Another exciting high roller event concluded in the stunning city of Prague at the EPT festival, and it was Japanese player Tsugunari Toma who lifted the latest title worth half a million euros.
Having recently set the high roller scene alight, Japan’s Tsugunari Toma has cashed for almost $800,000 in the last fortnight, and is the toast of the famous Christmas market city after outlasting a stacked field for the biggest live result of his career.
Having earned over $2.2 million in his lifetime playing live poker alone, Toma is a new name on the lips of many poker fans, but the high roller circuit are starting to known him very well, such is the frequency with which he is appearing at final tables.
Having already won a single-day high roller event at EPT Prague just a few days earlier, Toma’s latest triumph saw him come into play behind the overnight chip leader Simon Lofberg, with 17 players from the 255 entries kicking off the final day action.
Sam Greenwood had already won a €25,000-entry single-day high roller and was still involved, but started the day short and left soon after taking his seat. He was joined in taking an early leave by players such as Thi Nguyen, Daniel Dvoress and Ludovic Geilich.
While big names were departing, the eventual winner scored a crucial double, Toma’s pocket jacks doubling through the tens of Lofberg in what would turn out to be a sign of things to come much later in the tournament.
The final table started with a bang, Rainer Kempe first busting fellow high roller regular George Wolff then joining him on the rail in 8th place. These players were followed out of the tournament by the second Japanese player at the final table, Masato Yokosawa, in 7th place busted by the powerful Austrian Pokercode founder, Matthias Eibinger.
Once Chinese player Yunye Lu eliminated Italy’s Gianluca Speranza in sixth place, the event was building to its conclusion and it felt like a race to get heads-up. Toma held the lead and Lofberg wanted to regain control of the table, busting Lu in a big pot to move to within a four-bet of the leader. It would be Eibinger who eventually busted in 4th place, flopping quad sevens against the unfortunate Austrian before flushing him out of the competition in the same orbit.
With three left, it took no time at all to conclude matters. Danish pro Simon Pedersen busted when he shoved with pocket jacks and was called by Lofberg whose ace-eight met with another ace on the flop.
The heads-up match was, perhaps surprisingly, a quick ending too. Toma four-bet shoved in the very first hand to lay his cards on the table and when he moved all-in in the next hand with ace-eight, Lofberg had the easiest of calls with ace-king. The board was unkind to Lofberg, however, as the very hand he had profited from to bust Pedersen came back to bite him, an eight on the flop ending the tournament and confining him to a runner-up reward of €352,230. Toma had the top prize of €523,120, but most importantly, the title.
EPT Prague €10,300 High Roller final table results:
|1st||Tsugunari Toma||Japan||€ 523,120|
|2nd||Simon Lofberg||Sweden||€ 352,230|
|3rd||Simon Pedersen||Denmark||€ 248,340|
|4th||Matthias Eibinger||Austria||€ 201,340|
|5th||Yunye Lu||China||€ 159,290|
|6th||Gianluca Speranza||Italy||€ 120,950|
|7th||Masato Yokosawa||Japan||€ 88,300|
|8th||Rainer Kempe||Germany||€ 64,560|
|9th||George Wolff||United States||€ 53,430|