After three shootout tables that featured some world-class players, along with a final table that involved some of the most intense shootout poker, the Full Tilt Poker $25,000 Shootout Invitational has just wrapped up!
Twenty-four players took to the felt over three days with Annette Obrestad, Tong G, Mike Matusow, Gus Hansen, Carlos Mortensen (flight one), Phil Ivey, David Benyamine, Jonathan Karamalikis, Billy Argyros (flight two), Tom Dwan, John Juanda, Andy Bloch and Van Marcus (flight three) all being the headlines of their respective flights.
Regardless of how great some of the aforementioned players are, even the best can have an off day as they all found themselves on the rail as only two players from each shootout managed to survive for a final table berth here tonight.
Headlining that final table was David Oppenheim who destroyed his shootout table to ease through to a final six. Multiple WSOP bracelet and WPT title holder Howard Lederer, along with cash game specialists Patrik Antonius and Eli Elezra were also joined WSOP Europe Champion James Bord and tournament veteran Barny Boatman as play got underway just five hours ago.
Elezra would run a bluff against Lederer before - although dominating his opponent - see an unlucky river end his stay in sixth. With Oppenheim still on top, he would be involved in a preflop cooler hand of jacks against tens to see him crippled to the bottom of the leaderboard as Bord headed in the other direction to sit on top. Short-stack doubles here and there would see chips circulate as Oppenheim would regain the lead when he grinded his stack back up before holding in a preflop all in with a dominating ace.
It would take three hours until Antonius fell in fifth when he was straightened out on the river as Boatman followed soon after in fourth place before Bord was left crippled with just a big blind. Luck was on the Englishman's side as he soon ran that back up to the chip lead with four near-consecutive double ups as a short-stacked Lederer bowed out in third.
With a near three-to-win lead, Oppenheim would relinquish the first two pots to Bord before having eighty-percent of the chips in the middle preflop with his dominating Bord's . A sweat-tastic turn card would only be that . . . a sweat . . . as Bord was bumped to the rail in second place to see Oppenheim victorious in his first outing in Australia.
For Oppenheim, through all the praise and respect from his peers, this marks his first tournament victory after spending years on the cash game felt in Las Vegas. His AUD$250,000 winner's cheque here may not be his biggest (following his third place finish at last year's $50,000 Poker Players Championship), but it will be one that he no doubt remembers after displaying bouts of ruthless aggression, great analysis and patience to be crowned the Full Tilt Poker $25,000 Shootout Invitational Champion and recipient of AUD$250,000.
For the PokerNews Live Reporting Team, our day may have come to an end, but tomorrow is where the major actions starts as the $100,000 Challenge kicks off with an expected record breaking field takes to the felt from 2:15 pm EST. See you there!