The 2011 PokerStars.com European Poker Tour London Poker Festival Main Event came to an end on Thursday after a great final table of play. It was young superstar Benny Spindler, who emerged victorious against Steve O'Dwyer in heads-up play to take the title.
Spindler started the day off on the final table third in chips. At the end of Day 1b of the tournament, Spindler had the largest stack in the room by day's end. He pretty much maintained that big stack coming into Day 2 with only Lukasz Golczyk from Day 1a having more chips than him. That remained the case over the remaining days of the tournament with Spindler being one of, if not, the largest stack in the room. The final table was no different when he picked off a huge bluff from Mattias Bergstrom and once again became table captain.
Opening with a raise of 120,000 from the cutoff seat, with the blinds at 30,000-60,000 with a 5,000 ante, Spindler found himself just one caller in Bergstrom acting out of the big blind. He made the call and the flop came down . Bergstrom checked the flop only to see Spindler fired a continuation bet worth 140,000. Bergstrom decided to check-raise to 460,000 and got a call from Spindler.
The turn card was the and Bergstrom continued to fire putting in a hefty 700,000, but that didn't scare off Spindler. He called and the came out out on the river, completing a possible flush draw. Bergstrom fired his final bullet of 700,000 on the river hoping to push Spindler out of the hand but unfortunately for him Spindler made the call.
Bergstrom could only muster five high when he turned his hand over. He held the for a big bluff that was picked off. Spindler held the for two pair and scooped in the massive pot. Shortly after that, Spindler added a boatload of chips to his stack when he won a massive flip with start-of-the-day chip leader Martins Adeniya to sit on an even larger stack.
From under the gun, Bergstrom opened with a raise to 150,000. Action then folded to Spindler on the button and he flat-called. In the big blind, Adeniya squeezed in a three-bet to 475,000 and Bergstrom got out of the way. Spindler took a minute and then shoved all in, having Adeniya covered. Adeniya made the call to create a huge pot for a ton of chips.
Over seven million chips were up for grabs on this one and it was Adeniya's versus Spindler's . After the board ran out , Adeniya was left with just the pair of jacks on board. Spindler's tens held and he raked in the massive pot to bust Adeniya in seventh place.
O'Dwyer doubled through Andre Klebanov and then busted Bergstrom in fifth place after his tens held versus the of the Swede. That helped O'Dwyer lessen the gap between him and Spindler, but then Spindler sent Team PokerStars Pro Juan Manuel Pastor out the door in fourth place to add even more chips to his towers.
O'Dwyer was able to bust Klebanov in third, but when heads-up play began he was still down nearly two-to-one. Spindler held 13.49 million in chips to O'Dwyer's 7.145 million.
After a couple of hands, all of the money finally went in. O'Dwyer five-bet jammed with and Spindler met him with a call holding the . Spindler flopped an ace and fended off O'Dwyer from there, who could only make a pair of jacks on the hand. He was eliminated in second place to crown Spindler champion.
This is the largest win of Spindler's career after having a few close calls on EPT events. In 2009, he final tabled the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure and finished in third place before placing 12th in the EPT London Main Event later that year in October. Earlier this year, he placed second in Season 7's EPT Grand Final €25,000 High Roller.
When asked if he felt like he had a giant monkey lifted off his back, Spindler simply shook his head and responded, "No."
He may not be a man of many words, but he does have a lot of money in his pocket from this win.
Final Table Payouts
|4||Juan Manuel Pastor||£200,000|
Congratulations to all of the winners and especially to PokerStars player Benny Spindler for taking down EPT London!
The next stop on Season 8 of the PokerStars.com EPT will be Loutraki, Greece in November. The Main Event takes place November 15-20, 2011 and PokerNews will be on hand to provide live coverage. For more information about the event, check out the tournament's page.