Alex Foxen has emerged victorious in the World Poker Tour (WPT) Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event at the Bellagio, capturing the very first WPT title of his poker career.
Not only was the win historic for Foxen but lucrative as well, as he claimed nearly $1.7 million and a $15,000 seat in the season-ending WPT Tournament of Champions.
The Five Diamond is one of the few remaining $10,000 buy-in tournaments on the World Poker Tour. With unlimited re-entries allowed until the start of Level 12, the field increased to 1,035, a record for a $10,000 event on the World Poker Tour. The prize pool just went past $10 million.
Foxen headed to the six-handed final table second in chips with 9.750 million. Danny Park led with 11.100 million. The most crucial hand of the final table doesn’t often come early but it did on this game.
On just the 29th hand, Foxen held Q♣-3♣ and, up against Park, hit top pair on a flop of J♣-6♥-Q♠. Park was the aggressor pre-flop and kept that up while Foxen obliged with a call. Park again bet the turn 8♣ and Foxen called once more. The 2♣ on the river gave Foxen the unlikely runner-runner flush and this time, when Park bet, Foxen put in a massive raise. After disposing of three-time extension chips, Park finally called, mucking his hand.
That hand elevated Foxen into the chip lead with 14.125 million chips. Park was still in solid shape but saw his stack plunge to 8.025 million after having just been over 12 million.
Foxen never looked back after that.
Going into heads-up play, Foxen held a substantial chip edge over Toby Joyce, 29.500 million to 11.900 million. Joyce would likely need a double-up to get back into contention, but he never got it. Foxen pulled away, taking only nine hands to win up the tournament.
Joyce needed four time extensions to think it over before finally calling all-in for his last 4.500 million
On the final hand, Foxen limped pre-flop and Joyce checked to see a flop of J♣-5♠-3♦. Joyce checked, but when Foxen bet 400,000, Joyce check-raised to 1.100 million. Undeterred, Foxen re-raised to 2 million and Joyce slowed down, just calling. The turn was the K♣. Joyce checked, so Foxen put him to the test, moving all-in for many millions more chips than Joyce had in front of him. Joyce needed four time extensions to think it over before finally calling all-in for his last 4.500 million.
Joyce had J♥-9♣, good for the second pair, but Foxen had A♣-J♠, giving him the same second pair but the top kicker. The river was of no use to either player, giving the pot to Foxen, along with his first WPT title.
“It’s surreal – it’s kind of hard to put into words,” Foxen told WPT.com after the win. “It feels amazing. The last time I got to this spot I was a little bit disappointed in how I played heads-up. It’s just incredible to get the opportunity again and be fortunate enough to pull out the win.”