Portuguese player Francisco Lopes denied Omar Lakhdari heads-up to win the WPTDeepStacks Portugal Main Event. Lakhdari was looking to better his finish in Cannes three months ago where he finished second, but it wasn't to be as Lopes took down the tournament, the trophy and the €55,010 in prize money.
Lopes also takes home a €2,000 package (€1,500 seat + €500 expenses) to the WPTDeepStacks European Championships in Berlin, which take place between the 5th and the 8th of January 2018 at the Spielbank Casino in Berlin.
Speaking after his victory he said that it felt great to win such a big tournament.
"It's a big trophy and a lot of money," he said, "It's been an amazing week.
"I have a lot of friends here with me. We study a lot together and for them to be here is really great. For one of us to win a big one is amazing.
"Vilamoura is an amazing place. I've never been here, even though I'm Portuguese. My friends have had some success in the side events, so we're absolutely going out to celebrate."
Here are the final table results in full.
1. Francisco Lopes - €55,010 + €2,000 WPTDS European Championship Package
2. Omar Lakhdari - €40,037
3. Manuel Borges - €25,754
4. Paul Marius - €19,061
5. Gregory Janin - €14,305
6. Joao Franco - €11,446
7. Pedro Goncalves - €9,506
8. Pedro Ferro - €7,615
9. Omar Cabral - €5,699
The action started from the moment the players took their seats at the final table. Joao Franco doubled up in the very first hand through Pedro Goncalves, but it didn’t take long for our first casualty of the day.
Omar Cabral five-bet jammed with pocket Jacks into the Ace-King of Paul Marius. There was an Ace on the flop, and with Cabral failing to find one of the remaining jacks, he was eliminated in 9th place for €5,699; not a bad return for someone who won their seat in a €60 satellite.
Omar Lakhdari came into the day as an overwhelming chip leader, but had stopped himself from being overly aggressive in the early stages. However, he three-bet jammed over Pedro Ferrro (pictured below) with Ace-Six only for Ferro to have Ace-Seven. A six on the flop quickly rectified the situation in the favour of Lakhdari and Ferro became the next elimination in 8th place for €7,615.
It was a busy day for Manuel Borges, doubling up not once, not twice but three times. His first came through the chip leader when his sevens bested Lakhdari’s Ace-King. It was hands like this that kept the reins on Lakhdari and stopped his chip lead getting unassailable.
The next casualty was Pedro Goncalves. He held pocket eights against the jacks of Lakhdari, and looked set for a double up after flopping a set of eights. However, Lakhdari hit one of the remaining jacks in the deck on the river to send Goncalves to the rail in 7th for €9,506.
It capped a successful week of poker for Goncalves, who finished sixth in the WPTDS High Roller earlier in the week at the Casino Vilamoura.
The youngest player at the table Joao Franco had done well to ladder to sixth place, but his pocket sevens were cracked by the Ace-King of Paul Marius (pictured below). He left with €11,446. Soon after shortstack Gregory Janin shoved with Jack-Eight suited from the button, and Marius picked off the rest of his stack when his King-Nine held. Janin took home €14,305.
As the average stack grew, the players became emboldened, none moreso than chip leader Omar Lakhdari. In a hand against Francisco Lopes, Lopes check-called on the flop, the turn and a river shove from his opponent. Lopes’s hand was good after Lakhdari was forced to show Seven-Deuce.
It wasn’t long before Lopes took the chip lead, but as soon as he had taken it, he handed over some chips to Manuel Borges and Lakhdari was back in the lead.
Paul Marius had showed glimpses of brilliance throughout the day, and looked to be picking up a head of steam after back-to-back eliminations of Joao Franco and Gregory Janin, however, his stack dwindled and he was next to go against Lopes; his 4th place finish was good enough for €19,061.
Borges managed to get one more double-up in while play was three-handed, but he eventually fell in 3rd place for €25,754. It was the smallest flip with Borges’s Ace-Three ever so slightly behind the pocket deuces of Lakhdari.
And so began an entertaining heads-up affair between Omar Lakhdari, looking to go one better than his runner-up in Cannes three months ago, and 24-year-old student Francisco Lopes.
However, in the end Lopes emerged triumphant to deny Lakhdari, and he celebrated loudly with a rail of friends when the final river card hit after his Ace-Seven held against the Queen-Eight of Lakhdari.
Thank you for joining us for our live updates from the Casino Vilamoura here in Portugal for the WPTDeepStacks Festival. Our next European DeepStacks action will be coming to you from Morrocco with the PMU.fr WPTDeepStacks Marrakech Festival between the 30th September and the 8th October. We hope you will join us there!