WSOP Update: Players from China, Canada, France, Austria Secure Bracelets; Neymar Jr. Joins Action

It was a nice few days for international players over the last week at the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas. Several players scored bracelets including China’s Tong Li, who took home the largest of those scores for $1.5 million.

Canada’s Alex Livingston struck gold for the first time as well and then promptly lost his new bracelet along the way. Austria’s Stefan Lehner also was among the big winners, taking his first bracelet for $558,616.

Here’s a look at some players on the international poker scene scoring hardware and winning big on the Vegas Strip.

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Event 9: $1,500 Seven Card Stud

Livingston secured his first bracelet for $103,282 in this event. He now has $5.9 million in live tournament winnings.

Poker fans may recognize Livingston for finishing third in the Main Event in 2019 for $4 million. He made some news after winning the Stud event for actually losing his gold bracelet.

Another Canadian, Thomas Taylor,  finished third for $44,112.

Event 14: $1,500 Six-Handed NLHE

Vive la France! Frenchman Leo Soma scored not just his first career WSOP cash, but also his first bracelet in this event. 

The final day saw 16 players return and Soma was in the middle of the pack. He continued working his way back into contention throughout the day, eventually topping Thomas Schultz heads-up for the title and $456,889.

The tournament produced 2,392 entries for a $3.2 million prize pool. Schultz took home $282,358 for runner-up and Argentina’s Maximiliano Gallardo finished third for $203,451. 

Event 16: $3,000 NLHE

Most players would love winning a half-million dollars. Austria’s Stefan Lehner (pictured in lead image, courtesy WSOP) did just that in this event,  pocketing a nice $558,616.

This was his first bracelet and came after winning a WSOP Circuit ring in Aruba in December. Lehner detailed his road to victory, which included some major swings at the final table.

“I don’t have the words for it I think,” he told “At the beginning I was second in chips but then I was short stacked all the time. So I played very well and I’m very happy that I have this [bracelet] now.”

The win came at a tough final table that included Alex Foxen, Joey Weissman, and David Miscikowski. Toby Boas scored runner-up for $345,244 in an event featuring 1,240 entries for a $3.3 million prize pool.

China’s Tong Li shows off his new WSOP bracelet. (photo courtesy WSOP)

Event 19: $25,000 High Roller PLO

Omaha players with some big bankrolls found their way into this tournament with China’s Tong Li coming out as champion. This marked not just his WSOP cash, but also his first bracelet as well with a nice $1.5 million also headed his way.

The tournament brought in 264 for a $6.2 million prize pool. Fabian Brandes finished runner-up for $907,132 and 2021 WSOP player of the year Josh Arieh finished third for $644,365.

Event 20: $1,500 Limit 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw

Russia’s Denis Nesterenko took home the title and $108,250 in this lowball event. His previous best career cash was a win for $7,702.

This was Nesterenko’s first bracelet, but he also scored a WSOP Circuit ring in 202, also in 2-7 Triple Draw. The tournament saw 350 entries and a $467,250 prize pool. California’s Von Altizer took second place for $66,910.

A look at other players running deep at WSOP

Several other international players found some nice finishes over the last week as well. In Event 7:  $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better, Brazil’s Murilo Figueredo finished fourth for $80,671.

Event 10: $10,000 Dealers Choice Six-Handed Championship saw Japan’s Naoya Kihara finish fifth for $73,453. Thailand’s Punnat Punsri also ran deep in Event 12: $25,000 High Roller Eight-Handed with a third-place finish for $593,481

In online action, Italy’s Gianluca “inmyhouse” Speranza notched third in the $400 Ultra Deepstack on Sunday for $50,218.

Brazilian soccer star Neymar Jr. also jumped in the WSOP action on Sunday as well.  A longtime poker player, he is also a PokerStars ambassador when not on the pitch.

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Upcoming events

The action continues this week in Las Vegas and here’s what to expect.

  • $1,500 Shootout NLHE (Event 27) – June 13
  • $50,000 High Roller PLO (Event 28) – June 13
  • $1,500 No-Limit 2-7 Lowball Draw (Event 29) – June 14
  • $1,000 PLO (Event 30) – June 14
  • $10,000 Limit 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw Championship (Event 31) – June 15
  • $1,500 HORSE (Event 32) – June 15
  • $3,000 Six-Handed NLHE (Event 33) – June 15
  • $1,500 Freezeout No-Limit Holdem (Event 34) – June 16
  • $2,500 Mixed Big Bet Event (Event 35) – June 16
  • $1,500 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo 8 or Better (Event 36) – June 17
  • $1,500 Millionaire Maker (Event 37) – June 17
  • $10,000 No Limit 2-7 Lowball Draw Championship (Event 38) – June 18
  • $3,000 Six-Handed Pot-Limit Omaha (Event 39) – June 18
  • $10,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship (Event 40) – June 19
  • $1,000 Super Turbo Bounty No-Limit Hold’em Freezeout (Event 41) – June 19
  • $100,000High Roller NLHE (Event 42) – June 19
  • $1,000 Online Event 4: PLO Six-Max – June 19

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