Bill Donnelly (pictured) topped a field of 241 players at a final table that was five hours long to win the WPTDeepStacks Oklahoma Main Event on Monday at the Downstream Casino Resort. "I'm feeling great, I'm feeling awesome. Everything went well today, and I got very lucky on the river with the third jack, but I'm just pumped up. It was a great win. I had a good year about three or four years ago, and I've been in a little funk in the last couple years, so this was nice to win this," said Donnelly right after his victory. Donnelly started his path to the championship when he fired his third bullet right at the close of registration on Day 1, and he made that third try the charm to take home $52,509 in prize money, along with the $3,000 WPTDeepStacks Championship package for the WPTDeepStacks Championship in December at Thunder Valley Casino Resort in Northern California.
"I was just going to be really patient because I was the chip leader. I didn't want to do anything stupid, which I've done many times before in tournaments. I was just patient, waited for my cards. I think I played really tight so I got a lot of respect. I got a few lay downs along the way, but I really didn't have a plan. It was just kind of see what happens, see how the table went, just patience, a lot of patience," said Donnelly. And as far as the prize money goes, the win came at a good time for Donnelly and his family. "My wife just changed jobs, so she's not making any money right now, and we both depend on each other for making some money, so this is definitely going to help fill in the gap. It's really good timing," said Donnelly. Donnelly also had a special message for his family: "My kids were watching, Will and Mary, love you both, and my wife Liz, love you too."
Cards got into the air at Noon between the final nine players, and action was slow and steady for the first two hours as three players took their leave. Recent World Series of Poker Main Event 35th-place finisher Matt Bond was out in ninth place, local player Kurt Haiss fell in eighth place, and former WPTDeepStacks Tampa champion Anthony Astarita busted out in seventh place.
The six-handed battle was defined by a long series of double ups, half-a-dozen of them in fact. Michael Walling did eventually bust in sixth place almost four hours into the final table. Tyler Tabman then doubled up twice, and that second double up left John Martin on a very short stack. Martin was able to triple up, but he did fall in fifth place a short time later.
Jon Bennett took out Martin, and then he eliminated Tyler Tabman in fourth place, and Jim Indiveri in third place to take the chip lead into the heads-up final. He held 3.78 million, but Donnelly wasn't too far behind with 2,245,000. Donnelly then doubled up twice to take the chip lead before the final hand of the night.
On that hand, Bennett moved all in preflop for 2.58 million on the button, and Donnelly called to cover him. The two players then tabled their cards.
Bennett found a third 4 on the flop, but Donnelly made a better set in dramatic fashion thanks to a Jack on the river. Bennett was eliminated in second place, good for $38,595 thanks to his deep run in the event. Donnelly won the top prize of $52,509, the $3,000 WPTDeepStacks Championship package, and the WPTDeepStacks trophy.
Congratulations to our new WPTDeepStacks Champion - Bill Donnelly!