Ben Lamb may have been the talk of this year’s WSOP, but it was Pius Heinz winning the 2011 WSOP Main Event title, along with the top prize of $8.7 million.
Heinz walked onto the final table with 108 million chips, which put him well ahead of the other two remaining players in Lamb (55.4 million) and Martin Staszko (42.7 million). However, it didn’t take long at all for Heinz to have competition since Staszko doubled up through Lamb on the first hand of the final day. It happened when Lamb tried to steal a pot from Staszko with K-J, only to see the 35-year-old Czech Republic native go all-in. Lamb felt that he was pot committed and called; Staszko flipped over pocket sevens, and won the hand after the board provided nothing for Lamb.
Just three hands later, Lamb desperately shoved his remaining chips in with Q-6(o), which didn’t hold up against Staszko’s pocket jacks. With the American now eliminated from the tournament in third place, Heinz and Staszko battled for the title, with the latter holding a 117.3 million-to-88.6 million chip lead.
This was definitely a heads-up match for the ages as both players went back and forth with the lead. At one point, Staszko looked like he was in firm control of the tournament since he’d maneuvered into a 4-1 chip advantage. However, the German Heinz never looked phased, and battled back to be in contention.
On one very critical play, Staszko called Heinz’s shove with Qc-9c because he didn’t think that the 22-year-old had anything. But Heinz held Ah-Qh, and when the board provided no help to either player, the German took a big lead over Staszko. Just a few hands later, Heinz was able to put Staszko away and win the 2011 WSOP Main Event title.
With the world’s biggest poker tournament now in the books, Heinz becomes the third richest winner ever with $8.7 million. Here is a look at how all of the final tablist fared:
1. Pius Heinz – $8,715,638
2. Martin Staszko – $5,433,086
3. Ben Lamb – $4,021,138
4. Matt Giannetti – $3,012,700
5. Phil Collins – $2,269,599
6. Eoghan O’Dea – $1,720,831
7. Bob Bounahra – $1,314,097
8. Anton Makiievskyi – $1,010,015
9. Sam Holden – $782,115