He started the day as the chipleader and he stayed that way throughout the final table and in the end he won every single chip in play. This morning Sebastian Homann will have woken up €254,746 richer and can call himself the WPT Marrakech Main Event Champion!
The German's Curriculum Vitae may not read as well as some of the more well-known poker players but Homann has still put in some impressive results. According to his entry in the Hendon Mob database, Mr Homann had previously cashed in six major live events, with entry fees ranging from €600 up to €2,000, with each cash being a final table finish, two of them outright wins. However, he was still looking for that first massive cash to give him more freedom to travel the circuit. He has it now.
Everyone who reached the final table was guaranteed to take home €19,920, not bad for three day's work, and the first to collect theirs was Patrick Muleta. Around half an hour after the final table had started, Muleta looked down and decided AcJh was good enough to play for all his 250,000 stack. With blinds at 6,000/12,000 and a running ante of 2,000, Muleta moved all in preflop from early position, however, he did not bank on Felix Oberauer waking up with a dominating AsQs behind him. He made the call and when the final table ran out Ah-4d-3h-4s-7c, Muleta was eliminated in ninth place.
Julien Labussiere was the next player to head for the rail, around an hour later, when he moved all in from the cutoff for 342,000 chips holding KsKh. The overwhelming chipleader, Homann, made the call with AdTs and was rewarded for his gamble when the flop came down Ad-Ts-Jd. The 4c on the meant Labussiere was drawing extremely thin and when the 2s showed up on the river it was curtains for Labussiere.
The table played six handed for another two hours before not one but three players busted out in quick succession! First to go was the Swede Johan Williamson, who was eliminated when he raised Homann's opening bet of 50,000 to 135,000 and received a call from the German. The flop came down 4d-3c-8d, Homann checked, Williamson bet 165,000 and then quickly called when Homann moved all in. Homann held 6d6h, which somehow stayed in front of the AdKd of Williamson as the turn and river came the Qh and Th respectively.
Ten minutes later and Dominik Nitsche was heading for the cashier's cage to pick up his prize money of €36,220. With the blinds now standing at 12,000/24,000/4000a, Nitsche moved all in for 450,000 from the button and must have known he was in bad shape when Homann re-shoved to isolate him. Nitsche turned over 7h6h, needing a small miracle against the KhKs or his opponent. No help came on the Tc-4s-Qc-8c-7c board and the 2009 LAPT Argentina winner was busted out, leaving Homann with three-quarters of the chips in play!
Five became four just moments later when Sebestien Compte open-shoved from the button and fellow short stack Guillaume de la Gorce called off his remaining 270,000 from the small blind. De la Gorce turned over 9c9d, which were way in front of the red pocket fives of his opponent. No miracle two outer on the 3s-Qh-9s flop, nor on the Jd turn or 2d river, and with it, de la Gorce was eliminated in fifth place, worth €54,334.
Felix Oberauer was next to go in a cruel hand involving Homann. No less than three pots had been split involving Oberauer but he will be wishing his exit hand was a fourth! Homann opened to 65,000 under the gun, Compte folded on the button but Oberauer shoved and Homann snap-called. With the cards in their backs it was revelaed it was one of poker's coinflip scenarios, with Homann's JhJd holding a slender advantage over the AdKs of his opponent. However, the jacks fell well behind on a Qc-Jc-Th flop but then took an unassailable lead when the Qs fell on the river. The meaningless 5s on the river completed the hand and took the tie down to three-handed.
Those three players battled it out for almost 90 minutes before one was eliminated, that dubious honour going to Compte, who got his money in good with AhQc against Guillaume Cescut's JhTs but then fell behind on a 3s-6c-Tc flop and even further behind when the Td peeled off on the turn. The inconsequential 7h on the river completed the hand and took the tournament heads-up!
Going into heads-up, Homann held a two-to-one chip lead over Cescut but it still took him 40 minutes to defeat him. In the final hand Cescut raised to 125,000 and Homann called and then checked the Jd-4s-3s flop. Cescut then bet 150,000, Homann check-raised to 375,000 and then instantly called Cescut's shove! Cescut turned over As4c for a pair and an overcard, whilst Homann held Js9h for top pair. The turn was the Kc and the river 3c, meaning Homann was cowned champion and Cescut would have to make do with the €135,831 on offer to the runner-up.
Much will be said about the disappointing turnout of just 222 players, down 194 on the previous year, but Homann's aggression and victory should be commended and I doubt it is the last we have heard from the talented German