Adrien Allain just elevated his status from very big in France to very big in the world when he was crowned the latest WPT champion.
Allain was one of the favourites heading into this final table of six, but at the start of the day all eyes were on the chip leader Scott Baumstein. Baumstein was on a fantastic WPT voyage, one that he had been captain of since the end of Day 2, and everyone was wondering who could stop him. Then out of the depths of the murky waters came PartyPoker qualifier Jordane Ouin. Ouin did not lose a pot of note and it seemed whenever the cards were turned over, he had the goods, and most of the time his luckless opponent was Scott Baumstein.
It wasn't only Ouin that Baumstein was losing pots too. Our eventual champion also doubled up through Baumstein in the early levels when he moved all in with pocket aces and was called by the A 10 of Baumstein.
"This is a set up," said Baumstein.
It was tongue in cheek, but at the rate he was losing pots we could see exactly what he was thinking. Then after 2 hours and 20 mins we lost our first player. The first player out was our eldest and least experienced player Arnaud Trouer. Trouer moved all-in with A Q and he was called by Allain holding A J. Trouer was not to know that Allain's name was on the trophy and the flop of K J J was only a surprise to Trouer!
The next player to exit through stage door left was Michel Konieczny. He squeezed out a three-bet shove but Baumstein was laying a trap for him. The A 10 of Konieczny did not find the community cards they were looking for and the pocket ladies of Baumstein held true.
Step forward and take centre stage Adrien Allain and Scott Baumstein. In a huge pot Allain moved all in on a A Q 5 A 9 board and Baumstein made the call. Allain's A 3 was stronger than Baumstein's Q 8 and the crowd went absolutely mental with excitement.
Despite doubling up, immediately, Baumstein could not get back into the action and Jordane Ouin eliminated him in 4th place. That left Jordane Ouin, Adrien Allain and Thibaud Guenegou to battle it out for the title, and with the absence of Baumstein the play slowed down to that of a snail. It was Guenegou with the short stack, and after moving all-in, uncontested, several times Allain found a hand worthy of the call and his A Q outlasted the A 7 of Guenegou and he was our third place finisher.
Heading into the heads up encounter it was Allain who had stolen the momentum from Ouin. At one point it looked like a one-horse race until Ouin made an inspirational call to haul himself back into the match. On a board of 8 7 4 Ouin bet 620,000 and Allain moved all-in. A Ouin fold at this point would have given Allain a huge advantage in the match but he found the courage to make the call and Allain was stunned. Ouin had A 9 and Allain had J T, Ouin's hand held and the stakes were even again.
After that hand, the pendulum seemed to swing back into the direction of Ouin until Allain won yet another huge pot. On a board of K Q 9 9 Ouin bet 950,000 and once again Allain moved all-in. The room went deathly silent before Ouin eventually called. Allain held 6 5 for the flush and Ouin held A 9 for trips. Ouin needed the board to pair or the case nine to show up and he would have been crowned the new champion. Instead the 6 showed up and Allain was the player looking more likely to take the title.
A few hands later and the chips were all-in once again and Allain's 10 10 finished off the K 9 of Ouin and he was crowned our latest WPT Champion.
Good afternoon and welcome to the final table of WPT Amneville.
The event, which many of the professionals dub as one of the softest WPT events on the tour, attracted 379 players and a prize pool of $1.6 million. Over five days of pulsating play we have our final six players. But only one of them can walk away with the $452,816 first prize and all of the trappings that come with the success of being a World Poker Tour champion.
Lets meet the players:
Scott Baumstein - 3,910,000 chips
Scott Baumstein has been the chip leader since Day Two of this event, which is quite an achievement when you consider the variance in this great game. Finding the luck when he needs it, combined with a fearless and aggressive style, Baumstein has managed to turn himself into the man everyone wishes to avoid.
Baumstein comes into this table with a mammoth looking 130 big blinds. The 27-year old from New York City is the only non-French national who has made it to this final table. Baumstein wants nothing more than the number one spot and as any winner will also tell you his favourite hand is pocket aces.
Six figure cashes are not an unfamiliar sight to the man who has been playing professionally for only three-years. Baumstein has won $431,813 playing live tournament poker and his two previous six-figure cashes both came this year. He won the PCA Heads-Up championship for $120,000 and then finished 4th in the $5,000 Bounty tournament for $146,639 at this summers WSOP in Vegas.
So with great form also on the mans side you wouldn't want to bet against him grabbing his first major title today.
Adrien Allain - 2,675,000 chips
Adrien Allain looks like he was born to play at a poker table. If he ever stopped playing he could get a job as a poker playing extra on a James Bond movie! Allain, who is 25-years of age, sits in his seat with his Aviator sunglasses looking as cool as a cucumber. So far during this competition only the chip leader himself has been able to rattle this contender.
Allain won a huge flip on day one when his ace-queen defeated his opponents pocket kings. Back then he told us that he was willing to flip for a 100,000 stack and it turns out that it was a great decision to make. Yesterday Allain found a little bit more luck when the board helped him out to eliminate both Arnaud Mattern and Jean Phillipe Rohr. After that he systematically dismantled the stack of Nesrine Kourdourli to position himself just behind Baumstein in the chip counts.
Allain first burst onto the poker scene in 2009 when he won the Asian Poker Tour in Macau for a $391,580. Just like Baumstein he is also on a good run of form with two cashes in this years WSOPE in Cannes, including a final table appearance in the €2,500 six-max NLHE tournament. In the run up to that tournament he was responsible for taking most of Phill Hellmuth's chips and causing the Poker Brat a myriad of problems.
With his 89 big blinds keep your eye on Adrien Allain.
Jordane Ouin - 1,915,000
The PartyPoker qualifier Jordane Ouin is one of the more modest poker players at the table. Ouin has just got on with his job with the minimum of fuss and is currently 3rd in the chip counts with 63 big blinds.
The 29-year old from Lyon only has one former live cash on record and that was a 12th place finish in a side event at this seasons Partouche Poker Tour. Ouin is already guaranteed a minimum of $65,618 making this his biggest live score to date.
Thibaud Guenegou - 1,500,000 chips
There is something about the way Thibaud Guenegou presents himself at the table that tells you that he will be in and around the top contenders for the title. His confident demure not only attracted our attention but it also attracted the attention of a sponsor. Guenegou recently won a contest to become a BWIN sponsored pro and he has already started to pay back their faith in him in a short period of time.
The 29-year old from Bourges has only been a professional for 3 months but what a great 3-months it has been. He finished an impressive 12th place at the WSOPE €10,000 Main Event in Cannes for $90,171 and is now guaranteed another impressive score in his first ever WPT final table appearance.
Guenegou, who comes to the final table with 50 big blinds, counts Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier as his favourite player and his superstition at the table is Adrien Allain!
Arnaud Trouer - 1,005,000
The 39-year old PMU qualifier from Nancy is our oldest player at the table. Trouer is not only our eldest player but he is also our most inexperienced. With no live tournament cashes on his resume he will be delighted at being guaranteed a nice juicy pay day today.
The salesman comes to this final table with 33 big blinds, which is plenty for the tight style of Trouer. Trouer has been so impressed with the play of the chip leader Scott Baumstein that he now classes him as his favourite player!
Michel Konieczny - 295,000
33-year old Michel Konieczny comes into this final table as the short stack with 9 big blinds. Keep your eyes peeled for a series of early shoves from the man from just down the road in Metz.
Michael Jackson fan Konieczny, has moon walked his way onto this final table, a final table that is his first ever live cash.
Tony Blanchandin Eliminated in 9th Place (€19,310)
Level 24: 12,000-24,000, 4,000 ante
Tony Blanchandin raises to 42,000 from middle position, Jordane Ouin folds but Michel Konieczny calls. The action then folds to Arnaud Trouer in the big blind and he also comes along for the ride. The flop is AJ5, Trouer checks, Blanchandin bets 60,000, Konieczny folds but Trouer moves all in. Blanchandin calls instantly and the cards are turned over.
A cooler of a hand for Blanchandin and he will need some help from the board or he will be eliminated from this tournament. The turn is the 9 and the river 3 was no help either and we are down to eight in the main event.
Nesrine Kourdourli Eliminated in 12th Place (€13,061)
Level 21: 6,000-12,000, 2,000 ante
After being bashed about by Adrien Allain the last woman standing in the WPT Amneville Main Event has been eliminated at the hands of Arnaud Trouer. Trouer opens to 22,000 from the cutoff, Kourdourli three-bets to 45,000 from the button and Trouer four-bets to 130,000. Kourdourli then moves all in for 400,000 and Trouer calls instantly.
Kourdourli showed AxJx and Trouer AxK. The board runs out A585K and Kourdourli is eliminated.
Ovidiu Balaj has just been eliminated at the hands of Arnaud Trouer. Balaj raised from under the gun and then called when Trouer three-bet from the big blind - enough to put Balaj all in. Trouer turned over QxQx, which held against the JxJx of Balaj.