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EPT No-Limit Hold'em Main Event 1

  • Oct 28, '08 - Nov 01, '08


Updates on Final Day (Nov 01, 08)


Goodbye Budapest

As the crazy buzz from today's escapades slowly dies down, the winners are taken off to get their pictures taken, and receive their money. The next stop for the European Poker Tour is Warsaw, Poland. CardPlayer will be there for every important minute of it, but in the meantime stay with for all your news, updates, and interviews from across the international poker world.


Tournament Trail Q and A -- Johnny Lodden

Johnny LoddenNorwegian Johnny Lodden is best known for his online antiques but has been making some respectable cashes in the live circuit also. It is hard not to watch the baby-faced assassin take out his opponents one by one, as he seems to have that magic spark which many of the greats have brought to the table. Card Player caught up with him after he made it to the final table of the 2008 Hungarian Open in the Sofitel Hotel in Budapest. The fact that he was to eventually go out in eighth place is little to worry about, as whatever the final result, he has a new achievement to add to his vast collection.

Rebecca McAdam: Can you tell me about your journey to the final table, how did you get there?

Johnny Lodden: Being lucky I guess, but no, I felt like I played good now for three days. On Thursday I played, I feel, one of the best days I’ve played in tournament poker at least. Yesterday was a little up and down, and today ... I’m surprised by myself actually because the first three levels I was amazed at how many hands I folded. Usually I raise two times a round but I was just like folding three rounds in a row and everyone just looked at me funny like what’s going on here, is he trapping us or what is he doing?

RM: Were you changing your tactics?

JL: Yeah, I tried a new style because usually when I raise, so many times you’ve got to reraise ... I don’t know, people don’t like to see flops I think. Call and see what happens, that’s how I like it ... flop plays. That’s the thing about poker, that’s where the skill comes out. Not the reraise, reraise, reraise, position push, that’s just boring.

RM: What do you think about the standard of the field here in Budapest?

JL: Should I be honest here? It’s probably at least in the top two weakest fields in the EPTs I’ve played in. There was a lot of dead money going into the tournament, and that’s one of the reasons why I came down here to play, because if you play in beautiful places like San Remo or Monte Carlo, all the pros come over from the US, but I haven’t seen one here I think. There’s Danny Ryan, but none really of the famous big ones. There’s a lot of Hungarians, Romanian, Italians, French, so there’s big value in the tournament.

RM: So there weren’t many who impressed you then?

JL: No, I’ve seen a lot of really really weird plays down here, and I’m glad for it ... But I think I should probably have more chips then.

RM: How did it compare with the WSOPE?

JL: I would rather go to the final table of the WSOPE ten times more than the final table here, but of course it’s the EPT, and I’ve no final tables in the EPT. I’ve bubbled the final like five times, so I’ve finally reached it.

RM: Why do you think that is?

JL: I don’t know, I put myself in decisions where when I get a little short and I raise and somebody reraises, and normally it’s 50-50 with A-K and a pocket pair, and I push. I’m not good at coin flip stuff. Every time that I went out on the bubble it was A-K against a pair, or a pair against A-K, in every single one, so I tried to avoid that this time, and I made it.

RM: Were there any big hands that stand out or coin flips you won to get you to the final table?

JL: No, I was all in once preflop on day 3 with A-Q against A-J and I won that one, and I was almost all in I think in a coin flip once when we were down to 19 players, so we were playing six handed. I raised with pocket tens, a guy reraised me, and the average was like 280,000. I think I had 280,000. I make it 25,000 and he makes it 100,000. I had pocket tens, so I probably had the best hand but I put him on A-K, A-Q and I don’t want to gamble. If I lose, I’m almost out, and I had a good position and a good table, so I knew I would have a better chance than that.

RM: Coming to places like this, do you spend time sightseeing or is it all spent on poker?

JL: I usually do but this time I came in the night before, so I went to sleep and woke up and played. Usually I play day 1A so I can go out on day 1B to watch the city and take a guided tour, but this time I played day 1B so I didn’t have much time off, but maybe after.

RM: Do you have a strategy going into the final table?

JL: I’ll have to see my position because there are like three really sickos on the table, except for me, so there are probably four, but with the other three, I need to have position on them to play my game, and they have big stacks as well. It’s different. On day 3 when we were nine handed it was like everyone was having fun except two guys sitting there, fold, fold, fold. We were laughing, drinking, having fun. It didn’t look like an EPT final table. Usually, everyone’s quiet, just folding... it was just high-fiving and having fun.

RM: Did you find that worked better for you?

JL: Yeah. I felt like it was me that brought it to the table. If I wasn’t there I think it would just be a regular table. I don’t like to sit there quiet. Then the game is so boring, everyone is just sitting and waiting for hands, and not talking, and just pushing chips around. That’s boring.

RM: That’s such an important side to the game isn’t it, the social element?

JL: Yeah. It’s fun. I like it when everyone’s talking and having fun, and cheering.

RM: Do you think that European fields are softer than American?

JL: It depends on the tournament, like World Series side events are probably the same as here, but if you play bigger events like Monte Carlo and the World Series of Poker Europe, the field is tougher, it’s all pros almost, but down here it was not that good.

RM: Where to next and what do you want to achieve?

JL: To win in Amsterdam.


More to Come

 Check back with for interviews from two of the final tablists. For now, stay right here for an interview with Johnny Lodden and an end of day recap. Lodden spoke to us shortly before taking to the final table.


2008 Hungarian Open Winner: William Fry (€595,839)

William FryWilliam Fry is the champion of the first ever EPT Hungary. As he slowly sips his Bordeaux, he is now wallowing in the happiness of winning his first EPT, and also his first major poker tournament.













Ciprian Hrisca Eliminated in Second Place (€342,608)

In the final hand of the event, Ciprian Hrisca bet 150,000 preflop and William Fry raises it up to 650,000. Hrisca goes all in and Fry calls.

The two show their hands:

Fry: J-J

Hrisca: A6

Board: Q106KQ

Fry's pocket jacks hold up and Hrisca takes second place.


Quick Chip Update

William Fry: 2,781,000

Ciprian Hrisca: 2,458,000



Level Up

It's level 26 and the blinds are 25,000/50,000.


Game of Tag

Fry bets 160,000 and Hrisca raises all in. Fry calls and shows 77. Hrisca flips over J10 and the board comes K102J6 giving Hrisca two pair, jacks and tens. Back to scratch.



William Gets Busy

Ciprian HriscaCiprian Hrisca bets 130,000 and William raises to 430,000, Hrisca calls. The flop comes 1092 and Fry pushes a mass of chips forward for a bet of one million. Hrisca folds.

The very next hand, there is an all in situation. Fry holds A5 and Hrisca A6. The boards comes down KJ10J4 and it's not over yet. Chop chop!

Hrisca pushes all in again the next hand after a one million bet by Fry on a board of 8548, but a river is not to be as Fry folds.









Quick Break

EPT trophyJust a quick break and then Brit William Fry will go up against Romanian Ciprian Hrisca for the top prize of €595,839, the trophy, and the prestigious title.








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