Martin Finger wins the EPT London £50k Super High Roller and £821,000
EPT Prague Main Event winner Martin Finger tonight won the EPT London Super High Roller to pocket £821,000 and a second Shamballa Jewels bracelet. The German joins two elite clubs; the Super High Roller club and an even more niche group of players that have won two PokerStars flagship EPT tournaments, alongside Team PokerStars Pros Jason Mercier and ElkY, both of whom hold Main Event and High Roller titles.
This was the first ever EPT Super High Roller to take place in the UK but it was Germany that was dominant mimicking the recent success of Deutschland in the WCOOP Main Event. There were four Germans at both final tables and in both the three podium spots were filled with a German one-two-three: Finger taking the gold ahead of Tobias Reinkemeier (£593,900) and Christoph Vogelsang (£383,200).
National pride aside, today always looked like it may be favourable for Finger who had brought an enormous starting stack to the final table. Johannes Strassmann was his closest rival at the start of play but still had less than half his stack.
"It made me pretty confident," said Finger of his dominating lead, "but I just tried to play my best poker and keep going on like the first two days. I thought I had a pretty good chance to win and finally I did... It feels awesome. The field of a Super High Roller is so tough; tough to beat all of them in one tournament."
Finger was sporting the Shamballa Jewels bracelet that he won at EPT Prague on his left wrist throughout the day and is now the first player to bag two of them. A raggedy collection of festival ribbons and passes on his right wrist will be replaced with a new Super High Roller Shamballa bracelet worth €10,000. Sounds like a good swap.
How Finger took the title
Finger had made what seemed like an enormous call against Christoph Vogelsang in the penultimate level of Day 2 and had kicked on from there with liberal lashings of opens and three-bets, backed up with some solid studied reads. Sure, a little luck helped, such as finding queens and holding after successfully inducing Bill Perkins and finding jacks heads-up against Reinkemeier's eights, but you can't begrudge anyone that when they've played so well for three days against the best players in the world.
Antonius went fairly early in 8th for £109,455, which marked a nice return on his single £50,000 bullet which was fired just before Day 2 began. He looked likely to chop with A♠5♠ against Timothy Adams' A♦5♣ but a diamond four-flush sent him to the rail instead.
David Benefield just can't help himself at the moment. This is his fourth cash in four EPT events, after he scored a hat-trick at EPT Barcelona with cashes in the Main Event, High Roller and Super High Roller for a combined taking of €267,350 (not factoring in buy-ins). He can add £139,600 to that from this tournament after busting in 7th after a nice three-way spot turned sour. Vogelsang opened ace-queen, Benefield jammed with pocket jacks and Reinkemeier re-shoved with ace-king. Vogelsang passed, but would have undoubtedly have called if they'd been no interference, and an ace on the flop was an indication that it was simply Benefield's time to go. He'll just save his luck for the November Nine.
Timothy Adams, probably still thankful that he didn't bubble this tournament again following some bad luck in Barcelona, went in 6th for £175,200. Sure, it was a suck out again: sevens all-in against Perkins' pocket sixes. The coup de grace coming on the river with a two-outer set. Still, it's preferable to bubbling.
Double-knockout ICM firework
It didn't take long for the action to go three-handed after that thanks to a double elimination. Day 1 chip leader Johannes Strassmann shoved with a hopeful J♥9♣, Finger trapped by flat calling Q♣Q♦ in the small blind, and businessman Perkins, a super interesting guy who acquitted himself well, squeezed all-in with A♣J♦. Perkins flopped top pair but found himself crushed by a set of queens. Must be nice to see an ICM-exploding double bust out.
Vogelsang, somewhat incredibly picking up his first ever recorded live cash, toppled in a standard small blind shove leaving Finger to move into the heads-up with a solid lead. Reinkemeier, who has finished runner-up in a Super High Roller once before to Justin Bonomo for more than €1m, was thrilled to make it so deep, he told us, considering that he started the day the second shortest.
EPT London Super High Roller
Prize pool: £2,736,855
Entries: 57 (41 players, 16 re-entries)
1. Martin Finger, Germany, £821,000
2. Tobias Reinkemeier, Germany, £593,900
3. Christoph Vogelsang, Germany, £383,200
4. Bill Perkins, USA, £290,100
5. Johannes Strassmann, Germany, £224,400
6. Timothy Adams, Canada, £175,200
7. David Benefield, £139,600
8. Patrik Antonius, Finland, £109,455
"I guess we just go out and make some party!" said Finger, sporting a wide smile.
Watch out, London.
Rick Dacey is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.