The World Poker Tour has taken to Vienna this week and the Montesino Pokertainment Centre, and already a big name has emerged as an event winner from the festival. James Akenhead, former World Series of Poker November Niner, won the partypoker WPT Vienna Warm-Up for €65,000 on Monday, March 14, 2016.
Akenhead topped a field of 1,157 entries to get his hands on the winner's trophy and €65,000 ($72,800). Despite four players busting from the nine-handed final table in the first six hands of play, it took a total of 198 hands, including a three-hour heads-up battle between Akenhead and runner-up Oliver Baude, for the tournament to be settled.
Final Table Results
James Akenhead’s decision to travel to the Austrian capital of Vienna for the 2016 partypoker WPT Vienna Warm-Up proved to be a profitable one as he came out on top of a field of 1,157 entrants to get his hands on the winner’s trophy and the first place prize of €65,000.
2016 partypoker WPT Vienna Warm-Up Final Table Results
Akenhead took a break from the game he loves a few years ago in order to concentrate on his business, but returned to the felt with a renewed vigour in late 2015. A third place finish in the £2,125 Grosvenor UK Poker Tour Grand Final netted the former Tube driver £72,500, a result he followed up a week later with a third place finish in the €2,150 Eureka Prague no-limit hold’em turbo tournament for €31,780.
Three cashes at the UKIPT and European Poker Tour Dublin festival bagged Akenhead a combined €30,335 and now he has secured his first major live title since 2012 with this excellent victory in Vienna.
The nine-handed final table started with Akenhead as the chip leader and also with the British star as the most experienced player of the finalists. Within the first six hands at the final table, four players bust, those players being Christoph Zobl, Martin Toncev, Jozef Faber, and Milos Zerzevski. Akenhead was responsible for Toncev and Faber’s early exits and saw his chip stack swell to 9,200,000 from 7,630,000.
Shortly after Zerzevski’s demise, Akenhead lost a huge pot when his faltered against David Koglgruber’s dominated , yet Akenhead kept his cool and was still held a healthy chip stack.
Akenhead found himself back to almost 9,000,000 chips when his prevailed against Catalin Dragomir’s to send his Romanian opponent to the rail, and his chip stack swelled to more than 13,000,000 when he his held against Koglgruber’s with the chip going in on the turn of the board.
Lajos Motel was the next Akenhead victim, his failing to connect with the board and losing to Akenhead’s . This left Akenhead in a dominant position going into the heads-up battle with Oliver Baude, the latter holding 4,195,000 chips (34 big blinds) to Akenhead’s 18,965,000 chips (158 big blinds).
The heads-up duo locked horns for almost three hours, but it was Akenhead who would come out on top. On the 198th hand of the final table, with blinds of 100,000/200,000, Baude moved all-in for 4,475,000 chips, and Akenhead eventually called.
According to the PokerNews poker odds calculator, Baude was an almost 66 percent favourite to win the hand, but the odds swing massively in Akenhead’s favour on the flop. The on the turn gave Baude some outs to a straight, but the river improved Akenhead to a flush, busting Baude in second place and leaving Akenhead to take down the partypoker WPT Vienna Warm-Up.
Next up for Akenhead is the €3,300 partypoker WPT Vienna Main Event commencing on March 15 at 2:00 p.m. local time (1:00 p.m. UK time).
Lead image courtesy of the WPT Live Updates team