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Tuesday, August 25, 2009 | Francis Lee


The opening stop of this season’s European Poker Tour (EPT) was in Kiev, Ukraine for the very first time.  This event was originally scheduled to be played in Moscow but due to recent change in Russian laws regarding poker the venue had to be changed.

296 players started out all searching to be crowned the first EPT champion this season and of course the €330,000 on offer to the winner.  It took four days play to reach the final stage of the table with Russian Maxim Lykov setting the lead with 2.5 million in chips.  The rest of the final table line up looked as follows.

Final Table Chip Rankings

  • 1st Maxim Lykov 2,597,000
  • 2nd Vadim Markushevski 1,662,000
  • 3rd Alexander Dovzhenko 1,590,000
  • 4th Vitaly Tolokonnikov 1,019,000
  • 5th Lucasz Plichta 731,000
  • 6th Arthur Simonyan 531,000
  • 7th Adrian Schaap 520,000
  • 8th Torsten Tent 264,000

It took nearly one hour before the first elimination came about on the final table.  Vadim Markushevski had started the day second in the chip rankings but found himself to be the first player out as he clashed with Alexander Dovzhenko who had a similar sized stack.  All the chips went in pre flop with Markushevski having pocket Kings but was behind against Dovzhenko with pocket Aces.  No help for Markushevski meant he was out in 8th place collecting €30,000 in prize money.

Half an hour later short stacked Torsten Tent moved all in with :ac :8s and looked in good shape to double up against Maxim Lykov with :kd :8d The flop :8h :kc :3c changed the outlook as Lykov hit two pair, leaving Tent needing an ace to survive.  The :4d and :9s completed the board confirming Tent’s exit in 7th place winning €45,000.

Ad Schaap’s bid to make it three consecutive Dutch EPT wins came to an end in a race against Lykov.  Schaap had :ah :qc up against Lykov’s pocket tens.  The final board blanked out for Schaap in the end leaving him to head for the rail in 6th place winning €60,000.  Shortly after online qualifier Lucasz Plichta ran his pocket eights into Vitaly Tolokonnikov with pocket queens.  Both players flopped a set and the over pair easily took the pot.

Arthur Simonyan didn’t really get going on this final table, but still managed to nurse his short stack, rising up the pay ladder with each elimination.  This is where it all came to an end as he pushed his remaining 275,000 in chips with :qc :8c He was called by the chip leader Dovzhenko who had picked up pocket tens.  Simonyan could only pair an eight on the final board showing :kc :4d :8d :4h :kd which wasn’t enough to stay alive.  He still picked up €100,000 in prize money for his efforts.

Three handed play didn’t last long at all as Lykov and Tolokonnikov clashed moving all there chips in pre flop with Lykov only just had Tolokonnikov covered in chips.  It turned out to be a race with Lykov having :ad :jc against pocket sevens.  Tolokonnikov held the lead after the flop came down :3c :qs :5h but the :ah on the turn put Lykov in pole position.  The river was the :8d  eliminating Tolokonnikov and moving Lykov into the chip lead going into heads up.

Heads up was dominated by Lykov as his aggressive play limited the moves Dovzhenko was able to make.  The final hand came when all the chips went in after the first four cards down were :4s :jd :7s :4c Dovzhenko revealed :jc :10h having top pair but found himself behind Lykov’s :4h :9d having hit trip four’s.  The :ad on the river meant Lykov was the first ever EPT Kiev champion taking home €330,000 and a seat to the EPT grand final in Monte Carlo.

Final Standings


  • 1st Maxim Lykov €330,000
  • 2nd Alexander Dovzhenko €220,000
  • 3rd Vitaly Tolokonnikov €140,000
  • 4th Arthur Simonyan €100,000
  • 5th Lucasz Plichta €80,000
  • 6th Ad Schaap €60,000
  • 7th Torsten Tent €45,000
  • 8th Vadim Markushevski €30,000



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