Julian Thomas Wins bwin WPT Prague

Dec 21, 2013

Julian Thomas reigns supreme after defeating Vasili Firsau in heads up action after seven amazing days of poker at the bwin World Poker Tour (WPT) Prague.

Thomas joins a long list of German professionals that have gone all the way in some of the biggest poker tournaments of 2013, and it’s more heartbreak for Firsau, who also finished runner-up the last time we held a European WPT event at the Grand Prix de Paris just a few months ago.

The first level of play contained our first elimination as the Bulgarian Valeri Savov took the cooler of all coolers when he got it in KK v AA of Gintaras Simaitis. Suddenly, Simaitis was a real contender in this contest as Savov had to settle for a $52,297 consolation prize.

One man who absolutely hated life in the first level was the Serbian Ognjen Sekularac. Nothing the former WPT Vienna final tablist did turned into anything other than a loss of chips, and by the time the sands ran down he was the competitions short stack.

Standings at the end of Level 24

1st. Vasili Firsau – 2,785,000
2nd. Andrey Shatilov – 2,700,000
3rd. Gintaras Simaitis – 1,850,000
4th. Julian Thomas – 990,000
5th. Ognjen Sekularac – 820,000

The 25th and 26th levels contained nothing but tumbleweed, until Vasili Firsau and Ognjen Sekularac gave us something to talk about in the last hand of the level. Sekularac limped on the button and both blinds joined the fun. The flop was [Qd] [8d] [6h] and when the action checked to Sekularac he bet 60,000 and just Firsau made the call.

The turn card was the [8s] and Firsau led for 105,000; Sekularac called. The river card was the [Ah] and once again Firsau led, this time for 255,000, and Sekularac went into the tank. Eventually time was called and Sekularac moved all-in, Firsau snap called and after tabling his [8h] [7h] Sekularac was out. The Serbian making a move with nothing more than [7c] [4c].

"Unlucky," we said to the Serbian a little while later.

"Unlucky? I was stupid." He replied.

Ognjen Sekularac (Final Table)

Standings at the end of Level 26

1st. Vasili Firsau – 3,560,000
2nd. Julian Thomas – 1,965,000
3rd. Gintaras Simaitis – 1,910,000
4th. Andrey Shatilov – 1,710,000

The 27th level saw Andrey Shatilov tumble down the rankings after a series of pots went every which way but his; and we lost Gintaras Simaitis in a hand that would propel Julian Thomas to the same airspace as Vasili Firsau.

Simaitis raised to 125,000, on the button, Julian Thomas three-bet to 325,000 in the big blind and all eyes turned to the Lithuanian.

"How much do you have?" Asked Simaitis.

"More than you." Said the German.

Literally, seconds later Simaitis moved all-in and Thomas had called. It was [As] [8s] for Simaitis, pocket queens for Thomas, and despite Simaitis flopping the absolute world on [Th] [9s] [7s], the turn and river bricked to give Thomas 3.1m chips.

Gintaras Simaitis (Final Table)

That left just three players in the competition with Vasili Firsau holding around 3.6m, Thomas 3.1m and Shatilov 1.3m and the three would waste little time getting it in.

Not since WPT Ireland back in Season X have we seen such a dramatic three-way all-in. Thomas opening the button, Shatilov shoving from the small blind with [Qh] [Th], Firsau re-shoving with [Jc] [Js], and Thomas was sat holding pocket aces. The dealer did her job, Shatilov was out and Thomas eliminated Firsau shortly thereafter in a hand you can read about right underneath this recap.

So that’s a wrap for our time in Prague.

From all the team at the World Poker Tour Live Updates we wish you all a very happy holiday, and we will see you at the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open in late January.

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