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The Season 20 edition of World Poker Tour (WPT) Legends of Poker at Parkwest Bicycle Casino culminated with the two-time WSOP bracelet winner Joshua Pollock (cover image) championing the $5,250 buy-in Main Event for $573,350. This was Pollock’s career-first WPT title and his career-best score!
The winning amount includes a seat worth $10,400 in the season-ending WPT World Championship. Pollock’s name will be added to the Mike Sexton WPT Champions Cup, alongside all the other champions in the WPT’s 20-year history!
In August 2011, Pollock made his first major poker tournament final table in the WPT Legends of Poker Main Event, finishing fourth for the first six-figure payday of his career. Since that deep run, he has had plenty of success on the circuit.
Almost 11 years since making that first WPT final table, Pollock again made the six-player FT lineup in the 2022 WPT Legends of Poker Main Event. After battling an intense heads-up match against Ray Qartomy (2nd for $380,000), Pollock could close out the win, emerging victorious from a field of 642 entries! With this win, Pollock’s lifetime tournament earnings have improved to just shy of $2 Million.
“This tournament was a dream. I ran okay on day one and just ran super well on day two, especially on the last level. I went from one of the bottom stacks to chip leader. Probably this is the best I’ve ever run in a tournament,” Pollock said after the win. “(Ray) is a legend. He has the most WPT Final tables ever. It was awesome playing him heads up. It felt like we were in a home game playing heads-up, and it was really enjoyable.”
“My wife and I are about to go on a baby moon to Hawaii next week,” Pollock shared. “This might be the last live tournament I might play for a while, so this was a good tournament to win. If they can’t differ the seat to next year, we will see if my wife will let me come.”
The Main Event ran from August 27 to September 1, attracting 642 entries across three starting flights, and comfortably surpassed its $2.50 Million guarantee. The event paid 81 places a share from the $3,113,700 prize pool.
Alex Farahi (8th for 71,000), Stephen Song (21st for $20,800), Paul Nguyen (23rd for $20,800), Giuseppe Pantaleo (31st for $17,700), Ryan Tosoc (35th for $15,400), and Indian-original player Deepinder Singh (48th for $13,500) were among the notables to cross the money line.
With the elimination of Tyler Dickinson in seventh place ($91,000), the play was paused on Day 3. Ray Qartomy (73 BBs) headlined the six-handed final table.
Final Table Chip Counts
Final Table Recap
Short-stack Adam Hendrix was the first player to fall on the final day. He was eliminated on hand #5 when he turned a royal flush draw against Wantman’s flopped set. The river failed to improve Hendrix, and he headed to the payout cage in sixth place.
Three hands later, on hand #8, Lei Lei, was all-in for 2.1 Million with Ace-Jack against Wantman’s pocket Kings. A king on the flop sealed Lei’s fate, and he walked away in fifth place.
Soon after that, Pollock sent Aaron Motoyama packing in fourth place. With the quick eliminations, Qartomy, Wantmam, and Pollock started three-handed play virtually dead even in chips.
Despite the early success, Matthew Wantman couldn’t get much going three-handed. Finally, he jammed with his last 1.5 Million on hand #80. His Ace-Deuce was up against the Ace-Nine of Pollock. Pollock flopped a pair of nines, knocking Wantman out in third place.
Pollock (19,275,000) held the lead to start heads-up play against Ray Qartomy (12,675,000), but the latter fought back, eventually taking the chip lead on hand #118. However, the lead would be short-lived as Pollock immediately reclaimed the chip lead on hand #119.
The tournament came to a close on hand #129. Pollock raised to 1.30 Million, and Qartomy moved all-in for about 10.60 Million. Pollock snap-called.
The board ran . Pollock’s pocket eights held, securing him his maiden WPT trophy!
Final Table Results (USD)
*includes a seat worth $10,400 in the season-ending WPT World Championship
Content & Cover Image Courtesy: World Poker Tour & Joe Giron