‘The Matador’ wins WPT championship

Apr 30, 2007 2:55 AM

Juan Carlos Mortensen, affectionately known as The Matador, defeated a solid field of 639 players to win the World Poker Tour’s championship event at the Bellagio on Saturday.

Mortensen took home a cool $3,970,415 for his effort. The tournament wrapped up the WPT’s fifth season.

Mortensen defeated Kirk Morrison in head-to-head action to win it all. Morrison consoled himself with second place, worth $2,011,135.

In the final hand, Mortensen raised from the button to $6.5 million. Morrison moved all-in and Mortensen called with King-Jack, suited.

Morrison turned over Ace-4, off-suit, and maintained a lead through the flop of 7-4-3, rainbow. But the turn brought a Jack for Mortensen, and when the river produced a meaningless 3, Mortensen became the tournament champ.

The event was the World Poker Tour’s richest with a $25,000 buy-in.

When heads-up play began, Morrison had the chip lead, $18.8 million to $13.8 million. The two players battled for nearly three hours, with the chip leading shifting back and forth, before Mortensen was able to win the decisive hand.

We noted last week that several female players got off to great starts. However, they all fell by the wayside as play continued. None made the final table.