Michael Rodrigues Wins The First-Ever WSOP Badugi Bracelet

Michael Rodrigues, a Portuguese player, has emerged victorious in the inaugural World Series of Poker badugi event, securing the first-ever badugi bracelet. Outlasting a field of 516 entries, Rodrigues displayed exceptional skill to claim the title and the accompanying prize money of $144,678. This triumph not only marks his first bracelet win but also represents his first-ever victory in a live tournament. Earlier in the year, Rodrigues came close to securing a title in a European Poker Tour Paris event, finishing as the runner-up and earning $76,505. With this recent accomplishment, his total recorded earnings have reached nearly $450,000.

The tournament was originally scheduled to span three days but required an additional day of play. Numerous notable players made deep runs, including Terrence Chan, Jon Turner, David ‘ODB’ Baker, Owais Ahmed, and Danny Tang, all of whom demonstrated their skill and experience.

As play reached the early hours of day 3, only three contenders remained, with Yingui Li holding the chip lead and Rodrigues in second position. The unscheduled fourth day of play was relatively brief, lasting just over an hour. Rodrigues ultimately emerged as the victor, with Serhii Popovych finishing in third place. Popovych’s hopes were dashed when he failed to improve his hand against Li, who held a three-card badugi. Popovych’s impressive efforts earned him $58,879 in prize money.

In the ensuing heads-up battle, Rodrigues held a chip deficit against Li. However, he quickly regained the lead by successfully identifying and countering Li’s bluff. The final hand saw Li raising from the button, prompting Rodrigues to three-bet from the big blind. Li called the bet and drew two cards, while Rodrigues chose to keep his hand intact. Rodrigues then placed a bet, which Li called.

For the second draw, Rodrigues maintained his hand while Li drew one card. Rodrigues placed another bet, and Li decided to go all-in with his remaining chips. Rodrigues stayed pat once again, and Li drew one final card. Rodrigues revealed a strong hand with 7♦ 4♠ 3♣ A♥, while Li was hoping for a live draw with 6♠ 5♣ A♦. However, Li’s last card, the K♣, signaled the end of his journey in this event, securing Rodrigues the victory. Li received $89,415 as the runner-up, which stands as the second-largest payout in his tournament history.

2023 WSOP Event #20: $1,500 Badugi Final Table Results

1Michael RodriguesPortugal$144,678
2Yingui LiChina$89,415
3Serhii PopovychUnited States$59,879
4Matt VengrinUnited States$40,996
5Danny TangHong Kong$28,270
6Owais AhmedUnited States$20,557


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