With all the focus on the World Poker Tour delayed final tables that were held at the HyperX Esports Arena at the Luxor in Las Vegas last week, other events tended to be ignored. But lest we forget, the WPT had another tour stop happening halfway around the world in Spain. And it was there that Vitalijs Zavorotnijs won the WPT Barcelona Main Event and €600,000 ($678,000).
After the tournament, Zavorotnijs told WPT.com, “How I feel right now is hard to describe. A mix of emotion and exhaustion. I’m really tired and really happy! When you work hard for something, and it happens, to be in this spot right now, it feels like a dream come true.”
This was his first major live tournament win and his first cash to make it into the six-digit dollar figure range. He is now officially on a roll, as last month, he won the €1,000 OlyBet Kings of Tallinn Main Event, good for €85,300 ($96,738), which was his best cash at the time. Not bad setting your own personal earnings record two tournaments in a row.
Zavorotnijs went into the six-handed final table over the weekend with the chip lead, holding 10.635 million chips. It was a two-horse race to start, as Eric Sfez had 10.265 million chips. The closest player after him was Niko Koop with 6.305 million.
And cool fun fact about the final table, all six players were from different countries: Latvia, France, Austria, Bulgaria, Sweden, and Lebanon. It truly is a World Poker Tour!
It was a wild final table, as within the first 30-plus hands, the chip lead changed a number of times and gigantic pots were passed back and forth. Zavorotnijs did a load of damage after Jerry Odeen was eliminated in fifth place when he doubled through Koop (who had elevated his stack to nearly 11 million chips) and then eliminated him a couple hands later. He won the next hand, getting millions of chips from Boris Kolev without a showdown and was soon up to 24 million.
After knocking out Sfez on the 64th hand of the final table, Zavorotnijs went into heads-up play against Kolev with a 20 million chip lead.
Sometimes the severe chip underdog makes a game of it, but that didn’t happen here. It was over in three hands. On the final hand, Zavorotnijs raised to 425,000 pre-flop with K-9 of spades, Kolev three-bet to 1.700 million with a Queen (I don’t know the other card), and Zavorotnijs called. The flop of Q-J-4 gave Zavorotnijs a gutshot draw and he called a 1.200 million chip bet. A flush draw presented itself on the turn and after using a couple time bank chips, he called a 5.700 million chip all-in bet by Kolev. The river completed the flush and Zavorotnijs nabbed the pot and the World Poker Tour Barcelona crown.
The prize money gives him a chance to relax a bit, as he told WPT.com, “I am now going to spend some more time with my wife, who won a satellite into the Main Event this week, and my four-year-old daughter. Then I will go to Vegas for the WPT Tournament of Champions.”
2019 World Poker Tour Barcelona Main Event – Final Table Results
1. Vitalijs Zavorotnijs – € 600,000 ($678,000)
2. Boris Kolev – €375,000 ($423,750)
3. Eric Sfez – €281,570 ($318,174)
4. Niko Koop – €215,000 ($242,950)
5. Jerry Odeen – €160,000 ($180,800)
6. Alain Zeidan – €120,000 ($135,600)