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Vivek Rajkumar Wins L.A. Poker Classic Heads Up Championship

Chris Moore Finishes Runner Up


Four Players Square OffThe 2009 L.A. Poker Classic Heads Up Championship was a resounding success, not only for the players happy with the unique double-elimination format, but for the fans watching from the rail as well. The three-day event saw hundreds of matches come and go before its conclusion, assuring that each skilled player would receive their shot at the title.

A total of 12 players returned for the final day of play, some with a much shorter road to the final match. those eight players in the loser's bracket would have to play perfect the rest of the way to win the top prize. Those in the winner's bracket could afford a mis-step along the way.

Here were the in-the-money finishers from the previous night:

Tie 13th - Michael Pesek -- $20,000
Tie 13th - John Conkright -- $20,000
Tie 13th - Scott Seiver -- $20,000
Tie 13th - Peter Feldman -- $20,000

Chris MooreThe day started off with the winner's bracket determining their final two players. David Oppenheim was beaten by Chris Moore and James Mackey was also victorious, sending Evan Roberts to the loser's bracket.

Moore and Mackey then decided to play their final winner's bracket match early instead of waiting for the other side to finish up. Moore quickly got up on the young bracelet winner and closed out the match when his A-8 held against a dominated Q-8.

On the other side, David Oppenheim made the most of his time and eliminated Steve Billirakis, who had previously eliminated both Steve Sung and Owen Crowe. Oppenheim was all set to meet his next opponent, but first that had to be determined.

Here were the finishes from the loser's bracket:

Tie 9th - David Paredes -- $25,150
Tie 9th - Owen Crowe -- $25,150
Tie 9th - Ryan Hughes -- $25,150
Tie 9th - John Racener -- $25,150
Tie 7th - Steve Sung -- $35,000
Tie 7th - Amit Makhija -- $35,000
Tie 5th - Evan Roberts -- $50,000
Tie 5th - Steve Billirakis -- $50,000

James MackeyVivek Rajkumar had lost to James Mackey earlier in the tournament, but had set the loser's bracket on fire with his string of victories, beating two-time bracelet winner Ryan Hughes, good friend Amit "amak316" Makhija and then online pro Evan Roberts.

The match up was set and it did not disappoint. Nearly three hours of play saw several lead changes and plenty of comebacks. Finally Rajkumar had built up more than a 3-1 chip lead and called Oppenheim's all in with J-10. The cash game specialist held a better A-8, but it failed to hold when Rajkumar paired his ten. Oppenheim was eliminated in fourth place and earned $75,000.

Rajkumar was just one match away from the onwaiting Moore, but first he had to go through Mackey, who had already beaten him before. This match went differently from the outset, with Rajkumar getting paid off huge with a set of threes. Rajkumar had Mackey on the ropes and finally sealed the win after slowplaying his pocket aces. Mackey pocketed a cool $100,000 for his third place finish.

Vivek RajkumarMoore was immediately called to the room and the two players wasted no time before starting up their match. The first match went to Rajkumar, which meant that no player was undefeated any longer. Both players had the lead at various points in the match, but it was clear that Rajkumar held it for much longer, having Moore on the ropes quite a few times before finally finishing him off. On the final hand, Moore was all in with a pair and an open-ended straight draw while Rajkumar held a club flush draw with a gutshot to a higher straight. The river gave him his flush and suddenly things were all square.

The next match didn't wrap up until past 5 a.m. Rajkumar held the lead and was close to finishing several times before his pair of nines held against Moore's pair of sevens to take down the tournament and the gigantic cowbody statue that accompanies all LAPC tournaments. Moore took home $190,000 for his runner-up finish and Rajkumar pocketed the lion's share with $350,000.

Here were the final four results:

4th - David Oppenheim -- $75,000
3rd - James "" Mackey -- $100,000
2nd - Chris Moore -- $190,000
1st - Vivek "psyduck" Rajkumar -- $350,000



almost 13 years ago

Cograts to the ITN Winners-Looks like Chino "wiseass" Rheems has busted out in the Main Event already.