From Russia With Love: Andrey Kotelnikov Wins WPT Mix-Max Championships

Andrey Kotelnikov busted more than half of the final table on his way to WPT glory

Andrey Kotelnikov came close to becoming a World Poker Tour (WPT) champion in January 2020. The Russian pro finished third in Sochi, Russia for a $41,000 prize. Kotelnikov now has a WPT title to brag about plus a career-best cash worth $488,508.

Kotelnikov came out on top of a star-studded field in the $3,200 WPT #06 Mix-max Championship at partypoker. Some 989-players bought in over the course of two starting flights, including some of the game’s elite stars.

The likes of Kahle Burns, Ali Imsirovic, Maria Ho, and Steve O’Dwyer all cashed in the event. Dominik Nitsche, Parker Talbot, Timothy Adams, Mikita Badziakouski, and Liv Boeree also saw a return on their investments.

Kotelnikov Starts Final Table Fifth in Chips

Day 3 started with only seven players in contention for the near half-million-dollar top prize. Kotelnikov sat down with 12,538,277 chips, enough for fifth-place at the restart.

The final seven locked horns and butted heads for 90-minutes before something gave and the tournament lost a player.

Maciej Gasior min-raised from middle position to 800,000 with As-7s. Canada’s Jerry Wong made it 4,800,000 to go from the next seat along with Ad-Th. This would have ordinarily taken down the pot, but not this time because Stuart Guite woke up on the button with Qh-Qd. Guite moved all-in for 10,600,000 and Wong called off his last 3,200,000 when Gasior folded. The queens held and Wong busted in seventh place.

Former PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Main Event champion Dimitar Danchev fell next. Danchev was down to less than four big blinds thanks to running his Ac-6s into pocket aces in a battle of the blinds. That short stack went into the middle with Ks-Qc and Oleg Vasylchenko called with As-4h. Danchev paired his queen on the flop, Vasylchenko his ace on the turn, and the tournament lost another player.

Five became four with the elimination of Gasior. Kotelnikov min-raised to 1,000,000 on the button with 8d-8s and Gasior moved all-in for 8,400,000 in the big blind. Kotelnikov called the shove and Gasior showed him 3s-3c. Those lowly threes didn’t melt the Russian’s snowmen and Gasior crashed out.

Kotelnikov Hits a Purple Patch

It is a deadly combination when a good player runs hot, which is what happened here. Kotelnikov sent the rest of his opponents to the showers over the next hour or so.

Vasylchenko was his next victim despite starting the final table as the chip leader. Vasylchenko jammed all-in for a shade under 20 big blinds with Kh-Qc. Kotelnikov woke up with Ac-Qs in the big blind and called. Neither player improved their holding so Vasylchenko crashed out.

Kotelnikov’s one-man wrecking spree continued with the bust out of Joakim Andersson. The action folded to the Russian in the small blind and he utilized his big stack with an all-in bet. Andersson called off his last 16 big blinds with Ac-9d and was shown Qs-Jc. Kotelnikov flopped a queen and turned another to send the tournament heads-up.

Heads-up started with Kotelnikov holding a better than two-to-one chip lead over British pro Guite. Guite enjoyed the better of the early confrontations and claimed the lead for himself. Both players began playing looser before a big hand swung the contest in Kotelnikov’s favor.

The Russian’s As-Kh prevailed against the dominated Ah-Jd.

A huge bluff with king-high on a board featuring two aces saw Kotelnikov surge into a commanding lead.

Final Hand Considered a Relative Cooler

The final hand took place during the 350,000/700,00087,500a level. It was a hand that highlighted the Russian’s ability to run hotter than the sun. Guite opened to 1,400,000 with Jd-4s and was called by Kotelnikov holding 6s-3c. The 5c-4d-Jh flop gifted Guite two pair and his opponent an open-ended straight draw. Kotelnikov check-called a 2,100,000 bet.

A burn card later and the 2c appeared on the turn, improving Kotelnikov to a straight. Guite kept up the aggression with a 5,400,000 bet when the action checked to him. He called when Kotelnikov check-raised to 11,200,000.

The river was the Kd and now the Russian moved all-in. Guite called with his two pair only to muck when he saw the straight of his opponent. Guite collected $366,064 for his runner-up finish, a career-best score. The champion netted $488,508, induction into the Champions Club, and a $15,000 Tournament of Champions entry.

WPT #06 Mix-Max Championship Final Table Results

Place Player Country Prize
1 Andrey Kotelnikov Russia $488,508
2 Stuart Guite United Kingdom $366,064
3 Joakim Andersson Sweden $271,903
4 Oleg Vasylchenko Ukraine $190,500
5 Maciej Gasior United Kingdom $124,500
6 Dimitar Danchev Bulgaria $89,016
7 Jerry Wong Canada $69,300

Matthew Pitt

If it’s something you can play online for real money, chances are Matthew knows a bit about it. He’s been writing about slots, craps and poker for the better part of the last decade. He’s written for PokerNews, PartyPoker and many other respected online gambling websites during the last nine years.


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