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Heads-up poker is considered to be the purest form of the game. Players lock horns one-on-one in a battle for supremacy. Some players thrive under this intense pressure, others falter. Steve O’Dwyer, Stefan Dimitrov, and Malte Kessler certainly did the former in their respective Heads-Up Championship events.

WPT Heads-Up Championship: $500K Gtd Final Four

Steve O’Dwyer has found himself heads-up in some of the world’s biggest multi-table tournaments so we weren’t surprised to see his name among the 166 entrants in the $3,200 WPT Heads-Up Championship.

The final 32 finishers received a slice of the $500,000 prize pool, including Rok Gostisa, WPT Mix-Max champion Andrey Kotelnikov, Sylvain Loosli, and Pauli Ayras.

Loosli busted at the hands of Joao Vieira who, in turn, finished in fifth place for $17,500.

Two more superstars managed to navigate their way to the final four but this is where their tournament ended. Allan Berger of Canada and Jorma Nuutinen from Finland both collected $40,000.

Berger’s hand had Twitch viewers’ jaws dropping. All the chips went in on the river of the board. Berger held for a set of eights but O’Dwyer had a set of his own because he held . Ouch!

Nuutinen’s exit hand was a little more straightforward, a coinflip with pocket threes against the ace-queen of Artem Akhmetvaleyev.

This left O’Dwyer and Russia’s Akhmetvaleyev to fight it out for the title and the event’s $135,000 top prize.

O’Dwyer proved too strong for his Russian opponent and he scooped the lion’s share of the prize money, leaving the second-place finisher to bank $75,000 for their $3,200 investment. The final hand saw O’Dwyer overbet-shove with on the river of the board. Akhmetvaleyev didn’t believe O’Dwyer’s story and made the call with only to discover he’d call with an expensive second-best hand.

Place Player Country Prize
1 Steve O’Dwyer Netherlands $135,000
2 Artem Akhmetvaleyev Russia $75,000
3 Jorma Nuutinen Finland $40,000
4 Allan Berger Canada $40,000

WPT Mini Heads-Up Championship: $100K Gtd Final Four

The $33 WPT Mini Heads-Up Championship attracted a field of 333 players and 64 of those were paid.

Such luminaries as Team partypoker’s Patrick Leonard, Maria Ho, Jerry Odeen, Steven Van Zadelhoff, and Tomas Fara all cashed but failed to make it into the final four spots.

Renato Nomura, of Team partypoker fame, was one of the coveted final four. Unfortunately for our Brazilian star, Nomura fell in fourth for a $7,000 score. Canada’s Peter Chien scooped the same sum after losing his semi-final battle.

Stefan Dimitrov and Yordan Ivanov clashed in the final of the $320 buy-in event and decided to strike a deal that left $1,000 for the eventual champion. That extra $1,000 is now nestled in the partypoker account of Dimitrov after he defeated his opponent. Dimitrov’s total prize weighed in at $19,558 with Ivanov banking $18,441.

Place Player Country Prize
1 Stefan Dimitrov United Kingdom $19,558*
2 Yordan Ivanov Bulgaria $18,441*
3 Peter Chien Canada $7,000
4 Renato Nomura Brazil $7,000

*reflects a deal leaving $1,000 for the champion

WPT Micro Heads-Up Championship: $20K Gtd Final Four

The WPT Micro Heads-Up Championship was even larger than expected with 985 entrants creating a $29,500 prize pool that the top 128 shared between them.

Each of the final four won at least $1,773 for their $33 buy-in. Tuomo Niskanen and Karel Kratochvil banked this sum when they fell in the semi-finals.

Germany’s Malte Kessler and Zhanar Shayakova, the latter hailing from Kazakhstan, were the two finalists. Neither was interested in striking a deal despite the $2,955 difference in the payouts, the equivalent of almost 90 buy-ins for this event.

The lack of a deal meant Shayakova collected $2,955 when he was eliminated in second place, which left Kessler to scoop $5,910 and the title of champion.

Place Player Country Prize
1 Malte Kessler Germany $5,910
2 Zhanar Shayakova Kazakhstan $2,955
3 Karel Kratochvil Czech Republic $1,773
4 Tuomo Niskanen Finland $1,73

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