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Vinicius Lima Tops Record Field In 2019 World Poker Tour Borgata Winter Poker Open Main Event

24-Year-Old Poker Pro Overcomes 1,415 Entries To Win $728,430


The 2019 World Poker Tour Borgata Winter Poker Open $3,500 buy-in no-limit hold’em main event drew a massive field of 1,415 entrants to become the largest WPT main event ever held at Borgata. This year’s record-setting turnout surpassed the 1,313 entrants made in the 2011 WPT Borgata Poker Open. The tournament was narrowed down to just six players on January 31. Due to the WPT’s new delayed final table approach to televised events, action didn’t resume until Mar. 13 at the HyperX Esports Arena at the Luxor Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. Roughly six weeks after the final table was set, Vinicius Lima fought his way from the short stack to the winner’s circle. The 24-year-old poker pro was awarded $728,430 and his first WPT title for the win.

“I was very fortunate to have good energy with me and ran good at good times, and when I was all in, I held up," Lima told WPT reporters after the win. "I just battled and was very fortunate to have won this thing. It’s surreal and unbelievable.”

In addition to the hardware and the money, Lima also earned 1,440 Card Player Player of the Year points for the win. This was his first final-table finish of 2019, but it was enough to see him climb to 25th place in the overall standings.

The final table lasted nearly ten hours. Although it took quite a while for the final elimination to take place, the first bustout went down on just the eleventh hand of the day. With blinds at 75,000-150,000 with a 150,000 big-blind ante, Brandon Hall raised to 350,000 from the cutoff holding pocket queens. Ian O’Hara moved all-in from the big blind with the AHeart Suit9Heart Suit. Hall made the call and held up to send O’Hara home in sixth place ($154,734).

It took 115 hands for the next player to hit the rail. Vinicius Lima shoved all-in from the small blind with the KClub Suit8Club Suit when it folded to him. Daniel Buzgon called for his last 11 big blinds with the ADiamond Suit9Heart Suit. Lima flopped a king and rivered an eight to secure the pot and eliminate Buzgon in fifth place ($202,942).

Brandon Hall got his last chips in with pocket deuces, only to run into the pocket jacks of the surging Lima. The jacks held up and Hall was eliminated in fourth place, earning $268,810 for his deep run.

Lima scored his third knockout of the final table when Venezuelan World Series of Poker bracelet winner Joseph Di Rosa Rojas shoved from the small blind with QDiamond Suit4Club Suit and Lima quickly called with AHeart Suit6Club Suit. The ASpade SuitQSpade Suit6Spade Suit3Diamond Suit10Heart Suit board gave Lima two pair and sent Rojas home with $359,555 for his third-place showing.

With that Lima chipped up to 22,200,000, while start-of-day chip leader David Farah had managed to grow his stack to 34,400,000 by the time heads-up play began.

Lima was able to quickly wrangle the lead away from Farah and then extend his advantage. He doubled up Farah once, but by the time the final hand arose Lima held roughly an 8-to-1 chip advantage. With blinds at 500,000-1,000,0000 with a 1,000,000 big blind ante, Farah moved all in for 6,300,000 on the button holding 9Diamond Suit5Diamond Suit. Lima called with the KHeart SuitJHeart Suit and the board came down ASpade SuitJSpade Suit5Heart Suit2Club SuitKSpade Suit and Lima made two pair to secure the pot and the title. Farah earned $485,611 as the runner-up finisher.

Here is a look at the payouts and POY points awarded at the final table:

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points
1 Vinicius Lima $728,430 1440
2 David Farah $485,611 1200
3 Joseph Rojas $359,555 960
4 Brandon Hall $268,810 720
5 Daniel Buzgon $202,942 600
6 Ian O’Hara $154,734 480

Winner photo credit: Joe Giron / WPT.