Robert Cowen has now won two World Series of Poker gold bracelets, with both victories coming in pot-limit Omaha. The Swansea, Wales resident backed up his title run in last year’s $3,000 pot-limit Omaha event at the series by taking down the 2022 WSOP $50,000 pot-limit Omaha high roller event. In addition to the hardware, he also secured a career-high payout of $1,393,816, which increased his career live tournament earnings to more than $2.7 million.
Cowen closed out the win in front of a rowdy rail of friends and supporters from the United Kingdom. He was appreciative of the fanfare.
“It’s nice to close it out,” Cowen said when asked about coming out on top at the main featured table with a crowd rooting him on. “The first one was very quiet. It was on a side table. There wasn’t much of a rail, so it’s nice to get that experience this time.”
The 36-year-old poker pro is glad to see an increase in high-stakes OLP tournaments being offered at the series and throughout the year. He also noted that the tournaments have been drawing strong turnouts.
“This tournament is amazing,” said Cowen. “The $25,000 buy-in OLP got like the biggest number ever, as well. Hopefully, they just keep growing.”
This was Cowen’s second big title run of the year, having also won a €10,300 buy-in no-limit hold’em high roller at the European Poker Tour Prague festival for $518,197 in the spring. With the 1,020 Card Player Player of the Year points he earned for this latest victory, Cowen has surged up the standings and into 26th place in the 2022 POY race, sponsored by Global Poker.
This event drew a field of 106 entries, creating a $5,074,750 prize pool that was paid out among the top 16 finishers. Plenty of big names made the money, only to fall short of making the final day, including three-time bracelet winner Chance Kornuth (14th – $83,960), Joni Jouhkimainen (10th – $104,950), two-time World Poker Tour champion Aaron Mermelstein (9th – $128,159), four-time bracelet winner Scott Seiver (8th – $159,464), bracelet winner Aaron Katz (7th – $202,103), and five-time bracelet winner Jason Mercier (6th – $260,815).
Cowen came into the final day in third chip position among the remaining five players.
Jared Bleznick was the clear short stack to start, and he was soon all-in and at risk. Bleznick held pocket kings, and was trailing the pocket aces with a king as a side card for two-time bracelet winner Dash Dudley. The board changed nothing and Bleznick was eliminated in fifth place ($342,626).
Cowen overtook the lead from Dudley, who had moved ahead in the early going of the final day, when his double-suited pocket aces beat out a single-suited QJ-10-9 rundown for Dudley. He was soon supplanted by bracelet winner and two-time SOPs main event final tablist Ben Lamb, though.
Veselin Karakitukov had started the final day with the chip lead, but he fell to the bottom of the counts during four-handed action. In his final hand, he called all-in on a J94 flop with J1065. He was trailing the AQJ10 of Cowen. The A killed any drama before the 3 completed the board. Karakitukov earned $458,016 as the fourth-palce finisher, the largest cash of his tournament career.
Cowen’s knockout of Karakitukov moved him closer to the lead. He was eventually able to jump out ahead thanks to winning a big pot with quad fours beating Lamb’s straight. In his final hand, Lamb raised and then called all-in with KJ76. He was up against the 7543 of Cowen. The board ran out J3264, giving Cowen a winning flush. Lamb earned $622,861 as the third-place finisher. He now has more than $14.5 million in tournament earnings to his name.
With that, Cowen took nearly a 3:1 chip lead into heads-up play with Dudley, who was looking for his third WSOP title in OLP. Dudley lost some ground before earning a double-up with pocket queens to close the gap considerably. Cowen was soon able to reestablish healthy chip advantage in time for the final hand of the tournament.
With blinds of 250,000-500,000 and a big blind ante of 500,000, Cowen raised to 1,200,000 from the button holding J985. Dudley three-bet to 3,600,000 out of the big blind with KKQ4.
The flop came down J76 and Dudley moved all-in with his overpair and flush draw. Cowen called with a pair of jacks and a wrap draw. The 9 gave Cowen a nine-high straight and two pair. The 9 completed Dudley’s flush, but it also gave Cowen a winning full house to secure the pot and the title. Dudley earned $861,442 as the runner-up, increasing his lifetime earnings to more than $2.7 million.
Here is a look at the payouts and rankings points awarded at the final table:
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