The European Poker Tour joined the other big-name IRL events in hosting an online series at last.
They managed to squeeze a few live events in around 2020’s game of lockdown whack-a-mole. But after the scale and/or success of the WSOP and WPT branded events, partypoker decided to get in on the action. They set up an online EPT, with dollar signs in their eyes.
It remains to be seen how well their plan will work. The EPT is the third biggest player in the live series game. But the step up to second on that podium is a big’un.
The inaugural EPT Online kicked off Sunday, November 8th, 2020 with three events. The $10,300 6-max PLO High-Roller, the $5,200 8-max High-Roller, and the $1.5 million guaranteed Arena Championship (the online equivalent to the [Insert-city-name] Championship events).
The PLO event and Arena Championship spilled over into Day 2. So it was the $5,200 8-Max event that had the honor of naming the very first EPT Online tournament champion. His name is David “MonkeyBausss” Laka, from Georgia (the country, not the U.S. state).
Laka got $143,566.75 as well as the kudos. And it took him a just-brisk 6 hours or so of play to get there.
There were only 29 players bought in at the cry of “shuffle up and deal.” But by the time late-reg closed, Laka was one of 87 players to enter the competition.
With 44 re-entries, that made for 131 buy-ins and a final prize pool of $655,000.
15 players were paid. Which made for a substantial wait for the bubble. Eventually, Guntis “poker@luffyD” Aleskins got it in with A-3 against 8-3 and the flop come 8-8-x. He went out in 16th place for zero dollars. He guaranteed his opponent a min-cash at minimum.
A few more ill-fated all-ins brought the final table closer. With two places to go, Laka, Christoph “26071985” Vogelsang, Pascal “Päffchen” Hartmann, and Parker “tonkaaaa” Talbot went all in.
Laka won the hand, sending three people to the rail at once. As the biggest stack among the losers, Vogelsang won a nominal place at the final table, but never took his seat.
The situation made for a 7-handed final table.
Final table play
Laka was able to keep the pressure up at the final table, busting a few of his foes and harrying the rest. By the time he was down to heads up with Pascal “Pass_72” Lefrancois, Laka had a 4-1 chip lead.
Five hands in and only 8 big blinds deep, Lefrancois moved all-in with the J-8. Laka instacalled with K-T.
The software burned a card then dealt out K-K-Q. The game was over on the flop.
The meaningless turn came out an 8, the river a deuce, and Laka won his crown. Lefrancois made $111,234.19 for his second-place finish.
Final Table Results
1st – David “MonkeyBausss” Laka – $143,566.75
2nd – Pascal “Pass_72” Lefrancois – $111,234.19
3rd – Artem “veeea” Vezhenkov – $86,183.26
4th – Vyacheslav “VbV1990” Buldygin – $66,774.04
5th – Ivan “zufo16” Zufic – $51,735.96
6th – Jon “apestyles” Van Fleet – $40,084.55
7th – Chris “ImDaNuts” Oliver – $31,057.15
8th – Christoph “26071985” Vogelsang – $24,062.80
Featured image source: Flickr