In 2017, Brazil’s Vivian “Vivi” Saliba, who signed on as an 888poker Ambassador back in November, made noise at the World Series of Poker. The 24-year-old became the youngest female to enter the World Series of Poker Main Event, which she jumped into after notching a career-best $47,923 in Event #54: $10,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Championship.
On Saturday, the 2018 WSOP kicked off the same $10K PLO championship, and we decided to spend some time observing Saliba. Given the tournament was played eight-handed, an orbit consisted of eight hands. We decided to spend three full orbits at Table 507 with Saliba starting with around 50 minutes remaining in Level 6 (300/600).
Saliba was sitting with a shorter stack of 13,000, and before we get to the hands, here’s what she had to say about what happened prior to our arrival.
“Very rough start. I turned the nuts in a multi-way pot. I had two pair also. My opponent had the same straight and a better redraw. He potted me, and I just called. The river paired the board and put out a flush. He bet it small, like 15% of the pot. It seemed like a bluff, so I called. He also had two pair and filled up on the river. I was knocked down to 20 blinds, and I’ve been struggling since then. That was like four hours ago.”
Here’s what we observed in our time with Saliba. Remember, poker can be quite a boring game as you’ll see by some of these hands.
3 PLO Orbits with Vivian Saliba
Hand #1 (Saliba is in the cutoff): Poker Pro, Noah Schwartz, limped under-the-gun and four players, including Saliba, called to see the 4♦6♦6♠ flop, which they all checked. When the dealer burned and turned the 4♠, the player in the small blind bet 1,500 and only Schwartz called to see the 2♥ river. Action went check-check, and Schwartz tabled the 8♥8♦A♦7♦ to win the pot.
Hand #2 (Hijack): The under-the-gun player raised to 1,200, the next player popped it to 3,000, and Saliba folded.
Hand #3 (Lojack): Saliba folded after the UTG player opened for 2,000.
Hand #4 (UTG+1): The UTG player raised to 1,200 and Saliba folded.
Hand #5 (UTG): Saliba folded.
Hand #6 (Big Blind): The player in the lojack raised to 1,500 and Schwartz came along from the hijack. Saliba called, and the three went to a 6♠9♠J♦ flop. Saliba checked, the lojack continued for 3,000, and both Schwartz and Saliba released.
Hand #7 (Small Blind): The button raised to 2,100 and Saliba folded.
Hand #8 (Button): The cutoff raised and Saliba folded.
Hand #9 (Cutoff): The hijack raised and Saliba folded.
Hand #10 (Hijack): A middle-position player raised to 2,000 and Saliba folded.
Hand #11 (Lojack): Saliba limped, and the player in the cutoff did the same. The big blind then exercised his option with a raise to 2,700 and Saliba folded. Long story short, the player in the big blind busted to the cutoff to leave the table seven handed.
Hand #12 (UTG+1): The UTG player raised and Saliba folded.
Hand #13 (UTG): Saliba folded.
Hand #14 (Big Blind): The player on the button raised to 2,000 and Saliba folded.
Hand #15 (Small Blind): The UTG player raised to 1,500 and everyone folded including Saliba.
Hand #16 (Button): The cutoff raised to 1,500 and Saliba folded.
Hands #17-21: Saliba folds and is down to 8,500 at the end of Level 6
Hand #22 (Small Blind): First hand of Level 7 (400/800) Saliba limps and the big blind checks his option. Both players check the 9♠5♦A♠ flop and then Saliba check-folds to a bet of 1,500 on the 7♥ turn.
Hand #23 (Button): A player in early position limped, and Saliba does the same. The small blind called, big blind checks his option, and the flop comes down Q♣K♠2♦. Everyone checks and the 8♣ comes on the turn. Saliba checks and then folds to a bet.
Hand #24 (Cutoff): Schwartz limped under the gun and then called when Saliba raised to 3,600 from the cutoff. When the flop came down 2♦10♥9♠, Schwartz led out for 2,000 and Saliba thought long and hard before deciding to raise all in for just 3,300. Schwartz called.
Neither player had much, and Saliba was technically ahead. However, the 6♦ turn paired Schwartz and the K♠ river made it two pair. Saliba wished the table luck and took her leave from the tournament.
“It is very frustrating, but in the end, it’s just a tournament like all others,” Saliba said. “The good news is I have patience, so hopefully patience pays off later in the series.”