The never-say-die attitude of Dutch player Pieter de Korver helped him pull off one of the greatest turnarounds in EPT tournament history over the weekend as he came back with a vengeance from the brink of elimination to win the trophy and the main prize of Euro 2.3 million in the PokerStars EPT grand finale in Monte Carlo.
935 players – a hundred more than last year – entered for the 4 day event, including world champions Joe Hachem and Peter Eastgate, EPT champions Vicky Coren, Will Frye, Gavin Griffin and many international superstars such as Gus Hansen, Phil Laak, Dave Ulliott and Barney Boatman.
The final table was comprised of de Korver and Matthew Woodward of the USA, Russian ace Mikhail Tulchinskiy, French player Eric Qu, Germany's Alem Shah and Daniel Zink, Peter Traply from Hungary and in the chip lead and favourite to win Dag Martin Mikkelsen of Norway.
Mikkelsen started big, sending two players to the rail before seeming to run out of good cards and steam, leading to a slow decline which eventually saw him head for the exit in fourth place after tangling with a resurgent de Korver in a striking comeback. It was a disappointment for Mikkelsen, who at one time owned just over half the chips on the table and looked like a dead cert to win.
When American Matthew Woodward sent Mikhail Tulchinskiy home in third place the heads up between de Korver and Woodward was set, but the Dutchman dominated the game, egged on by a bunch of vocal supporters from his homeland. After an hour-and-a-quarter of his brand of aggressive, talented play de Korver emerged the winner, leaving his opponent with a second placing prize of Euro 1.3 million.
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