Ilyas Muradi Wins WPT Main Event for $620,000
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Fla. resumed tournament play with the 2021 Lucky Hearts Poker Open (LHPO) after a year of tournament cancellations due to the pandemic. This year’s LHPO concluded in the early hours of Wednesday with Ilyas Muradi emerging victorious in the World Poker Tour (WPT) LHPO Main Event Championship. Muradi, of Fort Wayne, Ind., bested 1,573 entries bringing home $620,000, including a $15,000 entry to the 2021 WPT Baccarat Crystal Tournament of Champions.
With the implementation of the company-wide Safe + Sound initiative, Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood gave players a safe and socially distant environment to enjoy major tournament play. In addition to thermal temperature scanning upon entry and mandatory masks/face coverings policy, all tables were outfitted with protective Plexiglas between dealer and players, and in between players. There was a 33 percent reduction in the number of total tables to encourage social distancing. Each table was played eight-handed, as opposed to the standard nine-handed. All chips and cards underwent routine cleaning, and all areas were sanitized once a player leaves the table and before another sits.
“It’s really amazing. I feel like a million bucks,” Muradi after the win. “Anybody’s dream can come true. You just have to work hard and put in the effort. If you want something, you have to go get it.”
“I actually came here for small events because my bankroll wasn’t enough to play events like this,” Muradi said. “But I got the opportunity because I missed my flight and I came back and played a satellite, and won a seat. In the field were a lot of amazing players. A lot of people that have played most of their lives. I don’t have as much experience as them, but now I’m the winner. This is amazing. I still cannot believe I’m sitting here with these trophies.”
The $3,500 finale boasted a final prize pool of more than $5 million, more than five times the $1 million guarantee. The last 197 spots in the field made the money.
Championship Final Table Results:
1st: Ilyas Muradi (Fort Wayne, Ind.) $620,000* + includes a $15,000 entry into the 2021 WPT Baccarat Crystal Tournament of Champions
2nd: Robel Andemichael (White Plains, Md.) $545,000*
3rd: Ronnie Bardah (Henderson, Nev.) $655,135*
4th: Francis Margaglion (Boca Raton, Fla.) $293,510
5th: Jesse Lonis (Medford, Oreg.) $223,895
6th: Philip Shing (Manhattan, N.Y.) $168,990
7th: Andy Hwang (Sugar Land, Tex.) $115,630
* denotes three-way deal
LHPO kicked off on Thursday, Jan. 14 with the $600 Deep Stack NLH opener. With 3,004 entries, the event surpassed the $300,000 guarantee, creating a total prize pool of more than $1.5 million. Tampa, Fla. resident Fernando Rodriguez won the opener for $205,000.
Other signature event winners include:
- Chad Eveslage (Ramsey, Ind.), winning the $1,100 No Limit Hold’em (Single Re-Entry) for $101,572
- Dominique Mosley (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), winning the $2,200 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry) for $140,342
Poker action will return to Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood with the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown April 15 – April 27, 2021, headlined by a series-ending championship boasting a $2 million guarantee. The WPT Showdown Championship event will run April 23 through April 27 with the final six players reconvening at a later date for a televised final table.
Future tournament information and poker hotel rates are available at SHRPO.com.
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About Seminole Hard Rock Poker
Seminole Hard Rock Poker encompasses four major poker series held annually at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida. In August 2013, the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open (SHRPO) was introduced to poker players around the world and featured a $10 million guarantee championship, the largest guarantee in history. In addition to the SHRPO, Seminole Hard Rock Poker series’ includes the Seminole Hard Rock Lucky Hearts Poker Open (January), Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown (April) and Seminole Hard Rock “Rock ‘N’ Roll” Poker Open (November). All four series fall under the SHRPO umbrella with tournament news, live updates and championship live streaming. Visit www.SHRPO.com. Join the conversation at #SHRPO, and tag us @SHRPO.
About Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood is the flagship casino resort of Hard Rock International, owned by the Seminole Tribe of Florida. This world-renowned entertainment, gaming and hospitality destination unveiled a $1.5 billion expansion on Oct. 24, 2019. New offerings include 638 upscale guestrooms in the first-ever Guitar Hotel, 168 luxury guestrooms and unique swim-up suites in the adjacent Oasis Tower at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, and 465 newly redesigned guestrooms in Hard Rock Hotel for a combined room count of 1,271 throughout the resort. Additional amenities include the lush, “Bora Bora” style lagoon with private cabanas and butler service; a 42,000 square-foot Rock Spa® & Salon; a 13.5-acre recreational water experience for swimming, kayaking and paddle boarding; 19 dining outlets and 20 bars and lounges; an expansive gaming floor with 3,100 slots, 195 table games and a 45-table poker room; 120,000 square feet of premier meeting and convention space including a 38,000 square-foot, carpeted exhibition hall; and a 26,000 square-foot retail promenade. The new Hard Rock Live entertainment venue with a 7,000-person capacity, showcases A-list entertainers, comedy acts, Broadway performances, sporting events and live broadcast productions. The integrated resort is located on 87 acres of the Hollywood SeminoleReservation along State Road 7 (U.S. Highway 441), and is 10 minutes from Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport and 30 minutes from downtown Miami and Miami International Airport. For more information, visit us online at www.seminolehardrockhollywood.com, call 800-937-0010 or follow us: Facebook: SeminoleHardRockHollywood, Twitter: @HardRockHolly, Instagram: @HardRockHolly.