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2009 | Live & Online Poker Tournament News
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Monday, May 4, 2009 | Francis Lee


The grand final of the 2009 European Poker Tour (EPT) took place in Monte Carlo this bank holiday weekend.  The finale of a very successful fifth season was held in the Sporting Club at the Monte Carlo bay resort.  The €10,000 main event attracted 935 entrants creating a €9.35 million prize pool.  The winner of this event would walk away with a life changing €2.3 million jackpot.

The tournament was scheduled to be played over five days as there were two separate starting fields to begin on the first two days.  Both starting fields was packed full of well known poker stars and there was also a lot of online qualifiers lucky enough to have won there seat online.

With just 88 players making the money the bubble didn’t burst until day three.  Marcel Luske became the unlucky bubble boy going out in 89th place.  Dag Martin Mikklesen had the best of the running right down to the final table amassing a 7.3 million chip stack, almost 3 million ahead of Matthew Woodward in second place.  The rest of the final table looked as follows at the start of the final day that would decide the winner.

Final Table Chip Rankings

  • 1st Dag Martin Mikkelsen 7,315,000
  • 2nd  Matthew Woodward 4,560,000
  • 3rd  Peter Traply 4,365,000
  • 4th  Mikhail Tulchinskiy 3,220,000
  • 5th  Eric Qu 2,880,000
  • 6th  Pieter de Korver 2,440,000
  • 7th  Daniel Zink 1,865,000
  • 8th  Alem Shah 1,515,000

The first elimination came on the fourth orbit of the table when Peter Traply moved all in with :ad :kh and was called by the chip leader Dag Martin Mikkelsen with :qh :qc Traply tournament life ended as the pocket Queens held up as the board came down :8h :5c :2h :10d :6s This win increased Mikkelsen’s chip lead to more than double his nearest rival on 15 million.

Mikkelsen went onto increase his chip lead again by knocking out Daniel Zink into seventh place.   Mikkelsen had Zink dominated with :ad :kh against :ah :jh The Flop :8d :ks :2s put Mikkelsen even further into the lead but Zink has a small chance after the :jd fell on the Turn.  The :ac on the River dashed these hopes handing Mikkelsen the pot.

Just a few hands later Alem Shah found himself all in with :as :10c and was dominated against Mikhail Tulchinskiy holding :ad :kh Shah had a chance to win the pot when the board was showing :8c :3c :3d :2c after the Turn.   No club or ten came for Shah as the :6s completed the board, confirming his exit in sixth place.  On the very next hand Tulchinskiy called Eric Qu who went all in for 1.4 million in chips.  Tulchinskiy was ahead with :ad :qs against :kh :qh This changed when Qu paired a king on the Turn, but the :as put Tulchinskiy back into the lead to take the pot.  Qu collected €470,000 finishing in fifth place.

This win moved Tulchinskiy up to 7 million in chips in second place but he still had less than half the amount of chip leader Mikkelsen’s stack.  Matthew Woodward had just under 4 million in chips in third and Pieter De Korver was seriously short stacked with 905,000.

Four handed play saw an amazing turn around as Pieter De Korver managed to survive numerous times and built up a chip stack almost equal to the chip leader.  Hand number 103 was very decisive as De Korver doubled up against Mikkelsen taking the chip lead and crippling Mikkelsen down to just 360,000 in chips.  Two hands later he was heading for the exit as his :ac :8h didn’t hold up against Tulchinskiy’s :qh :9d

Just five hands after the dinner break Matthew Woodward announced he was all in and Tulchinsky made the call having less chips.  Woodward was slightly ahead with :3h :3d against :qh :10h The final board blanked out for both players leaving Tulchinskiy out in third place winning €800,000.

De Korver took a 3 million chip advantage into heads up against Woodward and managed to take down the title in just 45 hands.  Woodward decided to make a stand going all in after the Flop was showing :5h :10h :6h when having :6c :4h De Krover made the call with :6s :9s having the same pair but a better kicker.  Woodward needed just a heart to complete his flush or any four to survive.  The :qs on the Turn was no help for Woodward and the :7s confirmed De Krover as the champion.

Final Standings

  • 1st  Pieter De Korver €2,300,000
  • 2nd  Matthew Woodward €1,300,000
  • 3rd  Mikhail Tulchinskiy€800,000
  • 4th  Dag Martin Mikkelsen €600,000
  • 5th  Eric Qu €470,000
  • 6th  Alem Shah €350,000
  • 7th  Daniel Zink €250,000
  • 8th  Peter Traply €170,000



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