Welcome to Fantasyland: Alexandra Usoltseva New OFC Qiu Qiu Poker World Champion

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Female poker players have been dominating the Open Face Chinese (OFC) Poker Scene for some time now, and the TonyBet World Championship of OFC in Prague has been no exception. Last year Jennifer Shahade won the €10,000 High Roller OFC Championship, and just a couple of days ago Isabelle Mercier became the first winner of the new OFC Progressive Pineapple event.

 

Now Russia’s Alexandra Usoltseva has joined the club of champions by winning the prestigious OFC Poker World Championship Main Event.

 

The €1,000 Main Event attracted 118 players – and a lot of notables like Max Pescatori, Jen Shahade, Isabelle Mercier, Sergey Rybachenko and Maxim Panyak. In the end Usoltseva came out victorious after beating Ukraine’s Roman Paliuk heads up for the title, the €30,000 first place prize and the impressive champion’s belt.

 

The win is by far Usoltseva’s biggest accomplishment. According to the Hendon Mob Usoltseva has only cashed one time before, in 2013 when she finished in 5th place of the Russian Poker Tour’s OFC Championship. Nevertheless Usoltseva came to Prague with a lot of confidence, and after the win she said:

 

”I knew I’d win long before it happened. About a week ago I posted in one of the Russian poker forums that I really want to win this event and I imagined myself doing it. So I’m really happy that my dream came true.”

 

 

OFC Progressive Pineapple: Isabelle Mercier First World Champion

 

Prague is definitely the poker capital of the world in December. With the World Poker Tour, the Eureka Poker Tour, The Prague Poker Cup and the European Poker Tour all making their way to the Czech capital, Prague is the place to be for every poker player this time of year. Even though most events are no-limit hold’em events, there are other poker variants on the schedule too.

 

Last year TonyBet Poker launched the first Open Face Chinese Poker World Championship in Prague, and Jennifer Shahade became the first player to win the prestigious High Roller title. This year TonyBet Poker added a €350 OFC Progressive Pineapple World Championship to the schedule, which played down to a winner this morning.

 

After 14 hours of play Canada’s Isabelle Mercier came out on top of 108 entries. Mercier defeated Frank Gohletr from Germany heads-up to take home €10,189 ($11,049) for the win:

 

I won it !!! After a long 14 hours battle I took 1st place at Progressive Event #OFC @TonyBetPoker! High Roller Event starts in 5h yeah!!!

 

— Isabelle Mercier (@IsabelleNoMercy) December 7, 2015

 

After being part of Team PokerStars (until 2009), Mercier joined the world’s largest OFC poker site, TonyBet Poker, in October this year. Upon signing she said:

 

“My history with OFC goes a long way back, way before you could actually play it online. But it’s the new Pineapple Fantasyland variation that brought me back to OFC (…) This new form of Open Face is so exciting and refreshing, this is what the poker world needed.”

 

Vanessa Rousso Back at the Poker Tables

 

It’s been a while since we last saw Vanessa Rousso at the poker tables. The popular pro has been focusing on a career in music; DJing with Lisa Pittman under the appropriate name Deuces, and studying composition, music theory and digital production on the side. This year she participated in the latest season of the reality show Big Brother, where she came in third place after spending four months in the Big Brother house – playing a very strategically game; by many considered one of the best games that the show has ever seen. At the wrap party for Big Brother Rousso announced her engagement to long-term girl friend Melissa Ouellet:

 

The love of my life @MelProceOuellet asked me to marry her last night…and I said YES!! http://t.co/NRSaQPkZfH

 

— Vanessa Rousso (@VanessaRousso) September 25, 2015

 

In the light of all these activities, it’s no wonder that Rousso has been a rare guest at the Qiu Qiu poker tables, but now she’s back, and yesterday she final tabled the Heartland Poker Tour $1,650 Main Event at Soaring Eagle Casino, Mount Pleasant.

 

The three-day event saw 465 entries, which created a prize pool of $666,600 – with $153,323 reserved for the winner. Rousso entered the final table with 1,081,000 (6th) in chips and Main Event Champion Joe Cada hot on her heels with 858,000. Craig Casino was the man to catch with around 3 million in chips.

 

Rousso was off to a great start as she knocked out Mark Johnson in 9th place with pocket jacks against his pair of tens. Rousso was now 4th in chips and looking good. Unfortunately Rousso doubled up Steve Hagar, when she called his shove with pocket tens and was up against his pocket aces, which held. Rousso was now one of the short stacks, and in what became her final hand, she was all in with A8 vs. Danny Hannawa’s A4. Hannawa hit a four on the flop, and Rousso was eliminated in 8th place for $16,665:

 

Even tho I got unlucky in the end, I still made $16,665, so I can’t complain…thank you ALL for your loyalty and support! I’m so blessed!

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