It was a weekend of high-roller action that caught the eye at EPT Cyprus, with Alexander Tkatschew and Paulius Plausinaitis each bagging one-day $25k titles. Those names may not mean a lot to the general poker public, but they both have tales to tell.
When the buy-in goes higher than $10k, it’s usually the Chidwicks, Koons, and Brewers of the high-roller community who make the headlines, with occasional unknowns thrown into the mix.
When the show comes to Europe, however, the names tend to get longer, more unpronounceable, and in many ways more interesting.
Take Alexander Tkatschew. For a poker writer covering tournaments, the first port of call is always the Hendon Mob database. But the man who toppled Teun Mulder heads-up for the not-inconsiderable $432k top prize late on Friday night doesn’t have an entry.
A quick Google later, and we realise we have heard the name Tkatschew before – a €558,505 ($632,925) third-place finish at the 2021 WSOP Europe Main Event behind winner Josef Gulas Jr.
Playing under the German flag then, and the Austrian flag this weekend in Cyprus, Alexander is an “Unknown player” – one of those who have decided to remain invisible on The Hendon Mob.
Here are the payouts for Tkatschew’s big win, already anonymised on the Hendon Mob.
$25k No-Limit Hold’em (event 10) results
|1||Alexander Tkatschew (Austria)||$432,090|
|2||Teun Mulder (Netherlands)||$283,300|
|3||Artur Martirosian (Russia)||$205,400|
|4||Sam Grafton (England)||$155,800|
|5||Kanan Taherkhani (Turkey)||$120,400|
|6||Biao Ding (China)||$92,100|
|7||Ognyan Dimov (Bulgaria)||$70,800|
|8||Dimitar Danchev (Bulgaria)||$56,700|
Plausinaitis wins one, leads $50k Super High Roller
The second bout of weekend highroller action saw Lithuania’s Paulius Plausinaitis top a field of 29 players, and he’s enjoyed a meteoric rise in his poker career.
Plausinaitis was a regular for several years in Edinburgh, playing small-stakes Genting tournaments. Fast forward to the pandemic, and the Lithuanian had a seemingly life-changing win, scooping the 2020 GGPoker WSOP Winter Online Circuit $1,700 Main Event for $1,236,361.
By then, however, he was already described variously as a “Lithuanian grinder” and a “Macau-based high-stakes cash game player” in the poker press.
Curious and curiouser, and perhaps a bit more interesting than your monthly Petrangelo/Kenney hand history. Plausinaitis also sits atop the $50k Super High Roller chip counts at the end of Day 1. Can he go back-to-back?
$25k No-Limit Hold’em (event 13) results
|1||Paulius Plausinaitis (Lithuania)||$264,690|
|2||Artur Martirosian (Russia)||$170,600|
|3||Leon Sturm (Germany)||$113,100|
|4||Alex Kulev (Bulgaria)||$81,800|
|5||Mikalai Vaskaboinikau (Belarus)||$66,100|
Feature image courtesy of PokerStars