Amir Babakhani is $442,248 richer after taking out the 2013 PartyPoker World Poker Tour Canadian Spring Championship in Montreal.
The Canadian was the player to watch out for well before the final table given his strong play throughout the tournament. Babakhani had over 6.6 million chips going into the last day, over two million chips more than the second highest chip stack at the time.
His dominant play continued at the final table as he knocked out all but one player on the last day of play. Babakhani particularly shone when the tournament came down to the last three players, knocking out Jason Duval with an Ace high. Duval shoved all-in pre-flop with a suited Queen Nine of Spades, which was called by Babakhani, who had Ace Four off suit.
The Jack of Hearts, Ten of Hearts and Three of Spades on the flop gave Duval an open ended straight draw, potentially putting him back in the game. The Jack of Spades on the turn did not help Duval, however, leaving Babakhani ahead with his Ace. The river brought the Three of Hearts, which meant Duval missed his straight draw and was knocked out in third place with a little under $200,000 won.
This left just Babakhani and fellow Canadian Barry Kruger in heads-up play. Kruger had also done well for himself throughout the event, something seen by the fact he was second on the chip ladder coming into the final table. He was going to need everything in his poker arsenal to beat Babakhani, however, who looked unstoppable up to that point.
Babakhani would keep up that unstoppable streak in heads-up play, obtaining a whopping 10 to 1 chip lead over Kruger after winning 10 of the first 14 hands. Kruger would not give up though, winning two major hands to drop Babakhani’s chip lead to 2.5 to 1.
It was not enough for Kruger as both players flopped trip fives on the final hand. Kruger, with Five Four of Hearts, check-called Babakhani’s post-flop bet of 600,000. With Five Eight off suit, Babakhani had the higher kicker and was on his way to winning the tournament.
Kruger moved all-in, which was promptly called, after the Two of Clubs came on the turn. The Queen of Clubs on the river did not help Kruger’s cause and he was the last player knocked out of the tournament, leaving Babakhani as the last man sitting.
It was a surprise victory for Babakhani given that his previous live poker earnings totalled around US$16,000. He won CAD$442,248 (around US$431,000) by taking out the 2013 PartyPoker World Poker Tour Canadian Spring Championship, absolutely eclipsing all of his previous winnings.