LAPT Panama: Three more eliminated, heads-up play begins
In just a matter of an hour, three more players have been eliminated, setting up the least surprising heads-up match we could've predicted. Patrick Mahoney and Leo Fernandez began this final table with half the chips in play. Now the pair has 100% as they get settled in for what could be a very long heads-up battle. The players are nearly even in chips as heads-up play begins.
Leo Fernandez: 3,150,000
Patrick Mahoney: 3,565,000
The path to this point as a quick one. Diego Sanchez, Sam Razavi, Isaac Malca were all eliminated in quick fashion. Within minutes, it was Johnny Sandoval's turn to exit. It wasn't pretty.
Sandoval got it all in with 665,000 pocket kings versus Leo Fernandez's pocket nines. All was well and good until Fernandez flopped an open-ended straight draw and got there on the turn.
A pharmacist by trade, Sandoval was here with friends and playing his first LAPT. His fifth place finish, while not perfect, was a great introduction to the Latin American Poker Tour. He earned $42,230.
Despite starting the final table on the short stack, Peru's Walid Mubarak had managed to make it to four-handed play. He'd found a way to double up through Team PokerStars Pro Leo Fernandez and was up to 800,000 when he got A♠Q♠ all in. The problem was, Brazil's Marco Antonio Pedroso Cheida held A♣K♦. The board was no help, and Muburak was gone. A regular in Peru's high stakes cash games, he now has $55,050 more to put in play,
What happened next was the hand of the tournament so far. Patrick Mahoney opened the action with a raise to 110,000 and Marco Cheida defended in the big blind. On a flop of A♦5♥6♠, Cheida bet out 140,000. Mahoney didn't back down and made it 360,000 to play. On the Q♦ turn, Cheida check-called a 380,000 bet. The river was the 4♦, and Cheida once again checked.
Mahoney didn't slow down. His bet was 590,000.Cheida went deep in the tank. It took him nearly five minutes before he announced his call. It was the wrong one. Mahoney had flopped two pair with 5♠6♣. Cheida flashed the ace and settled in disgust back behind his million in chips.
Before long, Cheida's million looked more like 670,000, all of which he put in the middle with A♣8♦ against Leo's Fernandez' 9♦9♠. The board never gave Cheida any hope, and the man known in Brazil as The Jackal went out in third place for $73,900.
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Brad Willis is the PokerStars Head of Blogging