Dominik Panka Defeats Mike McDonald; Wins 2014 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Main Event
Finally, after a grueling, 16-hour day, Dominik Panka is the 2014 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Main Event champion.
Panka, who now leads the Polish all-time money list, reached heads-up play against Mike McDonald, winner of the European Poker Tour Dortmund in Season 4, and denied the Canadian his second title on the EPT.
Through 95 tour stops, no player has ever won two EPT titles.
Panka and McDonald made a three-way deal with American Isaac Baron. All three players earned more than $1 million. Panka earned $1,423,096, along with a “Steel and Black” design SLYDE watch worth €5,550.
Final Table Results
*Denotes a three-handed deal
During the first three hours of play, none of the eight finalists were eliminated. McDonald took the chip lead away from Muur and extended it by recording the first knockout of the day. Fabian Ortiz, who finished 17th in the World Series of Poker Main Event this summer for $357,665, four-bet shipped with the A♠K♥, and McDonald, the three-bettor, called with the Q♦Q♥. The wired pair held up, and the Argentinian hit the rail in eighth place.
One hour later, after Muur retook the chip lead, he and McDonald played one of the most important pots of the tournament. McDonald raised on the button with the A♣K♠ at 30,000/60,000/5,000, Muur three-bet to 310,000 out of the small blind with the Q♠Q♦, and McDonald put in a four-bet to 700,000. The Estonian didn’t back down, five-betting to 1.275 million, and McDonald moved all in for 6.73 million. Suddenly, there were over 8.1 million chips in the middle, and if Muur called there would be over 13 million — no other player had more than 5 million at the time.
Muur eventually folded his hand face up, and McDonald took a 2 million-chip lead.
Over four hours after Ortiz exited in eighth place, Pascal Lefrancois was eliminated in seventh, earning $242,020. The French Canadian lost a race with the 6♥6♠ against Baron’s A♦K♣ when Baron spiked an ace on the turn.
An hour after Lefrancois’ bust, another Canadian, Shyam Srinivasan, bowed out in sixth place. Srinivasan three-bet shoved with the J♦J♠, and was in great shape to double against Panka’s 10♥10♦, but the flop produced a ten, giving the Pole a set. Srinivasan failed to improve on the turn or river, and was eliminated.
After a few interesting betting lines during five-handed play, Daniel Gamez was on the short stack. He raised with the Q♥10♥ during Level 31, Panka called on the button, and McDonald put in a three-bet with the 10♦10♠. The Guatemalan opted to move all in for 24 big blinds, McDonald called, and the dominant hand held up. Gamez, a soon-to-be father, earned $447,040 for his efforts.
Muur also decided to risk his tournament life with queen-ten, four-bet jamming for 34 big blinds 30 minutes later with the Q♦10♣. Panka, the three-bettor, instantly called with the A♥K♣, and held. The Estonian earned $581,040.
Panka, Baron, and McDonald immediately stopped the tournament to discuss deal, and around 20 minutes later all three players were guaranteed at least $1 million.
As requested by the tournament staff, $100,000 was put on the side for the eventual winner.
Play loosened up a bit with all three players guaranteed seven figures, and Baron lost a big pot to McDonald when the latter turned two pair against the former’s top pair. A few hands later, Baron three-bet shoved with the K♦Q♥, and Panka, the three-bettor, called with the A♠9♠. The flop brought three spades and no kings or queens, leaving Baron drawing dead, and all the American could do is laugh.
Panka started heads-up play with the chip lead, McDonald edged in front on the very first hand, and the two battled for nearly three and a half hours. The Canadian eventually extended his lead, but lost a massive flip on the very last hand of Level 33. McDonald never recovered, and during the next level he three-bet all in with the 7♣4♣. Panka called with the A♦2♣, and it looked like McDonald was going to double when the turn produced a seven, but an ace spiked on the river.
Congratulations to Panka, the first Polish EPT champion. He earned $1,423,096, the trophy, the SLYDE watch, and a place in poker's history books.
Season 10 continues in less than two weeks with EPT Deauville, and PokerNews will be on hand to provide live updates from the Main Event and High Roller. Thank you for following our coverage of the 2014 PCA, and good morning from the Bahamas!