After a thrilling five days at the felt, Donald Maloney overcame a stacked final table to take down the WPT’s $3,500-entry Borgata Poker Open, winning of $487,874.
With 1,156 entries across the tournament, the former hockey player had a mountain to climb at the start of the final day with the experienced Dave Farah going into play as chip leader. He wouldn’t maintain his lead through the first bust-out, however. Victor Ramdin doubled up before he departed in sixth place, and between those two events, Farah lost a huge pot.
Kevin Albers turned trips to take a huge proportion of Farah’s chip leading stack. No-one would bust until the first break, and both Albers and Farah were involved. The latter opened blind in first position, and due to that, Albers three-bet. Victor Ramdin had pocket kings and moved all-in, but he was called off by Albers with jack-eight of diamonds, and Albers hit a nine on the flop, a seven on the turn and a ten on the river to send a stunned Ramdin to his rail.
The drama seen by the crowd early on was to continue.
Albers used his momentum to climb ever upward, but others slid down the pecking order. It would be one of the regulars to play in Borgata, Jerry Maher, who was out in fifth place. His club draw on the flop failed to catch against Uke Dauti’s top two, and four remained.
From there, it would be the overnight chip leader Farah who fell victim to the vicissitudes of variance to crash out in fourth for $227,077. Farah was all-in with queen-seven on a flop of queen-seven five, which was where Farah was all-in against Donald Maloney. But Maloney held pocket fives for bottom set, and he held through turn and river to take the tournament three-handed.
It was at that point that the three remaining players, Donald Maloney, Uke Dauti and Kevin Albers, did a deal. With the payouts confirmed and nothing on the line except the trophy, the three players went all-in blind the next hand, and when Maloney caught a runner-runner straight, it was all over and Maloney had the title to go with the biggest result of his poker career to date and just higher than his entire career’s winnings beforehand, which stood at $471,249 before this legendary WPT event.
Back of the net.
Final Table Payouts: