Padraig Parkinson wins the UKIPT Galway!
Ladies and gentlemen, sharks and fish, hometown hero Padraig Parkinson has won the inaugural UKIPT Galway scooping an enormous €125,000 as well as bagging a bonus £5,000 seat into the EPT London. Parkinson, who was born just down the road in Galway, beat Paul Marrow in a short but entertaining heads up session. Chip stacks were fairly even going into the heads up but the ensuing battle always looked like it was going to be short lived. After a few small pots either way it wasn’t long before the pair got it in for a classic race with Parkinson’s AQ getting there against Marrow’s pocket sixes. The loss crushed most of Marrow’s stack, but not his spirit, and the Brit kept shoving, winning a double up with J♠ Q♠ before Parkinson knocked out his good friend with K♥ Q♥ against Marrow’s 2♣ 5♥.

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Christmas came early for Parkinson who triumphed in the town of his birth, there’s a festive parable in there somewhere we’re sure

The ensuing winner’s presentation was an emotional affair with runner up Paul Marrow welling up and saying that even though he really wanted to win the heads up he wanted Parkinson to be Irish champion just as much. Parkinson, who is never one to be short for word, said, ‘I was born just down the road so I can’t believe that I won it. If anyone wants a drink, I’m buying!’

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Padraig swaps his usual Guinness for a microphone during the trophy presentation

It was a great final table with a fascinating mix of old school and new school. PokerStars qualifiers Ben ‘Chong94’ Lefew and Michael ‘BIGMICKG’ Graydon played some great poker and could have gone all the way if the cards have played out differently and a little thought has to be spared for PokerStars player Michael McFadden who got it all-in with Aces against Marrow’s QT and lost a huge tournament changing pot. The action came so thick and fast in the opening levels that it seemed that a winner could be crowned within the hour but inevitably the knockouts started to slow. Parkinson played a cagey game at the start of the final table leaving it to the short stacks, Ben Lefew and Paul Marrow to get their chips in before ramping up the aggression towards the later stages showing experience can get you a long way.

Parkinson’s win was enthusiastically greeted by the home crowd with notables players such as Nicky Power cheering on from the sidelines. Celebrations are expected to run long, long into the night. If it is indeed possible to drink Galway dry of Guinness it’s likely to happen tonight!

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Forget painting the town red, Galway’s going to get painted white, green and orange

Watch UKIPT GALWAY: Padraig Parkinson UKIPT Galway Winner!! on

The next stop of the UKIPT tour is in Manchester February 11-14, 2010.

UKIPT Galway payouts

1. Padraig Parkinson €125,000 (+£5,000 EPT qualifier)
2. Paul Marrow €82,000
3. Ben Lefew €52,000 (PokerStars qualifier)
4. Michael Graydon €36,000 (PokerStars qualifier)
5. Michael McFadgen €22,000 (PokerStars player)
6. Paul Dooley €17,000
7. Vinny Cosgrove €13,000
8. Cat O’Neill €11,000
9. Trevor Bulless €9,000

Catch up on all the action as it happened and all 36 money spots:

The money ladder

Level 25&26
Level 23&24
Level 21&22
Final table ready to kick off
Yes, we can!
Level 20&21
Level 18&19
Level 16&17
Money ladder madness
End of day 2 wrap
Level 14&15
Level 12&13
Level 10&11
Level 8&9
Another day dawns
Level 7 to close of play
Level 5&6
Level 3&4
Level 1&2
A new tour is born

Photos by Mickey May

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