Zamani, Karmatckii net six-figure paydays

The World Series of Poker Circuit and European Poker Tour both paid out big money earlier this month, as they crowned their latest main event champions.

We’ll start with the WSOP Circuit, which played its latest $1,675 main event at the Planet Hollywood Casino in Las Vegas. The event drew 610 entries for a prize pool of $915,000. When the final card was dealt, Benjamin Zamani was the last man standing, adding a WSOP Circuit championship ring to his two WSOP bracelets.

Zamani started the final day of the tournament third in chips but quickly moved into the chip lead after sending two of his opponents to the rail. Once he had the chip lead, the domination began. He continued building his stack as opponents fell around him. When only two remained, Zamani entered heads-up play with a near 20-to-1 chip lead on his opponent, Ben Palmer.

Heads-up play couldn’t have been any shorter as it lasted only one hand. On the final hand of the tournament, Palmer went all-in pre-flop with J-2 suited hearts and Zamani called with 10-7 suited clubs. The flop looked good for Palmer when it showed Ac-Kd-Jd. However the turn card – Qh – did him in as it gave Zamani a straight. The river was rags – 3s – giving Zamani the hand and the win. For first place, Zamani cashed $192,152, while Palmer received $118,849 for second.

Karmatckii wins EPT Sochi main event

While Zamani was dominating the field in Las Vegas, Arsenii Karmatckii was on the way to a six-figure cash in the EPT Sochi main event at the Sochi Casino and Resort in Russia.

The main event had a buy-in of 192,000 Russian rubles, or roughly $3,300 US. The tournament had 861 entries with the top prize being 27.3 million rubles, or $478,451 US.

Karmatckii is from Russia and the final table was nearly all local with Russian players taking up all but one of the seven seats. When only two players remained, it came down to two Russian players heads-up – Karmatckii and Victor Shegay.

When heads-up play began, Karmatckii had a near 4-to-1 chip lead. He continued to build his stack until he held a 9-to-1 chip lead. On the final hand, his Q-10 topped Shegay’s J-8 suited when another 10 hit on the flop.

For the second-place finish, Shegay received 16.5 million rubles, or $290,225 US.