Valentin Messina (7,805,000) and Jean Montury (7,185,000), both from France, were at the top of the chip counts when the first ever EPT Malta Main Event final table kicked off on Saturday.
The French duo used their big stacks well and made it to heads up after several hours of play. After coming back from a dinner break, they quickly agreed on a deal: Messina was guaranteed €615,000 while Montury secured €587,000, and there was still €100,000 left to play for.
Both players took the heads up very serious, and it ended up being a very long battle for the extra €100k and the title. Montury took down most of the pots in the beginning and generated a lead that suggested that he would win the battle rather easy, but Messina doubled up at least three times to extend play long into the early hours, which forced tournament officials to shorten the levels.
Messina was really unlucky in a pot where he flopped trips with AQ on a board of A7A and was up against Montury's A9. The river brought the 9 and Montory took a massive lead once again. The poker gods must have felt a bit sorry for Messina after that unlucky hand, given that he (once again) managed to double up a few times in a row to even out the score. However, at about 4.12 a.m. local time, six hours after Dominik Panka was eliminated in third place, the final hand of the tournament was played...
They got it in before the flop: Messina with 55 against Montury's A10. The board ran out 6 J J 4 6 and Montury's big ace won him the pot. An epic final hand to say the least.
"The heads-up was so long because we both wanted the trophy and wanted to win so much," Montury said. "It was so hard to beat a man like Valentin, because he is a very good player. It's hard for him, but we need one winner."
EPT11 Malta, €5,000 NL Hold 'em Main Event Entries: 895 Places paid: 127 Prize pool: €4,340,750 1 - Jean Montury, France, €687,400* 2 - Valentin Messina, France, €615,000* 3 - Dominik Panka, Poland, €347,300 4 - Stefan Schillhabel, Germany, €260,500 5 - Javier Gomez Zapatero, Spain, €205,300 6 - Hossein Ensan, Germany, €153,700 7 - Antonin Duda, Czech Republic, €108,200 8 - Remi Wyrzykiewicz, Poland, €76,000
I want to congratulate him, but for what i saw in the final table i can´t, because i didnt like the way that he play, and not him, the other françois too, but they reach the head-up and one of them win, after a very long time on the head-up. And be the first time EPT manin event winner on Malta is a good felling, so i will wait to see what he will be doing in the next months.
Looks to have been a great heads up battle for the title.Must be a strange feeling when you know you have already won half a million but an extra 100k is well worth going for.I can't remember the last time there were two french guys dominating a final table.
Posted by luisexy69: I want to congratulate him, but for what i saw in the final table i can't, because i didnt like the way that he play, and not him, the other fran�ois too, but they reach the head-up and one of them win, after a very long time on the head-up.