At the Merit Royal Diamond Hotel Casino and Spa, Gilles Simon took top spot and $1,042,000 in the $5,300 Main Event of the PokerStars European Poker Tour Cyprus. This victory is particularly noteworthy given that Simon was playing $10 buy-in online tournaments just a short time ago.
Andrea Dato, who gave Simon a run for his money, ended in the second spot, taking home a prize of $652,200. The final table’s dynamics were intriguing. Simon faced a significant chip disadvantage, with Dato having more than double his chips. Yet, he navigated the challenge and secured his win.
Support from Dutch fans was evident throughout the event. They cheered Simon on, especially given his previous achievement as the first winner of PokerStars’ ‘Dare2Stream’.
During a post-win interview, Simon expressed his feelings about the intense competition. “It was very close and I think it was just very much for everyone involved,” he shared. “Everyone felt the pressure, which grew with each passing day. While there were moments of doubt about some decisions, I believe I played well enough to get to the heads-up and secure the win.”
Simon also shed light on his transition from Twitch streaming to professional poker. “I chose to focus on my skills,” he remarked. “While streaming had its charm, events in my personal life coupled with significant poker milestones like winning the Platinum Pass, made me confident about taking poker up as a full-time profession.”
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