It took until the early morning hours, but the 2017 PokerStars Festival Rozvadov€5,300 King’s High Roller has eventually determined a champion. At just after 4.30 a.m. local time, Vladimir Troyanovskiy defeated Eugene Katchalov in heads-up to lift the trophy and claim a payday of €52,208. Troyanovskiy cut a deal with Katchalov before the battle one-versus-one got underway, and the duo left €2,000 as well as the elusive PokerStars Festival High Roller trophy on the side with the Russian coming out on top.
Before the start of Day 2, another four players reentered the competition to bump the total field to 37 entries (including nine reentries), and the top six spots were guaranteed a portion of the €179,450 prize pool in the most expensive tournament of the festival at the King’s Casino near the border to Germany.
PokerStars Team Pro Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier was the shortest stack coming back for Day 2 and became the first casualty after just two hands. Grospellier three-bet shoved with pocket queens and was called by Vladimir Troyanovskiy and Aviv Meiri. Troyanovskiy then bet the turn of a king-high board to isolate successfully and showed ace-king for top pair, “ElkY” only had queens and bowed out. Right after, Pierre Neuville lost a flip with pocket jacks against the ace-king of Eugene Katchalov when an ace appeared on the flop.
Papa Guy’s pocket aces were cracked by the pocket kings of Eugene Katchalov and Marcin Chmielewski as well as Mateusz Chwastek, both from Poland, were sent to the rail next along with Almedin Imsirovic. Jonas Lauck, who reentered before the start of Day 2 and doubled up twice with ace-king, then dodged the ace-king of Czech poker pro Martin Kabrhel and held up with pocket sixes despite two over cards, a straight and flush draw for Kabrhel.
Steven Thompson, Tomas Jozonis and Vlado Banicevic then all failed to make the unofficial final table and bowed out in quick succession. Banicevic three-bet with pocket jacks and eventually called the four-bet shove of Andreas Samuelsson for 30 big blinds only to find himself up against pocket kings. Another king hit on the river and that was it for Banicevic.
Within one hour, Andreas Samuelsson twice picked up pocket kings and his stack was reduced to zero. The Swede first lost to the pocket aces of Andreas Eiler and then became the second casualty of the hot run of Vladimir Troyanovskiy in back-to-back hands. First, Aviv Meiri three-bet shoved with pocket tens and Troyanovskiy called with queen-jack suited with a jack appearing on the flop. Exactly one hand later, Samuelsson four-bet shoved with pocket kings and Troyanovskiy called with ace-king to find an ace from space on the river.
On the money bubble, Viliyan Petleshkov was the shortest stack by far and managed to double once before three-bet jamming with ace-jack. Vladimir Troyanovskiy called with ace-king suited and a king on the flop all but sealed it. Martin Staszko was the first player on the rail in the money when his ace-queen suited found no help against the ace-king of Tomas Soderstrom and that reduced the field to the last five already.
Andreas Eiler lost his momentum and fell to the last spot in the counts before open-shoving from the small blind with the jack-four off suit. Vladimir Troyanovskiy looked down on pocket queens from one seat over in the big blind and Eiler failed to get there on an ace-high board.
The run of Jonas Lauck then came to an end in fourth place. He open-shoved for just 11 big blinds with pocket fives and Eugene Katchalovreshoved with pocket eights. There was no miracle on the board and Lauck had to settle for a payday of €20,640.
Down to the last three, 28-year-old Tomas Soderstrom, who only started playing live tournaments in late 2015 and then finished third in the 2016 Irish Poker Open in Dublin, eventually claimed the very same position here in Rozvadov as well. Soderstrom shoved for 10 big blinds from the button with king-nine and Vladimir Troyanovskiy called with ace-ten in the small blind. An ace hit the flop and the Swede was drawing dead on the turn.
Both Eugene Katchalov and Vladimir Troyanovskiy were almost even in chips and agreed to an ICM deal, but the prestigious trophy had to wait another two and a half hours before being lifted into the air. Troyanovskiy fell back and doubled twice, the second time with ace-six suited versus pocket eights, before pulling into a dominating lead. Eventually, Katchalov shoved with nine-eight suited and Troyanovskiy called with queen-jack suited. A ten-high flop gave Katchalov middle pair and his opponent had a ton of outs with an open-ended straight flush draw. Another diamond on the turn completed the flush for Troyanovskiy and that was all she wrote.
That marks the end of the PokerNews live reporting from the €5,300 King’s High Roller, but the action recommences in just a few hours. As of 2 p.m. local time, the second of four starting days of the €1,100 Main Event gets underway. Day 1a saw 183 participants already and that brings the tournament on par with the excellent turnout of the previous PokerStars Festival in London at the end of January.