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The Season XVII World Poker Tour (WPT) Borgata Poker Open saw its $3,500 Main Event attracting a total of 1,075 entries over two starting flights. Making an impressive show at the felts, Sacramento resident Erkut Yilmaz (cover image) won the event to claim his maiden live title. Yilmaz banked a hefty payout of $575,112 that includes a $15,000 buy-in for the season-ending WPT Tournament of Champions.
Yilmez came to the final day with a big chip lead but had a tough time against TK Miles who constantly challenged him all through the final table. The duo engaged over the heads-up match that lasted several hours before Yilmez finally claimed victory. This win has taken Yilmez’s career earnings to $1,530,112.
The tournament saw 136 places make the money and only 24 managed to reach Day 4. Among the players seen in action were, Michael Wang (11th for $45,781), Dhaval Joshi (12th for $45,781), Ryan Jones (17th for $24,695), PokerStars Team Pro Maria Konnikova (20th for $24,695), Michael Gagliano (82nd for $7,309), Daniel Weinman (100th for $6,393), Jared Jaffee (117th for $6,097), Anthony Zinno (130th for $6,097) and Darren Elias (131st for $6,097).
Ali Imsirovic who has been on a winning streak this year and recently won the Poker Masters Purple Jacket after taking down two events at the 2018 Poker Masters was also in the mix. Imsirovic managed to make a deep run and was among the top 18 finalists but took two rough beats at the hands of Aaron Kweskin and stumbled down in chips. Imsirovic eventually finished in ninth place, pocketing $57,510.
Just when eight players remained the field, Yilmaz took on a decisive lead. He dug into Liam He’s stack in a hand only to river two pairs, collecting a massive pot. Another hand saw Yilmaz’s pocket jacks crack Miles’ pair of eights. Yilmaz continued to chip up and won a major pot against Grove to take a commanding chip lead. Soon, Yilmaz was over 20 Million in chips. He kept up an aggressive strategy through the elimination of John Lakatosh (7th for $93,776) and Chris Grove (8th for 73,040) that cleared the field to the final six.
Final Table Chip Counts
1. Erkut Yilmaz – 21,575,000
2. Oleg Shnaider – 7,750,000
3. TK Miles – 5,900,000
4. Austin Wentling – 3,750,000
5. Liam He – 2,575,000
6. Anthony Maio – 1,400,000
The six-handed final table featured several WPT and Borgata tournament regulars including Miles, Liam He, Oleg ‘the Destroyer’ Shnaider and Anthony Maio.
Final Table Recap
Anthony Maio became the first casualty on the final table when he moved all in for 950,000 from under the gun and Austin Wentling snap called from the big blind with against Maio’s . The board ran , winning Wentling the pot while Maio was relegated to the rail in sixth place.
The short stacked Liam He exited next, in fifth place, when Shnaider raised to 400,000 preflop from the small blind and He re-raised all in for 2.45 Million from the big blind. Shnaider called and both players tabled their cards. Shnaider had against He’s . On a board, Shnaider hit a three-of-a-kind sending He packing in fifth place.
Austin Wentling was then shown the door in a hand where Miles raised to 500,000 from under the gun and Wentling 3-bet all in for 1,725,000 from the button. Yilmaz called from the big blind and Miles made the call. The players checked to the river with the board running where Miles led in another 600,000. Yilmaz decided to fold. Miles tabled and his flopped pair of queens won him the hand against Wentling’s , eliminating the latter in fourth place.
In the three-handed play, Oleg Shnaider faced the heat when Miles opened to 500,000 from the button and Shnaider 3-bet shoved from the big blind for 6 Million. Yilmaz called from the big blind prompting Miles to fold. Shnaider tabled against Yilmaz’s . The board ran , bringing no help to Shnaider whose run ended in third place.
The heads-up match between TK Miles and Yilmazlasted several hours before the final hand was witnessed where Miles bet from the button and Yilmaz called to see the flop . Yilmaz checked and Miles bet 800,000. Yilmaz then check-raised all in with a covering stack and Miles called all in for 15,800,000. Miles’ dominated Yilmaz’s but turning the tables, the appeared on the turn, giving Yilmaz the lead with two pairs, which he maintained through the river.
Miles’ run ended in second place while Yilmaz claimed the event title, banking his biggest tournament cash to-date. He also won a seat into the 2018 WPT Tournament of Champions.
jikkkFinal Table Results (USD)
1. Erkut Yilmaz – $575,112*
2. TK Miles – $383,399
3. Oleg Shnaider – $283,341
4. Austin Wentling – $211,562
5. Liam He – $159,616
6.Anthony Maio – $121,697
*includes $15,000 WPT Tournament of Champions seat