The €10,300 EPT High Roller at the PokerStars and Barcelona©Casino European Poker Tour wrapped up after nearly ten hours of play on Day 3 and saw Portugal's Rui Ferreira winning the trophy and €767,750 for the biggest live score of his career.
Ferreira, who is primarily an online crusher with five SCOOP titles and over $23 million in online tournament earnings, earned the trophy and six-figure score after a three-way deal with Germany's Stefan Schillhabel and Hungary's Laszlo Molnar. The three agreed to flatten the final three payouts and then play for a remaining €75,000 and the trophy.
€10,300 EPT High Roller Final Table Results
|PLACE||PLAYER||COUNTRY||PRIZE (IN EURO)|
|5||Daewoong Song||South Korea||€254,380|
*Denotes three-handed ICM deal
When asked how he felt after the victory, Ferreira dryly replied "absolutely normal" before coming clean that he was "excited."
“I played one hand at a time and it came my way," Ferreira told PokerNews. "I just played one hand at a time.”
Ferreira had $1.2 million in Hendon Mob-reported live earnings before the event but had never logged a first-place finish. The victory gives him his first live tournament win, despite having close calls in EPT events before, including runner-up finishes at EPT Deauville in 2014 and EPT Prague the following year.
“When it was happening, it happened," he said succinctly about the live victory.
Day 2 Action
Day 2 began with 16 runners on the hunt for the trophy after the event drew a larger-than-anticipated field of 530 runners to generate the prize pool of €5,141,000. Some of the players who made it deep but failed to make the final table include PokerStars ambassador Ramon Colillas (13th - €67,090), France's Antoine Labat (12th - €67,090) and Hungary's Eric Rabl, who was eliminated in 14th place when his nine-high river bluff was picked off by the trips of fourth-place finisher Ehsan Amiri.
Day 3 was all the Ehsan Amiri Show as the Aussie stacked opponent after opponent to stay atop the chip counts after ending Day 2 as the chip leader.
The show continued during the early stages of the final table, including when he eliminated eighth-place finisher Damian Salas, who was looking to add a live EPT win to his poker resume that includes EPT Online and SCOOP championships in addition to taking down the 2020 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event.
But the show's ratings slipped as Amiri doubled up multiple opponents and lost the chip lead. In a crucial hand, Amiri doubled up Ferreira in a two pair versus two pair cooler that went in the eventual champion's favor. Eventually, Amiri became one of the short stacks he had been bullying throughout the tournament.
After the fifth-place elimination of Daewoong Song, who took a brutal beat earlier when his king-jack lost to the runner-runner flush of Schillhabel's king-jack, it was Amiri who fell. The Australian got it in with king-queen and couldn't improve against the ace-jack of Schillhabel. And with that, the entertaining Ehsan Amiri Show was taken off the air.
The three remaining players reached the ICM deal after returning from a break and then played out the rest of the tournament. Molnar was the first to go when the Hungarian's king-jack couldn't improve against the ace-queen of Schillhabel.
In the final hand, Schillhabel, who with $9.5 million in live earnings heading into the event is no stranger to success on the felt, completed in the small blind before calling off with pocket sixes to be ahead of the queen-deuce of Ferreira. Schillhabel stayed ahead on the flop and turn, which gave his opponent a flush draw, but a queen on the river locked up the victory for Ferreira.
After the win, the Portuguese crusher gave a shoutout to the poker coaching and staking company that he works with, Polarize Poker, and celebrated with a rail that included a handful of friends and his brother.
That wraps up the PokerNews live reporting team's coverage of the €10,300 EPT High Roller at the tail end of an exciting return of EPT Barcelona at the beachside Casino Barcelona. Be sure to check out the team's coverage of other events that took place throughout the series.