The European Poker Tour stop in Berlin was always going to a big one (with no little thanks to the huge Berlin Cup which preceded the Main Event). Daniel Pidun, the first domestic player to win in the capital, collected €880,000 after beating the 912-player field and building an insurmountable lead in the latter stages of the final table.
Germany has adopted the game wholeheartedly and has established itself as a powerhouse nation of global poker, as could be seen by the constant percentage rise of German players as the tournament played out. Pidun is the 10th German winner joining (in reverse chronological order) Martin Finger, Benny Spindler, Martin Schleich, Michael Eiler, Team PokerStars Pro Sandra Naujoks, Moritz Kranich, Sebastian Ruthenberg, Michael Schulze, and Duc Thang Nguyen.
Runner-up Robert Haigh, also German, won €531,000 to rocket into 2nd place on the EPT9 Player of the Year leader board. Only Slovakian Jan Bendik has clocked up more points this season.
Griffin ‘Flush_Entity’ Benger wins the High Roller
Of course, the Main Event wasn’t the only game in town. Among the other 44 scheduled tournaments the EPT High Roller stood out as the one to win. Online wizard Griffin ‘Flush_Entity’ Benger, who has won $2,613,959 in tournaments on PokerStars, notched up his first ever live tournament win in London last month and he followed that up in spectacular fashion by claiming the High Roller title for €429,000… on his 28th birthday. It really doesn’t get much better than that. Benger held out against the combined final table talents of Team PokerStars Pro Max Lykov, Martin Kabhrel, James Mitchell, Scott Seiver, Joni Jouhkimainen and Philippe Ktorza.
Neither of the seemingly unstoppable High Roller champions Philipp Gruissem and Tobias Renkemier turned up to play. We found out why not…
Side events galore
The enigmatic Micah Raskin won the Berlin Cup High Roller for €105,368, Team PokerStars Pro Marcel Luske won his fourth EPT side event of 2013, and Rupert Elder got to beat Max Heinzelmann into a runner-up spot again.
For a full roster of side events and their tournament wraps click here.
Rick Dacey is staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.