Just over a week ago, the US leg of the 2020 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event reached its final table.
The nine finalists will battle it out live at the Rio All Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas on December 28 to play down to a victor, who will then face international winner Damian Salas in a special heads-up finale which will also be held live at the same venue.
Among those who made it to the final table of the US portion of the event was Ye “YUAN365” Yuan, who is originally from Handan, Hebei, China, but is currently taking Ph.D studies at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
When Yuan entered this year’s biggest poker tournament, he only had $6,774 in lifetime earnings. Now, the Chinese pro just hit the biggest milestone of his poker career after clinching a spot in the final table. He is currently 4th in chips (4,829,459), and if things go his way come December 28, he could be in for a chance to take home his first-ever gold bracelet and become the official 2020 WSOP Main Event champion.
Fedor Holz is Yuan’s Poker Inspiration
Yuan developed an interest in poker when he was just 13 or 14 years old. He only knew the basics of the game and didn’t delve too much into the probability of things. His play was purely based on intuition. However when he started traveling the world, that’s when he knew he needed to learn more about poker and build a career out of playing the game.
He worked in the United Kingdom and later moved to the US for his studies. It was there that he came to know young German poker pro Fedor Holz and his massive accomplishments.
In 2016, the same year that Yuan moved to Wisconsin, Holz captured his first WSOP bracelet in the $111,111 High Roller for One Drop, taking home $4,981,775 at 23 years old. But even prior to his first WSOP victory, the German pro already had an illustrious poker resume winning multiple titles both live and online. Holz’ huge successes inspired Yuan to study probability, improve his skills, and elevate his play.
Reacting to his recent impressive performance, Yuan acknowledged that luck was on his side. The Chinese pro is currently more focused on his Ph.D, but if he wins big in the upcoming final table action, he said might consider playing poker full-time.