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Leo Margets Becomes First Woman to Win an Open Event at the 2021 World Series of Poker

Spanish Pro Won $376,850 For Winning Her First Bracelet In The $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em 'The Closer'


Leo Margets became the first female player to win an open event at the 2021 World Series of Poker Sunday night at the Rio.

The 38-year-old Spanish pro defeated a massive 1,903-entry field in one of the final events of the series, the $1,500 no-limit hold ‘em dubbed ‘The Closer.’ She bested Alex Kulev heads-up and topped a final table that featured bracelet winner Stephen Song, east coast grinder Cherish Andrews, and the recent addition to the Americas Cardroom team of pros, online poker legend Chris Moorman.

It was the first bracelet for the Winamax team pro and she took home $376,850 for her efforts. The score was the largest of her career, topping her 2009 WSOP main event 27th place finish for $353,832, and bumping her career total to $1.45 million.

“Usually, it’s going to be harder for a woman to get a bracelet because we [make up less of the field],” Margets told WSOP live reporters after her victory. She went on to say that she hoped her victory could spark the interest of more women to play the game.

Three years ago, at the 2018 WSOP, Margets fell just shy of a bracelet win after a runner-up finish in the $1,000 no-limit hold ’em double stack with 30-minute levels. When she started heads-up play with Kulev, it looked likely that she would earn another second-place finish when the Bosnian held a 5.5-1 chip lead over the Barcelona native.

“He had a massive chip lead,” Margets said of the chip disparity. “He actually did all the hard work.”

And ultimately a misclick early on in the match against Kulev, Margets was three outs away from a repeat of 2018. She got all in with 9-4 against Kulev’s A-9 but drilled a four on the turn to stay alive. Margets told media after the tournament that she miscounted her stack and thought she somehow had 2.5 big blinds instead of the seven she actually possessed.

Like Margets alluded to, Kulev dominated the final table. He came into the unofficial 10-handed final table with the chip lead, scored the majority of knockouts, and stayed at the top of the leaderboard until Margets took the chip lead, and ultimately the title, heads-up.

Shortly after Kulev busted Ofer Wexler in 10th, Aleksandr Shevliakov sent Benjamin Underwood to the rail in ninth. Underwood shoved his short stack into the middle from the small blind with QDiamond Suit6Spade Suit and got called by Shevliakov’s QDiamond SuitJDiamond Suit in the big blind. Both players made trip queens, but Underwood couldn’t hit a six to stay alive.

Just 10 minutes after Underwood was gone, Margets dispatched of Moorman in eighth in another battle of the blinds when the British pro shoved all in from the small blind with AHeart Suit5Heart Suit and got looked up by Margets’ ADiamond Suit9Club Suit.

The final seven players took a dinner break but when they returned, Kulev took over. His A-K held up against Shevliakov’s A-Q to eliminate the Russian in seventh and scored a double knockout when he eliminated Arturo Segura in fifth and Marc Lange in fourth on the same hand.

Segura moved all in from the hijack, Lange shoved on the button and Kulev called out of the small blind with A-Q. He was in great shape against Segura’s Q-10, but was in bad shape against Lange’s A-K. Despite one of the queens being accounted for in Segura’s hand, one still came on the river which sent the pot to Kulev and gave him 38,000,000 out of the 47,000,000 in play.

In between Kulev’s knockouts, Song eliminated Andrews in sixth. She moved all in with ADiamond Suit3Heart Suit and was called by Song’s QSpade SuitQHeart Suit. Andrews flopped two pair to take the lead, but a queen on the river sent her home.

Song was eliminated in third by Kulev after he moved all in with KClub Suit8Heart Suit and was called by Kulev’s 9Diamond Suit9Club Suit.

Margets was the first player at the final table to put a stop to Kulev’s momentum. After spiking the three-outer, she doubled up twice more to even out the chip counts. Kulev still held the slightest of chip leads when Margets scored the biggest pot of the tournament. They put all the chips in the middle on a 9Spade Suit5Diamond Suit3Spade Suit flop with Margets showing QSpade Suit5Spade Suit and Kulev tabling AHeart Suit9Diamond Suit.

Margets needed a spade, queen, or five to take the lead and hit the 5Club Suit on the turn to leave Kulev drawing to just one of the last two nines in the deck. The 10Heart Suit came on the river, which left Kulev with just a couple of big blinds and he was eliminated on the next hand.

Kulev cashed for a career-best $232,920.

Final Table Results:

Place Player Earnings POY Points
1 Leo Margets $376,850 1,080
2 Alex Kulev $232,920 900
3 Stephen Song $172,855 720
4 Arturo Segura $129,460 540
5 Marc Lange $97,865 450
6 Cherish Andrews $74,680 360
7 Aleksandr Shevliakov $57,525 270
8 Chris Moorman $44,740 180
9 Benjamin Underwood $35,131 90

Photo Credit: WSOP/Melissa Haereiti



2 months ago

i don't understand "open event"

plenty of women have won non-ladies only event bracelets.


2 months ago

They are talking about the 2021 series not over-all