Juan Pardo Wins EPT Monte Carlo €10K Opening Event (€201,500)

Juan Pardo

At a table featuring several superstars, it was perhaps the least recognizable name, Juan Pardo, who emerged victorious in the €10K opening event at 2018 PokerStars and Monte-Carlo©Casino EPT. Pardo topped a field of 71 entries for a €201,500 first-place prize in the three-day event.

While that's a relatively modest amount by the standards of these EPT €10Ks, what Pardo has accomplished in such a short time deserves plenty of notice.

He's already pushing towards his first live million with over $750K in cashes despite having less than $3,000 before two sizable scores in Spain earlier this month. There, he burst onto the live radar with scores of €150,000 and €450,000 for fifth- and second-place finishes, respectively in €25K events.

Add another €201,500 to that, and the 24-year-old Spaniard has certainly had quite the lucrative April. Furthermore, he said, the taste of victory sets this one apart.

"It is a dream come true," he said. "I feel tremendously happy and proud to have achieved this victory. I had to face good players like Timothy Adams, Stephen Chidwick or Rainer Kempe, but fortunately today things went perfectly."

Road to the Win

Pardo started the day with a relatively short stack and didn't make a ton of headway in the first few levels while Vladimir Troyanovskiy, Chidwick and Orpen Kisacikoglu hit the rail. Former WSOP Main Event champ Ryan Riess rose up and took over the lead from Adams while Pardo remained short.

Adams busted Rainer Kempe in fifth with ace-king over ace-jack and seemed to be on a collision course with Riess. All that remained was to eliminate short stacks Pardo and Paul Newey.

Pardo appeared likely to be next out when he jammed over an Adams button open with threes and ran smack into pocket kings. However, a three hit the flop, and as an added bonus, Riess had cold-called in the big blind and then folded to a reshove from Adams, giving Pardo a triple up.

Pardo was suddenly in business. He got there with king-queen against a short-stacked Newey's ace-nine and then took the rest of Riess' chips in a big flip when jacks held against ace-queen suited. Suddenly, Pardo had a sizable lead heads up with Adams.

Juan Pardo Wins EPT Monte Carlo €10K Opening Event (€201,500) 101
Timothy Adams and Juan Pardo play heads up.

The match didn't take long, as Adams had only a little over 20 big blinds. He dropped some pots early and then shoved about 12 big blinds with king-nine, and Pardo woke up with ace-king to end things.

"He had a big chip lead and I just couldn't come back," Adams said. "He plays really well. Tricky, aggressive, doesn't give off much. I'm sure he'll keep being around."

That's exactly the plan for Pardo, who came up online as "Malaka$tyle" and now makes his home in the U.K. to play in the global online poker pools. Once a heads-up cash player, he switched his focus to tournaments and is newly establishing himself in the live scene.

He said he has put a lot of effort into his game and worked hard to make the jump into high rollers. He plans to play all of the big tourneys here in Monte Carlo and then play a full Spring Championship of Online Poker schedule before the WSOP.

"My arrival could not be better," he said. "I came to stay."

Official Final Table Results

1Juan PardoSpain€201,500
2Timothy AdamsCanada€145,000
3Ryan RiessUnited States€94,000
4Paul NeweyUnited Kingdom€71,000
5Rainer KempeGermany€55,000
6Orpen KisacikogluTurkey€42,700
7Stephen ChidwickUnited Kingdom€33,500
8Vladimir TroyanovskiyRussia€26,000
  • Juan Pardo is making quite the name for himself, adding a sweet victory in the €10K Monte Carlo Opening Event.

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