Sergey Ilyin wins RPS Riga and €65,000
If ever there was someone destined to win a poker tournament, it was Sergey Ilyin. So dominant was he of this final table that some wag in the audience shouted to the other players: "It is better to give up!" Of course they didn't, but the result was same. Ilyin took the title at the Russian Poker Series Riga event, the second event of the season, and the €65,324 that came with it.
He had taken a large chip lead in the middle of the third day, and carried it through to the final where he wasted little time in dispatching some of the shorter-stacked players. After just a couple of hours, the final table had been halved and the remainder seemingly settled for an Ilyin win and set about beating each other up to try and clinch second.
When they eventually got to the heads-up stage at the Royal Casino and Spa and Hotel Resort, with Ilyin playing Sergei Pilyugin, the winner had a huge chip lead of more than 3.5 million chips. The final hand saw Pilyugin hit top pair, top kicker with A♣Q♦ on a Q♣J♠6♣2♣ board - but that man Ilyin had two pairs, holding 2♠6♠. Pilyugin got €43,400 for his runner-up spot.
A note about Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov, who finished fourth in Riga for €17,400, a second consecutive RPS final table that likely puts him at the top of the Russian Poker Series Leader Board.
In all, 121 players forked out €2,000 to play the Riga main event, a decent turnout considering it was slap bang in the middle of PokerStars SCOOP, and some players had already headed to Las Vegas for the early WSOP prelim events.
The next stop will be the Russian Poker Series will be in Odessa, with events running from August 14 through 21. Visit the Russian Poker Series website for more details about how you can take part.