Mike Leah must feel as if he has a home-ice advantage at the Fallsview Poker Classic. The Canadian poker pro from nearby Innisfil, Ontario has won a title at this series in three out of the last four years, each time in the $1,100 CAD preliminary event. In 2018 Leah took his dominance at the Fallsview Casino Resort to the $5,000 CAD World Poker Tour Fallsview Poker Classic no-limit hold’em main event, defeating a record turnout of 517 entries to win $451,821 CAD($352,985 USD) and his very first WPT title.
“It hasn’t sunk in yet,” Leah told WPT reporters after coming out on top. “Winning a WPT has been near the top of my goal list for a long time, especially getting so close almost exactly three years ago when I lost to Anthony Zinno heads up at LAPC, so I’ve been pretty hungry to get back here again since that. To do it here, where I’ve had so much success winning three tournaments already, is pretty cool,” Leah continued. “So close to home, in my home country, it’s a pretty special tournament to win.”
In addition to the title and the money, Leah was also awarded 1,680 Card Player Player of the Year points for the win. As a result, he has flown up the leaderboard, landing in seventh place in the standings.
Leah came into the final day of this event in third chip position with 20 players remaining. Leah scored some knockouts and double ups to stay in the mix as the field was narrowed down to seven. He then knocked out David Eldridge in seventh palce, getting all-in on a flop of 9Spade Suit4Spade Suit2Diamond Suit with the ASpade Suit8Spade Suit up against Eldridge’s 9Diamond Suit4Diamond Suit. The QHeart Suit on the turn kept Eldridge ahead but the 2Spade Suit on the river completed Leah’s flush draw, earning him the pot and sending Eldridge home with $57,429 USD.
From there he survived to heads-up play against Ryan Yu, who took just over a 2-to-1 lead into the final showdown. Despite that advantage, it took only eight hands for Leah to not only turn the tables but also seal the victory. Yu earned $301,217 CAD ($235,326 USD) as the runner-up.
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