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Gary McGinty Takes Down the PokerStars Festival Dublin Main Event

Gary McGinty

Gary McGinty won a €1,040 High Roller for €26,625 in Dublin in April 2017, which at the time was his biggest ever live tournament cash. Now McGinty can brag of a €91,808 score after he topped a field of 544 players in the €1,100 PokerStars Festival Dublin Main Event.

2017 PokerStars Festival Dublin Main Event Final Table Results

Place Player Country Prize
1 Gary McGinty Ireland €91,808*
2 Jim O’Callaghan Ireland €74,797*
3 Antonio Merone Italy €78,554*
4 Sean Prendiville Ireland €71,161*
5 Ivan Tononi Italy €35,780
6 Declan Connolly Ireland €28,110
7 Michael Graydon Ireland €20,980
8 Alexander Bretherton United Kingdom €14,530

*reflects a four-handed deal

McGinty progressed to Day 2 of the tournament with a 20 big blind stack after playing in the turbo-structured Day 1c, but by the time the 199 players had been whittled to a more manageable 16, McGinty had 2,835,000 chips to bag up, or 118 big blinds.

The money bubble burst on Day 2, during the 16th level of play, when Sacha Lebreton and Paul Carr entered a preflop raising war that resulted in Carr being all-in and at risk of elimination. Carr held a pair of red kings and was amazingly way behind to the pocket aces in the hand of Lebreton. The five community cards didn’t even hint at coming to Carr’s rescue and he bust in 80th place, locking up €2,320 for the surviving 79 players; Lebreton would eventually bust in 16th place for €6,180.

Day 3 saw 16 players return to the Regency Hotel but four hours after the restart only the official final table of eight remained.

First to bust from the final table was Alexander Bretherton who moved all-in with ace-king only to lose a coinflip against the black tens in the hand of Antonio Merone, before former PokerStars Supernova Elite Michael “BIGMICKG” Graydon jammed with ace-king and lost to the Merone’s pair of queen.

Sixth place went to Irish grinder Declan Connolly who, at the 40,000/80,000/10,000a level, moved all-in for 1,420,000 from the small blind with what turned out to be king-ten and ran straight into Jim O’Callaghan’s pocket rockets. Connolly paired his ten on the flop, but no further help came on the turn or river.

Ivan Tononi then lost a coinflip against Sean Prendiville to bust in fifth place. Prendiville opened to 220,000 in the cutoff, Tononi three-bet all-in for 950,000, or 9.5 big blinds, and Prendiville called. Prendiville showed ace-eight of hearts and Tononi a pair of red fours. The queen-three-ten flop was no help to Prendiville and while the king of spades on the turn gave Prendivlile some outs to an inside straight, it was a relative brick at the time. Sadly for Tononi, the jack of hearts on the river gifted Prendiville a Broadway straight and left four players in the hunt for the title.

All four of the remaining players were close in terms of their chip stacks so it was no surprise they paused the tournament clock and discussed a deal. An ICM-based deal was agreed that left €13,000 for the eventual champion.

Prendiville didn’t get his hands on that extra €13,000 because his ace-seven failed to get there against the ace-ten of McGinty, and then Merone pushed his queen-ten into the dominating ace-queen of McGinty to send the tournament into the heads-up stage.

McGinty held a 13,600,000 to 2,600,000 lead over O’Callaghan and the contest was over before it had chance to begin. O’Callaghan pushed his 2,600,000 into the middle with {Q-Spades}{6-Clubs} and McGinty called with {K-Clubs}{J-Hearts}. By the river the board read {K-Hearts}{A-Diamonds}{4-Clubs}{J-Spades}{7-Clubs}, eliminating O’Callaghan and leaving McGinty to be crowned the 2017 PokerStars Festival Dublin Main Event champion.

Another player finding himself in the winner’s circle was Max Silver, who triumphed in the High Roller event. Silver enjoyed a fortunate hand going his way when the tournament was five-handed. Three players, Silver, Helio Bandeira and Fraser MacIntyre, were all-in, Silver holding ace-king, Bandeira queen-jack and MacIntyre a pair of aces. Two kings on the flop won the hand for Silver and gifted him 1,500,000 of the 2,500,000 chips in play.

Silver went on to defeat MacIntyre heads-up to get his hand on €45,350, which will buy plenty of nappies for Silver’s baby girl who is due to be born any day now.

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