Pius Heinz Wins the 2011 World Series of Poker Main Event
Captures $8.7 Million as First Ever German Champion
In front of a packed Penn & Teller Theater at the Rio in Las Vegas, Nevada, 22 year-old poker professional Pius Heinz took home $8.7 million and the most coveted title of the tournament year, after a back-and-forth duel with runner-up Martin Staszko.
Heinz, from Cologne, Germany, outlasted more than 6,800 players in July, six on Sunday, and two on Tuesday to capture the $10,000 World Series of Poker no-limit hold’em championship.
The Czech Republic’s Staszko outdid his No. 51,652 world ranking in the game of chess by finishing second in poker’s most prestigious competition.
Ben Lamb entered three-handed play second in chips, but was the third-place finisher in just four hands.
He lost most of his stack on the first hand on Tuesday, after he shoved with K-J over Staszko’s three-bet with pocket sevens. The board bricked out for Lamb, and Staszko took his stack to more than 85 million. Lamb was left with just under 13 million.
Lamb got the remainder of his chips in the pot three hands later, shoving with Q-6 from the small blind. Staszko, in the big blind, finished him off with pocket jacks after the board once again ran out dry for the American.
Despite winning more than $4 million, Lamb was visibly disappointed with the end to his 10-day run in the event.
Staszko held the chip lead going into heads-up play, but it didn’t take long before Heinz regained control. The German chipped away at his opponent, winning eight of the first 12 hands.
Heinz applied the pressure, raising a high percentage of his buttons, but Staszko ran some well-timed bluffs and held off the Blitzkrieg.
Staszko had his opponent out chipped 2-1 more than once, but Heinz found a way to apply a tourniquet to his chip stack.
Well after 100 hands of heads-up action, the lead changing finally came to a end when Heinz shoved with the A Q on a K 10 7 board, after Staszko raised him. Staszko called with the Q 9.
The turn was the 3, and the river a 6, giving Heinz the massive double up to 161.5 million. Staszko was down to 44.4 million, about what he started the final table with.
Heinz would finish off his opponent a few hands later.
The last hand began with Staszko moving all in from the button with the 10 7 and running into the A K of Heinz.
The board ran out 9 5 2 J 4, and an explosion of confetti engulfed the room. Heinz ran over to his cheering section, and the celebration ensued.
Here are the final table results:
1. Pius Heinz — $8,711,956
2. Martin Staszko — $5,430,928
3. Ben Lamb — $4,019,635
4. Matt Giannetti — $3,012,700
5. Phil Collins — $2,269,599
6. Eoghan O’Dea — $1,720,831
7. Badih Bounahra — $1,314,097
8. Anton Makiievskyi — $1,010,015
9. Sam Holden — $782,115
Follow Brian Pempus on Twitter — @brianpempus
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