This morning Lee Rawson will get out of bed as the winner of the largest ever land-based poker tournament in Europe.
Lee, who had to borrow a car to get to the venue on Saturday and Sunday, collected £32,705 and the GUKPT Goliath Trophy after overcoming a field of 1765 players who had all paid the £120 buy-in (sometime three times!) or qualified at G Casino to compete in the event.
Everybody Goes Home Happy
With 261 places paid and a total prize pool of £176,500, almost all of the 289 players who returned for Saturday´s Day 2 were guaranteed of cashing in the event. Grosvenor Casinos threw in an additional 28 free entries to next year´s Goliath to make sure that nobody went home empty handed, and the biggest smiles were those on the faces of the Marie Curie Charity representatives who collected almost £10,000 for their worthwhile cause.
Deadman Leads the Way into Day 3
Simon Deadman (501,000) started Day 2 as chip leader, with a commanding advantage over Scott Symonds (453,500), Andy Nguyen (400,500) and Luke Hallinen (396,600). He survived a brutal Day 2 in which he lost the chip lead to Nguyen, Jon Hewston and then last woman standing Helen Godfrey throughout the day, before storming back to take a 1.2 million chip advantage into the final day.
Chip Counts at the Start of Day 3
Simon Deadman 7115000
Mark Broomhall 5870000
Lee Rawson 5180000
Anthony Lissner 4660000
Helen Godfrey 4500000
Mitchell Scarlett 3500000
Adrian Okane 3160000
Ben Jackson 2785000
Robert Panayi 2320000
Andy Nguyen 2095000
Clive Smith 1740000
John Burberry 1475000
Quick Departures on Day 3
Day 3 of the GUKPT Goliath started just as brutally as Day 2 had concluded. Within the first 45 minutes, John Burberry, Ben Jackson and Adrian OKane had departed – the main beneficiary being Mitchell Scarlett who increased his chip stack to more than 5.5 million. However, Scarlett was the next player to depart, playing A♣ 6♣ on a board of 2♥ 3♦ 4♣ / J♣ against Simon Deadman´s K♣ K♦. The K♠ on the river sent Scarlett to the rail to collect £2,540 for ninth.
Panayi on the Move
With his huge stack, Simon Deadman both bossed the blinds and became the target for any player holding a premium opening hand. Robert Panayi took a substantial amount when his A♠ J♣ held on against Deadman´s K♥ J♥, and then he took out Anthony Lissner in eighth (£3,300) when his Kings were too good for Lissner´s Fives. Panayi temporarily took second place behind Deadman until Mark Broomhall took out Andy Nguyen in seventh (£4,325) when his Aces held against Nguyen´s KJ.
The Short Handed Final Table
Broomhall also caught up with Deadman when he flopped a set of Queens against Clive Smiths KJ, eliminating Smith in sixth (£5,825) and Helen Godfrey was next to go in fifth (£8,120) when she speculatively pushed with pocket Threes and ran into Simon Deadman´s pocket Fives. It was looking a certainty that Deadman was going to become the first GUKPT Goliath champion, but it then it all went incredibly wrong.
Deadman Dead in Three
Three hands in a short period of play changed the whole complex of the GUKPT Goliath. Lee Rawson pushed with A2 and was snapped called by Deadman holding A3. It looked for all the world as if the two players were going to share the pot after four community cards, until a deuce on the river gave Lee the chips. Trying to gain some of his chips back, Deadman raised into the pot with pocket Nines, but Lee got all-in with his Aces and Deadman´s demise was complete when shoving into Lee once more with Q5 against Lee´s K6 which spiked a pair on the river. Deadman out in fourth for £10,590.
Rawson Ties it Up Quickly
Being the new chip leader, Lee Rawson did not hang about wrapping up the tournament. In the first hand after dinner Lee (J♥ 7♣) called Robert Panayi´s (9♣ 7♠) shove on a flop which fell K♣ 7♥ 6♥ to eliminate Panayi in third (£13,240) and the heads up was over in three hands – Lee first spiking two pairs on the river to dominated Mark Broomhall´s paired Kings, and then calling Broomhall´s (4♦ 8♦) speculative shove with J♦ J♠ on a flop of 7♦ 2♠ 2♥, and with the A♥ on the turn and 7♦ on the river providing no assistance for Broomhall, he was eliminated in second (£21,120) and Lee was the GUKPT Goliath champion.
Helen Helps the Punters Lounge to Top Team
Helen Godfrey´s deep run enabled “Punter´s Lounge C” to claim the title of Top Team in the GUKPT Goliath Team Challenge. Each member of the team receives a free entry into next year´s Goliath and will play in a private online tournament with £1,000 prize money donated by G Casino Poker.