Ravi Raghavan Becomes Newest Addition to WPT Champions Club
Level 30: 50,000-100,000, 10,000 ante
By Diana Cox
Ravi Raghavan went from the short-stack to the only stack and won his first career WPT Title just before midnight Dec. 9, 2012 at the WPT Doyle Brunson Five Diamond World Poker Classic.
Raghavan outlasted a final table which included Antonio Esfandiari, who won this event in Season IX, Andrew Lichtenberger who final tabled this event in Season X and WPT Champions Club member Shawn Buchanan.
Raghavan began the day as the short stack and doubled up twice early on to rocket to the top of the chip counts and never slowed down.
With the elimination of Thomas Winters as the third place finisher, the heads-up battle between Raghavan and Buchanan began. Things came to an end when Buchanan pushed all-in for just over two million with K7 and Raghavan, who had about a 4-1 chiplead, called with 77.
Supporters of both players rose to their feet and the dealer peeled off J99 giving Buchanan the chance to double up. Greg Mueller, who finished 13th in this tournament, shouted for an eight from the crowd, and the 8 opened on the turn. But no more help for Buchanan was to be found when the 4 fell on the river and ended his chances at a second WPT title.
First to exit the final table was Jeremy Kottler. Kottler was down to his last 720,000 and moved all-in from the small blind after a 115,000 raise by Winters from middle position. Winters asked for an exact count before making the call to put Kottler at risk. Winters was in possession of pocket sevens, 77, and Kottler had been dealt the Ace and King of diamonds. Kottler's hand failed to improve after a flop of 853 but the 2 on the turn gave him additional outs. However, Kottler's tournament came to an end when the 9 fell on the river and Winters' sevens held.
Andrew Lichtenberger, who finished fourth here last season, was eliminated as the fifth place finisher when he shoved his last 395,000 from the small blind with A9 . Raghavan called from the big blind with Q4. Raghavan picked up a pair of fours after the flop of J84. His fours held went the board completed 2 K and Lichtenberger's tournament came to an end one place shy of his Season X finish.
With a massive rail on site to support him, Esfandiari fell short of becoming the first player in WPT history to win the same event twice. Esfandiari became the fourth place finisher when he ran his AK in Raghavan's AA.
Esfandiari raised to 200,000 from the small blind and Raghavan re-raised to 490,000 from the big blind. Esfandiari four-bet all-in and Raghavan snap-called.
"Damn," Esfandiari said as Raghavan flipped over his aces.
The board ran out J94106 and Esfandiari and his supporters left the room.
Two hands later Winters, who was seated at his first WPT final table and made his first WPT cash, was home as the third place finisher. Buchanan raised to 240,000 from the small blind and Winters three-bet to 700,000 from the big blind. Buchanan responded by moving all-in for just over three million and Winters called all-in. Buchanan flipped over 1010 and Winters was behind with A7. The dealer fanned 63285 and Winters never saw the needed cards to stay alive.
WPT Doyle Brunson Five Diamond World Poker Classic final table results:
1. Ravi Raghavan - $1,268,571
2. Shawn Buchanan - $746,502
3. Thomas Winters - $483,031
4. Antonio Esfandiari - $329,339
5. Andrew Lichtenberger - $234,197
6. Jeremy Kottler - $187,845
Hand #36: Jeremy Kottler Out in 6th Place ($187,845)
Level 27: 25,000-50,000, 5,000 ante
Thomas Winters raises from middle position to 115,000, Jeremy Kottler Kottler (pictured above) moves all in from the small blind for 720,000, and Winters asks for an exact count and thinks for a bit.
Winters calls with 77, and Kottler turns over AK. It's a race situation, and Kottler will need to improve to stay alive.
The board comes 85329, and Kottler turns a gutshot straight draw but improves no further. Thomas Winters wins the pot with his pocket sevens to eliminate Jeremy Kottler in sixth place.
Seat 1. Antonio Esfandiari - 4,310,000
Seat 2. Andrew Lichtenberger - 2,570,000
Seat 3. Jeremy Kottler - Out in the 6th Place ($187,845)
Seat 4. Ravi Raghavan - 1,740,000
Seat 5. Shawn Buchanan - 4,235,000
Seat 6. Thomas Winters - 2,240,000
With the board showing AQJ37 on the river and more than 200,000 already in the pot, Antonio Esfandiari bets 167,000 from the cutoff, and Jeremy Kottler thinks for a while from the button before he calls.
Esfandiari turns over AK for a pair of aces, and Kottler mucks. As Esfandiari pulls in the pot, he says, "I'm never bluffing there."
Antonio Esfandiari - 3,030,000 (126 bb)
Jeremy Kottler - 1,500,000 (62 bb)
Jeremy Kottler Beats Yevgeniy Timoshenko w/ a Straight
Level 23: 10,000-20,000, 3,000 ante
With the final board showing J82A10 and more than 160,000 already in the pot, Yevgeniy Timoshenko (right) has a bet of 144,000 in front of him in the hijack, and Jeremy Kottler thinks for a bit in the big blind before raising to 420,000.
Now it's Timoshenko's turn in the tank, and he thinks for several minutes before he calls.
Kottler turns over Q9 for a rivered queen-high straight, and Timoshenko mucks. Kottler wins the pot.