Tom Grigg Wins APPT Sydney Bounty Event

Posted at 12:41 2009-11-29

The PokerNetwork Live Reporting team were on the floor of the newly improved Star City Poker Room for the first time as we start to get to the business end of the preliminary events at the 2009 PokerStars.net APPT Sydney Championships. Today was the highly anticipated $1,650 No Limit Holdem Semi-Shootout/Bounty event which is simpler than it sounds. Every player had a $300 bounty placed on their head, and the tournament would start as a normal tournament, before shifting to a “shootout” style for the last 50 players.

It didn’t take took long to reach that point as 91 players took to the felt. Peter Aristidou carried his good form from Melbourne up north as he claimed the first bounty of the day however locals Eric Assadourian and John Caridad, both coming off final table performances in the Pot Limit Omaha from the night before, were not so fortunate as their were early casualties.

Another making the trip north was Steve “The Big Show” Topakas who is looking for a big week to cement his place at the top of the 2009 PokerNetwork Australasian Rankings Leaderboard, however he’ll have to wait for another day for points and revenge on Andrew Tieu, who claimed the bounty of Topakas and gave him a good old fashioned send off. The Big Show wasn’t impressed as the two exchanged some heated words as tournament officials defused the situation before a steel cage could be constructed and referee found.

Popular Sydney-sider Ali Khalil was enjoying his time at the tables and when he looked down at the “Doyle Brunson” {Td}{2h} he had no hesitation in isolating the short stack of good friend and PokerStars Team Australia Pro Grant Levy to attempt to brutally crack his {Ks}{qc}. “A two is coming,” laughed Levy and wouldn’t you know it the flop delivered the deuce which was enough to send Levy home early as Khalil steamrolled his way to the final table.

Others to fall during the day included Billy “The Croc” Argyros, Daniel Neilson, Lee “Final Table” Nelson, Andrew Hinrichsen, Tim “LuckyShades” Horan, Joel “Strong Play” Dodds, 2009 ANZPT Sydney winner Paren “Puzz” Arzoomanian and the rarely sighted 2008 APPT Sydney champ Martin Rowe.

As the dinner break fell at 8pm, the final table of ten players had been set. Here’s how they lined up:

Seat 1: William Skounztos (41,000)
Seat 2: Saidal Wardak (91,700)
Seat 3: Ali Ghezelbash (54,600)
Seat 4: Bruce Nguyen (70,500)
Seat 5: Ali 'Peppermint Hippo' Khalil (60,900)
Seat 6: Tom Grigg (99,600)
Seat 7: Minh Nguyen (35,000)
Seat 8: Julian Cohen (109,100)
Seat 9: Jonathan 'xMONSTERxDONGx' Karamalikis (107,800)
Seat 10: Aleks 'Banana Thief' Brkovic (58,900)

Julian Cohen was the chip leader however it was sure to be an entertaining final table as some of the country’s finest took their place for their shot at the trophy.

William Skountzos was featuring in his second final table of this series, but he was first to go in 10th place after picking up pocket tens in back-to-back hands. The only problem was that Ali Khalil woke up with pocket jacks to cripple Skountzos, before Ali Ghezelbash finished the job with Q-J when a jack fell on the river. Skountzos picked up $2,184 in prize money.

Online sensation Jonathan “xMONSTERxDONGx” Karamalikis was the next to go after a preflop raising war saw he and Ali Ghezelbash take a {Qs}{9s}{td} flop. Karamalikis led out for 15,000 before Ghezelbash moved all in. Karamalikis made he call with {jh}{jc} but had been out-flopped by Ghezelbash’s {ah}{Qh}. The turn and river bricked out to send Dong to collect $2,730 for his 9th place finish.

In a battle of the Nguyens, it was Minh who lost out against Bruce after a triple-barrel bluff went wrong on a {Kh}{Kc}{9s}{Ac}{Ah} board. Minh tabled {Qh}{Jh} for a busted straight draw as Bruce had him well beaten with his {As}{Js}. Minh collected $3,822 for his 8th place.

Julian Cohen was next to go in one in one of the turning points of this final table. After entering the final table as the chip leader, Cohen found his last chips in preflop with {Ac}{Ks} to be racing with the pocket tens of Ali Ghezelbash, and what a race it was! The flop came down {Tc}{qh}{8s} to give Ghezelbash a commanding lead with a set of tens. Incredibly Cohen found the {Jc} on the turn to complete his straight to re-claim the lead in the hand. However in a classic “suck, re-suck” Ghezelbash filled up with the {8d} river to send the local railbirds into a frenzy as Cohen trudged off to pick up $5,460 for his 7th place.

Ghezelbash continued to steamroll the table and couldn’t put a foot wrong as he continued to hit big flops and rake in big pots to take a big chip lead. Meanwhile the short-stacked Ali Khalil got some momentum with two double ups to get himself back into contention.

Aleks Brkovic found one double up of his own but couldn’t make it two when he took {ah}{5s} up against the pocket jacks of Tom Grigg. A third jack on the flop sealed the deal for Grigg as Brkovic was eliminated in 6th place for $6,552.

Bruce Nguyen fell in similar circumstances, as he shoved his short stack with {Ad}{5d} only to find Tom Grigg wake up with another big pair, this time {8h}{8c}. Nguyen picked up a pair on the flop, and a flush draw on the turn but ultimately the {5h}{3d}{th}{td}{3s} board left him heading to the cashier to collect $7,644 for 5th place.

Ali Khalil was unfortunate to go in 4th place when he moved all in with {Ac}{Kc} and was called by Saidal Wardak with a dominated {Ah}{4h}. Khalil looked set to eliminate Wardak and accumulate a big stack but the board had other ideas as it arrived {as}{4d}{9h}{4s}{2h} to leave Khalil crippled and eliminate shortly after in 4th place for $9,828 in prize money.

Saidal Wardak didn’t last much longer however as he found himself racing in a battle of the blinds holding {7s}{7c} against the {Ac}{8d} of Tom Grigg. The board fell {Ks}{9h}{9s}{As}{td} to give Grigg a pair of aces and the pot to eliminate Wardak in 3rd place for $13,104.

Tom Grigg held a near 2:1 chip lead into the heads-up battle with Ali Ghezelbash, but things were turned around when Ghezelbash doubled with a flush against Grigg’s top pair and flush draw to reclaim the lead.

However Grigg wasn’t done with just yet, and recovered to get himself back in front thanks to a key hand where he rivered a bigger full house after Ghezelbash had flopped trips. The final hand came down at around 4am local time when Ghezelbash moved all in preflop with pocket sixes and Grigg once again found a big pair with his pocket jacks. The board was spread {Ah}{Th}{Kc}{Ac}{5h} to eliminate Ghezelbash in 2nd place for $22,932.

It took 14 hours, but Tom Grigg was about to overcome 91 players in a quality field to capture the trophy and first place prize of $33,944!

After a few hours sleep the PokerNetwork Live Reporting team will be at it again today for the $2,700 No Limit Holdem Six-Handed Event. It should be a cracking event, and you can follow all of the live updates from our Live Reporting page.

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Tom Grigg Wins APPT Sydney Bounty Event Tom Grigg Wins APPT Sydney Bounty Event

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