A Final Table for the Ages: Jorstad Defeats Ivey and Chidwick to Claim His First Triton Title 

  • The Triton $40,000 Mystery Bounty came down to a remarkable final table
  • Steven Chidwick, Espen Jorstad, and Phil Ivey competed for the title
  • All three were short and all three were in pole as the chip-lead changed hands
  • Jorstad’s K-J took down Ivey’s K-2 for the Norwegian to claim the win
Jorstad wins Triton Series
Norwegian poker pro Espen Jorstad has won the Triton Series London $40,000 Mystery Bounty. [Image: Triton Poker Twitter]

A rollercoaster win for Jorstad

The Triton Poker Series London is delivering in a big way for poker fans. The free nightly poker live streams on YouTube feature the best poker players in the world, the best production crew in the business, and a commentary team par excellence. Also adding to the coverage in a big way is a nice sprinkling of have-a-go heroism due to a handful of qualifiers for whom the sums at stake are genuinely life-changing.

a rollercoaster ride for players and audience alike

Event 3 of the Series – the $40,000 Mystery Bounty – was no exception. In fact, it was a highlight, boasting a field of 133 players. Taking place across Saturday and Sunday, it boiled down to a remarkable final table and a quite extraordinary 3-handed affair. It proved a rollercoaster ride for players and audience alike as Stevie Chidwick, Espen Jorstad, and Phil Ivey all competed for the title of short-stack ninja warrior. 

In the end, the last man standing was the 2022 WSOP Main Event champion Jorstad who defeated his long-term idol Ivey to claim his first Triton title. He claimed the first prize of $639,000 plus the five bounties that he won, to be drawn at the bounty ceremony later today. 

Greenwood and Holz win the first two

Two ACR poker streamers made deep runs in Event #1 – the $25,000 GG Millions. Drew Gonzalez came 15th for $60,700 while Manuel Zapf took second for $605,500. The tournament was eventually won by Luc Greenwood who banked $897,000 for his efforts. 

German wunderkind turned early poker retiree Fedor Holz defeated Chris Brewer heads-up to claim victory in Event #2 – the $25,000 7-handed. The two nosebleed professionals did some business, both taking approximately $600,000 from the prize pool before they played on for the title. 

There is a sense though that this festival is hotting up and likely to break records in the English capital with big turnouts and huge audience figures who are veritably spoiled by the sumptuous coverage. The ShareHand crew keeps raising the bar when it comes to poker livestreams. The commentary team of Ali Nejad, Randy Lew, Henry Kilbane, and Maria Ho alongside producer James Dempsey strike the perfect balance of analysis, banter, and pageantry. 

A final table for the ages

Event #3 – the $40,000 Mystery Bounty – was pure carnage once the bounty phase kicked in. There were bust-outs galore with the players calling it off light in pursuit of the $400,000 big bounty.

the star-studded line-up was quite rightly reorienting its focus on winning

The action-inducing nature of knock-out tournaments usually ensures that they stay at a reasonably decent average stack depth but once the final table was set, it was clear that the star-studded line-up was quite rightly reorienting its focus on winning the tournament. 

Alex Boika, Daniel Dvoress, and Eric Wasserson bust in seventh, sixth, and fifth respectively after a dramatic passage of play, but that was nothing compared to what would follow. Coming back after the dinner break, Johannes Straver was in a commanding position with 13 million chips, roughly half the chips in play. However, the deck would be cruel to the Dutchman as he ultimately bust in fourth place having redistributed his stack to Chidwick, Ivey, and Jorstad in installments. 

“This has been a final table for the ages,” said commentator Henry Kilbane as his good friend Jorstad took the chiplead 3-handed after a preposterous passage of play that saw him go from 2.5 big blinds to almost 30 big blinds over the course of seven hands. 

arctic coolers, vomit-inducing bad beats, devilish bluffs, and miraculous rivers

From there, all three players were short at various points and all three were in pole position as the chip-lead changed hands an incredulous nine times. The standard of play was tremendously high but there were also arctic coolers, vomit-inducing bad beats, devilish bluffs, and miraculous rivers which all contributed to the entertainment factor. 

A compelling ménage-a-trois

With the blinds escalating quickly, Ivey took the bull by the horns with A♣️4♥️ in a key hand, calling off blind versus blind against Chidwick who had the very competitive Q♥️T♥️. Ivey held to pull ahead and leave Chidwick with just seven big blinds. An orbit later, Chidwick woke up with A-5 off suit in back-to-back-to-back hands, winning the first two pre-flop and cracking the A♣️T♦️ of Jorstad in the third. 

That was the prelude to a fascinating and intricate confrontation between the two who played a nine-big blind effective limped pot. Jorstad bet his Q♦️4♣️ on K♦️J♣️4♦️ and called when Chidwick raised with 8♥️7♦️. The action went check, check on the 9♦️ turn card, and then Jorstad turned his hand into a bluff on the 7♠️ river, shoving for two-thirds pot and getting a reluctant fold from Chidwick who gave real consideration to the hero-call. 

Ivey, who has been quiet for a couple of orbits, then went to work shoving a few hands in a row, leveraging the ICM on his opponents and stretching out his lead. Having been whittled back down, Chidwick then felt committed with T♠️5♦️in the big blind, calling off his 4.5 big blinds to find he was in decent shape versus the Q♣️3♠️ of Jorstad. He was, however, in very poor shape after the J♦️3♣️3♥️ flop and dead after the 3♦️ turn. 

Heads-up was one-way traffic

Chidwick walked away with $287,000 but the stage was set for Ivey and Jorstad. The former had a small chiplead but it was an ultra-shallow affair and Jorstad got the best of the tippy-tappy early small skirmishes to draw level. 

nothing was a foregone conclusion

Then Jorstad won the first meaningful pot when he flopped a straight with 5♦️4♥️ versus Ivey’s K♥️Q♠️. In the blink of an eye, the Norwegian had a 2:1 chip-lead but, in what had been an engrossing topsy-turvy evening of poker, nothing was a foregone conclusion. 

Jorstad shoved 8 big blinds effective with Q♥️8♣️ and Ivey called with Q♠️5♠️. It was looking good for Jorstad to end things but the board paired twice and the players chopped it up. A moment later, Jorstad shoved K♦️J♠️ and Ivey called with K♥️2♥️. This time Jorstad held to take down his first Triton title. 

Jorstad pursuing his poker dream

Jorstad is always composed but he was noticeably emotional when talking about his meteoric rise in the game over the past few years. “I gave up on my start-up dream to pursue my poker dream and I’m so grateful for how lucky I’ve been and how it’s worked out.” Speaking with VegasSlotsOnline News, Jorstad said:

“It was a wild, wild final table” from which he was delighted to emerge victorious. 

Jorstad won $639,000 plus he has five envelopes to open at the Ali Nejad-hosted bounty ceremony later today. Ivey walked away with $434,900 and a couple of bounties, a decent result but his fourth Triton title will have to wait for now. Notably, fourth-place finisher Straver, who dominated the tournament for so long, won nine bounties so is likely to add substantially to his $236,500 fourth-place money. 

The structure of these Triton tournaments makes the endgame very relatable to casual players as they often end in a short stack battle, similar to a nightly casino game. It is a wonderful opportunity to see how the players at the upper echelons of the game approach tricky shallow spots and to learn from the game’s absolute best. 

Triton has without doubt found the recipe for compelling poker television and it is no surprise that last night’s exciting endgame drew a record audience. Expect them to smash that record again and again as the buyins get bigger and bigger over the next eleven days. 

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