The Master Classics of Poker (MCOP) Main Event again proved after many years of European tournaments that it still has the players’ big backing on the live circuit after large numbers and a high-quality final table. Ultimately, for €260,878, Kevin Paqué dropped the €4,300 Main Event, defeating legendary Steve O’Dwyer heads-up.
The young player was shell-shocked by his win which saw the 23-year-old Dutch player winning in his home country causing an ecstatic rail to scream and shout at the Main Event’s final moment. The Main Event, which has been in existence for 28 years since it first began in 1992, was another roaring success with 346 players taking part in the event.
The Holland Casino invited stars of all grades to the Netherlands capital, with players like the aforementioned O’Dwyer, the German legend Ole Schemion and the Czech Republic’s Jan Bednar all making the final nine-handed.
Paqué was going to enter player second in chips, but he wasn’t wasting any time taking the lead straight away. Pascal Vos was the man who took him on, but Paqué looked around and determined that the time was right for his adversary to be challenged. Paqué hit two pairs and succeeded in getting interest from Vos, who finally skipped his flush draw.
Ole Schemion was the first player to leave the final table when, after being called from a pre-flop shove his pocket kings got some terrible luck. Schemion’s rival was Vos, who called only to see one in the window with queens to send him a set and bust the poor Schemion, one of the best players in Germany. Schemion had previously won the MCOP Main Event, but his effort to become the first player to win two fell short from the line by eight points.
Shyngis Satubayev bustled in eighth place in the next row, and with Schemion barely at the bar to order a coffee. Paqué, who owned ace-ten, called his all – in move with pocket nines, and a flop ace spelled doom for Kazakhstan’s game.
Paqué was a card shark who could smell blood in the water and was unable to overwhelm him by his victims. Steve O’Dwyer realised he had to advance ladder up and doubled his twelve big blinds by Johan Rensink and then discarded Rensink when O’Dwyer had pocket aces to the ace-five of Rensik. Rensik crashed in seventh place with no wheel.
The Czech player checked out when his ace-four couldn’t touch the pocket kings of Paraskevas Tsokaridis would be next to leave. Bednar was quickly followed by a short-stacked Frederico Silva from the board, who had laddered all the way to a € 73,441 5th-place payout but would not ascend any further rungs when his queen-jack shove crashed into Paqué’s ace-ten and could not improve.
It would be Pascal Vos who, when his slow-played aces ran into Tsokaridis made straight on the water, bustled in 4th position. Soon after, Vos bustled for Paqué’s loose change, leaving his conqueror as the only hope of home crowd. But when their man was a watching brief for Steve O’Dwyer eliminating the Greek player Tsokaridis, the Amsterdam rail cheered. The king-ten of O’Dwyer was able to hit Tsokaridis ‘ pocket sixes, and play was down to the heads-up showdown.
It took the best part of three hours to settle the heads-up duel, but O’Dwyer couldn’t get even late in the day after the initial rally, and with O’Dwyer holding the top pair on the turn, he called Paqué’s all – in pass. Paqué needed a club to complete the flush draw and he sat, stunned as the winner of the 2019 MCOP Main Event, O’Dwyer as ever, a gracious runner-up as a humble winner when the river came to a club.
2019 MCOP Main Event final table results:
|1||Kevin Paqué||Netherlands||€ 260,878|
|2||Steve O’Dwyer||Ireland||€ 174,421|
|3||Paraskevas Tsokaridis||Greece||€ 124,548|
|4||Pascal Vos||Netherlands||€ 95,911|
|5||Frederico Silva||Portugal||€ 73,441|
|6||Jan Bednar||Czech Republic||€ 56,177|
|7||Johan Rensink||Netherlands||€ 43,023|
|8||Shyngis Satubayev||Kazakhstan||€ 33,021|
|9||Ole Schemion||Germany||€ 25,485|