The final event of the 2019 British Poker Open, the £100,000-entry Main Event,  was the biggest buy-in and provided the best heads-up of the series, as Ben Tollerene won the final two all-ins in stunning fashion to deny Cary Katz the Main Event title.

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With just the top two players making money, the bubble was going to be a painful one, but 4th place wasn’t going to feel much nice either. Coming into play at the short-stack, with less than half of anyone else’s stack, Ben Tollerene would flip the script on its head and triumph, but two big names would go home without profit from the Main Event.

First, Christoph Vogelsang was eliminated when his ace-king was outdrawn by Ben Tollerene’s jack-ten, then Mikita Badziakouski was ‘bubble boy’ when he was all-in on the turn with what he thought was a gutter-ball and a flush draw, only to discover that his flush draw was not live, Tollerene’s hand being a higher flush draw and top pair.

Ben Tollerene and Cary Katz heads up for the title.
Ben Tollerene and Cary Katz heads up for the title.


Heads-up was a lengthy affair, with Tollerene’s initial lead getting bigger before Cary Katz doubled up twice when down to around ten big blinds.

Katz then moved ahead, with his peak stack at 1.6 million to the 800,000 of Tollerene, but that was whittle away and extinguished entirely when he lost two massive all-ins to decide the destination of the final event’s winning result.

First, Katz’s pair of couldn’t hold against Tollerene’s which hit a king on the flop to double through him. Then, in the final hand, Katz was all-in and at risk with ace-six, only to be outdrawn by Tollerene’s .

“I came in short today,” said Tollerene, “I got a good hand and three-bet over an open, then I got kings the next hand, so I think in the first orbit I was back to average.”

Tollerene ran a couple of aggressive but brilliantly-timed bluffs across the day’s play and called the pot where he triumphed with jack-ten against Christoph Vogelsang’s ace-king crucial.

“Everything kind of worked out. I got a lot of bluffs through. The heads up was going great and then, you know, it’s so swingy when it’s that shallow. It shifted back and then I was able to win two flips in a row and I won.”

With that victory, Ben Tollerene moves about $9.5 million in live earnings, to add to the eight figures of online results he’s raked in over the years, let alone his cash game prowess. One of the best in the world just won another title, and this time it was the final event of the British Poker Open.

British Poker Open Event #10 Results
Place  Name Country Payout
1 Ben Tollerene United States £840,000
2 Cary Katz United States £360,000
Christoph Vogelsang, Mikita Badziakouski, Cary Katz, Ben Tollerene