Keith Tilston Wins US Poker Open $50,000 Main Event

Keith Tilston emerged victorious in the $50,000 Main Event of the inaugural US Poker Open last night to be awarded $660,000 in prize money and the right to boast about beating a field of some of the world’s top high rollers.

This was Tilston’s fourth cash in the brand-new poker series. The player collected a total of $1,047,100 from the US Poker Open, including his payout from the Main Event. However, despite his impressive performance, the player could not pass UK poker pro Stephen Chidwick in the US Poker Open Championship standings. The Brit could not make it to the paid positions in the Main Event, but nevertheless cashed $1,256,600 from the series to be crowned the US Poker Open Champion and be awarded the special champion’s trophy.

Tilston entered the final day of the $50,000 Main Event with massive chip advantage over his remaining opponents. The five-handed final table of the tournament was rounded out by some of poker’s heavyweights and Tilston knew that winning would not be an easy task.

However, the player had no intention to relinquish the chip lead and kept and grew his momentum all the way through the day. He inflicted his first blow on Dan Smith on the very second hand of the day. The latter left the tournament in fifth place for a payout of $132,000.

Tom Marchese was eliminated by Daniel Negreanu shortly after to scoop $165,000 from the tournament. Negreanu himself went out in third place after he clashed against Jake Schindler. The Canadian poker pro received $264,000 from the payouts desk for his performance in the tournament.

Déjà Vu Heads-Up

The elimination of Negreanu set the heads-up between Tilston and Schindler. Their Canadian opponent predicted a long match, judging by the fierceness with which both players played during the Main Event.

Two-handed action began with Tilston holding the chip lead. However, Schindler quickly began putting pressure on his opponent in a bid to narrow the gap. The two players were running deep at the start of heads-up, which promised for a prolonged battle.

Eventually, Schindler tried to make an all-in bluff on the river of what turned out to be the final hand of the event. Tilston picked his opponent off and locked the title. Schindler added $429,000 to his live poker bankroll that now stands at over $15 million.

Tilston and Schindler are no strangers to each other. The two players faced each other in a heads-up battle in the $25,000 buy-in WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic High Roller at the Bellagio back in December. That duel, too, ended with Tilston claiming the title and the first-place prize, sending his opponent to the rail.

In his post-victory interview last night, Tilston said that he ran very well throughout the tournament and that to win against some of the world’s best certainly required a certain amount of luck aside from skills. The Main Event champion spoke with great respect about his opponents, particularly about Schindler. Tilston said that his final opponent was probably the last person in the world he would wish to face heads-up due to his aggressive style and great skills.

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