December 2021 was when Any Moc took down the £2,000 GUKPT Grand Final, and saw £265,350 land in his bank account. At the time, Moc’s payout was the largest ever issues by the Grosvenor UK Poker Tour. Fastforward to March 2023, and another Moc has broken the record for the largest-ever Grosvenor prize. Man Moc triumphed in the £1 million guaranteed UK Poker Open in Coventry, and reeled in £325,190. Talk about keeping it in the family.
UK Poker Open Main Event Final Table Results
*reflects a three-way deal
The £1,500 buy-in UK Poker Open drew in 1,086 entrants, which meant everyone was vying for a slice of a guarantee-busting £1,466,100. Any lingering thoughts of the £1 million guarantee being too ambitious were quickly dashed. The top 110 finishers saw a return on their investments, and there were some stellar names among the list of in-the-money finishers.
Such luminaries as Tom Hall, Dominik Nitsche, Brandon Sheils, Euan McNicholas, Robbie Bull, Ben Jackson, the aforementioned Andy Moc, and Leo Worthington-Leese, all cashed but failed to reach the final table.
Moc Wins £265K After Dramatic GUKPT Grand Final Conclusion
Former online poker tournament world number one and WSOP bracelet winner Christopher Brammer was the first of the eight finalists heading to the cashier’s desk. Brammer three-bet shoved with ace-queen, only to run square into the pocket aces of Lukas Kuliesis. Brammer collected £20,400 for his efforts.
Seventh place and £23,930 went to David Greene, who suffered a similar fate to Brammer. Greene committed his last seven big blinds with ace-six, only for Chris Yong to snap him off with a pair of aces in the hole. Yong faded a flush draw to reduce the player count.
Grosvenor Pro Trigg Bows Out
The final six became five when Team Grosvenor Pro Rick Trigg‘s run ended. Down to eight big blinds, Trigg jammed all-in with eight-seven of diamonds from the button, and Kuliesis called in the big blind with king-ten. Trigg flopped an open-ended straight draw, but missed his outs on the turn and the river, meaning he had to make do with a £33,780 consolation prize.
The pay jumps were growing huge by this point. Where Trigg took home £33,780, fifth-place finisher Michael Brown collected £52,070! Brown came unstuck in a battle of the blinds with Moc, Brown’s 18 big blind stack in the middle while holding a pair of threes against Moc’s pocket eights. No help arrived for Brown, and he busted.
The last five-figure prize, £78,810, went to Yong when he fell in fourth. Yong shoved from the small blind with king-eight, and got a taste of his own medicine because Moc woke up in the big blind with a pair of aces. Those aces held, and Yong headed into the cold Coventry night.
Richard Trigg Wins Third Main Event Title at GUKPT Reading (£78,260)
Possibly The Best Chip Leader Deal in the History of Poker
It is not uncommon for tournaments to end in a deal of some sort because of the massive prizes offered in some events. However, the deal in the UK Poker Open will likely be talked about for some time. Moc held a commanding lead going into three-handed play; he held 120 big blinds. Both Kuliesis and Majid Nadeem had stacks of around 14 big blinds each, and were understandably keen to make a deal. Moc was more than happy to play on as intended and wield his big stack, but eventually agree to giving away a mere £10,000 from the first place prize, leaving Nadeem and Kuliesis to chop up second and third-place prize money! With the prize money accounted for, the tournament continued.
Kuliesis became the third-place finisher when he ripped in his stack with queen-jack, and found callers in the shape of Nadeem holding ace-deuce, and Moc with his queen-nine. Nadeem moved all-in on the deuce-ten-three board, Moc folded, and Kuliesis bowed out after missing the turn and river.
The contest did not last much longer after Kuliesis’ exit. The final hand saw Nadeem rip in his short stack with king-ten, and Moc call with the superior ace-nine. Nadeem missed the board, with the nine on the river gifting Moc an unnecessary pair of nines and the title of UK Poker Open champion.
UK Open Side Event Round-Up
Although he did not win as much money as Moc, Italian Calogero Morreale padded his bankroll with £58,480 after taking down the Mini Main Event. Morreale has been in scintillating form in 2023, especially in Grosvenor-run events. He finished second in the 2023 GUKPT London Main Event for £65,950 and won the GUKPT Manchester Main Event for £106,700 in early February. Now Morreale has a UK Poker Open Mini Main Event on his poker resume.
Brandon Sheils edged ever closer to £1 million in live poker tournament cashes by winning the Mystery Bounty event for £21,260 plus £9,600 worth of bounties. Ron Musson’s luck was in during the Mystery Bounty event as is evident by his opening envelopes containing £5,000 and £10,000 prizes! Shout out also to Sean Mills, who won a £4,000 Vegas package. Mills will join Team Grosvenor and 25 other Road to Vegas promotional winners this summer.
There were also wins for Gary Thompson and Franky Green in the High Roller and UK Ladies Championship, respectively. Thompson defeated Jon McCann heads-up after McCann made an ace-high hero call only to discover Thompson was sat there with flopped trips!
The UK Ladies Championship saw 108 players outlasted by Franky Green, who flopped a set and faded the flush draw of Samantha Kelly to become the worthy champion of this inaugural event.
Grosvenor has not yet said if the UK Poker Open will run in 2024, but after the incredible turnouts for all of the events, it would be a significant shock to not see this festival become a mainstay on the United Kingdom poker calendar.