Playground Poker Spring Classic: Christopher Savov Ships the 8-Max

Playground Spring Classic

While the focus over the weekend was on the partypoker LIVE Million North America at Playground Poker Club, side events for the Playground Poker Spring Classic returned to action on Monday.

Event #5 gave players a second chance at a sizable payday, playing out Day 1 Monday morning. Later in the evening, Event #6 played down to completion with Christopher Savov taking the trophy and top share.

Event #5: $2,500 NL Hold’em Second Chance got underway at 11 a.m. Monday morning, much to the delight of 92 entries, all chasing the $150,000 guarantee. By the time the clock was paused on Day 1, just 16 hopefuls remained. Decorated tournament pro Martin Finger holds the lead with 2010 World Series of Poker Main Event champion Jonathan Duhamel sitting in second.

Martin Finger

Finger bagged 473,500, while Duhamel mustered 317,000. Oren Haziza (250,000), Ryan Yu (181,500) and David Valcourt-Dube (134,000) round out the top five.

Players have yet to reach the money as only 12 of the final 16 will walk away with a prize. Some notables still in the mix include Harpreet Gill (114,000), Alex Villa (109,000) and Thomas Lefort (95,500).

With 92 entries, the prize pool closed at $205,252. The eventual champion will earn $65,120 with a min-cash being worth $5,130. Play will resume on Tuesday at noon local time with Day 2 playing down to a winner.

The sixth event of the festival kicked off Monday evening at 8 p.m. The $330 NL Hold’em 8-Max event boasted a guarantee of $40,000 and drew in a total of 251 entries. After just past 6 a.m. Tuesday morning, Savov eliminated his final opponent to claim the title and bank a prize of $9,715, after a deal made between the final seven players.

PlaceNamePrize (CAD)
1Christopher Savov$9,715
2Yohann Wagner$8,901
3James St-Armand$7,305
4Alexandre Blanc$7,505
5Étienne Caron St-Georges$7,865
6Karam Saleh$6,455
7Sébastien Proulx$6,485
8Daune Fernandez$2,150
9Stuart Taylor$1,620

Canadian online poker pro, Ian Modder held the chip lead for a good portion of the preliminary levels before Savov took over for good, just before the bubble popped. Only the top 26 players made the money. A few to fall before the final table formed include Bob T (24th - $640), Modder (22nd - $710) and Marc Convey (21st - $770).

The all-time leader in tournament cashes at Playground, Bill Kontaratos, would end up bubbling the final table, but picked up yet another cash to add to his resume. With the elimination of Kontaratos, the final nine moved to a single table.

Savov had the lead and added to it when he took out Stuart Taylor in ninth. Yohann Wagner then knocked out Daune Fernandez in eighth and the remaining players paused the clock to discuss a deal.

After some negotiations and tweaks to the prizes, an agreement was reached and the players locked in their prizes, leaving $1,500 to play for. On the first hand after the deal, James St-Armand scored a double elimination, sending Sebastien Proulx and Karam Saleh to the rail.

Christopher Savov

Savov got caught trying to steal the big blind from Étienne Caron St-Georges from the small blind, but St-Georges snap-called having woken up with a big hand. Unfortunately, even though St-Georges flopped top pair, Savov hit trip tens on the turn and they held for the bust out. Alexandre Blanc and St-Armand would soon run out of gas, setting up a heads-up battle between Savov and Wagner.

Play had been moving at a swift pace since the deal was made, and on the final hand, Savov flopped a straight and Wagner hit top pair. All the chips went in and Wagner was drawing dead on the turn. Savov picked up the extra prize money and took home the champion’s trophy.

More side event action takes place on Tuesday at Playground. The $1,100 NL Hold’em 50/50 Bounty begins at 11 a.m., followed by a $330 5-Card PL Omaha Re-entry later on Tuesday evening.

PokerNews will provide daily recaps throughout the festival along with live coverage of the $5,000,000 guaranteed partypoker Million North America.

For full festival details and live updates from the Playground blogging team check out the official blog here.

  • Savov claimed the first-place prize of $9,715 after a deal between the final seven players.

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Anthony Charter

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