Maria Lampropulos has become the first woman player to win the main event at the renowned PokerStars Carribean Adventure. The 36-year-old Argentinian took home a tidy seven figures amounting to a total of $1,081,100 and a Platinum Pass (worth $30,000) to the PokerStars Players Championship.
Next year's PokerStars Players Championship will be held at the Atlantis Resort, Paradise Island, so Lampropolus will be jet-setting there in style. The poker pro has now earned nearly $2.8 million in total playing live poker tournament games throughout her extremely successful and ground-breaking career.
To win her $1m dollar prize, Lampropulos had to come out on top in a field of 582 players over a gruelling six days of play. The name may seem familiar because in April of last year Lampropulos also won $1,255,004 at the PartyPoker Live Millions Dusk Till Dawn. Surprisingly, she only began playing poker professionally in 2014.
The PCA Main Event final table for 2018 was by no means an easy one for Lampropulos, who faced off against Koray Aldemir, Adrian Mateos and eventual runner-up Shawn Buchanan. After starting 3rd in chips, Lampropulos battled her way to a heads-up contest with Buchanan, better known as “buck21” on PokerStars.
Lampropulos had also knocked out the second last woman player, Liv Boeree of Team PokerStars, to put an end to day four of the tournament. To say that the final table was full of quality players would be an absolute understatement - any single one of them could have walked away with the title.
Each are renowned in their own right amongst and feature prominently with top online poker sites. While Lampropulos received some Twitter flack for excessive tanking, the quality of the PokerStars live stream was excellent and was a joy for the many viewers who heralded Lampropulos’ win across the web.
Lampropulos’ lead up to the title was by no means smooth. Buchanan was in an excellent position at the beginning of the three-handed session, with over 60% of the chips in play. After Daniel Coupla, Adrian Mateos and Koray Aldemir were sent packing the two players began to hash it out and Buchanan was put on the backfoot by Lampropulos who doubled up once with A-8 and twice with A-T.
In the 14 years since the inception of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, every winner had been a man which makes Lampropulos’ win at the event even sweeter. Beaming with happiness, she spoke of her milestone win at the event:
"I am very proud. Every woman here - dealers, floors - every woman is very happy for me, and I'm grateful for that."
No American players managed to play at the final table of the main event, but 22 US players did make the list of 87 who cashed. Darren Rabinowitz was the first player to land in the money, earning $17,500 for coming in at 87th. Unsurprisingly, 8 US players made the top 40 including Sharman Olshan who came 33rd for $25,400 and Aaron Olshan who came 39th with the same amount of prize money.
The PCA is always a much-anticipated event on the PokerStars tournament calendar and always registers major interests from fans and industry players throughout the world. This year was no exception, with the beautiful surroundings of Atlantis Resort providing a perfect atmosphere for players to relax during down time.
The championship started in 2004 and has awarded over $150,000,000 in prize money. From its beginnings on a cruise ship making its way around the Gulf of Mexico to the incredible live event it is today, the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure will surely remain a staple on Poker calendars around the world for many years to come!