The APAT UK Amateur Poker Championships held at the Grosvenor Casino Walsall was the first event of APAT’s third season and was once again sponsored by BlueSquare.com.
Seats for the 200 player strong event sold out within minutes confirming APAT’s popularity and highlighting the attraction of these events to a wide range of poker players.
The APAT buy in to National Championship events remains at £75 for Season Three, and all live events will remain registration free for the third consecutive season.
The structure of events has evolved to include antes in Season Three. Levels increase to 45 minutes and players once again start all main events with 10,000 chips.
The winners of the five National Championship events including this event receive entry to the prestigious GUKPT Champion of Champions event, while the winners of the World Amateur Championship and European Amateur Championship main events will receive entry to the GUKPT Grand Final all courtesy of Blue Square.com.
Including alternates, 205 runners took part with a prize pool of £15,375. First out on the second hand was Marcin Rejmak who ran his pocket Kings into Llyr Jones’ Aces, followed by Stuart Langford who flopped two pair against bottom set.
Amongst the early chip leaders, doubling up were Chris Filus and Curtis Ledger, whilst Tracey Dell hit top set to bust Aces in the first level. Marc Jelfs saw the other extremes of luck finding pocket Kings two hands in a row, and running into pocket Aces on both hands to exit very unluckily. Geoff Keddy also had a tough bad beat, flopping a set of Kings only to be four flushed on the river by the pocket Queens of Martyn Sharp.
As play progressed after the dinner break several players moved to the head of affairs, a position they would not relinquish for the rest of the day. Amongst these were Noe Purdie from Bristol, Jack Prime from Leicester, Graeme Morl from Newcastle and Steve Lister, who had gone deep in a number of previous APAT events.
The chip leaders at the end of Day One were as follows:
Steve Redfern 84,400
Steve Lister 83,000
Darren Hatton 79,800
Noe Purdie 79,500
Tod Wood 74,900
47 Players remained for Day Two with blinds beginning at 1,500/3,000/100 for the start of the day, and the players having on average 13x big blinds, so play was likely to be brisk as players jostled for final table positions. Two players were to dominate proceedings on the run to the final. Alan Armitage re-shoved over a short-stack push with A9, and Patrick Tochel woke up with pocket Kings in the blinds. An Ace on the flop gave Alan a huge boost in early play. He then flopped a straight in the big blind to knock out raiser Neil Dawson. Meanwhile Brian Martin was already chip leader when he eliminated former APAT Champion Darren Shallis with Aces on the button against Kings in the big blind.
Also going well were local player Steve Redfern and Chris Osborne, though Chris was unfortunate to bubble the final table when he ran pocket nines into the pocket tens of Andrew Duncan whilst Steve was to hit the final a big chip leader after outdrawing his opponent in a blind-on-blind confrontation A10 v AJ, ten on the turn, two tables out. Well placed was the sole remaining lady player Noe Purdie who negotiated the run to the final well, finding hands at the right time and showing controlled aggression to snap off a lot of late position raises.
The final table line up was as follows, in seat order:
Jonathan Crute from Belfast 129,000
Andrew Duncan from Telford 210,000
Steve Redfern from Droitwich 458,000
Brian Martin from Middlewich 150,000
Noe Purdie from Bristol 289,000
Tod Wood from Birmingham 287,000
Stuart Oliver from Galashiels 213,000
Alan Horsburgh from Ayr 122,000
Alan Armitage from Halifax 234,000
First to exit in the final, where blinds began at 10,000/20,000/1,000 was Alan Horsburgh, one of the shorter stacks left without much play at those blind levels, who ran AJ off into Andrew Duncan’s AK suited. Shortly after Tod Wood won a very big pot to challenge Steve Redfern for the chip lead, KK versus Armitage’s AQ suited. Alan Armitage was left very short, and was next to depart in 8th at the hands of Brian Martin.
Exiting in 7th was eighteen year old Jonathan Crute, his A10 failing to hold up against Stuart Oliver’s KQ. With several levels having passed blinds had now become punitive to all but the few biggest stacks. Eventually Brian Martin pushed one time too many in late position, with 76, and ran into Oliver’s Kings in the blinds. He left the competition in 6th to leave Stuart Oliver the chip leader. Shortly after Andrew Duncan pushed from the small blind with K8 into Steve Redfern who called with 99, and held. Andrew Duncan was out in 5th.
Play four handed was a topsy turvy affair, with the chip lead changing hands several times and repeated double-ups by the short-stacks. Eventually Noe Purdie was the unlucky player to bubble the medal positions and exit in 4th, eliminated at the hands of Tod Wood in a battle of the blinds when Tod flopped top two after calling Noe’s push with QJ suited.
Stuart Oliver departed in 3rd, pushing on the button with A5, called by Steve Redfern in the blinds with Q 10, leaving Steve and Tod Wood heads-up for the UK Amateur Poker Championship and Steve holding a 2:1 chip lead.
It had been a marathon final table, and a short while later, Steve having won the key pot with a rivered straight to beat KQ, Steve and Tod got their chips in, and Steve’s Q3 off held to beat Tod’s J5. Tod Wood was our runner up.
Thus Steve Redfern from Droitwich became the UK Amateur Poker Champion 2009, winning £3,500, trophy, gold medal and a coveted seat into the GUKPT Champion of Champions event later this year
The next event is the Welsh Amateur Championships in April. See www.apat.com for full details.