After a week of poker in paradise, Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier claimed his first European Poker Tour title by winning the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, worth a cool $2 million! Grospellier outlasted a field of 1,136 players to take down the tournament, the largest in PCA history and join former winners like Team PokerStars teammate Steve Paul-Ambrose as PCA Champions.
Grospellier started the final table second in chips to David ‘The Dragon’ Pham, as the final table chip stacks looked like this as play began -
David Pham 7,390,000
Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier 3,060,000
Joe Elpayaa 2,755,000
Hafiz Khan 2,560,000
Kris Kuykendall 2,150,000
Richard Fohrenbach 1,855,000
Craig Hopkins 1,770,000
Christian Harder 905,000
Richard Fohrenbach picked up pocket Jacks, two hands out of three, early at the final table. They held up once against Joe Elpayaa’s pocket Tens, but fell in the second hand to Grospellier’s A-K. All the money went in preflop, and Fohrenbach lost his race on the flop when a King hit. He picked up $150,000 for his 8th-place finish. Grospellier took another scalp moments later when he got all in again, this time holding pocket Jacks of his own to Christian Harder’s . No help on the board for Harder, and he busted in 7th ($200,000).
Joe ‘bigegypt’ Elpayaa was the next player busted by Grospellier when he ran into Grospellier’s A-Q. The board blanked out, and Elpayaa went to the cage in 6th place for $300,000. After being card dead all day, Craig Hopkins pushed the last of his chips in the middle with from early position and found one caller in David Pham, who woke up in the big blind with pocket Tens. A Ten on the flop, and Hopkins was eliminated in 5th ($450,000).
David Pham started the day with a dominant chip lead, but Grospellier’s aggressive action early put Pham far behind. He called a preflop raise from Grospellier in the big blind with Q-5 and flopped gin when the board read . Both players checked, then Grospellier led out when the hit on the turn. Pham check-raised all in with his two pair, and Grospellier called with . A diamond on the river, and Pham was busted in 4th place ($600,000).
Kris Kuykendall kept his birthday celebration going one day extra, picking up a present in the amount of $800,000 for his third-place finish. Kuykendall got his last few chips in with and found himself up against Hafiz Khan’s . No help on the board for Kuykendall, who turned 25 the day before the final table, and he was eliminated by Khan’s Ace-high.
Once the heads-up match was started, it didn’t take Grospellier long to put his big stack to use bludgeoning Hafiz Khan to a 2nd-place finish ($1,094,976). In the final hand, Grospellier made a preflop raise only to find himself facing an all-in re-raise from Khan. After a moment’s thought, Grospellier made the call with pocket eights, and Khan tabled 9-3 for the steal attempt. When the board was done, Grospellier’s eights were good enough to bust Khan and give him the $2 million first prize!