Gary McGinty saw off a field of 544 players to take down the PokerStars Festival Dublin Main Event after a four-way deal. He came into the day as chip leader, and after a brief moment towards the latter stages, he rode that wave to the win and €91,808 in prize money.
McGinty, who made it into Day 2 with just 20 big blinds after playing the turbo Day 1C, previously had a highest cash of €26,625 from winning a High Roller in Dublin earlier this year, but he's now more than quadrupled that with his win here at the PokerStars Festival Dublin.
Speaking after the win, McGinty said that he had been working a lot on his game in the recent past.
"I won a satellite to EPT Barcelona and played that, and I've got experience playing 1ks and 2ks. I've played one EPT but this tops it all off.
"Shows that hard work comes to fruition. I wanna thank my family and a shout out to all my mates for railing me during the final table."
Here are the final table results in full:
|8||Alexander Bretherton||United Kingdom||€14,530|
*denotes four-way deal
A total of 16 players spread across two tables came back for the final day of the PokerStars Festival Dublin Main Event, and to say it was a slow start would be an understatement. Besides Sacha Lebreton's elimination less than 15 minutes into the day, there wouldn't be another for almost two hours of play.
Then, Andrew Grimason, Virgilio Dicicco and Florian Duta were all eliminated in the space of ten minutes.
And by the time we were down to a final table of nine, McGinty held nearly a third of the chips in play. It would take a full level of play until we lost Noel McMahon in 9th place, confirming the official final table of eight players.
A steady stream of eliminations followed; Alexander Bretherton and Michael Graydon both failed to see ace-king overcome the tens and queens respectively of Antonio Merone, with Merone looking like the sole contender to battle with McGinty at the top of the chip counts.
Merone then won a huge 1.6m-chip pot over McGinty, when the Italian flopped a set and got paid on all three streets to level the chip stacks at just over 5m each.
Declan Connolly became the next elimination, shoving from the small blind with king-ten only for Jim O'Callaghan to wake up with aces in the big blind, and ten minutes later, Ivan Tononi joined him on the rail to bring things to four-handed.
The four remaining players: McGinty, Merone, O'Callaghan and Sean Prendiville all had fairly even stacks and looked at the numbers, eventually agreeing to a four-way ICM deal giving each of them a minimum of €71,000.
Prendiville then proceeded to lose a huge pot to O'Callaghan where on a four-flush board, he called an overbet on the river only to be shown a full house. Prendiville was then eliminated by McGinty who held more than half the chips in play three-handed.
Merone appeared to run out of steam as the night progressed before it was left between McGinty and O'Callaghan. Heads-up play began with the latter asking his opponent: "Are you ready for a punt?"
It only took a few minutes before McGinty's overwhelming chip lead saw him through to the win, the trophy and over €90,000 in prize money.