The final table of the Eureka Poker Tour Prague Main Event took place on Thursday and although neither of our players who competed managed to win, they did bank over €140,000 for their respective finishes.
When play commenced on the fourth and final day’s play Stephen Chidwick was second in chips, Czech-based Irishman Mark Dalimore fifth and we were preparing to write an article depicting their one-two finish. Sadly, that isn’t the case, but both players performed fantastically well and would have been worthy champions.
Eureka Poker Tour Main Event Final Table
Johannes Tiefenbrunner was the first casualty of the final table in a clash of the short stacks. The blinds were 40,000/80,000/10,000a and Milan Simko moved all in from early position for 715,000. Tiefenbrunner called off his last 650,000 and turned over . Simko held creating one of tournament poker’s many coinflip scenarios. The flop propelled Simko into the lead, which is where he stayed as the turn and river fell and to bust Tiefenbrunner in eighth place.
Ninety minutes later and the last remaining Team PokerStars Pro busted. Marcin Horecki, Team Pro for Poland, moved his 13 big blind stack into the middle with what turned out to be and Mark Dalimore called with . The board was void of aces and Horecki shook his former table mates’ hands before heading to the cashier’s desk to collect seventh place money.
Simko started the day as the shortest stack and despite doubling a couple of times, never really got going at the final table. His tournament ended when Dmitri Holdeew opened to 260,000 and then called when Simko three-bet all in for 1,250,000 in total. Holdeew held and Simko the . It would prove to be one coinflip too many for Simko as the board ran out to leave Holdeew’s nines the best hand and to reduce the final table by one player.
Shortly after Simko’s demise, Dalimore lost his chips after a move with king-queen did not go to plan. Holdeew opened to 350,000, Dalimore moved all in for 4,000,000 with king-queen and Holdeew snap-called with his pocket aces – as you would do. The aces held, Holdeew’s position strengthened and Dalimore, who had got under the skin of a few of the final table members, was gone.
Four became three when the last Czech player in the field busted shortly after 5:00 p.m. The action passed around to Jaroslav Peter on the button and he moved all in with . Holdeew, seated in the small blind, re-shoved with pocket eights and when Amir Barer folded the dealer got busy spreading the board. Game over for Peter.
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Heads-up was set when Chidwick busted in third place after an hour of three-handed play. Having lost a large pot to Barer to lave himself with 20 big blinds, Chidwick started making moves and one such move saw him ship in 20 big blinds from the small blind with . Holdeew opted to call with and another race began. The flop gave Chidwick an inside straight draw in addition to his two overcards and although Chidwick trailed, he did have a 40% chance of winning. The on the turn completely changed that because it now meant Chidwick needed to hit a jack and only a jack in order to win the hand. It was not meant to be as the river was the and Chidwick headed to the rail.
Holdeew held a 14 million to 11.9 million chip lead over Barer, but Barer was vastly more experienced in tournament poker and was seen as the clear favourite to win. Barer’s odds of victory improved as he doubled with pocket eights versus Holdeww’s fours, yet the battle was far from over.
During the next two hours the chip lead exchanged hands several times before Holdeew opened to 600,000 and Barer called. The pair saw the flop come down , Holdeew continued with a 475,000 bet and Barer called. Simple enough so far. The turn brought the into play and suddenly the players went nuts! Barer checked, Holdeew bet 1,500,000 and his Canadian opponent jammed all in for 7,915,000. Holdeew stood, paused, asked for a count then called, turning over as he did so. Holdeew’s two pair needed to avoid a heart because Barer’s hand was the . The river was the , which improved Barer to a pair of kings, nonetheless it was too little too late and a delighted Holdeew became the latest in a long line of German’s to take down a major live tournament.
Eureka Poker Tour Main Event Final Table
Lead image courtesy of the PokerStars Blog