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Soi Nguyen, WSOP's last amateur player, finishes ninth

6 Nov 2010

By Aaron Todd
The World Series of Poker's lone remaining amateur player became the first casualty of the November Nine, as Cuong "Soi" Nguyen's ace-king fell to Jason Senti's pocket queens. Nguyen, who entered the final table in eighth place, took home $811,823, all of which was paid to him when the final table was determined in July.

Nguyen left the tournament – accompanied by scores of friends and family chanting "Soi! Soi! Soi!" – confident that he played his best despite the early exit.

"I played all my hands correct today," said Nguyen in the lobby of the Penn & Teller Theater inside the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. "I wasn't afraid (of finishing ninth), because nobody expected me to get this far anyway. Any further I got would have just been gravy, but I lost a race and I'm okay with that.

Soi Nguyen was the lone amateur to advance to the November Nine.

Soi Nguyen was the lone amateur to advance to the November Nine. (photo by Vin Narayanan)

"(The last four months have been) the best four months of my life. I wouldn't trade it for anything. It's been awesome."

Nguyen refused to offer a prediction or say who he's rooting for to win the Main Event and the $8.9 million first-place prize, saying the nine have become good friends through Facebook and cell phone messages over the last four months.

Nguyen, who works as a manager for a company that makes and distributes products related to orthopedic surgery, says that he does not plan to make poker a full-time profession, though he's not exactly sure when he's going to go back to work after the weekend in Vegas.

"I don't know, good question," said Nguyen when asked about his return to work. "Where's my boss at?"

While he doesn't plan on playing high-stakes poker in the future, Nguyen did say that he enjoys playing high-stakes blackjack for as much as $500 a hand. When asked what his betting strategy was, he replied: "I don't know … bet more when you're winning."

Nguyen, who was wearing Full Tilt Poker patches leading up to the November Nine, wore Poker After Dark patches during play today. WSOP officials announced earlier this year that no more than three players could wear patches advertising the same online poker room at the final table. It appears that Full Tilt (which had seven players make the November Nine) got creative by outfitting several players with Poker After Dark patches, advertising the late-night poker television show paid for by the same online company. At the post-bust-out interview, Nguyen was once again sporting Full Tilt patches.
 
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