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APPT -- Simon Watt Wins Auckland Main Event

New Zealander Watt Takes Home Top Prize Worth $209,085 NZD

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Simon Watt Wins the 2009 APPT Auckland Main EventThe final table of the PokerStars Asia Pacific Poker Tour Auckland main event welcomed back nine players to the final table today at the Skycity Casino in New Zealand. The $3,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em tournament attracted a total of 263 entrants, and the top prize that each player was gunning for was the $209,085 NZD. Here is a look at the chip counts when play began:

Seat 1: Jason Brown — 709,000
Seat 2: Richard Lancaster — 568,000
Seat 3: Ke Sijia — 294,000
Seat 4: Assadour Assadourian — 231,000
Seat 5: Simon Watt — 581,000 (pictured right)
Seat 6: Gerome Guitteau — 1,204,000
Seat 7: Lance Climo — 350,000
Seat 8: Michael Shinzaki — 620,000
Seat 9: Jens Walther — 335,000

Michael Shizaki was the first player to take his leave from the final table when his KDiamond Suit 5Heart Suit ran into the AClub Suit JDiamond Suit of Gerome Guitteau on an A-10-7-9-K board. Shinzaki was eliminated in ninth place ($14,202), and he was followed to the rail Lance Climo. Climo moved in for the last of his chips holding A-10, but he was dominated by the A-K of Simon Watt. Watt hit a king on the turn to score his first elimination, and Climo was sent home in eighth place ($18,936).

Guitteau then scored his second elimination at the final table when his 8-7 made two pair on a J-8-7-2-4 board against Assadour Assadourian, who held Q-J in the hole. Top pair wasn’t good enough for Assadourian, who was eliminated in seventh place ($23,670). Guitteau kept his momentum going by taking out the next player, as well. Jens Walther was all in preflop with A-Q, and Guitteau called him with pocket fives. The board bricked out, and Walther left the tournament in sixth place ($31,560).

Next came the fall of Richard Lancaster, who was among the chip leaders when the final tale began. He found a good spot to move all in preflop with A-K in the hole, and Guitteau made the call against him holding A-Q. Fate intervened, as the board ran out J-8-3-10-K to give Guitteau a Broadway straight. Lancaster was eliminated in fifth place ($42,606) as Guitteau’s fourth victim at the final table.

Guitteau looked untouchable at this point in play, and the events that transpired to decide fourth place did nothing to recommend otherwise. A limped pot produced a flop of JHeart Suit 10Diamond Suit 2Diamond Suit, and Ke Sijia bet 70,000 to open the action. Guitteau then check-raised to 200,000, and Sijia made the call. The turn fell 3Heart Suit, and Guitteau moved all in. Sijia made the call and turned over 10Heart Suit 9Heart Suit. Guitteau held JDiamond Suit 7Diamond Suit, and the river fell QDiamond Suit. Guitteau made a flush to eliminate Sijia in fourth place ($55,320) and claim his fifth knockout punch.

Watt then got back in on the action when he went to battle against Jason Brown in a huge hand. Watt was all in preflop with pocket kings against the pocket fives of Brown. The board fell A-K-4-6-6, and Watt doubled up to 2.3 million to take the chip lead, while Brown was crippled with just 200,000 remaining with the blinds at 15,000-30,000 with a 3,000 ante. Brown was eliminated shortly thereafter in third place ($82,845) when his king high was knocked out by a pair of nines held by Guitteau. The sixth of the eliminations scored at the final table by Guitteau gave him back the chip lead heading into heads-up play.

Heads-Up Chip Counts:

Guitteau: 2.6 million
Watt: 2.25 million

The two players traded jabs for 15 minutes of heads-up play before the penultimate hand of the tournament played out. Watt opened on the button for 75,000, and Guitteau reraised to 200,000. Watt reraised to 525,000. Guitteau made the call, and the flop was dealt 10Heart Suit 8Spade Suit 7Club Suit. Guitteau checked, and Watt moved all in. Guitteau made the call and they turned up their cards:

Watt: ADiamond Suit 4Spade Suit
Guitteau: JHeart Suit 8Club Suit

Turn and River: ASpade Suit and QSpade Suit

Watt won the hand with a pair of aces to take a commanding chip lead, and Guitteau was left with just 540,000. A few minutes later, it was all over. Guitteau open-shoved for the last of his chips with K-7 in the hole, and Watt made the call with pocket fives. The board ran out Q-J-6-9-J and Guitteau was eliminated in second place ($142,020). The tournament title and $209,085 for first place was awarded to the 26-year-old New Zealander Simon Watt.

Final-Table Results:

1: Simon Watt — $209,085
2: Gerome Guitteau — $142,020
3: Jason Brown — $82,845
4: Ke Sijia — $55,320
5: Richard Lancaster — $42,606
6: Jens Walther — $31,560
7: Assadour Assadourian — $23,670
8: Lance Climo — $18,936
9: Michael Shinzaki — $14,202

The next PokerStars APPT event will take place at Cebu in the Philippines from November 11-15.