The 2019 European Poker Tour Sochi 191,800 Russian Ruble (or $2,930) buy-in NLHE Main Event has been won by Uri Gilboa, after outlasting a player field of 758 entries.
Thanks to this win, the 61-year-old became the first-ever EPT champion from his home country Israel, taking home $424,997 USD with him. At Casino Sochi where the event was held, he is considered to be the oldest EPT champion ever.
Sporting a shirt from the ‘Rocky Balboa' film franchise all through the latter stages of the tournament, his friends advised him not to change his t-shirt for good luck. It must have worked since Gilboa was able to overcome more than 750 players to win the $400,000+ first prize!
The fifth and final day of the EPT Main Event started with Zakhar Babaev in the chip lead position with only six players left.
The final heads up match saw Gilboa with 13,360,000 in chips while fellow Israeli player Babaev had 8,385,000. The heads-up showdown lasted 36 hands. When it came down to the final hand, Gilboa had a 32-to-1 advantage.
Zakhar Babaev had 8-4 Uri Gilboa got A-4 The board showed A-10-5-4-6, giving Gilboa a two pair that's enough to win him the title and the pot.
Watch the final table action here:
Gilboa said after he won, "I'm glad that I'm the first Israeli winner. You have to know that the standard of Israeli poker is becoming tremendous. We've had a lot of achievements at the WSOP and at other European tournaments. I know I'm the first, but for sure I'm not the last."
Originally a pro bridge player, Gilboa began playing poker around eight years ago and said that playing bridge on a national level helped him a lot when playing poker, "I'm self-taught. I love to learn and I'm improving all the time. I learn from my mistakes, from others and from other very good young Israeli players. Never give up. You can start, you can study and it's an amazing game. I love it."
If you check his poker record through the Hendonmob, this humongous win significantly quadrupled his lifetime earnings! Uri Gilboa now has $524,651 total live earnings to his name.
EPT Sochi 191,800 RUB NLHE Main Event - Final Table Results
Not an easy win there, since the player field was a big one. And how couldnt not be, since the buy in was low for less than 3k USD. The reward for the first place was a very good one, for the money invested. That also due to the number of players.
another sochi final and another great win on this tournament!almost 3 K buy in and to win 424 K is great!not so much players,but it was long fight for this money!when you see that he dont have much winnings on live poker,this is something special for him!congratulations!
Many congratulations to Uri on winning this event and his first EPT title.I was surprised to read that he was the first player from his country to win a title and this must have made him extra proud as well
Israel's people are very good at math and they can become very good poker players if they study this game carefully. Mathematics and poker do a good job and in Sochi this has been seen good enough. I have a question: Online players must sign up for Hendonmob or not because the winner of this game says something about this but for live players. For online players is it necessary or not?
I like his shirt though. One thing stands out - there are quite the amount of jewish poker-pros playing in Russia for some reason and I have no idea how that guy from Uruguay got into the tourney. Probably working at the embassy.