Roger Teska Wins WPT Gardens Main Event
The 18th season of the World Poker Tour (WPT) kicked off this week at The Gardens Casino in Los Angeles and it was Roger Teska who took the $5,000 Main Event.
WPT Gardens Poker Festival Main Event attracted a field of 373 entries who created a $1,752,100 prize pool that was shared among the top 47 finishers. While a substantial prize pool was created, it was some way of the Season 17 edition of this event that saw 584 players compete for a slice of $2,944,800.
WPT Gardens Poker Festival Final Table Results
|1||Roger Teska||United States||$368,475|
|3||Lior Orel||United States||$172,770|
|5||Andrew Wisdom||United States||$96,545|
|6||Cord Garcia||United States||$73,600|
|7||Eric Hicks||United States||$56,860|
|8||Maria Ho||United States||$44,525|
|9||Vladimir Vasilyev||United States||$35,340|
Usually, one player earns the unwanted title of bubble boy in a poker tournament. This event was different as two players on different tables busted during the same hand on the money bubble. Tam Nguyen crashed out when his pocket kings fell foul to the aces in the hand of Dan Fleyshman while Joel Feldman lost his last chips on an adjacent table at the same time so both busted on the bubble and shared 47th place money, taking home $4,665 each.
With the bubble burst, a host of stars and established poker tournament grinders headed for the showers via the cashier’s desk. These included Jared Jaffe (34th for $10,460), recent World Series of Poker bracelet winner Daniel Strelitz (33rd for $10,460), Max Pescatori (28th for $11,910), British star Jack Salter (21st for $13,765), and Elio Fox (18th for $16,150).
Nine Handed Final Table Set
Each of the nine finalists banked at least $35,340. This was the sum awarded to Vladimir Vasilyev who three-bet all in for 18 big binds with ace-nine after Teska had opened with pocket sixes. Vasilyev caught a nine on the turn, but Teska improved to a straight on the river to send home the first member of the final table.
Eighth-place and $44,525 went to Maria Ho. Ho was down to less than 10 big blinds and pushed her stack into the middle from the button holding jack-ten. Unfortunately for Ho, Teska was seated in the small blind with pocket queens in his hand. Teska called and his ladies held to render the tournament an all-male affair.
Day 4 Concludes With Six Players
Eric Hicks exited in seventh-place for $56,860 to bring the penultimate day’s action to a close. Lior Orel opened to 65,000 from under the gun at the 15,000/30,000/30,000a level and called when Hick raised to 180,000 from the next seat over. A king-queen-jack flop saw Orel check-call a 125,000 bet from Hicks. The five of spades saw Orel check-call again, this time a 350,000 bet. The deuce of spades landed on the turn, putting three spades in view. Orel checked once more, Hicks bet 425,000 only to see Orel raise all in. Hicks called off his remaining chips and showed pocket queens for middle set. Orel turned over ace-eight of spades for a flush on the river.
Day 5 started with only six players in the hunt for the title and it took only 17 hands for the first casualty to be decided. Lars Kamphues and Cord Garcia got their chips in on a queen-ten-seven-six board, Garcia holding queen-ten for two pair and Kampheus pocket queens for a set of ladies. The meaningless three of hearts completed the board and confirmed Garcia’s demise.
Andrew Wisdom busted only five hands later after committing his stack with ace-queen on a five-five-four-ace-nine board in a three-bet pot only to see Kampheus sat there with pocket fours for a flopped full house. Wisdom took home $96,545 for his valiant efforts.
Final Four Guaranteed Six-Figures
Four-handed play lasted 114 hands before Kampheus three-bet all in over a raise from Teska. It was a classic coinflip with Teska holding ace-queen and Kampheus pocket jacks. Kampheus looked set to double up as his fish hooks remained the best hand right up to the ace of diamonds appearing on the river. Kampheus took $128,320 back to his native Germany.
Heads-up was set on the 187th hand of the day when jacks proved an inferior hand once again. Laszlo Molnar opened double the big blind to 300,000, Orel three-bet to 1,000,000. Molnar responded by raising all in for more than 7,000,000 and Orel called off his 4,950,000 chips. It was jacks for Orel and kings for Molnar. A king on the turn locked up the hand for Molnar and Orel added $172,770 to his bankroll.
Molnar went into heads-up with a 12,275,000 to 2,650,000 chip lead over Teska, but Teska doubled up on the first hand with queen-jack against ace-queen thanks to rivering a straight. It was relatively one-way traffic from that point and on the 229th hand it was all over.
Molnar was down six big blinds and pushed all in with king-queen of clubs. Teska called with ace-six. The jack-four-nine flop gave Molnar plenty more outs with the three of clubs giving him a flush draw too. The deuce of spades was a brick, busting Molnar in second-place for $235,615 and leaving Teska to win $368,475, a $15,000 seat into the season-ending Tournament of Champions, and a brand new BMW X1 car donated by The Gardens Casino.