Smyth Scoops Irish Open and Massive Pay Day

Posted by Gerry Poltorak on Apr 26, 2011 Posted in Irish Open, Irish Poker News | No Comments »

Niall Smyth won an enthralling battle to claim the PaddyPower Irish Open, at the Burlington Hotel at 3.48am this morning. The final table started at 2.00pm on Monday afternoon with nine players and eventually came to an end some 14 hours later in the early hours of Tuesday morning when Smyth finally beat Surinder Sunar in a great heads-up duel.

Niall McCann was the first to exit, but he was extremely short stacked, but he still claimed €30,000 for his weekends work. John Eames was a strong fancy to take the title after starting the final day just behind the chip leader Smyth, but he was the next to go and collected €45,000.

There were steady eliminations throughout the day and when Martin Petri was eliminated in third, with a payday of €180,000, it was left to Smyth and Sunar to battle it out for the title. At one stage Sunar had a 2:1 chip advantage over Smyth but the Irishman kept chipping away at his more experienced opponent and went all-in with pocket nines against Ace/King. A nine came on the flop to give him a set and the tide had turned. After that hand it was not long before the end came when Smyth went all-in from the small blind forcing the call from Sunar. The cards were turned over to show Queen/Five for Smyth and Ace/Nine for Sunar. The flop and turn came, and were no help to either player which meant Sunar was in line for a double up, but the river came and it was the five of hearts, giving Smyth a pair of fives and with it the title of Irish Open Champion 2011.

Smyth won a massive €550,000, but not only that he was the last remaining survivor of all the PaddyPower qualifiers which meant he won a further €100,000 in prize money. This was the first ever time that the sole survivor has gone on to win the championship. Sunar would not have been left disappointed for too long as he picked up a cheque for €290,000 for finishing runner-up, a cheque which took his career winnings well past the $4Million mark.

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