French Pro Thomas Bichon Victor At WPT Cyprus 2009

The first ever World Poker Tour Merit Cypus Classic was declared a complete success and managed to attract 181 of the best poker players around the world to this mediterranean island paradise.
High profile players represented at the tournament included Patrik Antonius, Allen Cunningham, John Juanda, Mike Matusow, Eli Elezra, Chris “Jesus” Ferguson, Annette Obrestad, Jeffrey Lisandro, Dan Harrington, Huck Seed, Antonio Esfandiari, Layne Flack, and November Niner James Akenhead.
With such a class field vying for the $579,165 first prize, the competition couldn’t have been more demanding on a player’s determination and skill but after 6 grueling days French pro Thomas Bichon was crowned the WPT Cyprus champion.
Around 90 players entered the field on each of the first two days of the competition but by the end of Day 3 the field of 181 was down to just 21. With only 18 players being paid, Day 5 saw some tense bubble action culminating in the unfortunate Anthony Aboukhalil being eliminated in 19th place after his shortstack move with Kc-6c was called by Antony Lellouche’s As-Qh.
The rest of Day 5 saw the remaining high profile players exit the arena starting with Flack in 10th place for $20,760, Medic in ninth for $27,680 and Little in eighth for $38,940. For a while Huck Seed seemed like being the only big gun that would make it onto the final table but after his all in with Ad-Jd was called by Thomas Bichon’s Ks-Qd, a Q on the flop sealed Seed’s fate and he left the tournament in 7th spot for $56,240.
Jazar finished in 6th ($73,535) after his top pair on the turn was called by a flush and straight draw, with Kiivramees exiting in fifth place ($90,835) and Porter in fourth for $121,115.
The pressure was then on Steve Fung who was in danger of being blinded away when he was forced to call an all in bet holding just 9d-5d. Unfortunately for him Bichon was holding one of his hole cards with a J kicker and so he left the table in third place and $216,275 in prize money.
Heads up play was short and sweet with the second hand producing a raise from Keidar with J-10, followed by an all in and a call from Bichon holding 7-7. The Frechman’s scream of delight was heard around the resort when his pocket pair stood up and he can now crown his poker career with his first major tournament win, a WPT title and of course the $579.165 first prize.

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