Taylor Black Bounces Back to Win WPT Five Diamond ($1,241,430)
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Taylor Black lost a massive lead at the final table of the World Poker Tour (WPT) Five Diamond World Poker Classic, but he showed some resiliency and still ended up winning the tournament for $1,241,430.
Black entered Day 5 of the $10,400 buy-in event on Sunday with more than half the chips in play. He'd continue to hold a huge lead throughout the first couple hours before finally running into some trouble.
The first four days of play took place inside the Bellagio poker room in Las Vegas, while Sunday's final table was hosted at the HyperX Esports Arena at the Luxor Hotel & Casino.
A Lead is Never Safe in Tournament Poker
With four players remaining and massive pay jumps looming, Black remained out in front right up until a costly misstep. Gianluca Speranza opened to 400,000 with A♣K♦ and Black then moved all-in with A♠J♦, and Speranza snap-called his final 4.2 million chips. The best hand would hold up and there was a new chip leader for the first time at the final table.
Black would later get all those chips back when he doubled up through Speranza, putting him back in the chip lead. This time around, he wouldn't relinquish that lead. But he nearly did when he called an all-in with top pair on the flop against Lorenzo Lavis, who was chasing a flush draw. The flush didn't hit and Lavis was eliminated in fourth place for $454,590.
2021 WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic Final Table Results
Heads-Up for a World Poker Tour Title
Vik Shegal, not Black, would eventually finish Speranza off in third place, setting up a heads-up match with over $2 million remaining in the pot.
Black had almost exactly a 2-1 chip advantage when play resumed following a short break. He'd quickly give back a small chunk of that stack before beginning to take over the match, and surpassed the 20 million chip mark for the first time.
At around 11:15 p.m. local time in Las Vegas, Black called an all-in bet with A♥K♠ and was up against A♠8♦. The board ran out K♣10♣6♥Q♦9♠, officially putting an end to the five-day tournament that started with 716 entrants.
Taylor Black is the newest member of the WPT Champions Club. He took home $1,241,430, while the runner-up earned $827,620. The huge score isn't the first time Black won over $1 million in a poker tournament. In 2018, he received just under $1.1 million for shipping a partypoker MILLIONS Main Event in Canada.
With the conclusion of the Five Diamond World Poker Classic at Bellagio, the Season XIX of the World Poker Tour comes to a close. The WPT will resume next month with the $3,500 buy-in Lucky Hearts Poker Open at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida.
*Photos courtesy of WPT.com.