World Poker Tour is the leading brand in the poker industry that sponsors hundreds of tournaments across the globe, attracting highest profile of players and millions of fans. The Rock’N’Roll Poker Open is one of their flagship events.
This year’s event took place at the beautiful Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood in South Florida. Gediminas Uselis traveled all the way from Lithuania to take his shot at poker glory and on Sunday afternoon he was holding up the championship trophy after defeating 1,566 runners to win the World Poker Tour Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open main event and take home $778,490, the largest payday of the tournament so far. With over 1,500 runners, this was also the largest field in the history of the event.
Bit of Luck, Bit of Skill
Even if you got the best cards in the world, it doesn’t mean you’ll win. Uselis certainly didn’t start off with a perfect deck of cards, yet he managed to turn the odds at the final table with a few nicely placed bluffs. He started off fourth. After Clayton Maguire and Anshul Rai got out, he was placed last, but soon started climbing.
If we follow the official event updates, we can see that Uselis bluffed until he had the best hand on the river. Lithuanian was awarded 1,620 Card Player points (Player of the Year) for this last win. Two victories also managed to place him on the 41st place on the Global Poker’s PoY.
These are the World Poker Tour Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open main event final table results for the final six:
- Gediminas Uselis – $778,490
- Jacob Ferro – $573,605
- Harout Ghazarian – $380,000
- Selahaddin Bedir – $282,380
- Clayton Maguire – $211,925
- Anshul Rai – $170,835
Here’s what Uselis had to say to Betsafe kazino about the tournament:
“I came here, and this was the first tournament I sat down in. I didn’t sleep much, and I just kept going and going. I was playing small pots, big pots, slowly building. Slowly, nothing special. There was for sure a bunch of action. It was a crazy table, so I just needed to wait. I made a couple of moves because there were a couple of amateurs as well, so I was really lucky to make this final table.” (source)
Young Lithuanian Rockstar on the Rise
For a small country like Lithuania, number of world class poker players of that nationality is surprising. Best known Lithuanian poker player is most definitely Antanas “Tony G” Guoga. But he is also older than Uselis, so he had more time to make a name for himself. It’s fair to mention Vladas Burneikis as well, who won a WSOP bracelet online earlier last year.
There’s another good Lithuanian poker player, and that’s WPT champion Matas Cimbolas. That’s already three names from Lithuania, so what’s so special about Uselis? Well, his career is shaping rather nicely. If you asked someone outside Lithuania about Uselis last year, they would hardly know who you’re talking about, unless you were speaking to a hardcore poker fan.
This year it’s a whole different story. Gediminas managed to take home three large six-figure tournaments and became the first from his country to score both WPT and WSOP titles. And that’s the beauty of poker. At one moment you’re a local player, and at the other you’re winning world tournaments in front of large audience.