The Alea Casino in Nottingham hosted our latest East Midlands Regional Final for the very first time, and they didn’t disappoint. Between all the praise for the casino were 186 people who took their seat hoping to make next years National Final.

Play got underway a little after 2:00pm and Paul Harrison, from the Mundy Arms in Heanor got the eliminations underway as his full house was too strong for Kellem Walton-Mowbray’s broadway straight as he raced into an early chip lead. Unfortuantly for Paul, he was to later fall short of the final table by finishing in 17th place. Several eliminations later, over a 6 hour period saw us get down to the final 9 with the top 8 qualifying, but it was soon announced that one remaining player had already qualified which meant he was now joined by all of the remaining players in the tournament. This was, as expected, met with a big cheer from all.

Soon after, we were down to our 8 man final table. Richard Simmons, from the Wheel Inn in Derby held the chip lead with 305,000, but it was our third biggest stack Carl Percy who dictated the play at the final table, he was supported by our top railbird on the day and his lovely wife Debbie. Carl was to double up early on inbetween eliminating two of the first three finalists and raced to claim a joint chip lead with Richard. The decisive hand came when 3 handed and our two big stacks Richard and Carl clashed as all the chips went into the middle on the flop with Richard holding trip queens to Carl’s nut club flush draw. Nomore clubs were dealt as Richard sent Carl to the rail in 3rd place. The heads-up match was brief as Richard’s stack was just too big for Keith Lindley to make any kind of comeback as Keith’s T3 suited could not outdraw Richard’s Q6 on a Q55 3 9 board. A great day and venue was enjoyed by all.

National Final Qualifiers And Cash Prize Winners
1st Richard Simmons – Wheel Inn, Oadby
2nd Keith Lindley – New Cross, Sutton-In-Ashfield
3rd Carl Percy – Mundy Arms, Heanor
4th Mark Newbold – White Lion, Kimberley
5th David Knight – AJ’s Bar, Derby
6th Dayne Steedan – Mackworth Hotel, Derby
7th Mandy Hillman – Davy Lamp, Ilkeston
8th Jason Sisson – The Bridge Inn, Ilkeston