PokerStars qualifier Nik Kamal was blessed with an outrageous piece of good fortune to take a narrow lead in the UK and Ireland Poker Tour Main Event in Dublin yesterday. Irish born Nik, whose only live recoded cash was in the UKIPT in Newcastle earlier this year, hit one of only two outs to turn his dominated two pairs into a full house and eliminate compatriot Nicholas Newport from the tournament – sneaking the chip lead by just one small blind from Norwegian Patrik Kaltrud in the process.
The Luck of the Irish
Inasmuch as Nik Kamal´s luck was sensational, it could have flown completely under the radar had Chris O´Connor continued his stupendous run which saw him with a chip stack five times the average soon the dinner gong. Chris had taken three major hands in close succession and stacked up to over 155,000 chips (32,000 more than the overnight leader finished with), and it could have been even more had he not lost a 58,000 chip pot when leading with K♥ K♦ against the 10♠ 10♦ of Brendan Byrne and A♣ 6♠ of Ektor Strumi – Byrne hitting 10♣ on the flop to complete his set.
The Stars Come Out in Support
There were plenty of well-known faces seated around the two playing areas of the Ballsbridge Inn Hotel. UKIPT regulars Chris Dowling and Sam Razavi were trying to improve their position on the season-long leaderboard competition. Recent UKIPT Edinburgh Main Event winner Fintan Gavin and UKIPT Edinburgh High Roller winner Jon Spinks were both involved in the heart of the action and Day 1B entries already include last year´s UKIPT Dublin winner Max Silver and UKIPT Champion of Champions, David Vamplew – both flying in from competing in the WPT Paris – and PokerStars pros Jude Ainsworth and Liv Boeree.
Go to our UKIPT Dublin page for a full schedule.