WSOP 2019: Nikita Luther Once Again in the Headlines After Bagging Chip Lead on Day 1 of $1.5K 50th Annual Bracelets Only

Nikita Luther
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  • Namita Ghosh July 11, 2019
  • 2 Minutes Read

Nikita Luther (cover image) is by far the most accomplished women poker player in the country today, and she has a WSOP bracelet to prove it. After a harrowing bad beat that cost her the title in the Zynga Poker WPT500 Las Vegas a few weeks back, Luther is once again in the headlines! She bagged the end of day chip lead on Day 1 of Event #81: $1,500 50th Annual Bracelet Winners Only NLHE – an event open to only former WSOP bracelet winners.

The event kicked off on July 10 registering a starting field of 143 entries. Only 51 made it through where bagging the overnight chip lead was Luther with a massive stack of 538,500 (215 big blinds). Luther had a breakout series last year where she won the bracelet in the $1K Tag Team NLHE after pairing with Germany’s Giuseppe Pantaleo and is chasing her second career bracelet in this event.

Day 2 resumes at 2 pm (Pacific Time Zone) on July 11 with the blinds at 1,000/2,500, and since late registrations remain open till the start of Day 2, the field is likely to expand.


Event#81: $1,500 Bracelet Winners Only NLHE – Day 1

The new addition at the 50th annual series, the $1.5K Bracelet Winners Only NLHE registered a line-up of 143 former bracelet winners and among them was one of three Indians who could have represented Team India at the event – Nikita Luther.

Luther was one of almost two dozen female players in the field, but she kept the reporters on her back all day long with her aggressive play. She was fearless and didn`t shy away from moving all-in several times during the day. In almost a repeat of her performance at the WPT500 Las Vegas, she was once again taking on some of the best poker players head on and with panache.

She first appeared on the live coverage as early as Level 6 when she jammed all-in on Brian Wilson, forcing the latter to fold. She maintained a steady climb through the day and kept picking up small pots along the way.

However, it was in Level 10 that Luther rose to prominence after a hand where she opened from under-the-gun and saw her neighbor three-bet to 9,200. Luther retaliated with a four-bet for 25,000 and the opponent re-raised it to 54,200. Luther jammed for effectively 120,000 and got the call. The showdown had Luther collecting the 250,000 pot after her came out on top against the of her rival on the rundown board. With just one more hour left for the day to get over, Luther was sitting in the chip lead with 395,000.

Luther continued her climb by taking down another monster of a pot against Scott Bohlman after hitting two-pair on the turn. By the time the play concluded, Luther had accumulated 538,500 (215 big blinds) in chips.

Close on Luther`s coattails are Michael Gagliano (354,000 – 142 big blinds), and Yuval Bronshtein (277,000 – 111 big blinds) and the duo round up the top three stacks making their way into Day 2.

Six-time bracelet winner Chris Ferguson entered the tournament late but was able to carry forward a stack of 224,500. Joe Cada (195,000) is the other former Main Event champion still in the running.

Nikita Luther
Nikita Luther leads 51 survivors into Day 2

Top 10 Chips Counts At the End Of Day 1

  1. Nikita Luther – 538,500
  2. Michael Gagliano – 354,000
  3. Yuval Bronshtein – 277,000
  4. Haixia Zhang – 264,500
  5. Blair Hinkle – 259,000
  6. Shankar Pillai – 242,000
  7. Chris Ferguson – 224,500
  8. Ben Ponzio – 224,000
  9. James Mackey – 220,000
  10. Fred Berger – 204,500

Content & Images Courtesy: World Series of Poker

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