The WPT Cambodia $1,100 buy-in Main Event running at the NagaWorld Phnom Penh came to an end on Monday. The marquee event of the first-ever WPT festival held in the country’s capital city drew a record-breaking field of 750 entries and generated a whopping prize pool of US$ 727,500, which was shared by the top 94 finishers. The lion’s share of the prizepool eventually went to USA’s Brian Tougias who defeated Malaysia’s Kai Fu Wong to win a hefty $131,430 in top prizemoney. In addition to the top prizemoney, the eventual champion – Tougias also recieved the beautiful WPT Trophy and 1500 points towards Season XVIII WPT Asia Pacific Player of the Year leaderboard.
Talking to the WPT officials after his grand Main Event victory, Tougias said, “I feel great. Four months ago I was teaching PE and swimming lessons on Koh Samui, had a couple of big scores online and stopped teaching. I have only been playing professionally now for four months and semi-pro for five years, but it is pretty surreal. My birthday was yesterday and I couldn’t ask for a better birthday gift.”
Ryan Revai (11th – $10,891), Ping Liu (13th – $8,672), Burin Shinawatra (15th for $8,672), Youngjin Kim (16th for $7,188), Dan Alezandrovitz (18th for $7,188), Brett Kennedy (19th – $5,885), Jaegwang Kim (26th – $4,169), and Hong Leong Kho (48th – $2,634) were some of the notable ITM finishers.
After Dajia Chen (10th for $10,891) exiting as the Final Table bubble, the final 9 players returned on Sunday to battle it out for the coveted title, with Malaysia’s Kai Fu Wong (4,700,000) starting as the chip leader and the eventual champion Brian Tougias beginning as the second largest stack.
Tougias started off well by eliminating South Korea’s Jiyoung Kim in 9th place. Kim held ace-queen, which failed to beat pocket kings of Tougias. The next eliminations came in Yong Cheong Foo (8th) and Alex Lee (7th). A little later, Kue Seong Tchong lost a huge chunk of his chips to Tougias with his pocket tens losing to Tougias’ flopped set of fives. His efforts to improve in the next hand failed and he finished 6th. The next three eliminations were delivered by Kai Fu Wong and he took an over 2:1 chip lead into heads-up against Tougias, who fought hard and pulled ahead with a 3:1 chip lead.
About an hour later, it all ended with Tougias raising to 400,000 and Wong defending his big blind. On the flop of 8c 7d 5d, Wong check-raised to 2.1 Million and Tougias moved all-in holding Kd Kh. Wong called with 10c 9d. The turn 4h and the river 4c did not help Wong and Tougias won the title.
The Main Event alone saw as many as three Indian players scoring ITM finishes. Running deepest among them was WSOP bracelet winner Abhinav Iyer who finished 20th for $5,885. The other two Indians to cash were Raju Jaruplavath (41st for $2,975) and Romit Advani (94th for $1,593).
The top scorer among Indians yesterday was Rajneesh Katoch who cashed $5,975 for his fourth place finish in the $2,150 High Roller Turbo. India’s Kshitij Kucheria final-tabled the $300 WPT Nagaworld Superstack Classic Freezeout finishing 8th for $1,258 , while Paawan Bansal (11th for $948) and Ravi Shankar Metlapalli (20th for $565 ) also scored in the tournament.
The best performance at the series was delivered by the young gun Laksh Pal Singh who finished runner-up finish in the $1,100 Main Event Warm-Up and collected a hefty $17,509 for his run.
Final Table Payouts
- Brian Tougias – $131,430
- Kai Fu Wong – $92,152
- Jae Kyung Sim – $59,400
- Aladin Reskallah – $43,941
- Si Yang Phua – $33,574
- Kue Seong Tchong – $26,583
- Alex Lee – $22,007
- Yong Cheong Foo – $17,504
- Jiyoung Kim – $13,146