After three days of play at the PokerStars European Poker Tour Baden Event, 39-year-old Englishman Julian Thew took down the top prize of €670,800, outlasting 281 other players and a lightning-fast final table to claim the victory.
Final table chip leader Vladimir Poleshchuk went on a tear to start the day, knocking out the first three players at the final table, looking, for all the world, like an unstoppable force. In the very first hand of the final table, Anton Alleman raised preflop and Poleshchuk called. The flop of hit Alleman's hard, but when he led out, Poleshchuk raised him all in with , and Alleman called. The turn was the , and Alleman was done in 9th place (€60,000).
Ted Lawson was Poleshchuk's next victim, pushing in with and getting called by Poleshchuk's . The flop came down , and gave Poleshchuk the nut flush. Lawson went to the rail in 7th place for €83,600.
Manfred Hammer lasted a few more hands, but fell to Poleshchuk within the first orbit when he pushed all in preflop with . Poleshchuk called with , and caught an Ace on the flop. No 5 for Hammer and he was eliminated in 6th place (€105,000).
A massive 30 minutes passed before the next elimination, as the pace of play slowed slightly from the opening flurry. Thierry van den Berg found himself on the short stack and pushed all in preflop with - , and found one caller in Thomas Fuller, with . No help on the board for van den Berg, and he was eliminated in 5th place for €132,900.
Once play reached four-handed, the chip stacks looked like this -
Vladimir Poleshchuk - 988,000
Julian Thew - 693,000
Thomas Fuller - 690,000
Denes Kalo - 469,000
In one massive pot after the dinner break, Julian Thew took over the chip lead when he crippled Thomas Fuller after outdrawing Fuller's flopped set. Fuller raised preflop with , and Thew and Poleshchuk both called. When the flop brought the , Fuller led out, Thew raised and Poleshchuk folded. Fuller re-raised all in with his bottom set and Thew called, tabling for a pair with the flush draw. The on the turn left Fuller drawing thin to a full house, and the on the river left him crippled. He was eliminated on the next hand when Denes Kalo's pocket sevens held up to eliminate Fuller in 4th place for €160,820.
After the big hand with Fuller, Thew had a big chip lead, as the chip stacks looked like this -
Julian Thew - 1,816,000
Denes Kalo - 750,000
Vladimir Poleshchuk - 255,000
Poleshchuk wasted no time getting his last few chips in the middle, pushing all in with . Denes Kalo called with , and the board came down , giving Kalo the straight and sending Poleshchuk home in 3rd place (€225,000).
Once play was heads-up, it only took about an hour before Thew's chip advantage wore down Kalo and all the chips went in the middle for the last time. On a board of , Thew's was good enough to hold off Kalo's for the win. Denes Kalo was eliminated in 2nd place (€375,000) as Julian Thew took down the PokerStars EPT Baden event for €670,800.