Doug Polk, a well-respected player on the virtual nosebleed tables at Full Tilt Poker, where he is better known and often feared as the aggressive “WGCRider” has scored his first World Series of Poker bracelet, proving that he can be just as dangerous on the live tournament tables, even in major competitions.
Polk survived a stellar field of 1,473 entrants in the 23rd event of this year’s WSOP schedule, a $1,000 buy-in NLHE competition, to join – and eventually dominate – a formidable final table that comprised himself as chip leader, and Phounsavath “Andy” Philachack, Jonathan Hanner, Chad Cox, Liam Alcock, Anthony Gregg, Gianluca Cedolia, Dash Dudley and Andrew Mackenzie.
The quality of the entry field is illustrated by the names that did not reach the final table: Liv Boeree, Greg Raymer, Tony Dunst, Vanessa Selbst, Sorel Mizzi, Allen Cunninghamd, Oliver Busquet, Brandon Cantu, Scott Clements and many others.
With the departure of Jonathan Hanner in third for $102,503, the stage was set for a heads up between Polk and Philachack, a medical doctor with a penchant for poker.
With a 3 to 2 advantage in chips, Polk immediately turned on the super-aggressive playing style that had earlier enabled him dispatch four of the final table players as he started seriously eroding the good doctor’s chip stack.
Philachack was no push-over, and came back with some strong double-ups, but Polk was in overall control and was able to leverage that into a win in short order, claiming the main prize of $251,969 and his first WSOP bracelet.
It wasn’t his biggest career win (he took home A$860,000 from the Aussie Millions earlier this year for a fourth placing in the High Roller event, and has earned significant amounts online at the high stakes tables) but it was enhanced by the prestige of the bracelet.
Polk had the additional satisfaction of calling in a few bets that revolved around the achievement of his bracelet, notably $5,000 from his friend Jason Mo, who paid up on the spot.
Philachack’s very creditable performance was rewarded with a runner up prize of $155,756, with other final table finishers earning:
Chad Cox $73,894
Liam Alcock $54,088
Anthony Gregg $40,168
Gianluca Cedolia $30,252
Dash Dudley $23,093
Andrew Mackenzie $17,857