The 2012 PokerStars.com European Poker Tour Barcelona €50,000 Super High Roller has concluded with Dan Smith capturing the €962,925 first-place prize, a Shamballa Bracelet and the first major EPT title of Season 9.
Smith has been on a tear in 2012, starting back in January at the Aussie Millions where he won the $100,000 Challenge for A$1,012,000. Prior to that result, Smith had just $628,939 in live tournament earnings, but that was up to over $2.8 million headed into this final table.
The day began with the final table skewed as the top three players — Smith (5,108,000), Mike “Timex” McDonald (4,650,000) and JC Alvarado (3,116,000) — held 80% of the chips in play. As such, five of the short stacks, all below 700,000, were working with around 20 big blind stacks in Level 16 (15,000/30,000/4,000). Each were anxious to capture a larger chunk of the €3,072,960 prize pool, which was created after 55 players entered the event and accounted for nine rebuys. Interestingly, none of the players that rebought made the final table.
Despite the short stacks, it took a whole level before the first elimination occurred, which happened when Smith's outdrew the of Jim McCrink. Not long after, Talal Shakerchi was eliminated in seventh place for €138,300 after failing to hit an open-ended straight draw against the top pair of Ilari Sahamies, and then Poker Hall of Famer and consistent high roller Erik Seidel fell to the Finn in sixth place. Soon after, McDonald and Alvarado played a massive pot that resulted in the latter doubling, and the former ended up busting the very next hand when his ran into Smith’s .
A few hands later, it was Smith and Sahamies clashing after Smith had opened and Sahamies three-bet. Smith then moved all in and Sahamies made the call, creating a considerable pot. This time it was Smith who held the , but he was dominated by the of Sahamies.
Smith had been running well since the start of Day 2, and that momentum carried over to the final table as the flop came down . Neither the turn nor river helped Sahamies, and he was awarded a consolation prize of fourth-place money worth €291,900.
Mike Watson began three-handed play as the short stack and failed to mount a comeback, finishing in third place for €399,500. That left Smith holding a five-to-three chip lead going into heads-up play, but he and Alvarado still decided to do a deal — the former would take home €862,925, the latter €788,675, leaving €100,000 and the Shamballa bracelet up for grabs.
Alvarado managed to pull into the chip lead, but then a big hand saw Smith snatch it back. From there, Smith whittled down his opponent and pulled out to a six-to-one chip lead before finishing the job. On the final hand, Alvarado got it in good with the , but couldn't hold down the fort against Smith's . Once again, Smith's run good continued and this time it had won him the tournament.
Final Table Payouts
*Denotes two-player deal
Smith’s latest EPT win comes on the heels of winning three €5,000 side events at the PokerStars and Monte-Carlo® Casino EPT Grand Final back in May (€5,000 No-Limit Hold'em 6-Max Turbo for €152,980; €5,000 No-Limit Hold'em for €250,500; and €5,000 No-Limit Hold'em 6-Max for €118,000), and five cashes at this year’s World Series of Poker, including a big score in another $5,000 event where he took third in Event 50: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em for $368,943. Needless to say, 2012 has become the “Year of the Nub.”
Congratulations to Dan Smith on winning the EPT Barcelona €50,000 Super High Roller. While action in this event has concluded, the Main Event is in full swing. The PokerNews Live Reporting Team is covering that event, and will also be reporting from the €10,000 High Roller beginning on August 23.