It took 13 hours for the £1,100 Main Event to crown its champion today in London at the Grand Room, Grosvenor House. That champion was Ji Woon Kim, a forerunner, according to his friend Tommy Kim, of the Korean wave about to take over the poker circuit…
Kim chopped the majority of the top two prizes with Argentinian Jeremias Mendoza, who had a vocal rail of his own, making the end stages of the event a lively affair, even as the heftiest of prizes from the £987,460 total pool were fought over.
Day 3 had brought 24 in-the-money players from a starting field of 1,018 back to play to a winner, with prizes rising from £6,250 for the first out (Day 1 chip leader Daniel Wong) to – originally -£160,000 for the champion. Getting to a final table involved manoeuvring around some tough competition: eliminated during the course of the day were the likes of Sylvain Loosli (21st), Charles Akadiri (17th), Iaran Lightbourne (14th) and Martin Bader (11th).
Start of day chip leader Alex Andrei’s fortunes didn’t hold all the way to the end and he busted in 8th (£12,000), while Kevin Gu, who’d also begun the day in good shape chip-wise, ran queens into the aces of Eric Le Goff to bust in 6th, winning £20,000. Kim started to up the aggression now that the table was short-handed, building a stack that could take a hit or two; he eliminated Eric Le Goff in 4th place (£40,000), extending an already huge lead.
Eventual runner up Mendoza had just busted Gianluca Speranza in 5th (£27,000) after a period of preflop shoving helped to bring him back from a short stack. Three handed, Kim took pot shots at his opponents, busting Pawel Kabut in 3rd (£63,060) after giving his king-queen suited a spin with ten-jack offsuit – and finding a flush hidden in the deck.
Heads up, Kim and Mendoza agreed a deal guaranteeing each £117,000 and leaving £26,000 and the WSOP ring to play for. Despite a couple of rail-cheered doubles, Mendoza couldn’t take Kim down and his opponent took home £143,000 and his first WSOP title.
A prolific casher in Korea and around the Asia Pacific Poker Tour, Kim is ready to take on the world.
“I am very happy,” he said, “Back in 2019 I finished 47th in the WSOP $10,000 Main Event [for $173,000] – it was very important for me to win the ring.”
Final table results
|1||Kim Ji Woon||£143,000|
|4||Eric Le Goff||£40,000|
Schwaederle overtakes Lodge to win High Roller
Cedric Schwaederle has triumphed in Event #9: WSOPC £2,200 High Roller – apparently his first live event – taking home £80,000 and his first WSOP ring (well, it would be). It would have been tough to predict this outcome for most of Day 2, as it was dominated by the overnight chip leader Harry Lodge, who was overcome at the last hurdle by Schwaederle heads up.
The High Roller attracted 173 entries generating a prize pool of £335,620. Almost everyone who made it through Day 1 was paid (20 places) but three players had to bust cashless (they were Jack O’Neill, Pavlo Veksler and Benny Glaser – with some outdrawn pocket kings on the pure bubble) before everyone else was guaranteed at least £4,400.
Once in the money, play sped up considerably; some of those finishing before the final table were early leader Patrick Kallas (17th for £4,900), Tom Hall (16th), Daniel Yovchev (11th for £6,700) and Ewen Trevidy (10th).
The final table saw Harry Lodge wield his giant stack with ruthless efficiency, busting opponents and wearing down the short stacks until, short-handed, Schwaederle caused the first dent in his chip tower (then over five times his final opponents’ stacks) with a double (ace-seven holding against three-six suited).
Lodge got a few back busting Daren Bloom in 3rd for £37,170 when his pocket fours held up against Bloom’s final hand of eight-nine suited, but soon a huge hand pivoted the lead to Schwaederle. Lodge made a big call on the river to win a hefty pot already in the middle (around a quarter of the chips in play) but instead found his opponent with a turned flush, and that changed everything.
Putting on pressure with his new 2:1 advantage heads up, Schwaederle eventually moved in with what turned out to be five-four of diamonds. Lodge called with king-queen of diamonds, and although that looked a very favourable match-up, Schwaederle flopped a full house to seal the deal and pick up the title, ring, and £80,000 while Lodge had to settle for £54,000.
Final table results:
The £3,300 WSOP Super Circuit Main Event Begins
Today also saw the first 107 entrants into the £3,300 WSOP Super Circuit Main Event play an energy-sparing eight levels, and 58 of them survived through them all. Leading after the first flight is Latvian player Eduards Rakuss, who bagged 282,000 chips. Yi-Zhan Peng (239,600), David Vinayagamoorthy (217,900) and Alex Peffly (207,400) also acquitted themselves admirably and have a couple of days to rest while Day 1B and 1C players try to emulate their chip accumulation.
Viktor Blom made it through with 133,200 chips; other notables in the field included Christopher Yong (124,800), Iaran Lightbourne (90,100) and Rehman Kassam (80,100). Also playing (but not making it through on this bullet) was Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier who may well make another appearance for tomorrow’s Day 1B that begins at noon.