Antonio Puntas Stages Impressive Comeback to Capture First Live Title

Antonio Puntas Stages Impressive Comeback to Capture First Live Title

The final hand has been dealt in the EAPT Madrid 560 Main Event here at Casino Gran Via. It took just under six hours for a winner to emerge from the final table of nine players who made it to the final day.

Spain's Antonio Puntas may have started the day with the second-shortest stack in the room, but after the dust had settled, he had captured every chip in play as well as his first live title.

Winner's Reaction

"I still don't believe it. It's a lot of emotions and it's difficult to process the situation. But I'm happy now," Puntas said shortly after being crowned the winner. "I was at the final table in eighth position with 20 big blinds. It doesn't leave a lot of room to play perfect poker, so it was difficult in the beginning. After I doubled up, my sense at the table was very good, and I think I played well".

Puntas explained that while he's not a professional, he enjoys the competitive spirit of the game. "I play for fun. I have a nice job that I'm happy with. I play poker because I love poker and I love the competition. I've played for many years, but I'm not a professional".

During four-handed play, Puntas made a pivotal call against Ionut Dragomir in what he described as the biggest hand in the tournament for him.

"The situation was sick because it was small blind versus big blind, and the ranges are so wide. His third barrel, I don't understand. It's very polar and I have king-ten, I block the nuts. The situation is sick because when I call, I either double up or I'm out. But I think (Dragomir) is capable of having a good bluff there, so I thought, okay... call and go for the glory!"

In addition to the top prize Puntas also won a 5,000 package to Cyprus to attend the Mediterranean Poker Party in May and play in the 2,000 EAPT Grand Finale.

"This will be my first time (visiting Cyprus). I'm happy because I don't normally play that buy in. I'm happy to travel for poker, it will be my first time. Before I have only played in Spain".

Final Table Results

PlacePlayerCountryPrize (EUR)
1Antonio PuntasSpain28,732*
Fernando CeldranSpain22,362*
3Marius MoldoveanuRomania20,446*
4Ionut DragomirRomania16,735*
5Manuel LedesmaSpain9,400
6Javier RomeroSpain6,700
7Chadi AkremiTunisia5,325
8Constantin ScrobSpain4,300
9Kai FuongGermany3,500

*Denotes a four-way deal

Action of the Day

The Main Event attracted 305 entrants and featured a 180,000 guaranteed prize pool. Of those 305 entrants, only nine players made it to the final day. Kai Fuong would become the first final table casualty after his top pair went down in flames against Dragomir who had called with the nut-flush draw which came in on the river. Fuong would be followed out the door by Constantin Scrob and Chadi Akremi in eighth and seventh place. Akremi busted shortly after doubling up Puntas in a pivotal hand for the eventual winner.

Javier Romero found himself short-stacked early in the day but did a good job laddering up a few spots. He would ultimately bow out to Puntas in sixth place, and by that point, Puntas had a firm chip lead over the rest of the field.

Today's event marked the second final table Manuel Ledesma has made in Spain over the past month. Just over three weeks ago, he won the 888poker LIVE Madrid Main Event. Today he came four spots shy of another title here in Spain after falling in fifth place to Puntas in a brutal cooler. After Ledesma's elimination, the remaining four players were all guaranteed a 5,000 package to the Mediterranean Poker Party.

Despite making a deal four-handed to flatten the payouts, it would take over two hours for the next player to be eliminated and it was clear that all four players were playing hard for the trophy. All four players would take turns as chip leader during this period until Dragomir finally bowed out in fourth place after attempting a massive bluff against Puntas. The very next hand, Marius Moldoveanuwould be eliminated in third place after running into start of day chip leader Fernando Celdran's Big Slick to mark the beginning of heads-up play.

Celdran and Puntas started heads-up play close to even in chips, but by that point, the blinds had gotten massive, and with just under 50 big blinds in total between the two players, it was all but guaranteed that the heads-up duel would be a quick affair. Puntas would take the lead early before finishing Celdran off with a dominating queen to win the final hand of the tournament, the Main Event title and the top prize of 28,732.

That concludes our coverage for this event, but be sure to stay tuned to our live coverage of the EPT Paris that is still currently underway.


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