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Kevin Paqué Beats Steve O'Dwyer to Win 2019 Master Classics of Poker Main Event

Kevin Paqué

After almost 11 hours, the €4,300 Main Event of the Master Classics of Poker came to an end with Kevin Paqué the winner at Holland Casino Amsterdam for €260,878 ($287,146) and the plate trophy, also known as a "bordje. In heads-up play, Paqué defeated Steve O'Dwyer, who claimed €174,421 ($191,983) for finishing second in the 346-strong field.

"This is what every Dutch poker player dreams of. I don't have the words for it yet, I am so happy."

"It's delightful," was the first thing Paqué said in his post-victory interview. "This is what every Dutch poker player dreams of. I don't have the words for it yet, I am so happy. I didn't realize it at first, the river was dealt, it was quiet for a second and then the rail went crazy. I then grasped that I had won."

The 23-year old poker player collected his biggest cash ever in a live tournament according to The Hendon Mob as his previous record was €35,386 when he finished as the runner-up in the 2018 WSOP International Circuit High Roller at Holland Casino Rotterdam.

"He is a good player, he seems to play a lot of heads-up poker, he played really well," O'Dwyer complimented Paqué.

The final table was a stacked one, well-known players from the Netherlands and all over the world attracted to the marquee event of the MCOP, which has been around since 1992. Paqué is the eighth player who managed to keep the title in Dutch hands.

2019 MCOP Main Event Final Table Results

PlacePlayerCountryPrize (EUR)Prize (USD)
1Kevin PaquéNetherlands€260,878$287,146
2Steve O'DwyerIreland€174,421$191,983
3Paraskevas TsokaridisGreece€124,548$137,089
4Pascal VosNetherlands€95,911$105,568
5Frederico SilvaPortugal€73,441$80,836
6Jan BednarCzech Republic€56,177$61,833
7Johan RensinkNetherlands€43,023$47,355
8Shyngis SatubayevKazakhstan€33,021$36,346
9Ole SchemionGermany€25,485$28,051

Final Table Action

Paqué started the day second in chips but took over the chip lead in the first hand when he and Pascal Vos clashed. Vos missed his flush draw while Paqué held two pair. "I started well, I wanted to become the table captain, I had the ideal position to put pressure on the shorter stacks," Paqué explained.

And that's exactly what he did, he kept the pressure on his opponents, but it would take almost two and a half hours before Ole Schemion was sent to the rail in ninth place. Schemion had three-bet after Vos raised and then called the four-bet of the latter to see he was slightly ahead with the pocket kings against queens. A queen in the window meant the end of Schemion's run in trying to become the first two-time champion.

Ole Schemion
Ole Schemion

Only one hand later, Shyngis Satubayev fell when he shoved his short-stack into the ace-ten of Paqué with pocket nines. The four-ace-four flop gave Paqué the higher two pair and those held to send the Kazakhstanian player to the rail. Satubayev has now cashed for more than $1.4 million in his live poker career.

Paqué continued his rampage on the final table while everyone was getting shorter. O'Dwyer shoved for twelve big blinds with ace-deuce and was called by Johan Rensink. Rensink held ace-ten and O'Dwyer started behind but flopped a pair of deuces to double up. Less than ten minutes later, Rensink left the feature table stage when he was looked up by O'Dwyer. This time O'Dwyer held the rockets against Rensink's ace-five. No help came on the board for one of the old-school Dutch poker players and he was sent to the payout desk to collect his cash for finishing in seventh place, a personal best for him.

It would only take one level for Jan Bednar to first double for five big blinds and then to lose them all again in a blind-versus-blind situation. Bednar shoved and was called by Paraskevas Tsokaridis with kings. Bednar's ace-four didn't hit anything on the board for the tall Czech player to finish in sixth place.

Frederico Silva was happy to pick up a few pay jumps as he was getting shorter and shorter too. Soon after Bednar's elimination, Silva shoved his queen-jack into the ace-ten of Paqué to collect his first Dutch and biggest cash ever.

Three-Handed Play

Tsokaridis wasn't involved in too many hands, preferring to let the other players at the table battle but he picked up a very important double-up through Vos. On a six-jack-deuce-eight-four board he had rivered a straight while Vos had slowplayed his aces. When Vos shoved, Tsokaridis easily called with the nuts. Vos then lost the remainder of his stack to Paqué to take the Day 3 chip leader's lifetime earnings in live poker tournaments to the $800,000-mark.

Tsokaridis and O'Dwyer had similar stacks with Paqué with the big chip lead. O'Dwyer and Paqué played a lot of hands while the Greek stayed out of most confrontations. At one point the chip lead switched to O'Dwyer after first rivering a flush and then hitting two pair, but Paqué took it back when he O'Dwyer called the big river-bet of Paqué who had turned a pair of queens.

In the end, Tsokaridis' run was cut short when he shoved his sixes into the king-ten of O'Dwyer. The ten on the flop sent the Greek home with his biggest cash ever worth €124,548.

Steve O'Dwyer
Steve O'Dwyer in heads-up play.

Heads-up play went on for thirty minutes with O'Dywer getting shorter but he doubled up to 32 big blinds when he snap-called Paqué's bluff-shove on a jack-queen-jack-deuce-seven board with queen-four. He was ground down to twelve big blinds when he doubled again with king-high. He then made the right call with king-high when Paqué tried to bluff him again.

Two and a half hours of heads-up play was needed before the Main Event came to an end. O'Dwyer snap-called the check-shove of Paqué on a jack-queen-five-four board with two clubs. O'Dwyer held top pair but Paqué's flush draw got there on the river to send the Dutch rail in a frenzy while O'Dwyer calmly congratulated Paqué with the win.

"The rail was there all day, the boys always support me," said Paqué. "It was amazing, it gave me the motivation to try hard. They're always there."

This concludes the PokerNews live reporting coverage here in the Netherlands. Thank you for following all the updates and see you at the next event!

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  • Kevin Paqué topped a 346-entry field to win the 2019 @MCOP Main Event for €260,878 ($287,146).

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