Andy Frankenberger came out of nowhere to earn the title of newest World Poker Tour champion, winning the 2010 Legends of Poker $5,000 Main Event at the Bicycle Casino in Los Angeles. It took Frankenberger until after 2 a.m. on Wednesday to finish what he had started five days earlier, but after ending Days 2, 3, and 4 as chip leader, he battled through the final table to win the crown and its distinctive bronze Wild Bill Hickok trophy. He probably didn't mind the $750,000 first-place prize either.
Frankenberger had a sizable chip lead to begin the final table but quickly lost it as Tom Lee surged ahead. Frankenberger battled back to become chip leader again when heads-up play against Kyle Wilson began, but to get there, he and Wilson had to get rid of the rest of the competition.
Frank Brunetti was second in chips to start the day but was soon crippled after doubling up Tom "Titan Tom" Braband. Brunetti called Braband's shove when Titan Tom was making a move, but the Titan hit his gutshot on the river to leave Brunetti with six big blinds and $63,000 for sixth place.
Jared Jaffee was next to go, earning $86,000 for fifth place at his second WPT final table. Despite an earlier double, Braband was unable to last longer than fourth place. His loss to Wilson sent him to the payout desk to collect $109,000. Check out Titan Tom's PokerNews blog to read his description of his WPT Legends journey.
Three-handed, Lee and Wilson had most of the chips, but Frankenberger refused to give up his short stack. Lee and Wilson had both finished sixth at previous Legends of Poker final tables and had already succeeded in bettering their performances, but all three players were intent on the win. They went more than three hours without an elimination as Frankenberger gradually rebuilt his stack. He had enough to cripple Lee by the time he hit a flush to double through him. Frankenberger went runner-runner for another flush to finish Lee in third place, good for $174,772.
Frankenberger held a four-to-one chip lead over Wilson at the start of heads-up play. Six hands in, they got all the chips in preflop, and Frankenberger had the best of it with against Wilson's . The flop was made for television, but the turn and river bricked to eliminate Wilson. He earned $370,000 at his second Legends final table, and Frankenberger secured his first major title.
This is how the players finished at the final table:
1. Andy Frankenberger - $750,000
2. Kyle Wilson - $370,000
3. Tom Lee - $174,772
4. Tom Braband - $109,000
5. Jared Jaffee - $86,000
6. Franco Brunetti - $63,000
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