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Lucien Cohen Wins PokerStars European Poker Tour Deauville

Cohen is First European Poker Tour Deauville French Champion

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Lucien Cohen. Credit: Neil Stoddart and PokerStarsThe three names that stood out on the final table of the PokerStars European Poker Tour Deauville were Alex Wice, Martin Jacobson, and Kenny Hallaert. Wice had clearly shown his skills throughout the event while Hallaert is a well-known name on the European circuit. Jacobson had come close to victory twice before on the Tour, and all three had taken the top spots on the leader board going into day 6. So for many it was eye-widening news to hear that none of the above had taken down the lion’s share of the €4,276,800 prize pool.

For the first time ever the Deauville trophy would go to a Frenchman. Amateur poker player, Lucien Cohen and his plastic rat beat an 891-strong field to snag the €888,000 top prize and a seat in the EPT Grand Final. The 47-year-old who runs a pest control company in Paris used his company’s mascot, a plastic rat, as a card protector, but had an even bigger version in a rucksack which he would pull out and flaunt whenever he was involved in a big pot.

Cohen, who for the last 20 years has been playing poker as a hobby, said, “I’m very proud to be the first French EPT Deauville winner. It’s a very emotional moment. I want to say thank you to the organisers, the EPT and my opponents. This is one of the best days of my life after my wedding and the day my children were born. I’m happy, happy, happy.”

The Frenchman beat Martin Jacobson heads up for what would be a frustrating finish for the Swede. Jacobson finished in second place at EPT Vilamoura last September and also third in Budapest in season 5. He received €560,000 after a day of painful twists and turns.

Here is how the final table looked at the start:

Martin Jacobson (Sweden) 7,280,000
Alex Wice (Canada) 6,248,000
Kenny Hallaert (Belgium) 3,599,000
Julien Claudepierre (France) 3,244,000
Lucien Cohen (France) 3,085,000
Anthony Hnatow (France) 1,644,000
Ruslan Prydryk (Ukraine) 1,154,000
Kaspars Renga (Latvia) 470,000

Ukrainian Ruslan Prydryk was the first to go and he did so within the first few minutes of action. After Julien Claudepierre raised 130,000, Ruslan moved all in for his last million. Claudepierre called and turned over ASpade Suit QSpade Suit and Prydryk revealed pocket sixes. The board was dealt ADiamond Suit 4Diamond Suit 2Heart Suit 3Diamond Suit 3Heart Suit and Prydryk received €66,800 for eighth place.

Shortly after this, Jacobson was involved in a critical pot with Kaspars Renga and Wice. Jacobson raised to 130,000 under the gun and Renga moved all in for 600,000. Wice made the call, as did Jacobson. The flop came JHeart Suit 10Heart Suit 7Spade Suit and Wice and Jacobson checked. The turn was the 8Heart Suit making things quite dangerous and Jacobson bet one million. Wice called and the KDiamond Suit was dealt on the river.

Martin Jacobson. Credit: Neil StoddartWith 3.8 million in the middle, Jacobson bet 2 million. Wice asked how much he was playing and the answer was just over two million more. Wice put enough out to put Jacobson all in if he called, but the Swede folded in despair. Renga and Wice had both rivered a straight – Renga (side pot) with ADiamond Suit QDiamond Suit and Wice with AHeart Suit QClub Suit. Jacobson revealed he had pocket tens for a flopped set, which left his stack in smithereens.

Wice was quickly back at it again and this time Anthony Hnatow was at the brunt of his aggression. Wice flushed Hnatow and his pocket aces out in seventh place for a payday of €110,000.

Then it was time for another key hand. This one would see Cohen chip up after doubling through Wice with a turned full house. Meanwhile Jacobson was busy making a comeback. He first doubled through Julien Claudepierre and then took a chunk of chips off Cohen to put himself firmly back in second place on the leader board.

The limelight then shone on Kenny Hallaert. He was one of 36 Belgian players who made up 4 percent of the original field. (France had over 55 percent.) Belgium did a great job however as eight of them reached the final 24, and Hallaert topped the lot by finishing in sixth place for €155,000. His pocket fours were no match for Wice’s pocket tens, which needlessly hit a 10 on the river.

The next to go was Kaspars Renga. He arrived at the final table as the short stack with just 470,000, and managed to hang on to find aces twice, river a broadway straight once, and he even made a royal flush. He successfully turned his short stack into a fifth-place finish worth €200,000 when Jacobson put him on the other side of the rail.

Renga was followed by Claudepierre after the Frenchman three-bet all in for 2,150,000 from the big blind. Wice thought for a moment and then made the call flipping over QClub Suit JClub Suit. Claudepierre tabled AClub Suit 5Club Suit but it was no good as the board ran JDiamond Suit 8Heart Suit 6Club Suit 4Diamond Suit 4Heart Suit. Claudepierre received €260,000 for fourth place.

Alex Wice. Credit: Neil StoddartWice was soon going to be joining his victims on the other side of the rail as Cohen had built up ammo and the two were about to collide for the last time. After receiving a walk with aces, Wice raised from the small blind with A-Q. Cohen then reraised from the big blind with pocket queens and soon all the chips were in the middle. The queens held and Wice went hurtling out of the event in third place for €330,000.

It was Cohen versus Jacobson in the final battle, and Cohen moved way in to the lead from the very first hand. Pocket kings ensured he had 20 million to Jacobson’s 6.5 million and Cohen relentlessly increased this space further to a five-to-one chip lead. Jacobson last stand came when he shoved with 7Heart Suit 6Heart Suit and was called by Cohen and his ASpade Suit KDiamond Suit which was enough on its own to give him the title and the honour.

Here are the results and payouts:

1. Lucien Cohen €880,000
2. Martin Jacobson €560,000
3. Alex Wice €330,000
4. Julien Claudepierre €260,000
5. Kaspars Renga €200,000
6. Kenny Hallaert €155,000
7. Anthony Hnatow €110,000
8. Ruslan Prydryk €66,800

On a side note, World Series of Poker champ and Team PokerStars Pro player Jonathan Duhamel took down the EPT Deauville €10,000 High Roller event for €200,000 after topping a 58-strong field, while Anais Lerouge beat 85 players including four men in the €330 Ladies event for a first place prize of €8,600. This was Lerouge’s second EPT Season 7 victory as she also won the EPT London Luxury Ladies event.