British player Luke Boynton has won the Unibet Poker-sponsored International Poker Open in Dublin for €24,450.
The 35-year-old from Birmingham, who has been playing poker for some 15 years, was involved in a six-way ICM chop before going on to win the event and the prestigious IPO trophy. It was a lifetime best cash for Boynton and takes his total live tournament winnings to over $40k.
The International Poker Open is one of Europe’s longest-running and most popular poker events and has been held annually since 2008. Unibet Poker has sponsored the event for the last two years. There were 755 entries in total – across five starting flights, with 95 players getting a share of the €191,395 prize pool.
Close to 50 players competed in the €260 + €40 Main Event thanks to winning their seats in online satellites on Unibet Poker. Twelve made the money including Irish player Amby Travers who finished 10th for €2,450. Unibet Ambassador David Lappin also narrowly missed the final, busting just before Travers in 11th place, also for €2,450.
For the first time ever, the Main Event also featured an online Day 1 on Unibet Poker; seven players made it through to Day 2 with Ivan Tononi, Vinod Jadav, Andrew Pullen and Zac Sloper all finishing in the money.
The 2019 festival, which took place at Dublin’s Bonnington Hotel from October 23-28, featured 18 different tournaments. The flagship €550 High Roller was won by Irish poker legend Andy Black for €9,710 after overcoming a 6/1 chip deficit heads-up. Dutch player Kevin Berkhout took down the €120 APAT Irish Amateur Poker Championship for €4,870 and Ann Cunliffe won the €120 #QueenRules Ladies Event for €640.
Among those who cashed in the Main Event were 2013 Irish Open champion Ian Simpson who finished 78th for €580. Simpson also finished 12th in the High Roller. Others who competed at the 2019 IPO included Unibet Ambassador Dara O’Kearney, Scottish #1 Niall Farrell, Irish poker legend Andy Black, Ludovic Geilich and former Irish Poker Championships champions Jude Ainsworth and Mick Graydon. Players from all over Ireland attended the event, as well as the UK, Europe and further afield.
For the first time, this year’s International Poker Open had a live stream throughout the Main Event featured on both the IPO website and on Twitch. Fintan Gavin and Phil “The Tower” were on commentary, joined by numerous special guests including Unibet Ambassadors David Lappin, Dara O’Kearney and Ian Simpson.
Unibet Ambassador David Lappin said: “The IPO was a huge success. Credit to Nick O’Hara, his team, all the dealers and blogger Willie Elliot who all burned the midnight oil to make sure this was once again the highlight of the Irish poker calendar. I know Unibet Poker are very proud sponsors of the event and it was great to see the weekly satellites smash their guarantee every Sunday on Unibet Poker.
“I’m gutted to have bust just short of the Final Table but nonetheless I had a fantastic weekend with Dara and Ian in the Bonnington. Next Stop: Unibet Open Paris at the end of November. I can’t wait!”
Off the felt, there were plenty of activities to keep players entertained including a Buck-Shot-Pong evening with DJ and free drinks and the “Lip Sing” themed official IPO Players Party.
Nataly Sopacuaperu, Unibet Open’s Head of Events and Sponsorship, said: “Congratulations to our new IPO champion Luke Boynton and many thanks to all the players who took part especially our Unibet qualifiers. Unibet Poker is delighted to sponsor the IPO, one of Ireland’s most popular poker tournaments. We look forward to seeing lots of IPO players at the last Unibet Open of 2019, Unibet Open Paris, which takes place November 28 to December 1.”