Meet The Final Table Cast

Oct 30, 2013

Seat 1: Peter Apostolou – 269,000 (13BB)

Peter Apostolou (Day 4)

Peter Apostolou, from Australia, has been setting some personal bests in Paris.

No matter where he finishes today it will be his biggest live cash to date, it is also his first-ever WPT cash and his first-ever cash outside of Australia.

Apostolou picked up a big stack at the end of Day 2. A fact that was pointed out to us by his wife who was trying to follow his progress on the WPT Live Updates, but we had failed to enter him into our chip counts.

Apostolou decided to take matters into his own hands and made sure we spotted him in the crowd with a fantastic Day 3 performance that saw him finish in second place as the final 24-players returned for action.

His starting position, with just 13BB, means he is going to need some luck on his side to make a deep run into the big money, but that luck has treated him well thus far.

Whatever happens next for Apostolou, this tournament has been the crowning achievement of his career.

Seat 2: Kimmo Kurko – 116,000 (6BB)

Kimmo Kurko (Day 2)

The final table of WPT Grand Prix de Paris would not be complete without a Finnish player in the line up, but Kurko’s chances of doing what both Juha Helppi and Jani Sointula failed to do, and win this event (they finished 2nd in 2005 & 2006 respectively), was dealt a crushing blow when he ran pocket queens into pocket kings late in the penultimate day of the competition.

Kurko will start as the shortest stack in the competition with just 6BB meaning it’s a simple matter of all-in and fold for the man who must have surely thought this was his best shot of winning a WPT title since finishing 4th at WPT Baden in Season XI.

Kurko was the only player to take the chip lead from Vasili Firsau since the Belarusian took the lead at the end of Day 3, when he was fortunate to crush the spirit of Marvin Rettenmaier after his AQ came from behind to out flop the AK of the German. After that, every major pot seemed to go against the man who recently secured a seven figure score when he finished as runner-up to Tom Middleton at EPT Barcelona, culminating in that crushing blow against Christina Lindley at the end of Day 4.

Seat 3: Elliot Smith – 782,000 (39BB)

Elliot Smith (Day 3)

Elliot Smith starts third in chips and with 39BB has a little more play than the rest of the field.

Season XII bwin WPT Grand Prix de Paris has been a competition that has based its foundations on patience and Smith has shown that trait in volumes.

As the day crawled towards the money back on Day 3, Smith saw his hopes almost vanish before him when he got it in 66 v 22 against Byron Kaverman only to see the American spike a third deuce to cripple Smith at the most important stage of the contest.

Smith didn’t buckle. He didn’t just throw his chips into the middle. Instead he composed himself, finished Day 3 with the lowest chip stack of the final 24-competitors with 12BB and returned on Day 4 to show the field what he was truly made of.

A series of double ups and the eliminations of Micah Raskin and Rony Halimi handing him sufficient chips to see him sail through to the final table.

Smith has over $1m in live tournament earnings and his highest score to date was a 3rd place finish in the 2009 Aussie Millions for $497,258. This is his second WPT cash.

Seat 4: Mohsin Charania – 644,000 (32BB)

Mohsin Charania (Day 1A)

Mohsin Charania is arguably the most technically gifted player to take his seat at the final table. He has won over $2.7m in live tournament earnings and a similar haul has been achieved online where he plays under the moniker of Chicagocards1.

Charania’s greatest live success to date came in 2012 when he won the EPT Grand Final for $1.78m and change. This is his 11th WPT cash and 2nd final table, including back-to-back final tables when he finished 5th in this event last year.

Charania slowly gathered pace in this tournament and it all came together on the penultimate day of the competition. He flopped a set of aces to take a chunk of change from the then chip leader Kimmo Kurko, before eliminating his good friend Marvin Rettenmaier AJ v A6.

Charania will be confident despite losing a significant portion of his stack against Firsau at a crucial time yesterday. If anybody can overturn the Belarusian’s huge chip stack then it’s Chicagocards1.

Seat 5: Christina Lindley – 880,000 (44BB)

Christina Lindley (Day 4)

Can Christina Lindley become the first lady to win an open WPT event?

When you consider the size of the chip lead that Vasili Firsau holds, it’s going to be a tough ask, but with 44BB to play with nobody has a better chance of denting the Belarusian’s pride, and chip stack, when the action kicks off later today.

Lindley is one of the WPT Season XII Ones to Watch and has repaid the faith the WPT has shown her with a sterling performance here in Paris. Lindley turned 60k into over 400k on Day 3 when she emerged as the serious candidate to try and wrest the chip lead away from Vasili Firsau. That chip lead would have been hers had she not lost an all-in and call against Jason Koon QQ<KQ when Koon flopped the only two kings in the deck to shut out that possibility.

Lindley was all smiles whilst she played her poker yesterday, and the big chip stack eventually returned to her corner when she doubled through Kimmo Kurko KK>QQ and will start the day second in chips.

Seat 6: Vasili Firsau – 2,893,000 (145BB)

Vasili Firsau (Day 3)

It’s not often that you see a player enter a WPT final table with over 50% of the chips in play, but that is exactly what will happen today when Vasili Firsau takes his seat.

The last time this particular writer saw this happen was back in Season X WPT Ireland when Dave Shallow entered the final table with 60% of the chips in play. That final table turned into a white wash for Shallow as he captured the crown so quickly you would have missed it if you blinked.

Firsau is more than capable of emulating the performance of Shallow. Not only does he have the chips but he has the confidence, happiness, support and more importantly the luck.

There hasn’t been a big pot go against Firsau, and he has seemingly got every single decision right including the one that handed him a huge chip lead back on Day 4 when he made a great call with ace-queen on [5d] [4d] [2s] after Jason Koon had moved all-in to put the Belarusain under the most intense pressure we had seen in this contest. Firsau passed with flying colors and has never looked back since.

Barring an absolute disaster, this will be Firsau’s biggest cash to date, and it is the second time he has cashed in a WPT event after finishing in 66th place at WPT Prague last season. It is his first major final table appearance of any kind.

The cards will be in the air at 15:30 (CET) and you have two options to follow the action today. You can watch the live stream or follow the live updates. Both of which you can find on

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