The World Poker Tour (WPT) India Main Event attracted an impressive field of 697 players. It was only the second time the WPT India has been held and the turnout was greater than anticipated. The event was held aboard the Deltin Royale in Goa and, when the dust settled, Nikunj Jhunjhunwala emerged as the victor. He was awarded approximately $92,180 for his performance, the biggest cash of his career.
Following the win, Jhunjhunwala, who was coming off a three-week “poker sabbatical,” said, “Coming here, I had this prop bet with my friend that I was either going to final table the Main Event or the High Roller. So now that’s all happened it’s just starting to sink in.”
The final table saw several well-known players, including Vidur Singhal, Deepak Singh and Amit Jain, a member of the Adda52 team. Jain saw his run end in seventh place, earning him $15,435. Singh ran a little deeper, staving off elimination until fourth place, for which he picked up $30,662. Singhal would fall in third, taking home $41,679.
The eventual winner had to face off against Sahil Mahboobani for the top prize. The final battle was tough, but Jhunjhunwala managed to keep the pressure on to beat his opponent. Mahboobani earned $64,444 as the tournament runner-up.
Jhunjhunwala added, “There was a point in time where my stack was down, and [Mahboobani] had a 3-1 chip lead over me. My rail was on him and in his ears, and honestly, it was fantastic…I had a sleepless night; lots of anxiety. I knew there were two people at the [final table] that I wasn’t going to get into hands with until I got a double up. Then, I’d have 25-30 bb stack and I’d open up and wider up my range.”
He almost didn’t make it. Jhunjhunwala was the short stack on the table at one point, but turned things around after scoring two doubles in a row. “That’s the beauty of these blind levels. There were instances yesterday when a player had two big blinds, and six hands later he’s rallied to 515,000. I knew that it’s not impossible, so I knew not to lose morale. I had my rail there cheering me on, and that was great.”