Day 3 completed
|Blinds||50,000 / 100,000|
Day 3 completed
Josip Simunic is the winner of the PokerStars.fr European Poker Tour Deauville €10,300 High Roller beating Jean-Noel Thorel heads up to top a record-breaking field in this event.
Simunic began the day with just over three big blinds, but 10 hours later he found himself atop the final day's 12 remaining players to be crowned 2015 champion and walk away with the trophy, €309,170, and a luxury SLYDE watch.
There was high drama right from the start of the day, as several players were short stacked out of the 12 returning , not least of which was Tobias Peters who returned with just 5,000. The first order of business was the draw for the button, which Peters took great interest in, but he was out of luck as he was in the small blind for the first hand, while Garret Gruener would be under the gun and could wait to see what transpired on the other table.
As it happened, it would be Davidi Kitai who would crash out on the first hand of the day, which took over eight minutes to play out. Robin Ylitalo opened and Kitai moved all in with his short stack. Eric Sfez made the call in the big blind and Ylitalo put in the required extra chips to call as well. A bet from Sfez on the river got Ylitalo to fold, and on a final board of the cards were turned over. Sfez had the to beat the of Kitai to bust him, and Peters asked incredulously, "I just have to hit to win?" Peters finally looked at his cards and was indeed the winner.
With Kitai out, Peters and Gruener made the pay jump. Gruener would also survive when he was dealt the when he was all in on his second hand in the big blind. Peters was out in 11th for €25,190 soon after. He shoved the and was called by Fady Kamar holding the , who went on to make the nut flush. Gruener couldn’t hold on much longer and got the same €25,190 payday for his 10th place finish.
Nikolay Komcharokov entered the day as chip leader having won a live satellite to get his ticket, but he was to fall in ninth for €30,720, which represents his biggest payday ever. Thomas Butzhammer had doubled through Komcharokov a few hands earlier and he then four-bet shoved the into the of Butzhammer to exit short of the official final table of eight.
Butzhammer fell victim to the of Simunic in the next level when he shoved with the . His eighth-place finish was good for €41,160.
There were similar stack sizes at this stage and a fair bit of three-bet shoving before Ylitalo scored a double knock out holding the . He called the all-in shoves of Joao Ribeiro, who had the , and Eric Sfez, who had the . The cards ran out to reduce the field to five.
The chip lead swapped several times over the next few levels with Thorel holding it for some time, but no one was able to draw clear of the pack and it was anyone's tournament to win. Something had to give, though, and it was Argentinian sensation Ivan Luca who was next out when he shoved with the and Simunic called with the . The cards ran out to send Luca out in fifth for €90,690.
Four-handed play went on for a bit as the stacks evened out to around 20 big blinds, and it became a technical game of stack sizes and shoving ranges, with flops few and far between. That was how the action went as Ylitalo moved all in with the and Simunic called with the . It was a board of changing fortunes as the cards ran out . Ylitao was eliminated in fourth for €112,440, and three-handed play commenced.
Simunic was then chip leader and began to steadily apply the pressure on his shorter-stacked opponents, with Thorel and Kamar unable to fight back to his series of shoves. He would not be involved in the next elimination, though, as a rare flop broke out between Kamar and Thorel.
Thorel opened and Kamar called from the big blind. Kamar then check-raised all in on a flop of . Thorel called with the , and it was looking good for the of Kamar. But after the hit the turn, the river gave Thorel two pair. Kamar was the third-place finisher, taking home €135,780.
Thorel would attempt to apply maximum pressure to Simunic in the heads-up battle, but in the end that was his undoing. He called a shove on the turn holding bottom pair against the pocket aces of Simunic, and it was all over soon after.
Simiunic called a bet from Thorel on the flop of , and then all the chips went in the middle when the hit the turn. Simunic had made two pair with the , and Thorel had the . The completed the board, and Simunic was the new EPT Deauville High Roller champion. Thorel had to console himself with €208,900 for second place.
Two big things on the docket this week, as Aussie Millions has wrapped up and the World Series of Poker schedule has been released. Donnie Peters and Rich Ryan recap the big festival Down Under and the team is then joined by "Kid Poker" himself, Daniel Negreanu, to discuss the 2015 WSOP schedule.
It was a very short and incredibly intense heads-up match.
Jean-Noel Thorel had just doubled up and Josip Simunic limped from the small blind. Thorel raised to 300,000 out of the big blind and was called. After a flop of , Thorel fired 300,000 and was called by the Austrian before the fell on the turn.
Thorel bet 450,000 and Simunic moved all in with the superior stack. The call of the Frenchman wouldn't take long and they tabled their cards.
"Come on, face card one time please," Simunic begged towards the dealer. It was not exactly what he wanted, but the river was what he needed to let all the emotions flow. Thorel is eliminated in second place and receives €208,900 whereas Simunic even had tears in his eyes shortly after the victory.
Now, we should also stress out that Simunic had started the day with less than four big blinds!!!
The 2k 6-max event was on the final table nearby with such big names as Adrian Mateos, Dominik Nitsche and Artem Litvinov. They heard the noise from the heads-up match and would soon see another all in situation. After a limped pot to the flop of , Simunic bet 150,000 and Jean-Noel Thorel moved all in.
Simunic snap-called with the for bottom two pair and Thorel had . The turn was a brick but the river gave Thorel better two pair and let the French rail erupt. Litvinov shouted over "allez papa", rooting for his fellow older generation.
Jean-Noel Thorel opened for 250,000 and quickly called a 580,000 three-bet from Josip Simunic.
The flop was and Simunic led out for 515,000. Thorel quickly slid out the calling chip.
The turn card was the and after thinking for some time Simunic moved all in. Thorel again quickly called and the crowd craned their necks to see what the players had.
Throrel would need some luck on the river but the came off to give Simunic back a big chip lead.
In the very first hand of heads-up play, Jean-Noel Thorel faced a raise of Josip Simunic for 225,000 and moved all in. The Austrian was totally surprised by this: "I thought we were going to play a bit." Thorel only had a "Call if you want to play" and huge grin on the face.
Some time passed by then Simunic asked for a count, it would be 3,080,000 to call.
"Show if I fold?" the Austrian inquired. He then counted his own stack and sighed.
"I really don't know what to do to be honest," Simunic continued. He even considered flipping a coin and took a chip, but then realized that both sides of the chip would show the exact same.
"You don't want to see an ace?" Simunic asked, referring to an earlier hand where Thorel had also just moved all in and said exactly that.
After about nine minutes, the clock was called on the Austrian and he had one more minute to think about his decision. Thorel pulled his smart phone out and asked if he could take a picture of his opponent. Tournament director Thomas Lamatsch denied that, so the Frenchman handed over the phone to friends on the rail, who then took a picture.
"Show if I fold this time?" Simunic asked once again and then mucked his cards with three seconds to spare. Thorel grinned and his rail said "ne montre pas", so the Frenchman giggled and replied "my coach says no" before releasing the cards to the dealer.
Jean-Noel Thorel opened the button for 250,000 and Josip Simunic folded the small blind. Fady Kamar called in the big blind.
The flop was and Kamar check-raised all in. Thorel quickly made the call.
Kamar was ahead with top pair and Thorel had middle pair with .
The turn was the and the river delivered the that Thorel needed to give him two pair and bust Kamar.
Thorel celebrated and Kamar quickly offered his congratulations as they shook hands.
Josip Simunic raised to 205,000 from the button and folded when Fady Kamar moved all in.
Jean-Noel Thorel limped for 100,000 from the small blind and called the raise of Simunic out of the big blind for 275,000. On a flop of , Thorel immediately moved in and Simunic snap-folded.
The Austrian would recover some of the losses though by stealing the blinds shortly after.