Oct 27, 2015
2015 WSOP Europe Recaps (Events 1-10)
By RTR Dennis
The 2015 WSOP Europe marked a move from Cannes, France to Berlin, Germany. And it also marked the first time for 'Oktoberfest' - a €550 buy-in tournament with four flights and one rebuy per flight - along with a European 'Monster Stack' tourney. Let's discuss who won the Oktoberfest and Monster Stack events in addition to other big tournaments at the WSOP Europe.
Event #1: Restaurant Owner Makarios Avramidis wins €2,200 Six-Handed NLHE
For over 30 years, Makarios Avramidis has treated poker as a hobby while running a restaurant in Darmstadt, Germany. However, he might be taking poker a little more seriously after winning this Six-Handed NLHE tourney along with €105,000. The Greek-born restaurant owner was very humble following his first WSOP victory by saying, "It takes a lot of luck to win in poker." Avramidis is right about this since he overcame a massive chip disadvantage to Germany's Frederic Schwarzer (€64,930) to win.
Event #2: Dietrich Fast survives 2,144-Player Field to win €550 Oktoberfest
Oktoberfest's low buy-in and rebuys helped it smash the WSOP Europe attendance record with 2,144 entrants. The old record was 771 players, set in the 2011 WSOP Europe's €1,090 NL Hold'em event. Germany's Dietrich Fast was the big Oktoberfest winner, collecting €157,749 and stopping Britain's John Gale (€97,804) just short of his third-career gold bracelet.
Event #3: UK's Richard Gryko victorious in €3,250 PLO
Richard Gryko has won 10 live poker tournaments, including the 2009 Grosvenor UKPT Luton Main Event (£88,850). But never before has he been more excited to win than with his victory in this €3,250 PLO event. "The sight of the river card...I've never given a fist pump for winning a tournament before," said Gryko. "That alone should tell you how much it means. The British poker pro collected €126,345, while Canada's Mike Leah (2nd, €78,150) just missed his second bracelet.
Event #4: Financial Professional wins €1,650 'Monster Stack' on Assignment
Ryan Hefter, a New York-based financial professional, made a WSOP Europe side trip while on assignment in Poland. And it turned out to be a great decision for the Credit Suisse employee as he won the €176,205 top payout. "I just took a shot," Hefter said. "I came down to Berlin for a few days, busted out of the Oktoberfest, tried this one and ended up taking it down."
Event #5: Alex Komaromi wins Uruguay's First Bracelet in €2,200 8-Game Mix
Uruguay may not be the first place you think of regarding good poker players, but Alex Komaromi took a step to change this by winning his country's first WSOP bracelet. Komaromi survived a final table that included Scott Clements (2nd, €40.6k), Jonathan Duhamel (4th, €21k) and Shaun Deeb (5th, €15.2k) to capture the €65,740 top payout.
Event #6: Pavlos Xanthopoulos takes down €3,250 NLHE and €182,510
Pavlos Xanthopoulos netted by far what is his biggest-career cash by winning this €3,250 NL Hold'em tournament along with €182,510. Following the victory, Xanthopoulos talked about what it meant to win the second-ever WSOP bracelet for Greece. "I am very excited that this is our second bracelet in Berlin," he said. "But the poker community is small in Greece. There are only one or two tournaments a year, so I don't expect a lot more results."
Event #7: Barny Boatman nets Second-Career Bracelet in €550 PLO
British poker legend Barny Boatman waited a long time for his first WSOP bracelet, finally winning one in a 2013 $1.5k NLHE event ($204,464). Fortunately, he didn't have to wait long for his second one after taking down this €550 PLO tournament along with €54,725. "You know, any mug can win one bracelet - turns out any mug can win two," he joked. Boatman also pushed his career winnings over $3 million with the victory.
Event #8: Georgios Sotiropoulos wins Third Greek Bracelet in €1,100 Turbo NLHE
Coming into the 2015 WSOP Europe, Greece had zero gold bracelets. But thanks to Georgios Sotiropoulos winning this €1,000 Turbo NHLE event, the Greeks now have three bracelets (Avramidis, Xanthopoulos). Sotiropoulos collected a €112,133 payout for his victory and accomplished a lifelong dream. "It feels great," said Sotiropoulos. "It feels amazing. Winning a bracelet has always been one of my dreams, probably my number one dream in poker."
Event #9: Kevin MacPhee wins 2015 WSOP Main Event and €883k
Kevin MacPhee topped a 312-player field to win the Main Event and an €883,000 ($975k) prize. The 34-year-old poker pro actually had over half the chips in play when the final table started. And the only time that he ever looked threatened was during heads-up play, when Spain's David Lopez (2nd, €475k) evened up the chip count. However, this was as close as it would get during MacPhee's dominating performance. This is his second gold bracelet of the year while his live tournament winnings now stand at $5.28 million. Other notable players who fared well include Mexico's JC Alvarado (€315k) and Andrew Lichtenberger (€225k).
Event #10: Jonathan Duhamel grabs Third Bracelet in €25,600 High Roller
Jonathan Duhamel continues building on his poker success after taking down the WSOP Europe High Roller and collecting €554,395. This is also the Canadian's third-career gold bracelet, as he won the 2015 One Drop High Roller ($3.99 million) earlier this year. "It feels even better than the second one." Duhamel said. "I don’t know why. Maybe because it's two in the same year or maybe because this tournament was so tough." With the victory, Duhamel now has over $17.57 million in career tournament winnings.