Villa-Lobos: 'Brazil Could Be Second-Biggest Poker Market in the World'
Published on Jun 2014 by Pokerlistings
Nicolau Villa-Lobos and Bruno Kawauti should probably be in Rio de Janeiro watching the World Cup but their insatiable desire for poker action has brought them all the way to Las Vegas for the World Series of Poker. Poker is getting huge in Brazil and according to these two, it's going to get even bigger. Villa-Lobos and Kawauti both agreed that Brazil could host a World Series of Poker, and that it would be bigger than either WSOP Europe or WSOP Asia-Pacific. While poker continues to grow in their home country, both these members of Team 888poker continue to travel the world in search of big tournaments. PokerListings.com caught them on a break to find out how it feels being away from home for such an important event, and where they see poker in Brazil going in years to come.
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Scotsman Brendan Doogan has been playing low-stakes online poker for years and decided to take a shot at the step-satellites for Battle of Malta on 888poker, starting at just 1 cent. He fought his way through six different qualifiers to win his BOM package and managed to cash in the Main Event for €1,250. Doogan says he's had a blast and he'll be playing tons more qualifiers in the future. Check out his conversation with BOM Host Maria Ho to hear more about his incredible journey. Stay tuned to PokerListings.com for more video updates from the 2014 Battle of Malta.
Will Tonking is a professional poker player but he's never had an opportunity like this before. Tonking has made the biggest final table in poker, the WSOP Main Event November Nine, and has a chance at the $10 million first-place prize and the title of world champion of poker when he returns to Las Vegas in a few months. Tonking is from New Jersey and before this event had just $93,000 in live tournament earnings. He's already guaranteed more than $730,000 for making this table and has a chance at much more. Check out this November Nine video interview to get to know Tonking better and keep watching PokerListings.com this November to find out who will become the next world champion of poker.
Felix Stephensen is a 23-year-old poker pro from Oslo, Norway, who now lives in London playing online Pot-Limit Omaha. Stephensen admits that he has very little experience playing Texas Hold'em or live poker tournaments but that didn't stop him from making it to the final table of the 2014 World Series of Poker Main Event. Stephensen is guaranteed at least $730k for making the 2014 November Nine but has a chance at the $10 million first-place prize and the title of world champion. Stephensen enters the final table second in chips and with nearly three months to study up on his opponents and Hold'em strategy he's got a great shot at becoming the first-ever Norwegian poker world champion. Check out the full video interview with 2014 WSOP November Niner Felix Stephensen and check back in November to see if Stephensen will come out on top.
Martin Jacobson has a chance to become the first Swedish world champion of poker in history after making the 2014 WSOP Main Event November Nine final table. Before this event Jacobsen had earned almost $5 million playing live poker events. He's got to triple that total in November when he'll be competing for the $10 million first-place prize and the title of world champion. Jacobson had played in seven WSOP Main Events before this and had never made it to the dinner break on Day 2. He told PokerListings this year felt totally different. Jacobson also said he didn't have a single losing level for four days. Get the whole story on 2014 WSOP November Niner Martin Jacobson with this in-depth video interview.
For two straight years Dutch poker players have made the final table of the WSOP Main Event and this year it's Jorryt van Hoof looking to become the first-ever world champion of poker from the Netherlands. van Hoof has been a successful Pot-Limit Omaha cash-game player for years and even owns the poker website nederpoker.com. Before this event he only had $350,000 in live tournament earnings. He's already guaranteed over $730K for making this final table but he's got a chance at up to $10 million should he emerge victorious in November. van Hoof explains to PokerListings
Billy Pappas told PokerListings he's never played a poker tournament with a buy-in bigger than $500 but thanks to a backer buying him into this event he's got a shot at the title of world champion and $10 million. If Pappas can do it he'll add that title to the five world championship of foosball titles he already has. Pappas works as a poker dealer when he's not traveling the world playing foosball and said that the $730k he's already guaranteed will change his life in a big way. We can only imagine what would happen if he won eight figures. Pappas said he was inspired to play poker when a friend turned $1 into $27,000 in two days on PokerStars. Pappas enters the November Nine final table sixth in chips and will be looking to chip up against a line-up he admits has more poker experience than him. Check out the full video interview with 2014 WSOP November Niner Billy Pappas and keep watching PokerListings.com to start your own poker journey.
Bruno Politano is the first to ever make the final table of the World Series of Poker Main Event and according to Politano, he's going to have an entire country cheering him on in November. "This is not just my dream. This is a country's dream," Bruno told PokerListings.com. Politano has been playing poker for many years but still doesn't consider himself a pro. He owns a women's fashion store in Brazil but it's safe to say he'll be able to do whatever he wants if he wins this event and the $10 million first-place prize. "Until yesterday poker was the second most important thing in my life but today it's the first." Check out the full WSOP November Nine video interview with Bruno Politano and keep watching PokerListings for the latest and greatest poker content.
Dan Sindelar is originally from a small town of 800 people in Nebraska but moved to Las Vegas to pursue his dream of playing poker professionally. He's been at it for almost a decade and although he's had success in cash games and tournaments both online and live, nothing he's done even comes close to this. In November Sindelar will have a shot at $10 million and the title of world champion. Sindelar's father Bill is a world champion power-lifter and Dan told PokerListings that he wants to win so there can be two world champions in the Sindelar family. Sindelar enters the final table fifth in chips but is certainly considered one of the stronger players remaining. Check out this full November Nine video interview with Dan Sindelar to get to know him better.
Mark Newhouse is an experienced professional poker players who is on the verge of the biggest opportunity of his poker career, again. One year ago Newhouse made the final table of the 2013 WSOP Main Event and somehow he's managed to do it again in 2014. Last November Newhouse returned to the Rio with a shot at the world championship but ended up being the first player eliminated. Going into this year's finale he's third in chips and has vowed he will not finish ninth again. Newhouse told PokerListings what this accomplishment means to him and how much last year's experience will help him in November.