Neil McFayden Takes Down the GUKPT Luton Main Event (£58,326)
New Zealand’s Neil McFayden became a Grosvenor UK Poker Tour Main Event champion in the early hours of Monday morning when he came out on top of a 304-strong field in the 2018 GUKPT Luton Main Event.
2018 GUKPT Luton Main Event Final Table Results
*reflects a four-handed deal
The 304 starters were whittled to much more manageable 18 for the final day’s play, each of them guaranteed at least £2,740. This is because the money bubble burst late on Day 2 when Jamie Geraghty and Emran Hussain got their stacks into the middle on a flop. Geraghty showed pocket fives for a set and was against a pair of jacks. The turn was the ten of diamonds, followed by the ten of spades on the river to give Hussain a bigger full house! Geraghty busted in 27th place to burst the money bubble.
Well-known players such as Rob Boon, James Rann, Laurence Houghton, Angelo Milioto and Richard Kellett busted before the end of play on Day 2.
Team partypoker’s Adam Neal was the first casualty of the final day’s play, busting in 18th place. He was joined at the cashier’s desk by World Series of Poker bracelet winner Alex Lindop soon after. As the clock struck 4:00 p.m., the final table of nine was set.
Final table set
Almost immediately after the final table’s action kicked off, Alan Gray got his short stack into the middle with ace-seven against the ace-deuce of Yiannis Liperis and the latter spiked two pair on the flop to reduce the player count by one.
Eighth-place went to Justin Tsu who got 16 big blinds into the middle of the felt holding ace-queen only to run unto the dominating ace-king of Ben Maregedze. Neither player improved their holding so Maregedze’s king-kicker won him the pot.
Emran Hussain, the man who was fortunate on the money bubble, busted in seventh-place. Hussain was short stacked and pushed all-in from the small blind with eight-seven of diamonds. Liperis was laying in wait in the big blind with pocket jacks, which went on to flop a set to leave Hussain drawing dead.
The players gained even more elbow room when Alex Zeligman was eliminated in sixth-place. It was one of tournament poker’s many coinflips that took care of Zeligman, his pocket treys proving no match for the ace-queen of Liperis that paired the ace on the flop before turning a full house.
Five became four with the elimination of Maregedze who committed his final 12 big blinds with a suited ace-ten into to lose out to the pocket jacks in the hand of David Clarkson.
Four-handed play began at 9:30 p.m. on Sunday night and there were no exits for more than an hour. This prompted the players to discuss a deal for the remaining prize pool. A deal was struck that left £5,000 to play for and play resumed.
Almost immediately after resuming play, Clarkson was brushed aside by Liperis who had moved all-in from the small blind with queen-ten and Clarkson called with ace-eight. A ten on the turn was enough to bust Clarkson and leave only three players in the hunt for the title.
Sam Goodman’s nine-eight then fell foul to the pair of tens on McFayden’s hand to set heads-up. The one-on-one section spanned an hour and saw the chip lead exchange hands on numerous occasions. The final hand, the most important, saw Liperis move all-in for 12 big blinds with ace-five and McFayden call with king-four. A king on the flop proved to be enough to resign Liperis to his second runner-up finish and to crown McFayden the GUKPT Luton champion.
Leg 8 of the 2018 GUKPT is the final leg before the season-ending Grand Final and takes place in the seaside town ofBlackpool between Nov. 4-11. The Main Event is a £200,000 guaranteed affair costing £1,110 to enter unless you win yourself a cheap seat via one of the many online satellites held by Grosvenor Poker.