Charles Mason Crowned World Amateur Champion

Charles Mason from England has been crowned 2009 World Amateur Poker Champion, winning the main event of the APAT World Championship of Amateur Poker (WCOAP) at Europe’s premier poker room Dusk Till Dawn.

The WCOAP comprised three events in total with Omaha, HORSE and a Texas Hold’em World Amateur Poker Championship main event.  All events sold out on the first day of sale six months prior, and the four hundred and fifty entries saw players from as far afield as France, Germany and Norway compete.

As reported elsewhere on these pages, the 81 runner Omaha event was won by Paul Pitchford for £1,300 ahead of Andrew Drago and James Barber, whilst the 48 runner HORSE event was won by Andrew Tracey for £1,000 ahead of Jonathan Woodfield and Richard Iwaniak.

In the 314 runner main event, with two day ones, the most notable hands that led to the creation of the two chip leaders were as follows. Jamie Reeve called a raise with 3-3 in the big blind in the second level and saw a 6-6-3 flop, trebling up up through two opponents with Aces and 6-5. Later in the day, James Bagley won a very large pot when his Ace-Queen beat his opponent’s Pocket Kings in an all-in pre-flop confrontation. The Omaha event winner Paul Pitchford also continued his excellent run in the series, and was amongst the chip leaders through the day.

The Leaders at the end of the combined day ones were as follows, with 49 remaining and 38 paid:

James Bagley   187,500

Jamie Reeve    127,500

Frances Creed 120,900

Paul Pitchford  120,400

Kevin Smith     119,100

In the day two run to the final table, Charles Mason made substantial early progress when he eliminated Gurpreet Nagi with Aces against Jacks, whilst James Bagley was using his big stack to effect, most notably when winning a large pot off Paul Pitchford with a flopped set of sevens, taking most of Frances Creed’s stack with a turned set and then knocking out Irish Amateur International Brendan Byrne. The unfortunate Byrne took his Kings against Bagley’s Ace-Jack only to see a cruel flop containing two Jacks. On the final table bubble Jamie Reeve knocked out Paul Pitchford.

The line up for the final table was as follows:

1 Ian Overson from Woodford, Northants 256,500

2 Chris Filus from Evesham 282,000

3 James Bagley from Southampton 772,000

4 John Miller from Accrington 421,500

5 Ant Williams from Birmingham 482,500

6 Charles Mason from Solihull 372,500

7 Oystein Eggen from Oslo, Norway 114,000

8 Dave Potter from West Cornwall 114,000

9 Jamie Reeve from London 313,000

Blinds began the final at 8000-16000/1,500. The final began with Bagley in trademark aggressive form, but he was met with concerted resistance in the form of re-raises that he had to fold too. After over an hour’s play our first exit was Norway’s Oystein Eggen, who pushed with King-Jack of diamonds and was called by Overson’s Ace-Eight of diamonds. A flopped nut flush was decisive. By this time the chip distribution had evened out substantially, and play was attritional.

Dave Potter was to double through twice in quick succession with eight remaining, most notably with Queen-Jack against Bagley’s Pocket Eights. When Potter won this race Bagley was left the short-stack at the table. He pushed Ace-Deuce, Potter called with Ace-Four and despite the myriad of split pot opportunities Potter’s hand prevailed to knock Bagley out in 8th.

In seventh John Miller departed, at the hands of Charles Mason, Ace-Eight falling to pocket Queens. Soon after Ian Overson lost a big pot, making a move from the blinds post flop, but running into Dave Potter’s Aces. Mason knocked Overson out in sixth, in a big three way pot that also felted Chris Filus. Soon Filus was out in fifth.

In fourth Jamie Reeve accounted for Dave Potter, raising with Ace-Five, Reeve called Potter’s re-raise and was against pocket sevens. A flopped Ace eliminated Potter. Three handed Reeve was a commanding chip leader but a key hand turned the tournament on its head at that point.

Ant Williams; who had been the quietest player at the final table, raised on the button. Charles Mason pushed over 1m chips from the small blind and Reeve clearly had picked up a hand in the big blind. Eventually he called for two-third of his stack with Ace-Queen. The decision was back on Williams and the tension in the air, towards the end of a long final, was palpable. Williams eventually passed and Mason revealed Ace-four off-suit. In the key hand Mason out-drew Reeve when a four fell on the river.

Ant Williams was then eliminated in third, calling Reeve’s push with King -Ten before being out flopped. Heads Up, Mason began with a four to one chip lead courtesy of the earlier rivered four and the battle was short. Both players found a pocket Ace – Reeve with a Deuce kicker and Mason a Seven. Mason’s hand held up to ensure he won the competition.

As a result, Charles Mason became the APAT World Amateur Poker Champion 2009; winning £7,000, a GUKPT Grand final seat worth over £3,000 courtesy of, Championship trophy and Gold Medal.