Global Poker Awards Back to the Live Stage After Two Years!
On Friday night the Global Poker Awards was back for the first time since Covid lockdowns in a glorious celebration of all things poker, held at the Aria Resort & Casino in Las Vegas.
This year was especially sweet to see the greats of the game mingling in-person once again, a precursor to the joyous rebound live poker is set to see this year as we move towards a little more normalcy the world over once again with regard to public restrictions.
No surprise to see the young Ali Imsirovic winning an award after the year he's bad, but three was unexpected! "I feel like I won this one because Addamo isn't here, to be honest," the Bosnian-American pro player joked as he went on to scoop Players’ Choice for Toughest Opponent along with PokerGO Tour Player of the Year and the prestigious GPI Poker Player of the Year, making him clear and away the biggest winner of this year’s awards ceremony.
Other notable winners of the night included GPI Female Poker Player of the Year, won by Nadya Magnus, Best Final Table Performance, won by Adam Friedman for his performance in this year’s WSOP Event #36: the $10,000 Dealer’s Choice 6-max Championship.
Jamie Kerstetter won Twitter Personality of the Year, Kevin Mathers took down the Services to Poker award and Brad Owen got Best Vlogger, whilst the much-loved Doug Polk took down the fun Fans’ Choice: Best Hand for this epic fold he made against Phil Hellmuth in High Stakes Poker Season 8. Lest we forget, our boy Joe Stapleton along with partner James Hartigan took down Best Podcast for the hilariously-titled Poker in the Ears.
It was such a great show to watch this year, and if you missed it, you can catch the whole thing right here on Youtube.
We’ll also be talking it over as always on our PokerDeals Discord. Hop on and let us know what you thought!
by Lucky Luke
Images courtesy of GPI
Simoes has done it, closing out an immense run to top a field of 1,073 runners and taking down the prestigious €5,300 EPT Monte Carlo Main Event ! In doing so he also becomes the first Brazilian to ever ship an EPT Main , winning the trophy along with a sick €939,840 in prize money. Marcelo Simoes is a big player in Brazil, where his previous best score was $109k for 1st in a $900 BSOP Main Event back in 2017. With this result being almost 10x bigger, he must be walking on air after his trip to Monaco. The Brazilian player was the only representative of South America featured on the Final Table, busting out players from across Europe and the United States to secure the win, including Spanish PokerStars Pro Ramon Colillas . During six-handed play Simoes really shone, building a huge chip lead thanks to consistently aggressive play. Across a hectic half hour's play, German Erkan Soenmez , French Hugo Pingray , US player Jaime Cervantes and Dragos Trofimov from Moldova were all eliminated, leaving just Simoes and Danish player Morten Hvam to fight it out heads-up. The heads-up itself was also a short one, lasting under an hour. In the final hand Hvam opened to 500k at 125k/250k (250k bb ante) blinds and faced a 3bet from Simoes to 1.3 million which he called. The flop came down 9 ♦ 7 ♦ 6♠ and Simoes continuation bet a further 1 million . Hvam considered briefly before shoving all-in, a total of 3.4 million chips, with Simoes snap-calling him. Simoes tabled K ♥ K ♦ for the overpair, and all Hvam had to show was the K♣T ♦ for a gutshot with overs. When the board ran out 5♠, J ♦ the Dane was eliminated, and Simoes crowned EPT Monte Carlo Main Event Champion for 2022. It had been a long, hard battle for the Brazilian over five days of intense poker action, and a well-deserved win for this passionate poker player. We are sure that his family and friends back home will be celebrating his win for Brazil for a long time to come. Well played sir. by Lucky Luke Image courtesy of Pokerstars
He's had a wild ride to get here, and besting a field of 1,014 entrants Daniel Lakerveld has done it, he has gone on to take it down in first place after eliminating Simon Gyorgy heads-up. The end game was surprisingly fast and brutal in this one, with players busting out almost ceaselessly late on Sunday evening as they played down to 18 . Our PokerDeals Last Longer winner was finally crowned, as Robert Lim was eliminated in 17th place when his K ♦ T ♦ couldn't hold up against James Clarke's Q♠J♠ . This made Federico Petruzzelli the winner of a free entry to the very next Malta Poker Festival Grand Event (as well as a PokerDeals hoodie of course!). Petruzzelli himself was also sadly eliminated in 13th place when his A♠6♠ could not catch up with Chris da Silva's 9♣9 ♥ . Federico Petruzzelli - PokerDeals Last Longer Winner! One by one today across those first hours of play the field fell away until it teetered on the very brink of the final table - just one player left to go out for the final table of nine to be formed. It was James Clarke's fate to be that man, although you might argue he made that fate himself. In a limped pot good for 480k , Clarke checked back the 5♣2 ♦ with composure but then on the T ♥ T♠5 ♦ flop the Brit opted to rip almost 4x the pot with his remaining stack, giving Silva, who held T♣7 ♦ , a very easy chip-up with his hand. The 8 ♦ , 4 ♦ runout did absolutely nothing for him, and Clarke walked out as the Final Table bubble, 10th for €5,500 . James Clarke When Polish player Piotr Tuczynski got dealt QcJc in the Big Blind early on in the final table of nine he had two options, facing a 400k min-bet from Chris da Silva . He could flat or he could jam, with his 17bbs . Both fine options. He chose the latter, and he might have regretted it shortly thereafter as he ran straight into da Silva's A ♥ Q ♥ . The Q♠8♣6 ♦ 4 ♥ 6♣ runout could not help him, and he went home in ninth with €6,500 for his troubles. Piotr Tuczynski Nicolay Langfeldt from Norway had just got short. Like really short. With no time to waste, he put his last 425k , less than 2bbs at time time, into the pot with K ♦ J ♦ , met Georgios Ninis' A♠9♠ in the middle, and could not win the standoff, losing as he did on an A ♥ 8 ♦ T ♦ T ♥ 5 ♥ board and exiting in eighth with a €7,500 payday. Nicolay Langfeldt In a similar story UK player Stephen Kane got his last 4 bigs in facing a min-open from da Silva on the Button and sitting in the Big Blind. He was met with an ace under ace situation - his A♣6 ♦ against da Silva's much prettier A♠T♠ , and the T♣6♣7 ♦ J♠ Q♠ runout was nothing more than a tease. Kane busted in seventh with €9,000 to mop up his tears. Stephen Kane Polish Pawel Zawadowicz was powering through at the end of Day 2, as Chip Leader coming into today, but he had to put his last chips in the middle sometime, and this was the moment, as he looked down at A ♥ K ♥ . A shove, he decided, with just south of 12bbs in his 3.5 million chip stack . He was in the Cutoff , it might certainly look weaker than an open to some players. Lakerveld had too good a hand to think twice, with 8 ♥ 8♠ on the Button. The two players flipped it out, and Lakerveld landed on his feet, with a T ♦ 6♠2♠ flop making him a firm favourite. The turn and river brought nothing but a Jack and a five of ♠ s for the Pole, and the pain of elimination, and he walked out in sixth, taking home €11,000 with him. Pawel Zawadowicz Greek Georgios Ninis had been playing a solid game. He got it in on this final table in an excellent spot, A ♦ 5 ♦ on a 9 ♥ 2♣5♣ 5♠ board against a worse five, exactly what you want. Gyorgi Simon was the other involved, stuck in there with just T ♥ 5 ♥ . Then a miracle - the T♠ ! With very even stacks Ninis was struck out in fifth in a huge near 9 million chip pot. Ninis took away €14,000 in winnings from this one. Georgios Ninis Dutch player Jasper van Moorsel got it in in very fine shape with his J♣J♠ blind vs. blind against Simon Gyorgy's Q♣7 ♥ , but it was his turn to run bad as a Q ♥ in the window followed by a 5♣2 ♥ K♠ K♣ spelled the end for van Moorsel and had him out in fourth, cashing for €18,000 . Jasper van Moorsel When Simon Gyorgy put his 10 million stack in the middle from the Button and it folded to British player Chris da Silva's Big Blind , da Silva decided this was the spot to take a stand, and called it off with A ♥ 3♠ . Gyorgy showed down 4♣4♠ for the best hand preflop, and just to make the point, boated up on a Q♣8♣4 ♦ 8 ♦ 6 ♦ board runout. Da Silva, a live Pokerstars Pro, has to settle for third place this time, and €25,000 . Chris da Silva There had been some talk of a deal at three, and at two players remaining, but in the end no deal was struck, and Hungarian Simon Gyorgy would square up against Dutch player Daniel Lakerveld heads-up, playing for the trophy and a final pay-jump of €28,000 . The heads-up was, like the final table itself, to be relatively short-lived and dramatic, with the two players entering level 34 with roughly even stacks at 25-26 million apiece. With blinds at 300k/600k Lakerveld min-opened and Gyorgy called to see a T♠5 ♦ 3 ♥ flop, on which Lakerveld continuation bet 600k and Gyorgy called. The 8♣ turn was checked by both players, but on the 5♠ river something overtook both players. First of all Gyorgy checked, and Lakerveld overbet, 3.5 million. Then Gyorgy after the tiniest of hesitations jammed it in, to be immediately called. Gyorgy revealed K♠5 ♥ for trips, but Lakerveld had the best trips of all, holding A ♥ 5♣ . Simon Gyorgy - runner up Thus this incredible Grand Event was brought to its conclusion in fitting style with an epic cooler, Gyorgy departed €43,000 richer as runner up, and Daniel Lakerveld shipped the trophy, the €71,000 and the glory! Daniel Lakerveld - Malta Poker Festival Grand Event Champion 2022! We have thoroughly enjoyed our time here in the lovely land of Malta covering this series for you, and the vibe has been excellent throughout. Good weather, good people, and oh such good games! We'll be back to do it all again soon, and we hope you will too. In the meantime, if you'd like to touch base or hang out, do please connect with us over on the PokerDeals Discord channel. May the poker gods shine on you, and best of luck. by Lucky Luke
Sunday 1st May saw an epic day of poker action at the Malta Poker Festival Grand Event as 273 became just 18 after a mammoth day of play here at the Portomaso Casino. A strong cohort of 73 PokerDeals patched players competing in the PokerDeals Last Longer made it to Day 2 . These have surprisingly been cut down to just two players standing , vying for who will win the free ticket to the next Malta Poker Festival Grand Event: Robert Lim & Federico Pizzazz They are also of course, more importantly, competing for some serious payouts, at the top of the pile is the glory prize itself, 1st place , rewarding €71,000 and of course, the Malta Poker Festival trophy ! Pawel Zawadowicz is the man to catch right now, leading by over 2 million chips with his stack of 7,820,000 in chips. Let's check in on how our PokerDeals Last Longer players and others were doing in the late-night action. We dropped in on the final six tables as they were rapidly slashed back to just three, across the late hours of Day 2 , and it didn't take long for us to witness some serious brutality. In fact we counted at least 17 eliminations across less than 90 minutes of play, in the final field of 45 players. That's pretty rapid, even for a Texas Hold'em tournament. Some of these spots were simply unavoidable of course, just your classic coolers. For a case in point we could look at the elimination of Cosimo de Gennaro at the hands of Jasper Van Moorsel . A simple matter of TT running into AA preflop, Big Blind vs. Button . Nothing to be done about it, and when the board ran out 9♠8 ♥ 3 ♥ 7♠ K ♦ there was no shame in this Italian's walk from the arena. Cosimo de Gennaro Another all-in hand we bore witness to featured the Daniel Lakerveid being despatched by PokerDeals Last Longer competitor Federico Cirillo , when Lakerveid's BB hand K ♥ 6 ♥ failed to get there all-in against Cirillo's K♠J♣ from the Button . Federico Cirillo Another all-in shove from a short stack was Nicolaj D'Antoni's K ♦ 7 ♦ getting it in against the A♠4♠ of the seemingly indestructible Pawel Zawadowicz , the board running out a hopeless 9♣J ♥ Q ♥ 6 ♦ 9 ♥ to secure Zawadowicz the win with just Ace high. Pawel Zawadowicz But there was worse to come, at least for PokerDeals patched player Paul Morris , who had the spot players live (and die) for, A ♥ A♣ in the Big Blind facing action when short-stacked. Who knows, he might have flatted against one, but when Jordan Dumas opens Cutoff and James Clarke decides to come along from the Small Blind , and you're sitting on well under 15bbs , a jam seems very acceptable, and that's just what Morris did. Paul Morris After consideration Dumas decided to stick around with Q♣J♣ , Clarke got out the way and the flop thundered down around Morris' head, 8 ♥ J♠J ♦ . The turn and river had nothing more to offer Morris as they fell an irrelevant 5 and 7 of ♠s . It's rough when you've grinded for days to get there, but it's all part of this game we love, and this is why we are in it for the long run! One other hand of note came from canny players Jason Shellum and Mantas Petrauskas as they negotiated a 3 ♥ 4♣6♠ 3 ♦ Q ♦ board. Petrauskas had bet all the way, and he didn't let up on the river, putting Shellum to a major question with his river bet of 600k . Shellum went deep into the tank. He was down there a while, he may have had an oxygen mask on. Eventually someone at the table called time on Shellum , and it was during that final minute of decision-making that he found the call, with, wait for it… AJ offsuit . And he was good, Petrauskas quickly mucking. "A hero call!” someone nearby remarked to him. "A hero read!” was his quick reply. We literally couldn't be more excited for Day 3 , the final day of this Grand Event today kicking off at 2pm, and a fascinating end to this highly competitive Grand Event . We'll have more coverage of the day coming out this evening on our PokerDeals Live Reporting page. Also if you'd like to see even more videos, photos and social interaction covering the event, please do join us on our PokerDeals Facebook Page !
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