Enough is enough. After grinding for ten days in Monaco, Philipp Gruissem and Scott Seiver decided to strike a deal and finish the EPT Monte Carlo Grand Final High Roller earlier than expected.
“We decided not to bet it out this time and we chopped it. We both have just been tired from a lot of poker played this week and it’s really been exhausting so we are happy to finish this early,” Gruissem said in a PokerNews interview. “And I think everybody here is (happy), the camera crew as well,” he added, smiling.
And right he was as the last EPT High Roller of the season drew to a close with him being in the spotlight and winning the big prize. “Alright, now you have to stay here and deal with all of this stuff,” Seiver told the German after the last hand of the event, pointing at the various media around the table.
But before all the laughs, smiles, and jokes and before going all-in blind, both players had to grind seriously to reach that high: 12 hours on Day 1, 14 hours on Day 2, and over 5 hours on the final day.
Pascal Lefroncois got the final table rolling after hitting the rail in ninth place. He open-raised on the button and four-bet shove after chip leader Davidi Kitai made a small three-bet. Kitai snap-called with #qc#qd, dominating Lefrancois’ #ad#10c.
However, after that, Kitai started losing momentum and his big stack shrank, eventually giving the lead to Gruissem. In one pot, he tried to handle the German’s aggression by calling all three streets. Unfortunately for him, he mucked his hand after Gruissem showed a full house. In another battle, he called a four-bet preflop from Seiver and another big bet on the river, only to see his opponent holding the best hand – #kh#kd.
Kitai tried to rebound by eliminating Chenxiang Miao in eighth place with his trip queens.
But Gruissem wasn’t about to give up as he won a big pot from Seiver and grabbed the chip lead. Soon after that, another two High Roller finalists hit the rail. Brit Stephen Chidwick finished seventh, losing his last hand of the event to Siever’s #10c#10d with his #4h#4c. Martin Finger followed him in the very next hand, falling short to Kitai’s #9c#9d.
Gruissem continued to add to his lead after coolering Kitai in an Ace-high flush vs. King-high flush battle. He also eliminated Bryon Kaverman in fifth place with the absolute nuts preflop – #ad#ac. “Today basically I just had to call off the nuts and sometimes is that easy. It’s about playing good when you have no cards and everybody runs good at some point and I got it at the right time,” the German superstar explained.
John Juanda and Davidi Kitai completed the elimination board before Gruissem and Seiver decided to talk about a possible deal. Minutes later, the deal was set and all the chips were in the middle with the American going all-in blind with #2h#3h. The winner looked at the cards before calling with another premium hand – #qh#qd and securing the title.
Here are the final payouts:
- Philipp Gruissem (GER) – €993,963
- Scott Seiver (USA) – €857,637
- Davidi Kitai (BEL) – €526,400
- John Juanda (USA) – €426,800
- Byron Kaverman (USA) – €337,650
- Martin Finger (GER) – €256,400
- Stephen Chidwick (UK) – €187,200
- Chenxiang Miao (CHI) – €136,900
- Pascal Lefrancois (CAN) – €113,250
Congratulations to Philipp Gruissem on another impressive run. This is his fifth major High Roller title after the 2011 EPT London HR, the 2013 WSOP APAC HR Rebuy, the 2013 WPT Alpha8 London, and the 2013 WPT Alpha8 Saint Kitts. He also became the most successful German in live poker tournaments, topping 2011 WSOP Main Event champion Pius Heinz with his $9,461,396 in winnings.