PokerStars Qualifier Tom 'Hitthehole' Middleton Wins EPT 10 Barcelona

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PokerStars Qualifier Tom 'Hitthehole' Middleton Wins EPT 10 Barcelona

Tom “hitthehole” Middleton has won the EPT Barcelona Main Event - Spain’s richest ever poker tournament - for a massive first prize of €942,000.

Middleton, who was chip leader for the last thee nights of the €5,300 event, is a high-stakes online player with numerous big scores to his name, including third in a WCOOP $500 rebuy event. He also has a string of live tournament results with winnings totalling nearly $1 million. He won his seat to EPT Barcelona on PokerStars in June.

The 26-year-old from Leeds beat Finnish pro Kimmo Kurko heads-up. The pair cut a deal with Kurko taking €750,000 for his runner-up finish. 
A total of 1,234 players competed, creating a €5,984,900 prize pool. As well as his champion’s title, cash prize and trophy, Middleton also wins a stunning watch from luxury Swiss brand Slyde, the Official Watch Sponsor for EPT10 Main Events.

Asked how he felt about winning, he said “Delighted!” He now plans to celebrate “at the nearest bar” with a large group of friends who supported him throughout the final, including Team PokerStars Pro Jake Cody and EPT Vilamoura champion Toby Lewis.

As well as Middleton, there were three more PokerStars qualifiers at the final: Denmark’s Kresten Nielsen (who finished third), Luca Fiorini, who won his seat on PokerStars.it (4th) and PokerStars.fr’s “TV Star” Benoit Gury (5th). Spanish hopes for a first ever EPT champion were thwarted when Alejandro Perez from the Canary Islands bubbled the final.

Among the 183 players to to make the money were Alex Stevic, the first EPT champion who finished 86th for €12,700, as well as Team PokerStars Pros Christophe De Meulder, Victor Ramdin, Leo Fernandez and Toni Judet. 
Spanish football star Gerard Pique played the Main Event for the first time; he failed to cash in that event but finished 19th in the €10k High Roller for €21,950. Other stars who took part at EPT Barcelona included ex-Norwegian international footballer John Carew and Spanish golfer Sergio Garcia in a €1k side event.

Nearly 300 players won their seats to the event online with PokerStars, and 30 cashed, taking home €2,256,400 between them. They included EPT9 Online Qualifier of the Year Anaras Alekberovas, who was fourth last season and 13th this year. A further 72 players won their seats on the site in the very popular live satellites. 
Since the EPT first visited Barcelona - Event 1, Season 1 - the total prize pool for the Main Event has swelled from just over €200,000 to nearly €6 million - and today’s €942,000 first prize totally dwarfs the €80,000 won Stevic in September 2004.

EPTLive broadcast every single day of the Super High Roller and Main Event - in up to 12 languages - with a wealth of special features and side event coverage. The event was also filmed for television. 
Season 10 certainly got off to a phenomenal start in Barcelona with a record-breaking turnout for almost all events at the Barcelona Poker Festival.

For the second time, the EPT joined forces with national Estrellas Poker Tour to create a mega 11-day Poker Festival at Casino Barcelona. All in all, there were 9,167 entries at this season’s Barcelona Poker Festival - nearly double the turnout of last season. More than 3,200 unique players took part with €17,001,650 awarded in prize money. 
The EPT kicked off with the televised €50,000 Super High Roller tournament. Russian player Vitaly Lunkin won the event and received a stunning bracelet from sponsor Shamballa Jewels as well as his €771,300 first prize.

EPT Warsaw champion Joao Barbosa won the €5k NL Turbo for €70,900, putting him at the top of the Portugal all-time money list, while Austrian Thomas Muhlocker won the €10k High Roller for €390,700 and also received a watch from luxury Swiss brand Slyde.

Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu was runner-up in that event, which gave him enough points to take the lead in the Player of the Year race on the Global Poker Index. The €330 Ladies Event was won by Croatian Full Tilt Poker Ambassador Hana Soljan.

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