Battle of the Titans: Ivey Sweeps Antonius to Win WPT HU Poker Championship ($400,000)


A battle of the titans took place on Tuesday evening, with Phil Ivey battling against Patrik Antonius in the 32-player World Poker Tour $25,000 Heads Up Poker Championship. Ivey won the first three heads-up matches against Antonius to sweep the best-of-five format for the $400,000 top prize.

Many in the poker community felt the clock was turned back more than a decade commented before the match took place with two poker legends standing the test of time and still on top of their games.

Ivey recently shared his love of poker in an interview with Joey Ingram and expressed how he prefers to play live and look at his opponent. Although the entire event was held online at PokerKing, the entire event mandated players utilize webcams to give the players and fans a more of a live poker feel than one typically sees online.

“I want to travel and play poker […] I still enjoy playing online poker. When things come up, they’re great. But I prefer to play live and look at my opponent. Nowadays, online has gotten a lot tougher.


Related: The Return of Phil Ivey? 10-time Champion Aims to Play 2021 WSOP


2021 WPT HU Championship Results

Place Player Country Prize
1 Phil Ivey United States $400,000
2 Patrik Antonius Finland $200,000
3 Sam Greenwood Canada $100,000
4 Christopher Kruk Canada $100,000

Ivey Pulls Away to Win First Match

Ivey took an early chip lead during the first match. Antonius temporarily took the lead before Ivey stormed ahead to take the lead before extending it to a 3:1 chip advantage.

Antonius had a chance to double his stack to even things up but instead, Ivey won the first match after his nines held against Antonius’ ace-eight.

Patrik Antonius
Patrik Antonius in the hole early against Phil Ivey

Ivey Comes From Behind to Win Second Match

Antonius had an early chip lead in the second match and had double the stack of Ivey. The Finn seemed to be ready to tie things up but his sevens were unable to win a flip against king-queen after Ivey improved to Broadway to double his stack and take the chip lead.

Ivey, who showcased many bluffs of his own, picked off a bluff to win the second match with Antonius betting the turn and jamming the river with king-seven suited despite whiffing the queen-high board and needed a comeback for the ages as he needed to win three matches in a row after Ivey correctly called with jacks.

Phil Ivey
Phil Ivey has Patrik Antonius on the ropes

Ivey Completes the Sweep Against Antonius

Antonius held a small chip lead during the third match before fireworks went off. The Finn opened with ace-six suited and was called by Ivey with four-trey.

Ivey flopped the nuts with six-five-deuce initially hitting the board and check-raised Antonius who held top pair. An ace landed on the turn making it difficult for Antonius to get away from the hand as he improved to top two pair.

Antonius called a bet from Ivey and didn’t improve to a full house with a second deuce landing on the board on the river. Ivey jammed and Antonius was down to crumbs after he called.

Antonius was down but not quite out as he doubled up twice and a third double would have evened the stacks. Instead, Ivey won the match after his ace-ten held against queen-jack suited to win the WPT Heads Up Poker Championship for $400,000, while Antonius had to settle for the runner-up prize of $200,000.

While the event certainly turned back the clocks for many in the poker community, the poker world is once again likely to witness Ivey in the headlines for years to come and the 10-time WSOP bracelet winner plans to visit the WSOP this autumn for at least a few events.

“But I’m looking to play, I’m looking to play poker on TV. I’m looking to travel and play poker,” Ivey said in an interview with Ingram. “I’m looking at the World Series of Poker (WSOP). I’m not sure about a full schedule, but I’m planning on playing a few events.”

Final hand of the WPT HU Championship
Final hand of the WPT HU Championship

Phil Ivey’s Road to Victory

Round Match-up
Round of 32 Manig Loeser
Round of 16 Anthony Zinno
Quarterfinals Stephen Chidwick
Semifinals Christopher Kruk
Finals Patrik Antonius

*Lead image courtesy of the World Poker Tour.



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