Stephen Chidwick Draws First Blood Among the High Rollers at EPT Paris

Stephen Chidwick Draws First Blood Among the High Rollers at EPT Paris

The first of six 25,000 buy-in NL Hold'em tournaments on the 2024 PokerStars European Poker Tour (EPT) Paris schedule attracted 38 of the worlds most renowned poker players to Le Palais des Congrs in the French capital.

Together, they put 51 entries on the clock by the time late registration closed, creating a prize pool of 1,199,520. They waged a war that lasted for over 14 hours, but in the end, it was Stephen Chidwick who was the last one standing.

He defeated Adrian Mateos during a heads up battle which lasted only one hand, capturing the top prize of 389,820 and another EPT trophy to add to his ever-growing collection. Mateos, meanwhile, had to make do with the consolation prize of 257,900, while players like Jesse Lonis and Mike Watson were also among the seven players who secured a cash in the tough field.

EPT Paris 25,000 NL Hold'em Results

1Stephen ChidwickUnited Kingdom389,820
2Adrian MateosSpain257,900
3Jean-Noel ThorelFrance173,900
4Mike WatsonCanada131,900
5Jesse LonisUnited States102,000
6Sam GreenwoodCanada81,000
7Daniel DvoressCanada63,000

Early Play

The tournament knew a strong start, with 25 players already in their seats when the shuffle up and deal sounded. Each player had one reentry at their disposal, and the likes of Tamas Adamszki, Artur Martirosian, and Timothy Adams had gone through both allowed bullets before the late registration closed after the dinner break had ended.

Notable players such asJoao Vieira, Santhosh Suvarna, and Ben Heath got a little further but bowed out soon after dinner, while Steve ODwyer, PokerStars Sam Grafton, and online phenom Niklas "Lena900" Astedt were among the players who said their goodbyes at the final two tables.

Eventually, it was Orpen Kisacikoglu who was the last person to miss out on the final table, finishing in tenth place after his queens could not beat the kings of Aleksejs Ponakovs.

Final Table

With only seven players paid, two more aspirants for the title had to depart before any cash could be distributed. First to go was Alex Kulev, who fell into Jean-Noel Thorelspreflop trap and could not make a miraculous escape. Bubble play then lasted a while, but not for a lack of all-ins. The chips flew back and forth across the table as different players doubled up and others lost big parts of their stack.

Eventually, though, after a relatively calm period in play, it was the same Thorel who burst the bubble when he eliminated Ponakovs. Thorels king-queen outflopped Ponakovs ace-queen, which spelled the end for him despite starting the final table second in chips.

Daniel Dvoress had gotten critically short during the bubble phase and picked up the min-cash of 63,000 when he got his final few blinds in the middle with an outclassed pocket pair that could not catch up. Not much later, Watson won a flip for the chip lead that left Sam Greenwood very short. Greenwood would bust shortly thereafter as he was nearly forced all in in the big blind and could not spin it back up.

Next to go was Lonis, who caught a few payjumps before committing his short stack in the middle with queen-ten. Watson called with a dominating ace-queen and consequentially won the pot to eliminate his opponent. His reign would not last much longer, however, as he would lose a flip to Chidwick for the chip lead and busted not long thereafter when he went for value with two pair but ran into the higher two pair of Mateos.

Frances all-time money list leader Thorel then said his goodbyes a few moments later in third place, when he chose the wrong timing to attack Chidwicks open-raise, having his king-three lose to Chidwicks ace-queen. Chidwick and Mateos began heads up play with nearly even stacks, but after they went all in the first hand, it was Chidwick who became victorious as he made two pair against the ace-high of Mateos.


In this Series

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