The long-awaited European Poker Tour event in Paris is officially in the books, and PokerStars has every reason to be happy about it. The event was a major success in every way, becoming the largest-ever EPT debut in Tour’s history.
The €5,300 Main Event attracted 1606 entries, 1159 of which were unique players. These numbers made EPT Paris the biggest Main Event outside of Barcelona and the sixth-biggest Main Event in PokerStars EPT’s rich history.
When the registration finally closed, the total prize pool climbed to an impressive €7.7 million, with a good chunk of that — €1,170,000 — set aside for the eventual winner.
Perhaps fittingly, that honor went to Razvan Belea, a player from Romania who captured the first European Poker Tour trophy for his country. What better time to do it than at such a historical event?
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EPT Paris Main Event Final Results
|4||Brian Delaney||United Kingdom||€412,200|
A Well-Deserved Victory
EPT tournaments are some of the best organized out there, but they are not known for their softness. Every event attracts some of the finest players in the world to battle it out for big prizes and prestigious titles. Despite all of this, Belea found his way to victory.
The Romanian won his Main Event through an online satellite on PokerStars, putting up just $530 to enter the €5300 tournament, a win in its own right. But it was just the start of the road for Razvan Belea.
The poker gods were kind to the Romanian throughout the tournament, but especially on Day 4, when he seized the chip lead and never looked back. He started the final table as the chip leader with no plans to give up on that great start.
Only five players came back for the final day of play. Belea and Sweden’s Peter Jorgne took turns eliminating the other three, leading to an epic and very deep-stacked heads-up battle for the prestigious title.
It is important to note that deal-making in tournaments is not allowed in France, so players had to play to the end without the ability for any chop. It took a while, but Belea held his ground and found his way to the victory after calling Jorgne’s tricky all-in river shove for an epic conclusion to a stellar run.
The Romanian took the trophy and the first-place prize of €1,170,000, while Peter Jorgne pocketed €780,100 for his valiant efforts.
First-Ever EPT Paris Exceeds Expectations
There was little doubt that the Paris stop of the European Poker Tour would be a success. However, there are always some concerns with every fresh addition to the Tour. In the end, it was a massive success in all aspects. The turnout was great. The players had fun. And there was a lot of prize money to go around.
65 nations were represented in the EPT Paris Main Event. Not surprisingly, the French led the way with almost 30%, but Germany, Spain, Italy, and the UK also had a solid showing. It wasn’t just the European players that flocked to the French capital for some poker action, as countries like Venezuela, Singapore, Algeria, Mexico, Tunisia, and many others were represented.
All this shows just how strong the EPT brand is, and if these early numbers are anything to go by, PokerStars will have a very successful 2023 on the live circuit.