Manju Gera Takes Down WSOP Circuit Thunder Valley $400 H.O.R.S.E. for First Gold Ring

Manju Gera has become the newest winner of a WSOP Circuit gold ring. Earlier this week, the player bested the field of the $400 H.O.R.S.E. tournament at Thunder Valley Casino Resort for her first cash from the series and the coveted gold piece. Gera collected $8,303 to accompany her triumph.

While she had never cashed in a WSOP Circuit event before her win at Thunder Valley, it should be noted that Gera is quite an experienced poker player. Mixed games appear to be her specialty and she showed much of her expertize during the $400 H.O.R.S.E. tournament.

Gera played against a number of poker notables, including Howard Andrew and Vince Burgio, David Diiorio, who is something of a poker celebrity in the region, as well as defending champion Steve Lustig who won the H.O.R.S.E. ring at the exact same host venue last winter and was looking to pair the piece.

Gera might have not played in the WSOP Circuit series as frequently as some of her rivals in the Thunder Valley tournament, but she has certainly accumulated a lot of experience over the years by playing and cashing in mixed-games tournaments. She has been playing mostly at California and Nevada casinos.

Gera’s Run in the $400 H.O.R.S.E.

The $400 buy-in tournament drew 74 entries and, as mentioned earlier, there were quite some notables among those who ventured into H.O.R.S.E. action at Thunder Valley Casino. The tournament was played over a single day. Its $24,420 prize pool was split among the top eight finishers, min-cashes starting from $976.

Gera had a terrific run at the host venue and she herself admitted that cards were oftentimes coming her way. In her post-victory interview the player said that she did not really know much about her rivals at the tables. The brand-new WSOP Circuit champ further dwelt that her opponents might have thought that, playing against a middle-aged woman, they could bluff a lot. However, Gera manged to pick up a lot of those bluffs and that, combined with nice cards running her way, helped her take down the tournament and claim the gold ring.

Gera went into the unofficial nine-handed final table as the chip leader with 240,000. She maintained her momentum all the way down to her two-handed duel against Steve Lustig. Lustig was looking to win his second gold ring from the series, after collecting his first one early this year at the same host venue and in the same event. It was not meant for him to score a back-to-back win, though, and the player had to content with the consolation prize of $5,137 for his runner-up finish.

Here it is interesting to note that poker apparently runs in Gera’s family. The player is the mother of poker pro Nikhil Gera, who has previously won two WSOP Circuit gold rings.

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