Bryn Kenney wins $250k Luxon Pay Invitational, tops all-time money list

Jen Mason
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Posted on: August 5, 2023 4:40 pm EDT

It’s been a high-octane table-filler of a day at the Triton London Super High Roller Series, where the 118-entry $250k Luxon Pay Invitational has been won by Bryn Kenney for $6,860,000.

It’s an eye-watering figure on its own, and combined with his previous $60 million in live winnings, has propelled him into the top spot worldwide for tournament cashes.  

His opposition was a heady mix of super high roller VIP players and their selected pros (segregated at first, then combined in the later stages) – surely making for one of the toughest and most volatile fields ever seen at the nosebleed stakes. 

Final table players

Today’s final table started with a bang when a big-aces battle between James Chen and Bryn Kenney saw an all-in preflop situation on the second hand.  Kenney’s kicker was a king to Chen’s queen, and after both paired, Chen’s run at the title was over quickly. The top of Taiwan’s all-time money list (and 2019 €250k WSOPE Super High Roller champion), adds $680,000 to his over $7.5 million in tournament winnings.

One VIP/pro pair made it all the way to the final

In the same blind level, Kayhan Mokri was sent to the rail by Aleks Ponakovs (in another prefop all in), whose king-jack made a broadway straight to beat Mokri’s set-flopping pocket eights. Mokri’s elimination scuppered an interesting potential for a VIP and their pro to end up heads up against one another – his partner was Sweden’s Robert Flink.

Flink was to bust in 6th, but he outlasted double WSOP bracelet-winner Nick Petrangelo who lost a coinflip of his own vs. new chip leader Bryn Kenney. The pay jump was over $400,000 (these are the sorts of sums at the top of a Super High Roller event): Petrangelo took $1,170,000 and Flink $1,582,000.

Flink, an online cash game specialist, has made almost all of his $2 million in live winnings at the Triton Series, with this cash being his overall career best.

The Moneymaker magic ran out for the man credited with starting the 2003 poker snowball, with an all-in preflop flip against Punnat Punsri (pocket jacks vs king-queen off-suit). Chris Moneymaker had been the quietest player on the final table, and now, with his stab at a double foiled by the deck, was heard of no more (for now – the $125k Triton Main Event is currently under way and accepting entries).

Chris Moneymaker

Aleks Ponakovs, the amiable 31-year-old who secured the first WSOP bracelet for Latvia, had been ducking and diving throughout Day 2 and the final, but he’d drawn a tough left hand side neighbour in Talal Shakerchi.  He had lost several small pots to the eventual runner-up, before one huge one: he ran trips into Shakerchi’s full house, the gin turn card leading to a huge check-raise river shove that was the last move he made in the tournament. He picked up $2,540,000, his biggest single cash to date.

If play slowed down at all today, it was three handed, with Shakerchi, Kenney and Punsri playing for the $14 million left in the prize pool. It was Punsri who took 3rd place and $3,107,000 when, having gotten it in with a dominating ace against Shakerchi, found the deck against him and delivering the pair-up to his opponent’s kicker.

Heads up – Talal Shakerchi

Shakerchi and Kenney settled in for a fight – both no strangers to heads up play, and for hefty prize money at that. One VIP vs. one pro (although it’s hard to think there’s anything amateur about live and online crusher Shakerchi), stacks started even but tilted Kenney’s way before a late-stage double, and it could have been anyone’s game.

It ended up Kenney’s game, however; having built back a big chip lead he made a move with eight-nine off-suit when Shakerchi raised the button with ace-king suited. Live cards are live cards – when Shakerchi called, he had outs. He spiked an eight to bust Shakerchi (who collected a presumably quite consoling $4,650,000 before hopping straight into the $125k Main Event) and collected his third Triton title, $6,860,000 and the overall global money list top spot.

“I made a bit of a loose shove at the end and got there,” said Kenney afterwards, but no one can doubt the man knows his way around a high roller poker tournament.

You can relive all the best moments and follow the Main Event live on PokerOrg Instant.