Mike Wattel Beats Chris Ferguson to Scoop 2017 WSOP $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship Title

Arizona-based poker pro Mike Wattel won his second WSOP gold bracelet mere days ago. The player emerged as the victor from the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship after a final table, packed with former gold bracelet winners, and an epic six-hour heads-up battle against former WSOP Main Event Champion Chris Ferguson.

Wattel won his first piece of WSOP jewelry back in 1999, when he took down a $1,500 Limit Omaha Hi-Lo tournament. Asked which one of his two victories was sweeter, the player told WSOP reporters that he felt happier the second time, particularly given the fact that he had to wait for 18 years before collecting his second bracelet. He also collected $245,451, thus swelling his WSOP bankroll to over $2.2 million.

The $10,000 Seven Card Stud event was played over three days. It attracted 88 Stud specialists from around the world who generated a prize pool of $827,200. Day 3 began with the eight final-table players returning to the poker rooms of Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino, all eyeing victory. Seven of the eight finalists were former gold bracelet winners, hungry to add another gold piece to their collections and another hefty payout to their bankrolls.

Perry Friedman led what had remained of the elite field as the only survivor to have gone beyond the 1-million chip mark. What is more, the player held two times more chips than Ferguson, who ranked second in the chip counts chart.

It did not take long before Wattel emerged as the chip leader. And the player eventually entered heads-up against none other but Ferguson with an excellent chip advantage.

If anyone is wondering, by Chris Ferguson we mean that exact Ferguson who won the 2000 WSOP Main Event, who was one of the founding fathers of Full Tilt Poker, and who had his reputation blemished exactly because of the online poker brand.

In 2011, Ferguson was one of the individuals named in a US Department of Justice civil complaint in relation to an alleged Ponzi scheme that saw Full Tilt Poker’s founders pay out more than $440 million in customer proceeds to themselves. The case was dismissed two years later.

Ferguson disappeared from the poker scene following the above-described occurrence. It was last year when he made a comeback during the WSOP and this year the player was even more active throughout the Series.

Entering the heads-up match of the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship, Ferguson was looking for his gold bracelet number six. And he fought fiercely for the piece. Entering the match at disadvantage, the player found himself in serious danger at a certain point. However, he escaped elimination in an all-in confrontation to take the lead afterwards.

Ferguson even managed to place Wattel in the same situation, but cards ran out in the latter’s favor and he won that key pot. Wattel never looked back from that point on. To end the six-hour ordeal, the eventual champion inflicted two heavy blows on his final opponent. First, he won a massive pot with a flush he hit on seventh street. The very next hand turned out to be the final one to be dealt. Ferguson collected $151,700 for his runner-up finish.

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