Sep 16 2011 by Kieran Westbrook, Dumfries Standard Friday
STANDARD reporter Kieran Westbrook has been crowned South Scotland Nuts Poker League’s Champion of Champions.
The Stag Bar and Broons player battled through a field of 60 to claim the title, the trophy, the cash, a seat in the November Nationals, and a mug at the invitation event on Sunday.
Fellow Broons player Megan Airley busted first, exiting after only an hour of play.
The Broons Bar-based game was a substantially tighter game than normal, and the final nine lined up knowing they had all cashed – but that only three would win a seat at the November National.
Jeanette Hunt of Sanquhar exited quickly in ninth, along with Billy Smith of Newton Stewart in eighth, followed by Kristian Orban of Newton Stewart in seventh; Stuart Cairnie of Lockerbie in sixth and Jamie McQuarrie of Gatehouse of Fleet in fifth.
Tension mounted with four players left and only three seats available at the November National. Westbrook nearly ended Stuart McDonald’s chances when his pocket kings held up to his opponent’s king-queen.
But with only half a blind left, the Selkirk man ploughed back into contention with some gutsy moves and good luck.
It was Broons Bar regular Carl Dawber who missed out on the coveted seat, after he got short-stacked following a bluff on chip-leader Willie Smillie.
Relief was painted on the remaining three players who now battled it out for the top cash prize.
McDonald exited in third finishing off a spectacular showing for the Summer season from the Scottish Borders’ players, with four final table finishes and four national final seats.
And there were two, with Westbrook holding a commanding lead for the first time in the entire event. Head’s up was a remarkably quick affair – lasting all of one hand.
Westbrook of Dumfries got his money in the middle once again with pocket kings – a pair which had served him well all day with the cowboys having arrived in his hand six times!
Smillie called and turned over ace-five. Smillie hit the five, but failed to improve and the tournament was over.
Westbrook claimed the champion’s title as a perfect end to his participation in South Scotland Nuts Poker as he shall be relocating to Edinburgh, taking up a new role with his employers, and returning to his native Edinburgh and Lothians Nuts Poker League.
The Nuts Poker League plays in venues across south Scotland, for more information check out www.thenutspokerleague.com.