At the beginning of the final table, it was two big name pros who had taken over the lead at the European Poker Tour Campione. But in the end, it was the lesser known Jannick Wrang who took home his first ever EPT title, along with a €640,000 payday.The final table was a long and grueling battle. The relatively even stacks combined with the long structure and a short penultimate day meant that the players all went into the final table with plenty of chips to play with. It took almost an hour and a half for Robin Ylitalo to become the first player eliminated, finishing in 8th place for a prize of €54,000.After that, the other short stacks slowly saw themselves falling by the wayside. Stefano Puccilli, the last Italian hope for the title, was eliminated in 7th, while Mario Nagel hung on for a while, but was ultimately knocked out in 6th place about three hours later. Both Koen De Visscher and Balazs Botond made valiant runs, but were knocked out in 5th and 4th places, respectively.That left the three favorites to battle it out for the EPT title. For over an hour, the action was fierce between the trio, but it was France’s Fabrice Soulier who would ultimately wind up with the shortest stack. With few chips remaining, Soulier pushed all-in with KQ, and was called by the A6 of Wrang. The Frenchman was able to pair the flop, but an ace on the turn put him behind, and a blank on the river meant Soulier was forced to settle for a €240,000 third place prize.The left Wrang with approximately a 3-2 chip lead over Olivier Busquet, the man considered by many to be one of the world’s toughest heads-up players. Wrang expanded his lead to around 3-1 before the final heads up confrontation.On that hand, Busquet was in good shape with A9 against Wrang’s A6. The A35 flop didn’t help Wrang much, but did give him a backdoor flush draw. And when hearts hit on the turn and river, Wrang had completed that flush, earning him his first major title. Busquet earned €430,000 for his runner-up finish.
Jannick Wrang Victorious in Campione
Jannick Wrang Victorious in Campione April 1, 2012