Ole Schemion Wins WPT Tournament of Champions

Ole Schemion Wins WPT Tournament of Champions

The World Poker Tour wrapped up its 17th season of poker action in style. Not only did it host three final tables last week in Las Vegas, it hosted the Baccarat Crystal WPT Tournament of Champions at Aria on the Las Vegas Strip from June 1-3.

The Tournament of Champions is different from all other tournaments hosted by the WPT. It is reserved solely for past WPT main tour champions.

Players who won main tour events in Season XVII also won a seat into the Tournament of Champions, but those who won in previous seasons were able to buy in for $15,000. The good part, however, was that there was no entry fee or rake taken by the WPT or casino.

The WPT provided added incentive to play, putting an additional $100K into the prize pool and an extra $50K for the winner plus high-value prizes from WPT sponsors. Those included a special edition Hublot watch, handcrafted Baccarat Crystal trophy and champagne flute set, and custom BBO poker table.

In addition, every player in the tournament received a gift bag valued at $1K.

TOC Day 1

The first day of action at Aria brought a total of 76 players to the tables, and the total prize pool came to $1.29 million. That would be enough to pay the final 10 finishers at least $37,540 and put up $440,395 for the winner.

Nearly half of the field disappeared as play moved forward, leaving only 44 still in contention by the end of Day 1. Patrick Serda was the chip leader with 250,600 chips, followed closely by Mike Watson with 212,900, then by Alan Sternberg, WPT commentator Tony Dunst, and Ole Schemion.

TOC Day 2

Play started with 44 people but quickly made its way toward two tables with eliminations of players like Andy Frankenberger, Patrick Serda, and Tony Ruberto.

Once two tables were set, Mike Watson exited the field, as did Hoyt Corkins, Shawn Buchanan, Justin Young, and Brian Altman. That put the remainder of the players on the money bubble, and play slowed a bit. Simon Lam doubled through Dietrich Fast, and the latter was eliminated on the next hand by Ole Schemion in 11th place.

Schemion stayed aggressive and busted Noah Schwartz in 10th place, and Tony Dunst ousted Jonathan Little in ninth. Schemion was back to eliminate Dominik Nitsche in eighth place, but it was Ryan Tosoc who sent Aaron Mermelstein out in seventh place, on the final table bubble but with $50,870.

The final table was then set as follows:

–Ole Schemion (1,871,000 chips)

–Ryan Tosoc (549,000 chips)

–Tony Dunst (475,000 chips)

–Simon Lam (359,000 chips)

–Griffin Paul (308,000 chips)

–Nick Schulman (239,000 chips)

Final Table on Stage

The action then moved to the HyperX Esports Arena at the Luxor on June 3 for the final table.

It took only 17 hands for Schulman to make a move with his short stack, but his A-J was beat by Tosoc’s K-Q when a queen hit on the flop. Schulman exited in sixth place.

Paul doubled through Dunst but remained short. Two hands later, Paul pushed again, that time with A-K, but Dunst had pocket fives that had already found another five on the flop. Paul was going for a flush but didn’t make it, ending his run in fifth place.

Tosoc was on a heater and took the chip lead from Schemion, but the latter came back to take a big pot from Tosoc and reclaim the lead. But then Dunst doubled through Schemion to claim a strong second place on the leaderboard from Tosoc. A bit later, Tosoc doubled through Schemion to shake things up again.

Meanwhile, Lam was hurting and pushed with K-7 on a Q-7-4 flop with two clubs. Schemion called with 6-5 of clubs for the straight flush draw, and he made a regular flush to send Lam out in fourth place.

Schemion then doubled through Tosoc to take the lead again, but then Dunst climbed into that top position. When Tosoc was ready to move all-in, he did it with Q-7 of hearts against Schemion’s K-2 of hearts on a flop with 6-5-3 and two hearts. But no help at all came on the turn or river, and Tosoc was out in third place.

Heads-up play began with Schemion holding 2,105,000 chips to the 1,695,000 of Dunst. The battle took fewer than 25 hands. Dunst moved all-in with Kc-5d on a Kh-Jh-10s-4s board. Schemion called instantly with Qs-9s. The straight won it for Season XVI European Championship winner Ole Schemion.

1st place:  Ole Schemion ($440,395)

2nd place:  Tony Dunst ($250,265)

3rd place:  Ryan Tosoc ($166,845)

4th place:  Simon Lam ($115,945)

5th place:  Griffin Paul ($84,140)

6th place:  Nick Schulman ($63,890)


About Jennifer Newell

Jennifer began writing about poker while working at the World Poker Tour in the mid-2000s. Since then, her freelance writing career has taken her from Los Angeles to Las Vegas and back to her hometown of St. Louis, where she now lives with her two dogs. She continues to follow the poker world as she also launches a new subscription box company and finishes her first novel. Jennifer has written for numerous publications including PokerStars.com and has followed the US poker and gaming market closely for the last 15 years. Follow Jen on Twitter

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