The PokerStars European Poker Tour's (EPT) 6th season started on September 4th, 2009 with the beginning of EPT Barcelona. Usually marking the start of the European Poker Tour, the Spanish stop of the EPT actually comes as the 2nd stop in season 6, following the EPT Kyiv last August 2009. Always one of the EPT's most popular events, PokerStars is expecting as many as seven hundred participants to travel to Casino Barcelona for the tournament.
Last year, Team PokerStars Germany's Sebastian Ruthenberg followed up his 2008 World Series of Poker Stud Hi-Lo bracelet win by taking home the title and 1,361,000 1st place cash prize. It was no easy task, considering the final table featured fellow 2009 WSOP bracelet winner Davidi Kitai and European Poker Tour 4 San Remo champion, Jason Mercier, who had an opportunity first multiple title holder at the final.
Mercier said that it became his personal goal when he found out going into Day three last year that no one had even won two European Poker Tour titles. Mercier said that he was very frustrated with his 6th place finish last year, especially with how certain card hands are played out when they were 9-handed. He added that he was very lucky that he was able to ship the High Rollers in European Poker Tour London to become the first ever to win 2.
Mercier stated that Bertrand Grospellier won the High Rollers at the PCA to become the second one to do it but it gives him some additional motivation to become the first poker pro to win three. With Mercier finishing in 6th place and Kitai finishing in 3rd place, Ruthenberg took a 5-1 chip lead into the heads-up showdown and made quick work of Irish poker pro Fintan Gavin to win the tournament.
With a slew of the best poker players in the world in Spain for the tournament, a repeat for Ruthenberg should prove challenging. But with a 3-way chop in a preliminary tournament already under his belt at the Casino Barcelona, Jason Mercier feels good about his own prospects in the event. Mercier said that he is looking forward to the main event and hopes that he will have a good performance.
09/22/2009 22:24 PM