EPT10 Barcelona: Paul Vas Nunes looking to continue Estrellas success

Yesterday's Estrellas Poker Tour Main Event final table was a big money affair, as befitted a PokerStars record-breaking field of 1,798 players. It was, as we've been all too keen to trumpet, the largest ever 1k event to ever take place outside of Las Vegas.

British grinder Paul Vas Nunes started the final day of play as a dominant chip leader and rode that stack well to book the largest chunk of a four-way deal, guaranteeing himself €204,589. Although Vas Nunes couldn't quite close it out - that honour was taken by German Soenke Jahn - it does give push his career live earnings up to $922,507. It doesn't take much daydreaming to imagine that he'll join the million club before too long, perhaps even here in Barcelona. Perhaps even in the EPT Main Event. He's playing and looking to take build his starting 30,000 stack up yet again.

The quiet Brit's name kept popping up last season, but not in the Main Event. Seven side events cashes, four of which were final tables, helped keep the Vas Nunes war chest topped up, but a big result was not forthcoming on tour. Not so in Las Vegas where at the 2012 WSOP Vas Nunes finished third for $290,407 in Event #41: $3,000 No Limit Hold'em.


Paul Vas Nunes: wrapping up warm

I caught up with Vas Nunes today in the minutes leading up to shuffle-up-and-deal. He looked relaxed. No, not relaxed, a little ill.

"Obviously it (the win) feels pretty good, but I've got a bad cold at the moment as you can hear," said Vas Nunes.

"Four-handed. I'd just sucked out and knocked out the short stack out in fifth so had the most amount of chips... I felt I was the better player left but reduced variance and the deal was fairly good, I think," he said

And that's not to say the other players were weak: Marcelo Fonseca holds one LAPT title and has finished third in another.

Red letter day
So has Vas Nunes been inundated with backslaps and congratlations from back home?

"There's been a bit but I'm trying to keep it pretty quiet from friends who don't understand poker or poker money. It's been a long time since I've won significant money."

It's an issue that many grinders have to deal with. The headlines don't always paint the larger picture. A cash for €10,000 doesn't immediately reflect the buy-ins paid to get that cash, nor the expenses accrued or the hours studying/grinding/getting sucked out on.

Perhaps a big money cash here at an EPT festival may open the floodgates for further success.

"I hope it works like that," said Vas Nunes. "I hope I'm due."

Estrellas Poker Tour Main Event
Date: August 28 - September 1
Buy-in: €1,100
Game: NLHE
Players: 1,798
Prize pool: €1,744,060

1. Soenke Jahn, €169,136
2. Paul Nunes, €204,589
3. Alin Sameeian, €158,475
4. Marcelo Fonseca, €121,000
5. Marc Pujol Cases, €67,400
6. Pablo Cusí, €53,800
7. Lukasz Roczniak, €41,100
8. Alfonso Amendola, €29,000

Click here for the full Estrellas Main Event payouts.

Click through to live coverage of the EPT Barcelona Super High Roller and the EPT Barcelona Main Event. Check out all the festival results here. Follow the @PokerStarsBlog Twitter account to keep up-to-date with all the EPT action and check out the EPTLive webcast.

is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.

Rick Dacey
@PokerStars in Main Event