Dinesh Alt is the latest champion on the Eureka Poker Tour, becoming the first man from Switzerland to take a title on the tour that snakes through mainland Europe, and adding a major live victory to the TCOOP Main Event that he won under his online moniker “NastyMinder”.
“Everything happened that you need to win a tournament,” Alt said after his victory. That included having a girlfriend on a work trip to Hamburg this week, which gave Alt reason to come to northern Germany in the first place.
Alt took his seat on Day 1B this week, becoming the first of a flurry of familiar faces to arrive on the second starting day. For a while, he was sat on a table with Charlie Carrel, George Danzer and David Yan, all of whom are regulars at the highest-stakes tables in the world, but none of whom was still involved when the tournament reached its business end today.
The 25-year-old from Bern, Switzerland, was the shortest stack in the room when 22 players came back yesterday, but managed to duck and weave his way to today’s final, then land his punches at precisely the right moments.
“When I was short, I waited for good spots,” he said. “The good spots came and I won every flip since then.”
He was especially ruthless during a brief heads-up battle against Ercan Atmaca, a Dutch player living in Germany, when Alt picked off all Atmaca’s bluffs and was seemingly always ahead when he committed big portions of his stack.
Atmaca ended up moving all in with J♥5♠ on the final hand. Alt made a shrewd call with A♣2♦ and it held up. Alt takes €69,120 for the win, having refused to talk about a deal. Atmaca takes €43,790 for second.
The final table had an unusual dynamic at its start, with only 12 big blinds separating the biggest stack from the shortest and no one with the luxury to play anything but a potentially tournament-defining pot.
Walid Abdi-Ali was the first to surge up the leader board, profiting in the main from Erik Scheidt. But then Alt, who had been the short stack for long periods, took it out on Abdi-Ali and put his own charge into motion.
Ismet Oral sat most of this out, with the shortest stack for the longest period, and it was proven to be a wise strategy. He will have known that the dam would have to burst soon and was careful that it didn’t sweep him away first.
The unfortunate man to first hit the rail turned out to be Marcel Schauenburg, whose other claim to fame this week was that he had played every single day. Three players in the field used their full allocation of potential buy-ins, firing on Days 1A, 1B and 1C. Schauenburg was the only one to make it to Day 4, but couldn’t hoist the trophy.
He lost a massive flip with A♣Q♣ against Scheidt’s pocket twos, and then Alt picked up the last shrapnel. Schauenburg won €15,590 for sixth.
Such was the delicate nature of all this that despite profiting from Schauenburg’s misery, Scheidt was the next man out. He lost a flip with pocket fives when Oral’s J♠10♥ made a straight. That sent Scheidt looking for €20,260 from the second Eureka Poker Tour final table of his career.
But lo and behold, Oral couldn’t make those chips last very long. He tried to push Alt off an ace pre-flop with a big small-blind shove, but Alt made a shrewd call and the A♣6♥ stayed strong against Oral’s K♣Q♦.
Oral had laddered up a couple of spots and took €25,600 for fourth.
After playing for more than two-and-a-half hours without an elimination, we quickly saw three in 20 minutes. And then another one immediately after the first break of the day.
Abdi-Ali had slumped to short stack when they went three handed and got it in with K♦4♣. Atmaca made the right call with his A♣J♠ and it stayed good.
That left the stacks evenly balanced when heads-up play began, but Alt’s superior guile quickly paid dividends. He won a chunk of chips when both players flopped a pair and turned two pair. And Alt could then afford to double up Atmaca when K♠J♠ beat J♦10♥.
But with Atmaca appearing to tire in the face of Alt’s relentless precision, they went at it for the last time at around 7:10pm local time. Alt, as ever, was good.
Take a look through the live updates page for details of how it all went down.
Next up in the PokerStars universe is UKIPT Birmingham, which starts on Wednesday. Jake Cody, Liv Boeree and a
young man named Chris Moneymaker are booked to play in the last ever event under the UKIPT branding. Head to Birmingham to join them.
Goodnight from Hamburg!
Eureka6 Hamburg Main Event
Dates: September 28-October 3
Entries: 367 (327 uniques, plus 40 re-entries)
Prize pool: €355,990
|5||Erik Scheidt||Germany||PokerStars qualifier||€20,260|