Commentary

Rookie Foster Hays wins at WSOP

Updated: June 15, 2011, 12:44 PM ET
By Andrew Feldman | ESPN.com

The "Weekend Warriors" made their presence known during the second weekend of the 2011 World Series of Poker by creating massive fields in the $1,500 and $1,000 buy-in events. These players are mostly amateurs who are just giving the WSOP a chance with hopes of striking big. On Tuesday, the new hero of weekend warriors everywhere was determined. Meet Foster Hays, the champion of the $1,500 buy-in Event 18. He captured one of the largest top-prizes awarded to date, $735,400, and then on Wedneday, was back at work in Texas.

[+] EnlargeHays
WSOP Amateur Foster Hays won his first WSOP bracelet in his first WSOP event.

Outlasting the 3,157 player field wasn't easy for the 25-year-old medical researcher and Yale graduate, but it was a dream come true.

"It was a goal of mine to play in a World Series of Poker event," Hays said after the victory. "I decided on the $1,500 and it was between this and the $1,000 event. I figured that playing the $1,500 event would give me time to play on the weekend. It was just a standard Vegas weekend for me."

That standard weekend resulted in four days of play and one lengthy final table due to nearly five hours of waiting for the ninth-place elimination.

"Mentally it was very tough to just try get through that five-hour stretch," he said. "The big crowd really helped. I thought they were really funny. One of Jordan [Young's] fans said 'Foster -- Australian for Awesome,". I thought that was pretty funny. I got a good kick out of that."

Hays began the final table second in chips and was seated next to Young and Tristan Wade, two of online poker's most respected players.

"I got very lucky. I don't think I was a top-five in skill," admitted the champion, regarding his competition at the final table. "There were a lot of good players. All the young guys were very tough. Tristan Wade and Jordan Young were the toughest opponents and they were on my left and I was really sweating that. I know they probably feel really bad about busting, but I was glad to see them go."

Offering low buy-in events at the WSOP has become a recent trend with hopes of bringing out the casual players. Other than Wade and Young, the final table featured no previous WSOP bracelet winners and minimal WSOP experience. Hays defeated fellow amateur and first-time WSOP casher Casey Kelton to win the title. Kelton earned $454,920.

Other notable finishers included Tony Cousineau (32nd), Christian Harder (43rd) and Chris Moorman (66th).

Below are the complete results of Event 18 at the 2011 World Series of Poker:

Event 18: No-limit hold 'em
Buy-in: $1,500
Entries: 3,157
Prize pool: $4,261,950
Players in the money: 324

1. Foster Hays ($735,400)
2. Casey Kelton ($454,920)
3. Jeffrey Lavelle ($321,947)
4. Allan Le ($233,043)
5. Stanley Tavanese ($170,648)
6. Robert Koss ($126,409)
7. Tristan Wade ($94,700)
8. Philippe Vert ($71,728)
9. Jordan Young ($54,936)
10. Andrea Vezzani ($42,534)
11. Bruce Antman ($42,534)
12. Isaac Kirchner ($42,534)
13. Matthew Davis ($33,285)
14. Tom Carman ($33,285)
15. William Douglas-Smith ($33,285)
16. Matthew Wood ($26,338)
17. Dylan Thomassie ($26,338)
18. Shoaib Makani ($26,338)
19. Mathieu Poutine ($21,054)
20. Zachary Ray ($21,054)
21. Kyle White ($21,054)
22. Dennis Marcum ($21,054)
23. Bryan Barrile ($21,054)
24. Kenny Nguyen ($21,054)
25. Anton Brenner ($21,054)
26. Thomas White ($21,054)
27. Waseem Tarawneh ($21,054)
28. Ismail Abousharkh ($17,005)
29. Sameer Aljanedi ($17,005)
30. John Di-Matteo ($17,005)
31. Robert Lipkin ($17,005)
32. Tony Cousineau ($17,005)
33. Simon Lam ($17,005)
34. Peter Ketterling ($17,005)
35. John Hewitt ($17,005)
36. Efrain Lopez ($17,005)
37. Grantland Hillman ($13,893)
38. Casey Stewart ($13,893)
39. Andy Phan ($13,893)
40. Eric Hershler ($13,893)
41. Keith Uchima ($13,893)
42. Nicholas Rampone ($13,893)
43. Christian Harder ($13,893)
44. Todd Melander ($13,893)
45. Stuart Stone ($13,893)
46. Dominique Mosley ($11,464)
47. Timothy Stearns ($11,464)
48. Samuel Iola ($11,464)
49. Jason Hammerman ($11,464)
50. Daniel Dasilva ($11,464)
51. Tad Jurgens ($11,464)
52. Andrey Danilyuk ($11,464)
53. Maksim Bura ($11,464)
54. Nelson Resendiz ($11,464)
55. David Hickman ($9,546)
56. Henry Lu ($9,546)
57. Nicolas Troubat ($9,546)
58. Yaroob Kaskorkis ($9,546)
59. Jeffrey Papola ($9,546)
60. Ben Tollerene ($9,546)
61. Zachary Hench ($9,546)
62. Evan Dollinger ($9,546)
63. Kirill Rabtsov ($9,546)
64. Pascal LeFrancois ($8,012)
65. Adam Stoneham ($8,012)
66. Chris Moorman ($8,012)
67. Timothy Tuveson ($8,012)
68. Zachary Gilbert ($8,012)
69. Garrett Beckman ($8,012)
70. Sondre Svanevik ($8,012)
71. Jason Paquin ($8,012)
72. Helen Ellis ($8,012)
73. Edward Ho ($6,819)
74. Andrew Brussard ($6,819)
75. Alexander Hering ($6,819)
76. Dan Kelly ($6,819)
77. David Briedis ($6,819)
78. Tomas Macnamara ($6,819)
79. Matthew Hinton ($6,819)
80. Michael Paciorek ($6,819)
81. Charles Moore ($6,819)
82. Raymond Matthaei ($5,838)
83. Thomas Morgensten ($5,838)
84. Prahlad Friedman ($5,838)
85. David Ivers ($5,838)
86. Nicholas Goedert ($5,838)
87. Eric Monte ($5,838)
88. Laurence Houghton ($5,838)
89. Philippe Plouffe ($5,838)
90. Richard Toth ($5,838)
91. Jesse Yaginuma ($5,071)
92. Jonathan Turner ($5,071)
93. Gregory Brooks ($5,071)
94. Joanne Monteavaro ($5,071)
95. Bobby Poe ($5,071)
96. Troy Jones ($5,071)
97. Stefan Hendrickx ($5,071)
98. Michael Giampa ($5,071)
99. Justin Marsh ($5,071)
100. Erica Schoenberg ($4,432)
101. Ryan Fair ($4,432)
102. Taylor Shpur ($4,432)
103. Brian Fleming ($4,432)
104. Kevin Buck ($4,432)
105. Jeffrey Forrest ($4,432)
106. Isidro Sifuentes ($4,432)
107. Aneris Adomkevicius ($4,432)
108. David Hicks ($4,432)
109. Noah Weimer ($4,432)
110. Jussi Jaatinen ($4,432)
111. Roy Sachs ($4,432)
112. Ryan Buckholtz ($4,432)
113. Matt Iles ($4,432)
114. Robert Rottmann ($4,432)
115. Luke Fields ($4,432)
116. Gabriel Vezina ($4,432)
117. Erhart Edquist ($4,432)
118. Andrew Mcelroy ($4,432)
119. Quang Tran ($4,432)
120. Thai Tolly ($4,432)
121. Chris Viox ($4,432)
122. Rasmus Sibast ($4,432)
123. Todd Terry ($4,432)
124. David Rood ($4,432)
125. Ryan Daut ($4,432)
126. Marc Blais ($4,432)
127. Larry Rogers ($4,432)
128. Michael Jordan ($4,432)
129. Tam Hang ($4,432)
130. Nathan Tuthill ($4,432)
131. Douglas Johnson ($4,432)
132. David Roper ($4,432)
133. Matas Dilpsas ($4,432)
134. Jon Eaton ($4,432)
135. Jeffrey Reiter ($4,432)
136. Tony Kassouf ($4,432)
137. Brian Egger ($4,432)
138. Danny Noam ($4,432)
139. Joseph Giampietro ($4,432)
140. Jim Sachinidis ($4,432)
141. Eric David ($4,432)
142. Derrick Huang ($4,432)
143. Joseph Montanaro ($4,432)
144. Michael Lawson ($4,432)
145. Kenneth Eng ($3,920)
146. Nikolai Sears ($3,920)
147. Jonathan Lane ($3,920)
148. Ramey Shaio ($3,920)
149. Darren Kennedy ($3,920)
150. Jeffrey Lambert ($3,920)
151. Elliot Smith ($3,920)
152. Conor Shelly ($3,920)
153. John Ross ($3,920)
154. Grant Wall ($3,920)
155. Michael Compolongo ($3,920)
156. Jeff Burow ($3,920)
157. Kyle Shigano ($3,920)
158. Brandon Bowyer ($3,920)
159. Adam Bage ($3,920)
160. Houston White ($3,920)
161. David Pecaski ($3,920)
162. Rob Roseman ($3,920)
163. Ronald Stubing ($3,920)
164. Matthew Fox ($3,920)
165. Chan Pak ($3,920)
166. Aaron Amator ($3,920)
167. Eric Appel ($3,920)
168. James Yap ($3,920)
169. Yuk Mui ($3,920)
170. Rory Okubo ($3,920)
171. Scott Epstein ($3,920)
172. Jose Alvarenga ($3,920)
173. Jonathan Boal ($3,920)
174. Nicholas Grippo ($3,920)
175. Jeffrey Romano ($3,920)
176. Miguel Vazquez ($3,920)
177. Julian Horan ($3,920)
178. Phi Nguyen ($3,920)
179. John Zayes ($3,920)
180. Dennis Chae ($3,920)
181. Ryan Mattson ($3,920)
182. Robert Suer ($3,920)
183. Michael Bry ($3,920)
184. John Leathart ($3,920)
185. Karen Sarkisyan ($3,920)
186. Alexis Cordova-Nieto ($3,920)
187. Bryan Leskowitz ($3,920)
188. Peter Lewis ($3,920)
189. Patrick Spinelli ($3,920)
190. Albert Winchester ($3,494)
191. James Hess ($3,494)
192. David Daneshgar ($3,494)
193. Farhan Madhani ($3,494)
194. Dwyte Pilgrim ($3,494)
195. Qinghai Pan ($3,494)
196. Sumanth Reddy ($3,494)
197. William Vizcarrondo ($3,494)
198. Patrick Howard ($3,494)
199. Wesley Pantling ($3,494)
200. Arash Ghaneian ($3,494)
201. Ronit Chamani ($3,494)
202. Rogelio Camerino ($3,494)
203. Jason Riesenberg ($3,494)
204. Ron Worrell ($3,494)
205. Ken West ($3,494)
206. Mayu Roca Uribe ($3,494)
207. Stewart Newman ($3,494)
208. Walton Carlisle ($3,494)
209. Joel Silver ($3,494)
210. Daniel Doucet ($3,494)
211. Roland Israelashvili ($3,494)
212. David Leighton ($3,494)
213. Brandon Fish ($3,494)
214. Dan Martin ($3,494)
215. Frederic Penel ($3,494)
216. Jonathan Ziegler ($3,494)
217. Zohair Karim ($3,494)
218. Martin Green ($3,494)
219. Paul Siem ($3,494)
220. Hafiz Khan ($3,494)
221. Stanley Bratten ($3,494)
222. Chris Klodnicki ($3,494)
223. Thomas Follain ($3,494)
224. Junki Lee ($3,494)
225. David Quang ($3,494)
226. Stephen Laake ($3,494)
227. Anthony Bustamante ($3,494)
228. John Nieznanski ($3,494)
229. Stewart Yancik ($3,494)
230. Ryan Moriarty ($3,494)
231. Maxim Sorokin ($3,494)
232. Nick Niergarth ($3,494)
233. Justin Bradford ($3,494)
234. Fabrice Halleux ($3,494)
235. Shawn Stott ($3,153)
236. Shane Giese ($3,153)
237. Brian Brunner ($3,153)
238. Robert Brewer ($3,153)
239. Michael Bena ($3,153)
240. Billy Griner ($3,153)
241. Erick Lindgren ($3,153)
242. Robert Palfrey ($3,153)
243. Shawn Lin ($3,153)
244. Matthew Emmel ($3,153)
245. Gary Hasson ($3,153)
246. Frank Wood ($3,153)
247. Derrick Charles ($3,153)
248. David To ($3,153)
249. Ilan Rouah ($3,153)
250. Jarret Mcmillan ($3,153)
251. Michael Carlson ($3,153)
252. Erik Aude ($3,153)
253. Frank Rusnak ($3,153)
254. Gary Somerville ($3,153)
255. Allie Prescott ($3,153)
256. David Boggess ($3,153)
257. Joseph Ward ($3,153)
258. Thomas Ponczko ($3,153)
259. Sean Pramuk ($3,153)
260. Nicolas Roygignac ($3,153)
261. Jeffrey Bergerson ($3,153)
262. Jack Deutsch ($3,153)
263. Jeffrey Schnettler ($3,153)
264. Jean Francois Talbot ($3,153)
265. Matthew Batoon ($3,153)
266. Keith Ferrera ($3,153)
267. Wilfried Harig ($3,153)
268. Rickey Ribble ($3,153)
269. Eduard Scharf ($3,153)
270. Alexander Keating ($3,153)
271. Benjamin Jenkins ($3,153)
272. Richard Lutes ($3,153)
273. Matt Stout ($3,153)
274. Silma Macalou ($3,153)
275. Matthew Berto ($3,153)
276. Bradley Morin ($3,153)
277. Joseph Marchal ($3,153)
278. James Casement ($3,153)
279. Aleksandar Jelic ($3,153)
280. Dash Dudley ($2,855)
281. Alan Sass ($2,855)
282. Ian Nelson ($2,855)
283. Jason Munro ($2,855)
284. Eugene Castro ($2,855)
285. Desmond Portano ($2,855)
286. Salim Zakhem ($2,855)
287. Seth Davies ($2,855)
288. Edward Hill ($2,855)
289. Tom Braband ($2,855)
290. Cecil Miller ($2,855)
291. Mark Ioli ($2,855)
292. Anthony Alvarez ($2,855)
293. Humberto Brenes ($2,855)
294. Chris Hyong Chang ($2,855)
295. Elliott Zaydman ($2,855)
296. Devin Limburg ($2,855)
297. Deborah Gudinas ($2,855)
298. Michael Hopkins ($2,855)
299. Hans Winzeler ($2,855)
300. Mikhail Petrov ($2,855)
301. Rajesh Vohra ($2,855)
302. Darrel Dier ($2,855)
303. Michael Polcari ($2,855)
304. Filipp Khavin ($2,855)
305. George Panagakis ($2,855)
306. Kunimaro Kojo ($2,855)
307. Christopher Swan ($2,855)
308. Randy Cooper ($2,855)
309. Sean Giesbrecht ($2,855)
310. Mike Walker ($2,855)
311. Michael Tyson ($2,855)
312. Lawrence Hadley ($2,855)
313. Charles Frasier ($2,855)
314. Christopher Park ($2,855)
315. Andrew Sandomire ($2,855)
316. Tai Phan ($2,855)
317. Jason Ryan ($2,855)
318. Bryan Mcdonald ($2,855)
319. Michael Sissel ($2,855)
320. Shaun Suller ($2,855)
321. Mark Lange ($2,855)
322. David Taylor ($2,855)
323. Timothy Hebert ($2,855)
324. Robert Im ($2,855)

Andrew Feldman is ESPN.com's Poker Editor. He is the host of the Poker Edge Podcast and co-host of ESPN Inside Deal. Andrew has covered the poker industry for ESPN since 2004.

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