UKIPT Brighton: Jamie Burland wins the UKIPT Brighton
If the UKIPT Brighton was to be decided on the sharpest suit of the tournament then Jamie Burland would have been a direct frontrunner for the title - probably rivalled by some little chequered number sported by Paul Parker. As it was the £1,000 main event was contested over twenty-six hard one-hour levels of no-limit Hold'em and, as it turns out, Burland was pretty heavyweight when it came to that too. Although he wasn't a runaway chipleader at any point Burland was solid throughout and never seemed too far from the top of the pack.
It was quite some final table, perhaps the toughest the UKIPT has seen and although it was Burland that ended up on top there were a number of players deserving of the title (of which Burland was definitely one). Despite my talking up of the standard of play the first fall was quite straightforward with Jonathan Campbell's short stack shove with K♥9♥ being looked up by Tomas Cibak's A♥8♥. After that everything got a lot more intriguing and by the time the action was five-handed it was hard for anyone on the rail to tear themselves away. Burland's pack were there throughout - well oiled and vociferous in their support for their man to the
bitter glorious end. Nottingham UKIPT runner-up Owen Robinson and Neil Channing were never far away from their man either. One would think they had a percentage of him...
Burland and co hit the champagne shortly after his win but we still had enough time to collar him for a quick interview. 'One hundred percent I thought that Tomas was the biggest threat as I'd played with him a lot of yesterday and I was glad that I had position on him,' admitted Burland. 'I knew Tomas liked to play big pots so I wanted to take some flops with him to limit the amount of chips that went in pre-flop.' It was a strategy that worked well with the Brit flopping a huge two-pair with Q♥4♥ on a Q♠7♦4♠ flop against Cibak's T♠8♠ flush draw. It all went in and Burland faded the draw to take the title to a near-deafening cheer and more jumping around than a House of Pain concert. The low stakes grinder also issued a warning to Marius Lietuvninkas, Mike Hill, Rupinder Bedi and the other top dogs of the leaderboard that he was out to win that too. You have officially been served.
The final five players were a great mix with four young online players and one wildcard in the form of American 63-year-old Bill Seber. To most Seber was an American tourist here for a bit of fun. Not so. Today's £24,600 score tips Buffalo Bill's live winnings over the half-a-million dollar mark and many underestimated him to their peril. In what could well be the hand of the tournament Seber bluffed Sam Grafton off a large pot deep into the money causing the Gutshot player to storm away from the table. 'He's not good enough to make that bluff,' Grafton was heard saying to someone on the rail. Oh yes, it seems that he was with Seber bluffing seven-high on a board of terrifying proportions. Never judge an old(er) Texan on appearances alone. Seber eventually lost a huge flip three-handed to Burland with 9♥9♠ losing out to A♥T♠. It was a massive and emotional pot that effectively set up the heads up between Burland and the hyper-aggressive Tomas Cibak.
Second place finisher Tomas Cibak (£40,100) has heart, miles and miles of the stuff in fact. If we could have tracked his three- and four-betting percentages they would have been, well, quite simply terrifying. The Czech was a constant threat at the final table and always looked likely for a top three finish. The twenty-year-old Cibak qualified online at PokerStars and you certainly shouldn't bet against him becoming a regular fixture on this tour. 'I'm really happy with how I played,' he told us. 'I got chips by three-betting and four-betting pre-flop and avoiding all-in showdowns. The structure was good and I'll probably play in Edinburgh.' I think that after bagging £40,100 we can all take that 'probably' and turn it into a 'definitely.'
Cibak was the player that asked the most questions and had the most amount of players mucking their hand in frustration with day 2 chipleader Andy Youens one player that will be praying that Cibak won't be turning up at his next table with the big Czech on his left. Very well played, sir. Find us for a beer in Edinburgh.
Curse of the Flood
Liam Flood lost a large key pot at the UKIPT Killarney to eventual winner Femi Fakinle and the Irish legend did the same to Burland here in Brighton. 'Liam raised the button, I three-bet from the big blind and he called. The flop was 3♦7♣6♥ I bet, he shoved, I called. He had pocket fours, I had pocket jacks and held, that set me up for the rest of day two,' recounts Burland. The turn and river were the K♣ and A♣. If you want to win the UKIPT Edinburgh then you simply need to bust up Flood in a major pot on the run in to the money. Sorry, Liam, we've effectively put a hefty price on your head.
Although thirteen players came back today to play down to a winner everyone's initial thoughts were on making the final table but there were only eight spots there so we had to lose Ben Martin, Dimps Maker, Steve Thompson, Tony Lee and David Gant. It was a shame to lose them but it's tough on any player to get this close and not make that final playing platform. We salute those players and Steve Thompson particularly for coming all the way from Costa Rica and being such a nice guy (note to his wife: he did not say he didn't like your present, he was talking about coffee).
THE FINAL TABLE
1. Jamie Burland, UK, PokerStars qualifier - £65,400
2. Tomas Cibak, Czech, PokerStars qualifier - £40,100
3. Bill Seber, USA, PokerStars qualifier - £24,600
4. William Beauchamp, UK - £18,100
5. John Spinks, UK, PokerStars qualifier - £15,000
6. Waseem Ahmed, UK - £12,400
7. Andy Youens, UK, PokerStars qualifier - £9,850
8. Jonathan Campbell, UK, PokerStars qualifier - £7,750
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PokerStars Blog reporting team at UKIPT Brighton: Rick Dacey and Nick Wright. Photos by Mickey May.