The Bicycle Casino in Los Angeles has finally brought us a winner of the WPT Legends Of Poker Main Event, Josh Hale winning after negotiating his way through a large and dangerous field of 622 players to win the first prize of $500k.
This was also Hale’s first ever major title, and although he started the day as the chip leader he did not have it easy as there were many twists and turns before he was finally crowned the champion. He had to battle against some really big names in poker such as Greg Mueller, Max Steinberg, Jeff Madsen and Ali Eslami before getting his hands on that winner’s cheque.
The Final Table
Once the action got underway it really did not take too long before we had some decent action, with Madsen putting all of his chips into the middle with A-3, however he picked the wrong time as Steinberg called with pocket aces. Madsen didn’t stand much of a chance and was eliminated in sixth place.
By this point Hale had acquired almost 50 percent of the chips in the tournament, though he was happy to let the others eliminate themselves for now. Mueller went next after pushing all in with 2 million whilst holding pocket sevens, where it was yet again Steinberg who was willing to call with Ac-Ks. Steinberg again won through when the Kd fell on the turn.
The Ali Eslami Show!
Eslami had a steady tournament the whole way through yet actually got crippled early on in this days play when Raouf Malek doubled up through him. This left Eslami with just one big blind worth of chips, yet he was not going to give up easily.
He doubled up, then managed to triple up in a hand after and then doubled up yet again. This meant he had managed to turn his 110k chips into 1.6 million in quick succession. Did it stop there? No he even doubled up yet again; all of this was done in just six hands.
However, despite all that hard work, he was still to be the next one eliminated, and you guessed it, Steinberg was the one to take the scalp. Eslami’s pocket 2’s looked good against Steinberg’s K-J, until the flop brought out a King, bring Eslami’s tournament to a close.
Steinberg had eliminated half of the final table, and now it was the turn for Malek to go the same way, both players attaining a straight, yet Steinberg’s ace high variation beat the king high of Malek.
This left us going into heads up with Steinberg feeling like he could never lose, he had a 3 – 1 chip advantage over Hale at this point and would have felt unbeatable. However Hale managed to double up and they were back to level pegging.
However, Hale managed to take down the tournament when all the chips were in the middle, he was holding pocket J’s whilst Steinberg had two over cards with the A-K. Hale eventually hit a set and won the tournament.
The Final Standings:
Josh Hale – $500,000
Max Steinberg – $293,490
Raouf Malek – $192,400
Ali Eslami – $133,700
Greg Mueller – $97,100
Jeff Madsen – $75,400