As we see the summer months wind down, the Alberta poker scene shows no signs of slowing down as the Edmonton Poker Classic Main Event boasted a record-breaking turnout, almost tripling its number of entrants since the series began in September 2009 at Casino Edmonton.
Steve Worr took down the three-day $1,100 Main Event for a cool $65,000 in an epic heads-up battle against Samuel Ngai, which changed leads several times before crowning a winner.
The Edmonton Poker Classic kicked off on September 1 with a $165 no-limit hold’em turbo tournament. Players started with 10,000 in chips with speedy 12-minute blinds and 10 levels of late registration. For a total prize pool of $17,063, first place would take home $4,860 in a field of 130 players. Bragging rights went to Ron Lauzon, who eventually went on to cash the first three events in this series — all final tables. This win came after a four-way even chop and an agreement to play for an extra $500 to the winner. Also cashing in this event was Edmonton’s own Jonathan Sanborn, fresh off a win in the Main Event at the Deerfoot Summer Stack Series, as well as Chris MacPherson, who eventually came in fifth place in the Main Event.
The next event was the popular bounty tournament for a $550 buy-in with $100 per knockout. A starting stack was 15,000 in chips and blinds went for 30 minutes as players fought for a first-place prize of $9,520. A total of 83 entries formed a prize pool of $41,000, paying eight spots. The winner of this tournament was Melanie Leigh, who also impressively chopped the first event and made it heads-up with Ron Lauzon. Leigh also ran deep in the Main Event and cashed in 27th place for a total of three cashes this tournament series.
The final side event was the $660 no-limit hold’em tournament, which attracted 97 entrants to form a prize pool of $58,200 — first prize was $16,950. Players started with 15,000 in chips with 30-minute blind rounds and paid 10 spots. Scott Saik took first place after a three-way even chop with World Poker Tour Champions Club member Sheraz Nasir and Gregory Sieben, after which time players played one hand out to determine a winner. Sieben also cashed in Event 1 and made a deep run to finish in 18th place in the Main Event.
The record-breaking Main Event brought in 272 entries — almost triple the number of entries in their first-ever series in 2009, which attracted 95 players, and over a hundred more players than last year. This $1,100 event had three starting days, with the final day on Labour Day Monday. Francis Fan, Josh Wallace, and Chris MacPherson lead the way with top-three stacks over 300,000 when play resumed on Monday. Fan fell a couple of spots short of the final table, Wallace finished in ninth, and MacPherson quietly laddered into fifth place. Players battled it out and there were no talks of a chop.
Players dropped at a steady pace until they got to three-handed play. Kris Steinbach, Samuel Ngai, and Steve Worr battled it out for a while until Steinbach eventually lost two coolers before falling at the hands of Worr and cashing for $31,200 in third place. Ngai and Worr then began their $25,000 heads-up match after locking up $40,000 each, with first place being a whopping $65,000. Ngai began the match with a two-to-one lead, however the roles reversed after players got it all in preflop and Ngai’s pocket nines could not hold up against Worr’s suited ace-eight. Ngai took a hit but continued to chip up until the eventual final hand when players were all in before the flop again and Worr’s ace-jack held up against Ngai’s king high.
2015 Edmonton Poker Classic Main Event Top 10 Results
Edmonton’s next series will be at Casino Yellowhead and will play host to the Deepstacks Poker Tour. This will be a 12-day event with a two-starting day $1,500 series-ending Main Event. The series begins on October 1 and will run until October 12.