EPT11 Barcelona: Media friendly Jan Heitmann

We are unashamed of this, but here's another post this week about Jan Heitmann, even though his Main Event in Barcelona is now over.

Every now and again we all get favourites, and it's safe to say the German Team PokerStars Pro ticks a few boxes with PokerStars Blog. If you want to know why, how about this little anecdote -- more a vignette than anything else -- that gives a pretty good idea of what the man is like.

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In happier times, Jan Heitmann

We have had Will Shillibier working with us today at EPT Barcelona, a keen, young poker fan getting some "work" "experience" with us, generally raising the mean enthusiasm level among us miserable old sods. With Heitmann making hay as the tournament clock ticked towards the dinner break, we arranged for Shillibier, who is also a student of German, to interview Heitmann for his student site, Student Journals.

Then disaster struck, concealed as good fortune. Heitmann found aces when Mark Wagstaff had queens. The two of them got their stacks all in pre-flop -- they were all but identically sized -- and it looked as though Heitmann was going close to the chip lead.

But a queen on the river left him with only one big blind. He was clearly crestfallen, as anybody would be in that situation. (And as, to be fair, Wagstaff would also have been. Monster versus monster at this stage is tough, whatever the outcome.) Heitmann went away to dinner with less than one big blind and was out immediately on his return.

In almost all cases -- I'd say, 99.9 per cent -- the disappointed poker player could be excused for slouching away in this situation. Raz Razin, who looks after Team PokerStars Pros on the EPT, smoothed over with us that Heitmann might have to bail on the interview. We all understood.

But no. Heitmann wouldn't have a bar of it. Despite the horrific end to his tournament, including the 75-minute stay of execution as he ate dinner, Heitmann actually went looking for Razin after his bust out, asking where he could find the junior reporter. He had arranged an interview and was intent on honouring the commitment. (We then actually had to locate the errant Shillibier, who had seamlessly settled into life as a PokerStars Blog reporter by decamping to the free buffet.)

So it was that Heitmann met Shillibier, for an interview you can read wherever Shillibier is going to publish it. Cheers, Jan. Looking forward to next time.

Here's the man himself talking to Sarah Grant, of PokerStars.tv, in somewhat happier circumstances:


Follow all the action from the tournament floor on the main EPT Barcelona page. There's hand-by-hand coverage in the panel at the top, including chip counts, and feature pieces below. Follow the action from the High Roller on the High Roller page. There's also EPT Live, which is streaming action from Day 4 of the Main Event.

Howard Swains
@howardswains in European Poker Tour