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The 2018 PokerStars European Poker Tour (EPT) Prague is on its last legs, with only the €5,300 EPT Main Event, €25,000 Single-Day High Roller II and €10,300 EPT High Roller left to play out.
In the meantime, the fast-paced €10,300 Pot-Limit Omaha went from start to finish on December 15 with Swedish pro Alexander Norden (cover image) eventually emerging victorious at the event. Gathering a field of 26 players that collected a prize pool of €252,200, the event took a little over 12 hours to conclude.
Several notable players were seen in the running including Laszlo Bujtas, Alexander Petersen and online phenomenon Niklas Astedt, aka ‘Lena900’, but none were able to finish in the money.
With only the top five places receiving payouts, the nine-handed final table witnessed some aggressive plays and lot’s of entertaining poker action with beasts like Hungarian bigshot Andras Nemeth, Portuguese pro Rui Ferreira and American sensation Emil Patel all lined up for a shot at the title.
Norden showed tremendous poker prowess and orchestrated the elimination of Ferreira, and won huge pots from Max Silver and Arvi Vainionkulma, before facing Niko Soininen in the heads-up play. He overpowered the Finnish player to take down his career-first EPT title.
Day 2 of the €5,300 EPT Main Event played alongside the €10,300 PLO and saw Malaysia’s Natalie Teh take pole position as she bagged a stack of 786,000. She’ll lead the 137 survivors on Day 3 today.
From India, PokerStars Team Pro Muskan Sethi was also seen in action. She had qualified for Day 2 from the second starting flight, i.e. Day 1B, with a stack of 28,000 but failed to make the cut for Day 3 when her ace-queen ran into Evangelos Bechrakis‘ ten-nine which improved to two pairs on the flop.
Another PokerStars Team Pro Fatima Moreira De Melo was sent to the rail when her pocket jacks couldn’t beat the ace-queen of her opponent, who flopped a queen.
1. Andras Nemeth – 202,000
2. Jorryt van Hoof – 179,000
3. Arvi Vainionkulma – 176,000
4. Alexander Norden – 167,000
5. Max Silver – 156,000
6. Rui Ferreira – 136,000
7. Emil Patel – 102,000
8. Niko Soininen – 100,000
9. Pavel Binar – 80,000
Pavel Binar was running low on chips right from the start of the final table and it was just a matter of time before he had to put his tournament life at risk. With the board open , Binar bet 16,000 from small blind and Andras Nemeth called after some consideration. Niko Soininen raised to 75,000 from the hijack. Binar moved all-in and Nemeth folded. Soininen turned over and picked up a full house on the turn. Binar tabled for a lower full house and exited in ninth-place.
Barely a few minutes had passed before the next elimination came about. Rui Ferreira‘s failed to beat Alexander Norden’s , as the latter rivered a higher two pair on the board . Ferreira’s run ended in eighth place.
Final Table chip leader Andras Nemeth found himself on the bottom end of the chip counts after Jorryt van Hoof doubled up through him, leaving the Hungarian pro with only 25,000 behind. Unable to make a comeback, Nemeth bowed out in seventh place.
Finishing in sixth place was Emil Patel when his were cracked by Van Hoof’s , on the runout . Van Hoof hit a set of sixes on the turn, eliminating Patel on the tournament money bubble.
Patel’s elimination brought the playing field down to five. Right at the start of level 19, Max Silver lost a huge pot to Norden and was only left with 10 big blinds. He eventually lost that to Soininen and became the first player to finish in the money as he departed in fifth place.
All it took was five minutes for Jorryt van Hoof to follow Silver out to the rail. The Dutch pro tabled against Vainionkulma’s . On the board , Vainionkulma picked up a diamond flush on the turn which ended Van Hoof’s run in fourth place.
The three-way battle between Arvi Vainionkulma, Alexander Norden and Niko Soininen continued for another level before Vainionkulma fell in third place. Soininen raised to 50,000 from the button with and Vainionkulma countered with a call from the big blind holding . The flop came and Vainionkulma jammed with his last 45,000, prompting Soininen to call. The remaining two streets brought and . Soininen found a full house on the river, which sent Vainionkulma packing.
Alexander Norden (700,000) and Niko Soininen (600,000) began heads-up play with almost evenly matched stacks, with Norden holding a slight edge over Soininen. The final showdown lasted for less than an hour. Norden continued to put pressure on Soininen, all the while consistently extending his chip lead. In the end the pressure was to much for Soininen to handle and he surrendered the win to Norden.
On the final hand, the flop ran with 140,000 in the pot. Soininen shoved all-in with and Norden called with . Both players held top pair, but Soininen was ahead because of his ace kicker. The turn kept the status quo, but the river turned the game on its heads as Norden hit a straight and stole the title right from under Soininen’s nose. The latter finished in the runner-up spot, as Norden won his maiden EPT title and €93,300 in first-place prize money.
1. Alexander Norden – €93,300
2. Niko Soininen – €64,300
3. Arvi Vainionkulma – €41,000
4. Jorryt van Hoof – €29,640
5. Max Silver – €23,960
Content & Images courtesy Pokernews.com/PokerStars.com
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