In a tournament that went well into the early hours of Sunday morning, one man stood above the rest to take out the New Zealand Poker Championships at the Christchurch Casino.
Alan Goodrum, a school teacher from Levin outplayed, outfoxed and outthought a field of more than 150 participants to take out the New Zealand Poker Championship Trophy and claim prize money of more than $62,000.
“It’s just an amazing feeling. To win the Peter Peko poker title earlier in the week and then to go on and take out the big one is just unbelievable,” says Alan Goodrum.
Alan Goodrum had mixed emotions after the marathon effort. “It’s great to take out the event and outlast some big name players along the way but I’m pretty tired now. It has been a big week for me, and tonight’s 12 hour effort is now all worth it.”
Among Alan’s victims at the table was World Series of Poker Champion Joe Hachem, who later provided expert comments on the gaming floor as the remaining few players battled on.
“To beat the world champ was great, just having him here was a real coup for the Christchurch Casino, they really did a great job here, all the staff and dealers were first rate and they put a great dinner on for the players on Thursday night,” says Alan Goodrum.
World Series of Poker Champion Joe Hachem says the tournament was of a high standard. “It was a very well organised tournament and the service at the Christchurch Casino was second to none. It is a great boutique casino that will be a popular destination for some high quality players,” says Joe Hachem.
Along the way Alan Goodrum also saw a number of other high profile and highly vaunted players fall including ‘Kiwi G’, Lee Nelson, and Nick ‘the gun’ Nicolaou.
Alan Goodrum was so keen to play in the New Zealand Poker Championships that he put off going home to Middlesborough to see family until after the tournament finished, but he admits when he does go, he may make a stop off on the way. “Las Vegas is a must for every keen poker player. I will take it easy over there but I definitely plan to do some celebrating.”
Despite the trip to Las Vegas, Alan has some practical intentions for the prize money, “I’ve got a few bills waiting to be paid, and I think I owe a few mates a dinner or two.”
Christchurch Casino Poker Operations Manager Mick Ryan says there were some very aggressive moves at the final table. “There were people trying to knock each other out right from the start, it was great to see some locals there at the final table, but Alan has shown throughout the tournament he is a pretty shrewd player and knows when to take a risk.”
Alan was well behind chip leader Nick ‘The Gun’ Nicolaou, who started with almost three times more chips than Alan. “It really started to go Alan’s way when he took a big chunk of The Gun’s chips when Alan caught him out on a bluff and threw down a ‘flush’ for all to see,” says Mick Ryan.
“In the end Alan Goodrum took out the New Zealand Poker Championships with a ‘9’ and a ‘10’ off suit after the flop, turn, and river did no one any favours.
“It was a brilliant tournament and a fitting end to perfect week of poker,” says Mick Ryan.
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