Toronto ATM owner wins nearly $2 million at World Poker Tournament in Las Vegas
Toronto’s Davidson Matthew is $1,903,950 richer, after coming in second at the World Poker Tournament at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. This tournament is regarded as the most prestigious in the world next to the World Series of Poker Main event.
Matthew, who is known as “ATMKing” because he is president of a Toronto- based ATM company, qualified for the tournament through a $25 satellite tournament win on ParadisePoker.com allowing him to head to Las Vegas to take on some of his poker idols. The unknown Matthew beat all but one of the renowned poker superstars!
Matthew began playing poker in February of 2004 and shifted his focus to online poker at ParadisePoker.com in September of that year so he could play at his own convenience. His play on ParadisePoker.com earned him a trip to play with the “Who’s Who” of the poker world including poker legends like Doyle Brunson, Phil Hellmuth, Johnny Chan, and young superstar Phil Ivey.
“I was honoured to play with these players. Everywhere I looked there were faces I had seen on TV,” said Matthew. “I approached the tournament in a businesslike manner, my initial goal was to win $46,000, but as I advanced round after round I readjusted my expectations, and by the end I was going for it all!”
Down to the final two, Matthews faced local Las Vegas threat, Joseph Bartholdi. With just his wife there to cheer him on and his opponent boasting an entourage, Matthew (the button) led off and Bartholdi (big blind) checked behind him. The flop came up ace of hearts, nine of clubs and eight of hearts. Bartholdi checked, Matthew bet $800,000, Bartholdi raised to $2 million. At that point Matthew grabbed all of his chips and moved all-in. Bartholdi called.
Matthew showed the ten and four of hearts for a flush draw. Bartholdi showed a nine of diamonds and a five of hearts for a pair of nines. The turn revealed a two of diamonds and the river the ace of diamonds giving Bartholdi the win with two pairs.
With his winnings, Williams plans to pay off some debts and embark on a professional poker career.