Live Tournament Newcomer Wilinofsky Wins EPT Berlin

The EPT Berlin Main Event concluded tonight in the same fashion that it began – with a lot of stiff competition and a lot of surprises. Not least of those surprises was the eventual winner of this prestigious European tournament. While online players are probably familiar with Canadian player Ben Wilinofsky’s online persona of “NeverScaredB,” he’s a totally newb when it comes to the live tournament scene. Here’s how Wilinofsky earned his first live tournament cash and major title win on the same night…

The first portion of the final table proceeded like most tournament final tables do. The shortest stacks – held by Jonas Gutteck and Joep Van den Bijgaart, respectively – were picked off first. Had the action continued that way, Martin Jacobson would have been next in line for the rail, but as anyone that’s been following the 2011 EPT Berlin Main Event knows, Jacobson has been exceptionally hard to finish off. The final table proved to be no exception. While Jacobson obviously didn’t win the event, he nevertheless managed to improve his position once again.

In Jacobson’s place went Darren Kramer who had actually started the day in fourth but failed to improve his fortunes. At one point he doubled up off Vadzim Kursevich only to go all-in against him shortly thereafter. This time around the cards fell in Kursevich’s favor, sending Kramer to the rail in sixth. Armin Mette followed the earlier pattern, exiting the tournament in the same place he’d started the day – fifth.

With only half the final table remaining, Jacobson’s time finally came. Big stack Maximilian Heinzelmann dealt Jacobson the final blow when he managed to two-pair with a set of 6s in the hole against Jacobson’s unimproved A-K unsuited. Despite his best efforts, yet again Jacobson saw an EPT final table but no title. Taking out Jacobson was integral in Heinzelmann’s outlasting third place finisher Kursevich.

At one point Kursevich managed to close the gap between his stack and Heinzelmann’s by doubling up off chipleader Wilinofsky, but his success was short-lived when he went all-in against the same competitor only a few hands later. This time around Wilinofsky prevailed when he drew a straight on the flop; Heinzelmann was only able to two-pair his hand, sending him to the rail just a player away from the heads-up portion of the Main Event.

Not surprisingly, the final table’s two most aggressive and consistent players (as well as the two largest stacks starting the day) were the last two men standing. Wilinofsky started the last leg of the tournament well in the lead, and it was a lead that Max Heinzelmann never could overcome. Here’s what each of the eight final tablers earned for their trouble:

Ben Wilinofsky – €825,000

Maximilian Heinzelmann – €500,000

Vadzim Kursevich – €300,000

Martin Jacobson – €230,000

Armin Mette – €180,000

Darren Kramer – €140,000

Joep Van den Bijgaart – €100,000

Jonas Gutteck – €66,000

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