The penultimate edition of 888poker LIVE for 2023 wrapped up in Bucharest and marked the opening of a brand new poker room. The €888 buy-in Main Event was the first-ever live poker tournament in the brand-new 888poker Poker Room Bucharest to kick things off in style.
Running from August 8 through August 14, 888poker LIVE Bucharest was the penultimate stop on the 2023 live schedule for the trip-Eights.
With eight games across the slightly less than a week-long festival, the €888 Main Event was the highlight of the series, but there were a lot of side events going on as well, including a €55 Ladies Event and a multi-day version of the hottest new format in poker, the Mystery Bounty.
The Main Event was the jewel in the Bucharest crown, as always. Over four starting days, including the turbo Day 1D, more than 190 entries were recorded for a prize pool of more than €135k. After two more days of play, local Romanian grinder Viorel Gavrila was the player holding the striking 888poker LIVE trophy.
888poker LIVE Bucharest Main Event Details
- Dates: August 10 – 14. 2023
- Buy-In: €888
- Entries: 191
- Prizes: €138,898
- First Place: €30,000
- Winner: Viorel Gavrila
Penultimate 2023 LIVE Festival Christens New Poker Room
The latest edition of 888poker LIVE was the second-to-last LIVE series for 888poker in 2023, and the festival was the opening event at the newest poker room in Romania, the 888poker Poker Room Bucharest. The new poker room has a retro feel, harkening back to basement home games of old with a brick motif and unique lighting, creating an inviting space clearly dedicated to poker.
There were eight games on the schedule for Bucharest, a fitting number for the operator. While results for the side events were unavailable at press time, in addition to the featured Main Event, the series hosted a PLO game, a Ladies’ event, and a multi-day mystery bounty game.
Local Heroes and Satellite Runs
It was a good series for local Romanian players in Bucharest. Five of the nine players to make the final table on August 14 hailed from the host country, including the big winner of the event, Viorel Gavrila. Local Romanian players also took 3rd, 5th, 6th, and 9th places from the Bucharest Main Event.
Runner-up Admir Qinami had a story of his own from Bucharest. The Albanian player won his seat via an 888poker LIVE Passport freeroll and turned that into just shy of €20k.
If the finish to this Main Event happened in the movies, students of poker might well accuse the scriptwriter of the easiest of poker cliches. Aces versus kings for all the money, heads-up in a major tournament feels contrived in a work of fiction – students of the game would rhetorically ask, “You know that almost NEVER happens in real life, right?”
Well, we got a reminder in Bucharest this past Monday that everything that can happen with 52 cards in a deck eventually will happen, with freeroll winner Qinami finding the coldest of cold decks in the final hand.
He woke up with pocket Kings heads-up and must surely have been dreaming of a big double-up. With the money in the middle, however, the cards revealed a deck chilled with liquid nitrogen — Kings versus Aces for the Championship.
888poker LIVE Bucharest Main Event — Final Table Results