The €10,300 EPT Prague High Roller came to a conclusion on Tuesday after a dominating final table performance by Denmark’s Henrik Hecklen propelled him to take home the €503,700 first-place prize and title of EPT High Roller Champion.
Hecklen did the majority of the work at the final table himself, eliminating six of his final seven opponents. In the end, Hecklen secured his career-high live cash by besting one of Germany’s most formidable players in Ole Schemion in a lengthy heads-up match.
Before that occurred, there was a tough final table that needed to be dealt with. With the elimination of Anton Yakyba in ninth place, the final eight players got down to the business of finishing off the final table.
The first to fall was Australia’s Michael Addamo. After losing a big hand to Hecklen earlier, Addamo had been surviving on a short stack. The pair clashed again on Addamo’s final hand. Heckled opened with the and from the big blind, Addamo moved in holding . Heckling called and the Addamo needed to catch to survive. The board ran out 94h], leaving Addamo drawing dead on the turn. He finished in eighth place for €63,310, his third cash of EPT Prague.
Right behind Addamo, the Netherlands’ Jasper Meijer Van Putten was put to the test. Hecklen again made the open and Van Putten three-bet his short stack all-in from the big blind with . Hecklen, going for his second knockout in under 10 minutes, made the call with . The flop fell giving Hecklen a gutshot straight draw, but keeping Van Putten in the lead. The turn was gin for Hecklen, the and it left Van Putten drawing dead. The completed the board and Van Putten headed for the cage to collect his €86,170 for seventh place.
Next, it was Tomas Paiva’s turn to tangle with Hecklen. From under the gun, Paiva shipped just under 20bbs with . In the hijack, Hecklen reshoved, covering Paiva and holding . The board provided no drama for Hecklen, running out six-high. Paiva earned a career-high cash of €117,340 for his sixth-place finish.
After a break, the final five players were back at it and so was Hecklen, who had another final table confrontation. Canada’s Daviel Dvoress put in a raise with and was three-bet by Hecklen. The flop came . Hecklen bet, Dvoress call and they saw the turn of the . Hecklen led again, Dvoress called again. The river was the and Hecklen, covering Dvoress shoved. Dvoress tank called and Hecklen turned over the for top two pair, eliminating Dvoress in fifth place for €155,010.
While Hecklen was busy knocking out opponents, Alexandre Reard was busy doubling up. He actually did that a few times to climb out of critical condition and back into contention. After crippling defending Prague High Roller champion Danny Tang in a hand just minutes prior, Reard finished the job. Tang shoved his short stack from under the gun with and Reard made the call from the big blind with . The flop was offering Tang some backdoor opportunities and Reard a nut flush possibility. The turn was the giving Tang some life. However the river was a hapless and Tang who won this event last year, settled for fourth place and another €197,720 for his bankroll.
Reard was making headway into Hecklen’s lead but then he ran into German legend Ole Schemion who was biding his time, looking for openings. Schemion and Reard clashed in all-in confrontation that led to Schemion doubling through Reard. Then Reard faced the same situation as four other players before him, a clash with Hecklen.
Hecklen raised the button and Reard defending hold . The flop came p6s] and Reard check-called a bet from Hecklen. The turn was the , Reard check-called an even bigger bet from Hecklen. The river was the , Reard, holding a set, checked again, Hecklen thought and shoved, having Reard covered. Reard snap called with his set, however, it was Hecklen who was ahead since the turn, turning over the for a straight. Reard’s valiant final table performance came to an end in third place for €244,950 pushing the Frenchman’s total live cash north of $2 million in his career.
Hecklen, who has dominated the final table now faced his toughest challenge in that of Schemion. Holding a 5:1 chip lead when play began, Hecklen lost a few key hands early, allowing Schemion to double thru and, at one point, take the chip lead. However, Hecklen seemed destined to close out this tournament as he battled back to reclaim the chip lead.
In the final hand, Schemion called on the button with and Hecklen put in a raise with the . Schemion waited a breath and moved all in only to be snap called by Hecklen. The board ran out clean for Hecklen – – leaving the German phenom to settle for second place and €334,900. The result leaves Schemion just shy of $15 million in live total earnings.
For his part Hecklin’s High Roller victory is the current money peak of his career and is his first live victory since winning the Estrellas High Roller at EPT Barcelona back in 2014. Hecklen earns €503,700 ($572,688) for the victory.
PokerStars next stop will be at the 2019 PCA, which will include the $25K PSPC. The festival gets underway on January 6.
EPT Prague High Roller Final Table Payouts
|1||Henrik Hecklen||€ 503,700|
|2||Ole Schemion||€ 334,900|
|3||Alexandre Reard||€ 244,950|
|4||Danny Tang||€ 197,720|
|5||Daniel Dvoress||€ 155,010|
|6||Tomas Paiva||€ 117,340|
|7||Michael Addamo||€ 86,170|
|8||Anton Yakuba||€ 63,310|