state of Nevada. Matthew “mendey” Mendez shipped WSOP Event #47, $565 Online Pot-Limit Omaha 6-Handed on WSOP.com for $135,077, while playing from New Jersey.
Last month, WSOP.com got approval from New Jersey and Nevada lawmakers to merge player pools for the first time.
That opened the door for players located in both states to compete in the four online bracelet events offered this summer – this being the second of four.
WSOP.com Online Bracelet Events
June 3, WSOP Event #10, $365 No-Limit Hold’em (William “twooopair” Reymond won)
June 23, WSOP Event #47, $565 Pot-Limit Omaha (Matthew “mendey” Mendez won)
June 29, WSOP Event #61, $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em
June 30, WSOP Event #63, $3,200 No-Limit Hold’em High Roller
Accomplished Pro Wins Gold
Mendez will receive a gold bracelet, the same piece of jewelry won by those who win live WSOP events in Las Vegas. Although he played in New Jersey, he is originally from Florida and now has four World Series of Poker cashes to go along with three WSOP Circuit cashes.
This was his first career bracelet but not his biggest score. Mendez won $213,192 for 1st place in a $560 buy-in no-limit hold’em event at the April 2016 Borgata Spring Poker Open in Atlantic City. He also won a $2,500 buy-in WPTDeepstacks event for $100,539 two months earlier.
Hard Fought Victory
Mendez had to battle to earn his bracelet in the swingy game of pot-limit Omaha. He entered the final table with just an average chip stack and then when play got down to three-players, he had to defeat one of the top high-stakes pros in the world, Anthony “heheh” Zinno.
Zinno, a former WPT Player of the Year with over $7.4 million in lifetime live tournament winnings, was eliminated in 3rd place by Marton “GS.GURU” Czuczor, setting the stage for a heads-up battle.
With Zinno out of the way, a break for Mendez, the eventual champion’s next task was overcoming a 3-1 chip disadvantage.
In pot-limit Omaha, there are so many swings that a huge chip disparity can easily be overcame with in a few hands. It took Mendez very little time to regain the lead after hitting a straight flush to double-up.
Shortly after heads-up play began, he had a 3-1 chip lead over “GS.GURU.”
He began chipping away at his opponent before doubling up Czuczor but still had 3-1 advantage. A few hands later, Mendez flopped a straight and got all the money in against a gutshot draw to a higher straight and middle-pair. The best hand held up and the tournament came to a close.
WSOP.com $565 Pot-Limit Omaha Final Table Results
1 Matthew “mendey” Mendez ($135,077)
2 Marton “GS.GURU” Czuczor ($82,865)
3 Anthony “heheh” Zinno ($57,299)
4 Alex “3shotwonder” Smith ($40,256)
5 Ankush “rickrosstheb” Mandavia ($28,745)
6 Ao “Maimai1990” Chen ($20,859)