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Wednesday, April 9, 2008 | Francis Lee


The penultimate event in this years European Poker Tour (EPT) was held in San Remo, Italy. The first time an EPT event was held in this beautiful city. The $8,000 buy in main event attracted some of the best poker players from across the globe all battling to win the $1,340,8767 1st place prize and the seat to the EPT grand final, to be held in Monte Carlo later this month. A seat to this event values at around $10,000.

The event was scheduled to be played over four days and the final eight players would battle it out on the fourth day. The final table was filled with some of the best European poker players around. Dario Minieri was probably the most well known and up an coming stars at this final table. He was leading the chip rankings nearing the £2 million mark, mostly gained with his well known loose aggressive play. Jason Mericier who was hot on Minieir’s heels in second place had qualified for this event online through Poker Stars.

Final Table Chip Rankings:

  • 1st Dario Minieri $1,782,000
  • 2nd Jason Mercier $1,442,000
  • 3rd Anthony Lellouche $1,137,000
  • 4th Gregory Genovese $686,000
  • 5th William Thorson $528,000
  • 6th Eric Koskas $507,000
  • 7th Dag Polovic $505,000
  • 8th Marcus Bower $277,000

Marcus Bower on the short stack made his stand early on with pocket Fours and found him self up against Anthony Lellouche with :ad :jd Bower held the lead all the way down to the River until the :ah paired Lellouche with an Ace. Bower took home $118,348 in prize money for his 8th place finish.

A lot of chips were passed around in the early exchanges with some of the most aggressive players around. The next elimination came when Dag Palovic raised to $96,000 holding pocket Queens. Dario Minieri who had limped in before Dag, made the call and the Flop came down :2s :3d :6d Palovic moved All In and Minieri instantly called revealing pocket Three’s having hit a set. Dag didn’t improve leaving the event in 7th place.

Just a few hands later William Thorson found himself dominated All In with :ah :qh against Mericer with :ad :kh The Flop put Mercier in an even better position coming down :kd :6c :5c The Turn ended Thorson’s event with the :ac meaning he was drawing dead with one card to come.

Play stopped for a short break after Thorson’s elimination but the fast pace didn’t stop here. Almost immediately after the restart we lost the next player involving Mercier, Manieri and Gregory Genovese. Minieri made the first raise pre Flop, followed by an All In re raise from Genovese. Mercier and Minieri called and the flop came down :ad :5d :7s Mercier led out forcing Minieri to fold, Mercier revealed :ah :3s in a good lead against :9s :10h No help came for Genovese as the :qs and :2h completed the board.

Mercier continued his aggressive play and eliminated his next victim Eric Koskas in the process. Koskas was All In against Mercier after the River with the board showing :jh :6d :5c :8h :8c Mercier revealed :9d :5d having Two pair and amazingly beat Koskas with :10c :3d who was trying to bluff.

On the very next hand of play Minieri lead out with a pre Flop raise and Mercier followed this by his customary re raise. Minieri called and the Flop came down :7h :2d :8d Minieri bet out first again and Mercier moved All In with :ad :4d Minieri called showing pocket Queens desperately trying to avoid any Ace or diamond to double up. Neither came on the Turn but the River brought the :3d down to set up the heads up showdown between Mercier and Lellouche.

Mercier held a huge chip advantage over lellouche and finished off the event in the space of two hands. The final hand came when all the chips were in the middle pre Flop with Mercier holding :ks :qd and Lellouche having pocket Sevens. The final board came down :as :qs :4c :8c :2c hitting Mercier’s Queen handing him the EPT title. A great result for an online qualifier showing that anyone can attend one of the massive events with a chance to make the big prizes. Well see Jason Mercier back again in action at the EPT grand final in Monte Carlo later this month.

Final Standings:

  • 1st Jason Mercier $1,340,867
  • 2nd Anthony Lellouche $779,215
  • 3rd Dario Minieri $443,767
  • 4th Eric Koskas $345,015
  • 5th Gregory Genovese $290,855
  • 6th William Thorson $216,946
  • 7th Dag Palovic $172,507
  • 8th Marcus Bower $118,348



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