Daniel Smyth (not me) is the latest WPT World Online Championships victor, and $428,391 richer thanks to an investment of just $33.
Smyth was the proverbial underdog going into the final day of Event #5. The Irishman qualified for the $3,200 knockout tournament via a satellite, but showed he wasn’t afraid to mix it up with the best of them.
Despite the presence of high rollers like Manig Loeser and 2013 WSOP Main Event winner Ryan Riess, Smyth defied the odds to claim his first WPT title on Tuesday.
Smyth Stuns Poker’s Finest
The action got underway with nine players in the hunt for a WPT title. Loeser and Riess were the early favorites, but Artur Martirosian was also a threat. The Russian was a standout performer in the recent Super High Roller Bowl, and started strong in the finale of Event #5.
For all the stars on display, it was Joao Maureli who struck first. The Brazilian came out best with A♠ K♠ in a race against Matheus Resende’s pocket queens. That hand broke the deadlock and it wasn’t long before Shyngis Satubayev followed Resende to the rail.
At this point in the match, Smyth was fading fast. From 20 big blinds, his stack dwindled to virtually nothing before fate struck (see video above). A min-bet from Martirosian promoted an all-in from Smyth for 5.7 big blinds.
With everyone else out of the way, Martirosian called with A♠ 3♠. Smyth showed K♦ 8♣ and promptly hit top pair on the K♠ 4♥ 5♠ flop. Martirosian had a ton of outs, but couldn’t find a way to win as the 3♣ and 6♣ completed the board.
Twists of Fate in Online Finale
That hand gave Smyth enough breathing space to ladder up two places following the demise of Riess and Martirosian. In fact, he built up a big enough stack during the melee to be competitive with just five players remaining.
However, the road to success is rarely smooth and, within a few orbits, he was back down to 10 big blinds. Luck swung in his favor once again though when he moved all-in with A♠ T♦. Pedro Marques called with K♣ Q♠ and, after both missed the board, Smyth doubled his stack.
Any doubts Irish luck wasn’t on Smyth’s side were firmly dismissed when he scooped major pot against Manig Loeser (see video above).
Pedro Marques opened from under-the-gun with A♣ 7♥. Loeser called with A♥ Q♥, as did Pim Gieles with pocket sixes. Smyth took a stand at this point with A♦ 2♦ and moved all-in. Only Loeser called, but the pot was big enough to turn the tide for whoever won.
Smyth went in as the underdog but gained the upper hand on the 3♣ 2♠ 8♠ flop. The 5♦ and 9♠ on the turn and river didn’t help Loeser and, with that, Smyth jumped to second in the chip counts.
Ireland Baby, We Did It
It was all one-way traffic from that point on. Smyth avoided any further trouble and booked himself a place in the final two against Loeser. A quick double up for Smyth reversed the initial deficit and set up a battle that would last for more than an hour.
Something eventually had to give, and, in the end, Smyth came out on top with K♠ 9♥. Loeser was all-in preflop with 8♦ 7♦, and couldn’t find a pair as the board ran out T♠ A♠ 4♣ 9♦ 4♦.
With that, Smyth picked up Loeser’s bounty, the $208,803 top prize, and his first WPT title all thanks to a dose of luck and a $33 investment.
WPT World Online Championships Event #5 – $3,200 Knockout – Result
- Daniel Smyth – $208,803 + $204,588 in bounties
- Manig Loeser – $208,492 + $70,866 in bounties
- Joao Maureli – $142,061 + $32,449 in bounties
- Pim Gieles – $95,502 + $23,478 in bounties
- Pedro Marques – $66,687 + $22,382 in bounties
- Artur Martirosian – $47,281 + $16,593 in bounties
- Ryan Riess – $29,699 + $18,562 in bounties
- Shyngis Satubayev – $23,504 + $750 in bounties
- Matheus Resende – $19,483 + $13,242 in bounties