EPT Monte Carlo: Final table player profiles
The final table for the EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo has been decided.
At noon on Friday, the following eight players will compete for the first prize of €1,700,000.
Winners to date are on the prizewinners page.
1: Herve Costa, 47, St Paul de Vence, France - 1,590,000
Costa is a local to Monte Carlo and comes from the Provencal village of St Paul de Vence near Nice. He is a recreational poker player and runs a bureau de change as his day job. Costa finished second at the JoaRoyale Poker Tour Final in Antibes in June 2009, winnning €20,000. Two months later he won €13,500 for 44th place at the Grand Final of the Partouche Poker Tour II in Antibes.
2: Roger Hairabedian, 55, Cannes, France - 1,130,000
Hairabedian is a French professional who has been playing the circuit in France and Morocco for many years. His best result to date was winning the €10,000 Grand Prix De Paris tournament in 2008 for €419,520. The former martial arts practitioner only plays live and was ranked the #1 tournament player in France in 2009 by LivePoker magazine. The award was presented at the France Poker Awards during EPT Deauville in January.
3: Aleh Plauski, 26, Minsk, Belarus - PokerStars qualifier - 1,695,000
Plauski has had few live results in addition to a 13th place finish at the WPT Cyprus event won by the Team PokerStars Pro Thomas Bichon. His best online result was in the Sunday $100 re-buy and says he prefers no limit hold 'em re-buy tournaments.
4: Dominykas Karmazinas, 22, Vilnius, Lithuania - PokerStars player - 2,285,000
Dominykas Karmazinas is a student from Vilnius and set himself up for a deep run here when his pocket kings beat the nines of the Team PokerStars Pro Alex Gomes for a pot of 1.2 million chips on day three. He has been playing on the EPT for two seasons and although he hasn't had any main event cashes before, he came sixth in the EPT Berlin High Roller event for €24,000 and also went deep (8th and 9th places) in two EPT London side events. His favourite game is six max no-limit hold 'em.
5: Josef Klinger, 42, Vienna, Austria - PokerStars player - 1,170,000
Klinger rose to fame in Austria as a chess player in the 1980s, but quit chess in the 1990s in favour of poker. When asked what his best results were, he said: "I have no success." But this is far from the case, as he has taken down several large tournaments in Vienna and his biggest live cash to date was for €85,000.
6: Mesbah Guerfi, 34, Paris - 3,670,000
Guerfi is an unfamiliar name on the EPT circuit but no stranger to tournament poker. The 34-year-old Parisian has numerous live cashes, his biggest to date being seventh place in the 2009 Grand Prix de Paris for €52,440. His favourite game is Omaha, but he's proving here in Monte Carlo that he's got some skills in no limit hold'em too.
7: Nicolas Chouity, 23, Beirut, Lebanon - PokerStars qualifier - 10,280,000
Chouity has been playing on the EPT for the past two season and made it into the top 50 at last season's EPT Grand Final for a €31,000 payday. He also came 124th for €8,000 at EPT Berlin this season. He's won numerous online tournaments including a deep run in last year's WCOOP Main Event.
8: Andrew Chen, 22, Ontario, Canada - PokerStars qualifier - 3,670,000
Chen is a well-known Canadian online pro who seems almost certain to win a major live title soon. He has come close many times. After making the final of the PokerStars LAPT Event in San Jose, Costa Rica in 2008, he then final tabled EPT Prague the next month and came third for €257,000. Last summer he was runner-up in a $1,500 WSOP side event for $412,632. This EPT season he has cashed at the EPT London main event and a side event as well as a deep run at the PokerStars.net NAPT Venetian tournament in February.