Long before he made the World Series of Poker Main Event final table and the exclusive fraternity of November Nine members, Vojtech Ruzicka was a respected player and more than accomplished professional. Ruzicka added another great result to his poker resume today by winning the £10,300 High Roller at the Dusk Till Dawn as part of the partypokerLive series that is ongoing in Nottingham, England.
Ruzicka defeated a tough final table filled with World Poker Tour champions and did so after starting the final table near the top in chips as he outlasted a phenomenal 110 player field.
The nine-handed final table had its first casualty in the opening level of play and it was Ruzicka handing out the elimination ticket. Jason Wheeler opened for 125,000 from the hijack and Ruzicka jammed for 3,400,000 out of the small blind. Daniel Merrilees called all in for 578,000 in the big blind and Wheeler got out of the way. Merrilees was ahead with against the of Ruzicka heading to the flop. The flop was clean for Merrilees but the turn gave Ruzicka a set. Merrilees failed to catch up on the river and exited the stage.
45 minutes later, 2016 Bay 101 Champion Stefan Schillhabel was all in for five big blinds with against the of Bartlomiej Machon. The board ran all low cards and Schillhabel finished in eighth place.
Machon notched another bustout shortly after eliminating Schillhabel. Laszlo Bujtas moved all in for 693,000 from early position with and found himself in trouble against the of Machon. The board did little for Bujtas and he took home seventh place.
There was yet another elimination in a relatively short time span with Wheeler the next player on the chopping block. With the blinds at 30,000/60,000, Wheeler shoved for 1,252,000 from the small blind and was called by Machon in the big blind. Wheeler was live with but would need help against the of Machon. No card above a nine hit the flop, turn or river and Machon took down his third straight opponent.
Ruzicka gave Machon a breather and eliminated Joao Simao in fifth place to wrap up the first day of the final table. Simao got his last 522,000 in the middle from the big blind with against the of Ruzicka. After coming from behind the first time he took down a final table opponent, Ruzicka held with the better hand to make the final table four-handed.
When play resumed, it over an hour for the first player to leave the live stream stage with Chris Backhouse the unlucky competitor. Satellite qualifier Chris Backhouse moved all in for 1,015,000 from the small blind and Machon called out of the big blind. Backhouse and his were behind the of Machon and the flop did Backhouse no good. The turn kept Machon ahead and the was the final nail in Backhouse’s coffin.
Tom Hall advanced to the podium stage of the event but would have to settle with the bronze medal. Ruzicka raised on the button and Hall moved all in for 1,825,000 with . Ruzicka called with and managed to hold through the board to bring the tournament down to heads up play.
Once Hall was on his way to the payout cage, Ruzicka and Machon made an ICM deal that left £50,000 to play for along with the trophy. Ruzicka locked up £234,210 while Machon guaranteed himself £220,790. The players also agreed to shorten the levels to 20 minutes as they got ready to play out the rest of the event.
The match went back and forth for many levels before Ruzicka locked up the title over the course of two hands.
With the blinds at 200,000/400,000, Ruzicka was all in for 3,290,000 with against the of Machon. The flop was exactly was Ruzicka was looking for as he paired his ace to take the lead. Machon failed to catch up on the last two community cards and was down to just over 10 big blinds.
Machon was all in for those final chips a few hands later with against the of Ruzicka. As he did throughout the final table, Ruzicka found the right card when he needed it and hit the on the flop to take the lead. Despite picking up the on the turn, Machon improved no further and finished in second place.
Final Table Payouts
- Vojtech Ruzicka – £284,210*
- Bartlomiej Machon – £220,790*
- Tom Hall – £142,000
- Chris Backhouse- £110,000
- Joao Simao – £85,000
- Jason Wheeler – £65,000
- Laszlo Bujtas – £50,000
- Stefan Schillhabel – £40,000
- Daniel Merrilees – £30,000
*reflects heads up deal