Ryan Riess is one of the world’s newest, if not the newest, multi-millionaire and WSOP gold bracelet winner after he took out the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event this morning.
The 23-year-old came into heads-up play a little less than 20 million chips behind Jay Farber, but it wasn’t long before Riess would snatch the chip lead away. Farber then saw his stack being gradually chipped away as Riess made some good bets and solid plays to take small bits out of Farber’s arsenal.
Farber was not going to let himself go that easily, however. He had less than 20 million chips to his name at one stage of heads-up play, but he doubled up in what was then the biggest hand of the last day of play.
Riess made a 2.5 million chip after hitting a pair of Kings on the flop (his starting hand was King-Ten offsuit). With Jack-Ten offsuit, Farber made a bold move by reraising all-in with an open-ended straight draw. Riess instantly called and it looked like the event was going to be his.
The turn did not make that so as the Nine of Hearts was shown, which gave Farber the straight he was after and put him back up to 36 million. Riess still had over 153 million chips, however, and still had a huge advantage.
Despite that, it looked like Farber was on the comeback trail as he gradually chipped back up to 70 million in the late stages of heads-up play. But Riess then went back to his flawless poker-playing ways and Farber’s stack was soon down to just over 40 million.
It was all Riess from there as he eventually took out his adversary to win the top poker prize of the year. That came on the 261st hand, when Farber decided to move all-in pre-flop with Queen-Five of Spades. It was an understandable move for the short-stacked Farber, but Riess was waiting in the wings with Ace-King of Hearts.
The Jack of Diamonds, Ten of Diamonds and Four of Clubs came on the flop, which was followed by the Four of Clubs on the turn. Farber needed a Five on the river as a Queen would have given Riess a straight. The Four of Diamonds was the last card to be dealt in the 2013 WSOP Main Event, and Riess was the last man standing.
Riess won $8,361,570 for his stellar play in the event, and will go down in history as the first player born in the 1990s to take out the WSOP Main Event. The major milestone is by far the biggest win of Riess’ poker career. He did have three other in-the-money finishes at this year’s WSOP and won $239,063 in a WSOP Circuit event last year, but they don’t compare to the 2013 WSOP Main Event championship.