It was no walk in the park for Belarusian Yury Masliankou who went on to clinch the ₽77,000 EPT National Sochi Event Title and ₽9,317,000 ($139,755). Masliankou outlasted a field of 721 players and an onerous heads-up battle against Russian Daniil Lukin to take home the coveted title. The win is Masliankou’s biggest till date and he becomes the second non-Russian to win the event.
A special mention goes out to Indian Pro Kartik Ved for his fourth place finish in the same event! Ved played some world-class poker and faired extremely well on Day 2, coming into the final table seventh in chips. His run unfortunately ended when Lukin shoved with Ace-ten suited in big blind and Ved limp-called off with Ace-King, only to get beaten and settle for RUB 3,059,000 (INR 32.76 Lakhs).
The heads-up play was felt gripping. Both players had a balanced start to begin with, but as the chips flew across the table, Lukin kept absorbing blows, letting his opponent fatigue himself. He didn’t seem perturbed by the 1:2 chip lead he was up against.
Masliankou almost had Lukin in one instance, getting it in on a five-six-eight flop, Masliankou flopped a straight against Lukin’s seven-eight. Lukin looked like he was being sent to the rail, but the river gave both players a straight and they chopped the pot.
From then on Masliankou pushed forward, Lukin’s chip stack began to shrink and was reduced to his last 15 bigs. Eventually Masliankou shoved, Lukin called with his last 15 bigs, he didn’t improve and Masliankou was declared the winner.
EPT National Sochi Final Table Results