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Pius Heinz Wins 2011 WSOP Main Event

WSOP, 2011-11-09, by Ozone

The first-ever German to appear at the WSOP Main Event final table is now the first-ever World Champion from Germany. Twenty-two year old Pius Heinz started the final table with just 8% of the chips in play. By the time play reached three-handed, Heinz had 53% of the chips.

American Ben Lamb lost nearly all of his chips on the first hand of three-handed play after betting all-in preflop with King-Jack and being called by Czech Martin Staszko's pocket sevens. Staszko, who started the final table as the chipleader, saw his pair hold to cripple Lamb. The American known as "benba" online would bust three hands later in third place for a little more than $4 million.

Heinz and Staszko battled heads-up for more than six hours. It was the longest heads-up match in the WSOP Main Event since Tom McEvoy and Rod Peate in 1983. Heinz spent much of the heads-up match well behind Staszko and was out-chipped by a margin of three-to-one at one point.

On a crucial hand, Heinz re-raised all-in with Ace-Queen on a board of King-Ten-Seven with two clubs. Staszko made the call with Queen-Nine of clubs but could not hit any of the outs he needed in order to seize the championship.

A short while later, Staszko moved all-in preflop with Ten-Seven of clubs. Heinz had what was probably the easiest call of his life with Ace-King. Neither player made a pair and the young German's Ace-high was good enough to mint him as poker's newest World Champion.

Staszko's $5.4 million second-place payday gives him nearly four times the amount of career winnings as the previous leader from the Czech Republic.

Heinz's $8.7 million payday gives him more than double the lifetime winnings of former German leader Sebastian Ruthenberg. Heinz is now the fourth consecutive WSOP Champion aged 22 or younger at the start of the tournament.

The rest of the final table finishers and payouts are as follows:

4th: Matt Giannetti (United States), $3,012,000
5th: Phil Collins (United States), $2,270,000
6th: Eoghan O'Dea (Ireland), $1,721,000
7th: Bob Bounahra (Belize), $1,314,000
8th: Anton Makiievskyi (Ukraine), $1,010,000
9th: Sam Holden (United Kingdom), $782,000

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