€25,000 No-Limit Hold'em I

Francisco Benitez Goes Back-to-Back; Wins EPT Barcelona €25,000 No-Limit Hold'em (€341,565)

BrandonBloom • Nível 22: Blinds 10,000-20,000, 20,000 ante
Francisco Benitez

Uruguay’s Francisco Benitez is having a dream start at the 2022 PokerStars and Barcelona©Casino European Poker Tour, as he has gone back-to-back in high roller events by winning the €25,000 No-Limit Hold'em for €341,565 following a heads-up ICM deal with Argentina’s Ramiro Petrone.

Benitez is just coming off a victory in the €10,200 Mystery Bounty event for €224,080 with collected bounties. The day after that win, he entered this €25,000 No-Limit Hold'em event, and he ultimately emerged victorious to claim another trophy, along with a total of over half a million euro across the two events.

This high roller event attracted 50 entries to create a €1,200,500 prize pool, and the top seven finishers received a piece of it.

€25,000 No-Limit Hold'em Final Table Results

1Francisco BenitezUruguay€341,565*
2Ramiro PetroneArgentina€306,705*
3Paul PhuaMalaysia€174,070
4Artur MartirosianRussia€132,060
5Pedro GaragnaniBrazil€102,040
6Erik SeidelUnited States€81,030
7Timothy AdamsCanada€63,030

*Denotes Heads-Up ICM Deal

An Awesome Start

“I feel very good. It’s an awesome, awesome start,” Benitez exclaimed following his second victory in back-to-back events.

He found himself making it all the way to the end of the tournament with fellow South American Petrone, and the two players agreed to an ICM deal which gave Petrone €306,705 for the runner-up finish.

“He’s my friend, and we talked about getting heads up together, ‘blah, blah, blah', and (then we actually) did it.”

Ramiro Petrone - Francisco Benitez
Ramiro Petrone - Francisco Benitez

Although Benitez has some bigger online results, his victory the other day was his biggest live cash at the time, and now, he has already topped that with an even bigger cash.

“It’s amazing results… it’s not different to me from online. I have my biggest cash online, but of course, I feel very good.”

After his triumph the other day, the Uruguyan player said: "(It was a) good start and (gives me) more confidence for the rest of the tournaments.” Now, he may have all of the confidence in the world as he continues to play a full schedule of events in Barcelona.

Final Table Action

Nine players returned to the felt for the second and final day, yet only seven players would claim a piece of the prize pool.

France’s Jean-Noel Thorel came into the day as the short stack, and was the first casualty as he was eliminated by Benitez.

Spanish pro Adrian Mateos was looking to make an early run in Barcelona, but he ran kings into aces and was eliminated on the money bubble in the massive cooler.

Adrian Mateos Bubbled
Adrian Mateos Bubbled

The seven remaining players were now in the money and action started to pick up. Petrone found a double-up with a superior kicker to stay alive, and soon after, he eliminated Timothy Adams in seventh place when Adams couldn’t win a flip.

Poker Hall of Famer Erik Seidel came into the day as the chip leader, but he was left short after being on the losing side of Petrone’s recent double. He found himself at risk against Petrone with ace-queen against ace-three, but a trey on the flop sent the legendary player to the rail in sixth place.

Brazil’s Pedro Garagnani had only a few big blinds on the money bubble but was able to chip up and make it into the money. However, his run came to an end in fifth place when his ace-king found no improvement against pocket nines.

Artur Martirosian took the lead in four-handed play, but quickly found himself without any chips. He lost a huge pot with pocket jacks against pocket kings in a hand which gave Benitez all of the momentum, and soon after, Martirosian lost the rest of his chips against the Uruguayan eventual victor and was eliminated in fourth place.

Fourth-Place Finisher Artur Martirosian
Fourth-Place Finisher Artur Martirosian

Not long after three-handed play began, Petrone secured a double with ace-queen against Benitez’s ace-ten, leaving Paul Phua as the clear short stack. A bit later, Phua ended up getting his chips in with the best hand against Benitez, but the board ran out to give Benitez the winner, and Phua was sent to the rail in third place.

After the third-place elimination, Benitez held more than sixty percent of the chips in play, and the two remaining players discussed and agreed to an ICM deal. As a result, the two South American players each scored their biggest-ever live cash, according to The Hendon Mob, as Petrone received €306,705 and Benitez took home €341,565 along with a second EPT trophy.

That wraps up the coverage of this €25,000 No-Limit Hold'em event, but stay tuned as PokerNews continues to bring action of select EPT Barcelona events from the coast of Catalonia at Casino Barcelona.

Tags: Adrian MateosArtur MartirosianErik SeidelFrancisco BenitezJean-Noel ThorelPaul PhuaPedro GaragnaniRamiro PetroneTimothy Adams