Day 4 completed
|Blinds||30,000 / 60,000|
Day 4 completed
In what proved to be a dominant display of power poker, Taiwan's Chou Chien Fa took down his first major tournament title, earning the prestigious honor of becoming the first man to be crowned Poker King Cup Taiwan Main Event Champion at the poker tables of the Chinese Texas Hold’em Poker Association in Taipei, Taiwan
Fa came into the heads-up confrontation against the Philippine's David Erquiaga with all the momentum and an almost unassailable 13-to-1 chip lead after eliminating the UK's Alex Lindop in third place.
Erquiaga played a great tournament, showing plenty of grit, but at the end the slopes of Fa's mountainous chip stack proved too hard to scale. Heads-up lasted all of two hands, with Fa moving all-in from the button in the second hand with eight-seven of spades and Erquiaga making the call for his tournament life with ace-deuce offsuit. Fa spiked a pair of sevens on the flop, improving to two-pair on the eight of hearts river to take the title and the TWD 1,639,000 ($52,300) top prize.
PKC Taiwan Main Event Final Table Results
|Place||Winner||Country/Region||Prize (TWD)||Prize (USD)|
|1||Chou Chien Fa||Taiwan||1,639,000||52,300|
|3||Alex Lindop||United Kingdom||739,700||23,600|
|5||Lee Kuan Wee||Malaysia||411,000||13,115|
|6||Yu You Ci Tsai||Taiwan||328,600||10,485|
|7||Wai King Cheung||Hong Kong||273,000||8,710|
|8||Jae Wook Shin||South Korea||218,800||6,980|
|9||Kuang Hung Lee||Taiwan||164,000||5,230|
A stern man, Fa cracked a rare smile immediately after his win, which he celebrated with his watching rail before returning to shake his opponent's hand before posing for the obligatory winner's shot.
"I don't play all that many events and I'm not a professional poker player," said Fa via the aid of a translator immediately after his momentous win, "so I wasn't thinking too much about it on the table during the game. However, I'm very happy!"
"I finished runner-up in the Red Dragon before, and while this is a slightly smaller event than that, and my favorite buy-in range is HKD 15,000-20,000 (~$1,900-2,500), so this was a little lower, but it still feels very good to win!"
Playing recreationally for seven years, the 50-year-old professional commercial photographer seemed extremely comfortable piloting a big stack for a man who admitted he rarely plays more than four or five events a year. That makes the $310,000-plus (including this event) in live tournament winnings Fa sports on his poker resume all the more impressive, and he handled the favorite tag with aplomb.
Final Day Action
Fa returned for the fourth and final day third in the counts, after leading his Day 1C starting flight and bagging up the chip lead Day 2. The only reason Fa was not leading coming into the final was the fact that Hong Kong's Wai King Cheung put on a last-minute burst of pace on the penultimate Day 3 to edge into the lead.
While Fa started slowly on the fourth and final day, the action was high octane from the get-go, with the whole final table wrapped up in a little over four hours.
It was Malaysia's Lee Kuan Wee who scored the first casualty of the final table, waking up with pocket aces in early position and opening the action with a raise, before calling off the all-in short-stacked shove of Taiwan's Kuang Hung Lee, who had found pocket jacks in the big blind. Wee's aces held and he climbed up to fifth in the counts while Lee departed in ninth place for a TWD 164,000 ($5,230) payday.
While Jae Wook Shin returned second in the counts, the South Korean poker professional lost two big back-to-back hands against Taiwan's Yu You Ci Tsai to hit the rail in eighth place just minutes after Lee's departure. The first hand saw Shin and Tsai battle in a sizable four-way pot with the duo getting all the chips in on a king-high two heart flop and while the former held ace-seven of hearts for a pair and the nut flush draw, he couldn't get there against Tsai's king-queen.
The duo got into it again immediately after the first break, with Shin moving all-in pre-flop with pocket eights and getting looked up by Tsai from the blinds with ace-nine suited. An ace on the flop saw Tsai take the chip lead, and Shin hit the rail in eighth for TWD 218,800 ($6,980).
However, Tsai did not get to enjoy his stint at the top for long, doubling up one of the more dangerous players at the table when he called Alex Lindops all-in pre-flop shove, the Brit's pocket aces holding against Tsai's pocket twos to bring the pair even in chips and give the chip lead to Fa.
China's Ling He and runner-up Erquiaga tangled in a big pot shortly afterward that saw the two switch places in the counts, before former frontrunner Cheung got short and moved all-in preflop with pocket sevens. Unfortunately for the Hong Kong player, Fa woke up with pocket eights, which held to further increase his stranglehold on the final table. Cheung hit the rail in seventh for TWD 273,000 ($8,710).
Tsai continued downward climb down the counts, departing not long after Cheung after losing a preflop race with ace-king suited against Fa's two black queens to see the latter pull even further ahead of the rest of the pack. Tsai departed in sixth place for TWD 328,600 ($10,485).
Fa also scored the next knockout, raising with pocket tens just a few hands later and calling the all-in shove of Wee, who chose to make his last stand with ace-six suited and failed to hit the flop to crash out in fifth place for TWD 411,000 ($13,115) just before the second break.
It was Erquiaga who then scored the next elimination, raising in early position with two black nines and calling He's all-in shove with ace-queen and hitting a full house on the turn to send the Chinese player to the rail in fourth place for TWD 547,500 ($17,470).
Lindop was Fa's next most dangerous rival, and the Taiwanese player put him to the sword immediately following He's departure, rivering a full house with pocket fives to crack the Brit's flopped trip nines to bring the tournament down to the final two players. After just two hands, it was all over and Fa could call himself the first-ever Poker King Cup Taiwan Main Event champion.
That concludes the PokerNews live coverage of the Poker King Cup Taiwan Main Event. Congratulations to inaugural Main Event champ Chou Chien Fa and thanks for reading, until next time.
With Chou Chien Fa coming into the heads-up confrontation with a veritable mountain of chips for an almost unassailable 13-to-1 chip lead, the battle lasted all of two hands.
In the second hand, Fa moved all-in from the button and Erquiaga made the call for his tournament life, with the duo revealing their hole cards.
Chou Chien Fa:
While Erquiaga held a slight lead, he was the at-risk player, and the flop saw Fa pull ahead. The turn left Erquiaga teetering on the brink of elimination, and the river sealed the deal for Fa, who immediately celebrated his first major title win with his watching rail, before returning to shake Erquiaga's hand.
Erquiaga played a great game and showed plenty of grit, but at the end, the slopes of Fa's mountainous chip stack proved too hard to scale, and the Filipino headed off to the cash desk to collect the TWD 1,150,100 ($36,670) runner-up prize while Fa posed for his winner's picture. Full end of day wrap to follow shortly.
And then there were two. Alex Lindop has fallen at the hands of a rampant Chou Chien Fa.
Lindop limped the button, calling Fa's 150,000 preflop small blind raise and the flop fell . Fa fired a two-third pot bet on the flop, which Lindop called. The river saw the Taiwanese player fire again, and the Brit made the call once more.
The river saw Fa shove, sending Lindop deep into the tank.
"Have you got aces?" he quizzed Fa, who sat still as a statue. Eventually, Lindop reached a decision, shrugged and made the call for his tournament life.
Fa rolled over pocket fives for a rivered full house. Lindop grimaced, flashed the table for flopped trips, then shook everyone's hand and left the feature table stage, exiting in third place for a TWD 739,700 ($23,600) payday.
David Erquiaga has proved time and again that he is a fearless player, not afraid to bluff. Unfortunately for the Filipino however, Chou Chien Fa sniffed out his most recent attempt in a big pot that left Erquiaga short.
The two had battled in the decent-sized pot the hand earlier, the details of which we missed, but we caught all the action in this one. It was Fa the man raising the button, with Erquiaga defending from the small blind. The flop saw Erquiaga check-call Fa's continuation bet.
The turn saw Erquiaga lead for 300,000 into an already sizable pot, with Fa making the call. The river saw Erquiaga count out chips again, making it 500,000 to go and leaving himself 620,000 behind.
Fa seemed flummoxed and paid a visit to the think tank for quite some time. Eventually, he slammed down what turned out to be a great call. Erquiaga rolled over for king-high and Fa triumphantly revealed his for a pair of treys, which were good for a chunky pot.
Ling He's deep Main Event run has come to an end, though it was not the rampant Chou Chien Fa to show him the door, it was the Philippines David Erquiaga, who made it 125,000 to go under-the-gun, then called He's 860,000 small blind shove.
The flop saw Erquiaga remain in the lead, and the Filipino locked up the hand on the turn. the river was merely a formality, and the Poker King Cup Taiwan Main Event is now down to three-handed, with Ling He taking home TWD 547,500 ($17,470) for his fourth-place finish.
Chou Chien Fa is not getting it all going his way, doubling up the UK's Alex Lindop a couple of hands after doubling He.
It was Fa the man driving the action once again, raising the button and calling Lindop's big blind shove of 1.2 million.
Chou Chien Fa:
The Taiwanese player is certainly hitting hands at the right time, but the key to success is also hitting flops, something Lindop did with aplomb on the flop, improving to two pair on the turn and boating up on the river to earn a much needed double up.
Chou Chein Fa has been pressuring the table with a barrage of pre-flop raises and has been taking down most pots preflop. There have been two exceptions to this trend. The first saw Fa fold the button and David Erquiaga move all-in from the small blind. Big blind Alex Lindop open folded .
The next hand saw Fa back to raising, making it 125,000 to go from the cutoff, with Ling He moving all-in from the blinds. Fa made a quick call and the hands were turned over.
Chou Chien Fa:
He was in great shape for a double, and had the hand all but locked up in the flop with the appearence of the case jack. The turn guaranteed the Chinese player the double, and the river was a meaningless .
There have been another four hands played, with Chou Chien Fa winning two of them. David Erquiaga managed to win one of them after raising preflop from under-the-gun and firing on the flop after Fa defended his big blind, then check-folding.
The other hand was a chop, with Ling He moving all-in for 630,000 on the button, and Fa asking for a count. The Taiwanese player has called everytime this has been the case, and this hand was no exception, with Fa tossing in a single blue 5k calling chip. David Erquiaga bowed out and both Fa and He revealed their hole cards.
Chou Chien Fa:
Both players hit two pair on the flop, with the hand completing with the turn and river, with the pair divvying up the pot.