UKIPT5 Super Series London Final Table: Level 23-27(30,000/60,000/5,000)
5.00pm: Dale Garrad wins UKIPT5 Super Series for £28,300!
The heads-up may have started with Julien Rouxel in the ascendancy but from the moment it started, it was one way traffic - Dale Garrad blitzing his way to victory.
The pair traded a number of smaller pots but three large ones ensured the destiny of the title would head Garrad-wards.
The first saw a series of raises Julien Rouxel 180,000, Garrad 380,000, Rouxel 925,000 and Garrad shoved over the top instantly, leaving the Frenchman to fold just as quickly.
Garrad now had the lead.
The second key pot saw Garrad raise the button to 180,000 - called by Rouxel.
The flop of K♦Q♣8♥ was checked by both players, but come the turned 6♣, the action went check, Garrad 225,000 and Rouxel sprung into life with a check-raise to 475,000.
Garrad rubbed his chin and called.
The river saw a draw-completing T♣ arrive - Rouxel leading for 700,000 and Garrad calling immediately.
Pocket sixes for Garrad - an exasperated Rouxel turning over K♠8♣ for a flopped top two, undone on the turn.
The end was imminent with Garrad now a 6-1 chip leader.
It arrived when Garrad raised the button to 150,000, called by the Frenchman.
The A♠9♠3♥ board saw both players check.
A Q♥ on the turn however precipated the critical action.
Check, 150,000, check-raise all-in from Ruxel and call!
Dale held A♣7♠ for top pair and Rouxel tabled 6♥8♥ for a semi-bluff. Needing a heart to survive ROuxel instead watched the meaningless 3♠ roll off - Dale's supporters cheering wildly as their man completed the heads-up destruction of Rouxel.
Rouxel smiled wryly, accepting that it was not to be his day - although the £18,800 he collects for second place will go some way to softening the blow of defeat.
It was Dale Garrad however who had bested the rest of the competition to blaze his way to glory, the trophy, the tournament win and a pleasant £28,300 in winnings.
"I'm exhausted, but it feels great," Garrad enthused following his victory.
Click here for a final wrap of the day.
Thanks for following and congratulations Dale Garrad, UKIPT5 Super Series Champion!
4.10pm: Andrey Veselov crashes out 3rd(£13,760)
He's been short for sometime, and finally Veselov found what looked like a good spot to pick up some chips, jamming pocket fours on the button.
Timing is everything in poker though and when Rouxel snap-called and showed down tens, it was looking bleak for th Russian.
The board of T♠2♠8♠ was interesting, giving the Frenchman top set but the Russian a flush draw. He gathered his things but Garrad was sure he was fated to stay in. "put your coat back on...."
He was wrong however. The board bricked out A♦J♦ and Veselov's day was completed in 3rd spot - the princely sum of £13,760 awaiting him at the cash desk.
Heads up then for the trophy. 4,125,000 for chip leader Julien Rouxel and 3,085,000 for local favourite Dale Garrad.
Who will win this titantic struggle?
4.02pm: Rouxel goes straight for double
Three-handed most of the play has been between Garrad and Rouxel - the pair sparring regularly.
Given the dynamic between them it was no surprise when blind versus blind it all kicked off.
Garrad limped in, as he has been prone to do, and Rouxel checked his option.
A board of 7♥6♦4♥ saw Garrad check, Rouxel bet 75,000, Garrad check-raise to 210,000, Rouxel make it 400,000 and Garrad shove.
Rouxel called, showing down 5♦8♣ - the nuts!
Garrad sighed and rolled his eyes to the heavens as he turned over aces.
The turned 7♠ gave Garrad some outs but despite Garrad's vocal rail calling for a 7 or ace, it didnt arrive and Rouxel had finally gained the chip lead back - up to 3,000,000.
Garrad meanwhile drops to 3 million.
3.32pm: Critchley departs in 4th place (£11,105)
Needing to make a move before the chunky 25,000/50,000 blinds swallowed him up, Critchley jammed his 560,000 into the middle with K-5, only for Garrad to make another good call with K♠T♠.
A board of J♠6♠8♥7♥A♥ saw Garrad's equity advantage hold and Critchley departed with a series of handshakes and some heartfelt applause, his gutsy challenge for the title gunned down in 4th spot.
£11,105 awaits him at the cash desk but meanwhile we continue 3 handed - Garrad now a monster chip leader.
3.30pm: Garrad the cunning linguist
Dale Garrad has more than one string to his bow - regularly translating Julien Rouxel's French outbursts to his friends on the rail.
Just before the break Rouxel three-bet a Garrad 80,0000 open successfully - Garrad laying his hand down.
Rouxel conversed in French with his pals on the rail.
"I hope that means "I had it there," joked Garrad to some laughter.
3.25pm: Back in effect
The players have retaken their seats and we are back oin the game. Good luck all!
3.20pm: Chip counts
Here's how they stand as we move into the end game - Dale Garrad with a healthy advantage going into the final stretch.
Dale Garrad 3,455,000
Julien Rouxel 1,770,000
Steve Critchley 575,000
Andrey Veselov 1,420,000
3.10pm: Break Time!!
It's been non stop action at the felt since we sat down, these players playing this final table out with aggression and panache. The remaining four players now have a 20 minute sabbatical to catch their breath and perhaps indulge in another glass or two of champagne. We'll be back shortly to play to a winner.
3.03pm: Kaczmarek exits 5th(£8,710)
Alex Kaczmarek hasn't really been able to find too many spots to chip up today. He lost half his stack doubling up the mini stack of Steve Critchley - his A-2 losing out to Critchley's desperation shove with T-4.
He did manage to then double up with tens versus Dale Garrad's A-8, but his second attempt to pick up a double off Garrad was less successful.
This time when the pair battled preflop, it was Garrad who had the edge - his A♣Q♦ winning out versus Kaczmarek's A♦T♦ over the 8♦8♥5♥6♠2♣ board.
Goof game Kaczmarek - enjoy your £8,710 in hard-earned winnnings.
2.44pm: Scratching the Critch
Steve Critchley just suffered a painful beat at the hands of Andrey Veselov to leave his stack in tatters.
The pair were three-way with Dale Garrad to a ten-high board and got their stacks in - Garrad deciding to escape the pot.
Critchley's K-T had a healthy edge over the Russian's Q♠T♠ but spades on turn and river turned his backdoor flush into an actual one.
Critchley let out a strangled groan - left with just a pittance following the hand.
Veselov meanwhile moves up to 1,500,000, challenging for the lead following that slice of fortune.
2.30pm: Purser exits in 6th(£6,590)
The spate of quick eliminations continues - Andy Purser the next man to go. Holding pocket nines he was happy to jam over the toip of the busy Julien Rouxel's open to 80,000 for his 600,000 stack.
However Steve Critchley was lurking behind with pocket tens and made the cold call, duly eliminating the affable Purser when the board ran out A♠3♠A♥2♥8♥.
"Nice hand Steve," Dale Garrad offered as Purser departed to collect his £6,590.
Garrad is several glasses of champagne in at this point. "I hope I get to sit here drinking champagne all afternoon. I play better drunk anyway," he joked as the tournament continued 5 handed.
2.23pm: SPain-ful river sees Cortes out in 7th(£4,840)
Julien Rouxel and Jorge Barcelo Cortes both decided they liked the 8♦7♠6♣ board so much they went to war, Rouxel jamming and Cortes making the call.
Cards on their backs Cortes had a healthy advantage with K♠9♠ v Rouxel's T♥5♣.
However the board ran out 3♣9♥ to sounds of "ouch" from the wincing rail and Cortes was out - his hand bested by Rouxel's straight.
He collects £4,840 for his 7th place finish and we continue 6-handed, Rouxel having vaulted into the lead once more.
2.15pm: Jung is first man down (8th - £3,555)
It's a surprise that no one has been eliminated yet. We've seena number of all-ins and finally one of the shortstacks loses out.
Sebastian Jung was that man, the Frenchman making an understandable button shove with K♦7♠ - only for Garrad to make a good call with K♠J♥ in the small blind.
The board of J♠9♣7♦6♦3♣ saw Garrad home and Jung was left to shake hands, get a smattering of applause and disappear to the cash desk to retrieve his £3,555 for 8th place.
Well played sir! Garrad rises to 1,550,000.
2.10pm: Set up hand sees Rouxel rise again
Rouxel really has an aggressive game - so when he peeled a Critchley bet on a 4♠3♣6♣ board - checked the 2♠ turn along with Critchley and bet 450,000 on the 5♥ river, it was no surprise Critchley was curious enough to pay him off,
This time Rouxel had it however - showing 7♥7♦ for the straight. The unfortunate Critchley however rolled over pocket sixes for a flopped set! Nasty river - Rouxel back contending the chip lead once more with 1,500,000.
2.02pm: The lay of the land
Dale Garrad 790,000
Julien Rouxel 1,000,000
Jorge Barcelo Cortes - 366,000
Andy Purser - 520,000
Alex Kaczmarek - 490,000
Steve Critchley - 1,400,000
Andrey Veselov - 1,300,000
Sebastian Jung - 320,000
1.50pm: Jung survives tens moment
A little luck for Sebastian Jung has also seen him home to a double up - his A♦9♦ connecting sweetly with the 5♦3♦2♦7♣2♣ board to see him home to a double-through to 900,000.
The shortstacks are running very well versus the bigger stacks so far - the chip count landscape being turned on itsq head.
1.47pm: Veselov's knavery earns double
A preflop war between Andrey Veselov and Dale Garrad saw Garrad call Veselov's 650,000 re-shove with ace-king and lose out to the Russian's pocket jacks over a baby board.
"Nice hand," said Garrad charitably as he handed over a chunk of shis stack - down to 700,000 now.
1.40pm: Critchley on the march
A huge hand just played out - Steve Critchley jamming for his entire 701,000 stack over the top of a Rouxel open to 60,000.
Rouxel winced a littled but then made the call with pocket nines. He was in trouble as Critchley rolled over kings - duly winning the pot over the 8♥5♦3♦K♣J♣ board.
"I wish I could fine tune my game to get kings every two hours," joked Garrad.
"Then I wouldn't have to raise with J-7 suited."
Not that I'm admitting to raising with that of course," he added quickly. The upshot of the hand was that Steve Critchley is now challenging chip leader Dale Garrad with 1,450,000. Rouxel has been knocked down to 800,000.
1.35pm: Rouxel applies pressure
Unperturbed by losing that early big pot versus Dale Garrad, Julien Rouxel has turned into a betting machine, applying pressure in a variety of spots and forcing folds from almost everyone entering a pot with him.
It's interesting as the players know if they get in a tangle with the Frenchman, their tournament life could well be on the line...
1.32pm: Champagne reception
The players have all been given a glass of champagne to celebrate their final table appearance. Bottoms up!
LEVEL UP: BLINDS 10,000-20,000-3,000
1.15pm: First blood Dale
You sense Dale Garrad and Julien Rouxel will have some intense battles out there today. The pair were at each other's throats yesterday and the early going suggests more of the same is in the offing.
Moments ago, Garrad limped in from the small blind on Rouxel's big blind. Check from the Frenchman.
The A♠K♣3♦4♠Q♠ board saw Garrad lead for 25,000 flop, 42,000 turn and 81,000 river, where Rouxel suddenly raised to 305,000.
Many people would have baulked at calling such a large portion of their stack but Garrad is made of sterner stuff than most, insta-calling with A♠8♣ for top pair.
ROuxel tabled K♦7♣ having turned his second pair into an unsuccessful bluff.
"Nice snap-call," said Rouxel with a wry smile.
"It's too early for that!" Garrad replied. Garrad up to 2 million, Rouxel takes a hit - down to 1.1 million.
1.06pm: Cards in the air
The players have been buffed, photographed, and are on their way.
Let's see how this final plays out...
The Final Table
Welcome to The Hippodrome Casino for the final table of the UKIPT5 Super Series London!
We've seen three fierce days of poker play out - the 291-strong field whittled down to these final eight competitors ready to vie for the trophy.
Here's how those players will line-up at the start of play.
|Dale Garrad||United Kingdom||1640000|
|Andrey Veselov||Russian Federation||1116000|
|Steve Critchley||United Kingdom||786000|
|Alex Kaczmarek||United Kingdom||704000|
|Andy Purser||United Kingdom||630000|
|Jorge Barcelo Cortes||Spain||408000|
Dale Garrad will lead the finalists by a slender margin from Frenchman Julien Rouxel, though the stacks are in close enough proximity that any of these players could easily make a chage at the title with a fair wind behind them.
To view full profiles of the final tablists, click here.
We're moments away from the start. Good luck to all the combatants. May the best man win!
PokerStars Blog reporting team at PokerStars UKIPT5 Super Series: Rod Stirzaker. Photos courtesy of Mickey May.