EPT8 Deauville: Ondrej Vinklarek, EPT Player of the Year frontrunner
Ondrej Vinklarek, it's hardly a name that rolls off the tongue but you may need to get used to it. Vinklarek, who plays under the name 'Vinkyy' at PokerStars, is currently top of the EPT Player of the Year Leaderboard and is showing little intention of slowing his ascent.
The 28-year-old is sat on 130,000 in the main event and looks very comfortable at his table. There are no standout names that I could spot and in the ten minutes I watched him he played two pots; raise-folding one to a short stack and raise-taking the other - both with minimum raises. The Czech, who comes from just outside of Prague, turned pro two-and-a-half years ago, during which time he has racked up $311,098 in live winnings and significantly more than $1,500,000 in PokerStars tournaments online.
The last quarter of 2011 was a busy one for Vinklarek who couldn't stop final tabling in EPT side events on his way to the top.
12 Jan 2012: PCA, $2,000 no-limit hold'em turbo, 3rd - $42,350
10 Dec 2011: EPT Prague, €5,000 no-limit hold'em six-max turbo, 2nd - €46,500
9 Dec 2011: EPT Prague, €1,000 no-limit hold'em, 8th - €3,330
8 Dec 2011: EPT Prague, €1,000 no-limit hold'em turbo bounty, 1st - €15,960
22 Oct 2011: EPT San Remo, €2,000 no-limit hold'em bounty, 4th - €13,300
21 Oct 2011: EPT San Remo, €4,600 no-limit hold'em main event, 62nd - €12,000
31 Aug 2011: EPT Barcelona, € 1,000 no-limit hold'em, 1st - €49,760
Before turning pro the Czech had been studying a mixture of mathemathics and physics, a painfully good grounding for the numbers side of the game, which has helped him to some great results online.
"The highlight of my career is definitely my $500 rebuy win in the WCOOP. It is the biggest win," said Vinklarek, a shy novice in terms of interviews. Vinkyy scored $160,558 for that win back in September.
Although winning the TLB wasn't initially an ambition it has become a focus for his season: "Yes, it definitely has some value... It's good for me. I intend to play all of them (EPTs) until the end of the year. If I'm running good anyway."
Vinklarek may only hold a small lead over his opponents but should he score a deep run here in Deauville, one of the larger fields, then he'll make himself incredibly tough to catch. You can check TLB standings by clicking on this link here.
The EPT8 Player of the Year TLB
1. Ondrej Vinklarek, 2,370
2. Martin Finger, 2,125
3. Roberto Romanello, 2,080
4. Nick Yunis, 1,925
5. Jonathan Duhamel, 1,720
6. Philipp Gruissem, 1,610
7. Steve O'Dwyer, 1,560
8. Govert Metaal, 1,420
9. Roger Hairabedian, 1,400
10. Michael Telker, 1,365