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As always, all the photos and full results can be found on the past finals page.
Here's a brief summary report of the days tournament from the TD at each venue;
As usual, we had a fun loving crowd at the Birmingham final, with many familiar faces, as well as some new ones playing at their first quarterly finals, but all keen to try their hardest on the day take down one of the 8 guaranteed National Final seats along with the cash prize pool and winners trophy at stake.
The tournament began at just after 2pm and steady play seemed the order of the day as the food break came and went and most players taking up the add-on option to increase their stack size. As the player numbers began to reduce we reached the 50 player mark, then 40 then 30 until we eventually had our final table of 9 players taking their seats.
It’s worth noting that among the playing field was Chris Cochrane making his first playing appearance at a casino, with a brief visit to Star City just a week before to get a feel for the venue. Also in the mix was Natalie Richards, who was the highest placed female player on the day, finishing in a very creditable 9th place, but unfortunately just outside the National qualifying places.
With several of the players at the final table used to battling it out against each other for weekly league points at the Old Windmill in Coventry the heads up final hand came down to Andrew Moore and Mike Fowler both from that same venue, before Andrew’s Q,10 won him the winners trophy and 1st place prize money after a well fought contest.
A hard fought battle for most of the afternoon, with some welcome relief for all the players in the way of some first class catering provided by the Gala Casino Bradford, went down to the wire. With the final two players remaining, previous finalist and runner-up David Giblin was striving to take the No.1 spot this time.
Things were not looking great for him at one point having been reduced to only 300 chips remaining in his stack. His heads up opponent, Jonathan Hookey equally determined as David slowly grew his stack and both took turns to have a brief advantage and win some chips before their heads up opponent would gain some back.
Eventually something had to give, and as the blinds increased, Jonathan made a push with A,Q to be called by David's 7,4 , with a 7 kindly dropping on the board to give David his 1st place, and the winners trophy.
All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable day, particularly for the top 4 players all winning seats for Septembers National final.
The fourth season quarter final took place at the Bristol Gala Casino on Saturday 20th July. With a few players on summer holidays it was a smaller than usual affair but everyone still enjoyed themselves, even if the sun was shining outside!
The first player out was Mike Walker who plays at the Crown and Horseshoe in Bristol. After lunch, there was a steady flow of players exiting the tournament, until we reached the final ten players who made up the final table.
Well done to all the final table players, their finishing positions were as follows:
10th – Chris Ware from the Upper Cock in Cwmbran
9th – Chris Cotter from the Crown and Horseshoe in Bristol
8th – Mark Powell from the Rose and Crown in Salisbury
7th – Jessica Gouweloos from the Crown and Horseshoe in Bristol
6th – Sean Dean from the Queens Head in Andover
5th – Rod Pople from the Golden Ball in Bridgewater
4th – Tony Rogers from the White Hart Hotel in Devon
3rd – Steve Davies from the Oakfield Hotel in Cwmbran
2nd – Thomas Pearce from the Golden Ball in Bridgewater
1st – Diane Evans from the Upper Cock in Cwmbran
With four qualifiers going through to the National Final in September, it was all to play for as we reached the final table. Since three of the top seven player’s had already qualified, namely Jessica Gouweloos, Steve Davies and Sean Dean, then their places rolled down, meaning the top seven player’s actually went through!
The final table eventually whittled down Thomas Pearce from the Golden Ball in Bridgewater up against Diane Evans the landlady form the Upper Cock in Cwmbran. Chip stacks between the two were about even as they commenced their battle but Thomas took a big hand from Diane and the balance of power swung over to him. This was until Diane clawed her way back in and eventually won the tournament with a full house.
Congratulations to Diane along with the others who made it through to the National final which is fast approaching on 21st and 22nd September 2013. Invitations for this event will be sent out first or second week in August by email and text, so please confirm your seat and we look forward to seeing you.
Play at the Aspers casino in London started at midday with 76 players, with the players knowing that this would be the last chance this year to get to the Annual Birmingham grand final. It took 37mins to loose our first player, John Hallett from the Comrades Club. We had 5 further hours of solid play before we were down to the last 9 all making it through to Birmingham (1 being a previous qualifier), After another 30mins , 6 players remained all making the cash. It seemed almost no time at all later we were heads up, Jon v James. We had our showdown hand with Jon holding Queen, 10 and James Ace 9. The flop came 7, 2, 10, the turn an 8 and the river a 3 giving Jon the winning final hand with a pair of 10s to take first place prize money and the winners trophy.
Play started at Luton at 2pm sharp with a total of 105 runners. It was 59 minutes before the big cheer went up for the first player out, Matt Woods from The Old White Hart. The goal from the rest of the players was to make the top 11 to qualify for the Birmingham National Finals. Top Lady on the day was Vanessa Turner finishing 17th and shortly afterwards at 7pm we were down to the last 15, all going on to Birmingham because 4 of the last 15 had already qualified in previous seasons. At 8pm we are down to a final 6, all making the cash, and after another hour we had our showdown hand, Alex from The Dragon with 8, 10 suited, Ian from The Bletchley Arms with Ace, 10. The flop was 7, 8, 9, the turn a 3 and the river an 8, Alex wining the event with trip 8s taking the £500 cash and the crystal trophy.
A great battle was had throughout the day with players vying for the final places at the nationals. It was a good hour before the first person went out, and when we reached the final 2 tables at was most interesting as we had 7 players already qualified so the play went very tactical. We got to the bubble with 13 players remaining and Steve Moore just missing out. The final table was a patient affair as the trophy was the next target, with 3 further hours of play before we got heads up. It was like a table tennis match with chips, Nicky vs Gareth both desperate for the trophy so after another hour of play it was down to 10 hands. Gareth finally got his way with K 7 the king giving him the win.
With 8 National Final seats up for grabs it was all action at Aspers casino for the last round of Quarterly finals for the year. With various hands and strategies being discussed during the buffet food break it was soon back down to action for the afternoon session and as the thunder clouds came and went outside the hectic action continued in the card room.
When the play got down to the final 2 tables there were several experienced CPL players from previous quarterly and National finals so it was not going to be easy to take down the tournament and collect the winners trophy.
As the remaining players were slowly reduced there was great relief amongst the final table of 10 players, that with 2 of the number already qualified it meant the whole table would be receiving invites to Septembers Nationals, and as the cash prize bubble came and went we reached a heads up battle between Paul McInally and David Dickinson which resulted in managing to just pip Paul to the winners trophy and first place prize money.
Best of luck to all the qualifiers for September at Star City.
Another loud and full of cheer day at Hero's Bar for the Norfolk Mini Final. The 1st player to drop this time was Mr Ian Gell who quietly left the building before he could receive his round of applause. After 6 hours of play the following summarizes the action on the final table between the last 8 players remaining; With a total of 340K of chips in play, 2 players on the final table held over half of that total between them. Glenn Wilson bringing 90K and Rob Foyster with 100K, the rest spread across the other 6 players.
Gordon Stewart and Terry Secker drop within the first 4 hands. Lee Head is taken out with his pocket J's as Rob hits his Ace to increase his substantial chip stack. Justin Strickland is the first player to make a dent into Rob's chip stack taking 44K given Justin a chip stack of 88K. Scott Head has a stroke of luck and doubles through giving him a still rather short stack of only 22K. Justin loses a big pot to Glenn to double him through to a massive 185K, David Sawyer also dropped out in the same pot, leaving the final four.
Scott finally drops next after holding on for as long as he could with his small stack. Justin takes out Rob to give him nearly all the chips 320k. Glenn manages to hold on for 2 more hands until he was blinded all in and his A 8 suited was beaten by Justins rags of 10, 5 off suit when the cards on the table produced 5,2,4,Q of diamonds and the Q of spades giving Justin the 2 pair to win the Norfolk Mini Final.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Ian Lyons the Landlord for his great facilities and the lunch he provided.
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