It appears that if you would like to win a UKIPT Main Event title you had better be Scottish or at least residing in Scotland after Edinburgh’s Robbie Bull became the third consecutive Scot to bag himself a UKIPT crown (the other’s being Ludovic Geilich in Marbella and Alan Gold in Galway).
Bull sat down at the eight-handed final table sixth in chips, but a quick, aggressive start saw him accumulate enough chips to find himself in second place. From there, he never really looked back.
UKIPT London Main Event Final Table Seat Draw
The final table’s first casualty was Paul Zimbler. After arriving at the Grand Connaught Rooms fashionably late (due to traffic problems), Zimbler got to work trying to increase his short-stack. A split pot with Dario Sammartino didn’t help his cause much and a hand with Karl Mahrenholz certainly didn’t because it sent Zimbler to the rail.
Mahrenholz opened to 125,000 from middle position and then called when Zimbler three-bet all-in from the cutoff for around 500,000. Mahrenholz showed and needed some help from the board as Zimbler’s was the better of the two holdings. Help did arrive for Mahrenholz on the flop and when the turn and river were the and , Zimbler’s tournament ended.
Half an hour later and British based Polish pro Patryk Slusarek made a move on Irish Open champion Ian Simpson that did not go to plan. Simpson opened the preflop betting round with a raise from the small blind, only to see Slusarek move all in for approximately 1.3 million chips. Usually, this huge overbet would have claimed the blinds, antes and Simpson’s raise, but not this time because Simpson held and called. Slusarek could only muster the and when the board ran out it was game over for Slusarek.
Mahrenholz Loses Crucial Coinflip
Next to go was the popular Mahrenholz who lost a coinflip when it mattered the most. Mahrenholz, a member of The Hitsquad, open-shoved for 1,115,000 from under the gun with a pair of eights, a move that looked set to win the substantial blinds and antes. That was until overnight chip leader Jack Salter re-shoved from the button with . The blinds passed and the dealer got to work fanning out the flop. The turn was followed onto the board by the river, Salter’s pair of aces bested the “snowmen” of Mahrenholz and the latter exited in sixth place.
Bullets for Simpson
Shortly after Mahrenholz’s demise, Sammartino followed him to the sidelines having busted in fifth place. The Italian decided the best way to play with a 1,200,000 stack under-the-gun was to move all in. Unfortunately for Sammartino, Simpson woke up with pocket aces and had one of the easier calls of his career. Sammartino paired his king on the river of the board, but it was a case of too little too late and his tournament came to an abrupt end.
Denmark’s Laase Frost saw his stack melt away when he was unable to avoid a flush in a hand with Bull. On a flop, Frost check-raised Bull’s 155,000 continuation-bet to 450,000. Bull then raised to 765,000 and called when Frost shipped in his 1,500,000 stack. Frost’s was the best hand as Bull’s holding was the . The turn improved Bull to a diamond flush and left Frost drawing dead. The inconsequential showed up on the river and the UKIPT London Main Event became an all British affair with three players remaining.
Salt in the Wound
Forty minutes passed before the heads-up sage of the tournament was reached. Salter opened to 205,000 from the button and both blinds called. Bull and Simpson checked the flop, Salter bet 240,000 and only Simpson called. The turn saw Simpson lead for 455,000 and then instantly call when Salter moved al in for 2,850,000. Salter turned the onto their backs, but was in a whole world of pain as Simpson held for a straight. The was not one of Salter’s outs and he busted in third place, leaving Simpson and Bull to battle it out one-on-one for the title.
Simpson held a 7.85 million to 6.895 million chip lead over Bull going into the final stages of the tournament, making it a close affair indeed. Before play resumed after a scheduled break, the two finalists decided to discuss a deal that would lessen the gap between the £136,875 first place prize and the £83,400 runner-up prize – a £53,475 difference! A deal was agreed that saw Simpson secure £106,869.23, Bull claim £103,405.77 and the eventual champion winning the trophy and an additional £10,000.
Bull took the lead early on in the heads-up match and it looked like it was going to be one-way traffic until Simpson mounted an amazing comeback that completely turned the tie on its head. At the first break and an hour into the match, Simpson had increased his lead to 10.48 million to Bull’s 4.465 million.
That lead reversed shortly after returning from a break when Simpson called Bull’s four-bet jam with and found he was ahead of Bull’s . That was only the case until the flop. The turn did not alter anything while the river improved Bull to an unneeded flush.
Minutes later and it was all over. Simpson made it 375,000 to play, Bull three-bet all in to set Simpson all in and Simpson called. Bull held the and was behind to the of Simpson. The flop kept Simpson in front, but the gave Bull outs to a flush. One of those outs fell on the river, the , busting Simpson and leaving Bull to be crowned champion of the UKIPT London Main Event.
UKIPT London Main Event Final Table Results
*reflects a heads-up deal
Data and lead image courtesy of the PokerStars Blog.
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