Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Poker [Print without images]

Friday, August 10, 2012
Rettenmaier goes back-to-back at WPT


Marvin Rettenmaier
Marvin Rettenmaier became the first player to win back-to-back World Poker Tour titles with the victory at the Merit Cyprus Classic

Somehow, 2012 just continues to get better for Marvin Rettenmaier. The German kicked off the World Poker Tour's 11th season with a victory at the $4,400 buy-in Merit Cyprus Classic, becoming the first player in history to win back-to-back WPT events. Rettenmaier's victory over the field of 329 was worth $287,784, including a seat into the 2013 $25,500 WPT Championship where he'll defend his title from earlier this year. Rettenmaier has now earned four cashes of six figures (or better) in 2012 and is currently in third in both the Bluff and CardPlayer player of the year races.

"This is totally mad," said Rettenmaier to the World Poker Tour. "Now I am heading to Philadelphia to see if I can make it a triple at the WPT Parx Open Poker Classic. I have to keep going when things are going this well. I think I need to rebook my flight, though [since I'll miss Day 1A]."

The first WPT event at Parx ($3,500) began on Friday and offers two Day 1 flights. Rettenmaier's flight into Philadelphia left London on Friday afternoon.

According to the WPT, entering Day 4 with 18 players remaining in the event, Rettenmaier was 15th and held one-fifth of the stack owned by chip leader Erik Cajelais. Rettenmaier doubled through Robert Mizrachi, then eliminated the oldest Mizrachi brother to put himself among the leaders with a dozen players remaining.

The run for back-to-back titles then turned in the opposite direction in a hurry. Rettenmaier ran kings into the aces of Kemel Sevevi and lost a big pot against Sam El Sayed, leaving him down to his final eight blinds with 11 players left. Just as quick as his stack disappeared, it was rebuilt, and with 10 to go, Rettenmaier was in second place. Strong play during the final few hours of the night left Rettenmaier in third at the six-handed final table.

Under the WPT lights, Rettenmaier was determined capture his second WPT title. The table traded pots during early action, but then Rettenmaier took over as soon as he eliminated Kiryl Radzivonau in sixth (Q-Q over J-10). Joseph El Khoury (fifth), Victor Paraschiv (fourth), Ran Azor (third) and Artur Voskanyan (second) all fell at the hands of "Mad Marvin" and his lead was so massive that the table essentially played out with five players looking for second.

Rettenmaier has more than $3 million in career tournament earnings and is fourth on Germany's all-time money list.

Here are the final table results from the $4,400 Merit Cyprus Classic:

1. Marvin Rettenmaier ($287,784)
2. Artur Voskanyan ($184,020)
3. Ran Azor ($118,360)
4. Victor Paraschiv ($87,610)
5. Joseph El Khoury ($65,770)
6. Kiryl Radzivonau ($52,590)

Small blinds: PokerStars made the first of three payments to the Department of Justice to close on the purchase of Full Tilt Poker on Thursday. The new Full Tilt Poker will be up and running by Nov. 6, 2012. … Doyle Brunson turned 79 on Friday. … South Point is poised to be the first operator of online poker in Nevada. The Nevada Gaming Control Board recommended they receive an interactive gaming license when the Nevada Gaming Commission meets next on Aug. 23. … The Kahnawake Gaming Commission released a statement regarding the settlement between the Department of Justice and Blanca Games (Absolute/UB). … Pinnacle Entertainment sold the Global Poker Index rankings system to Zokay Entertainment. … The Poker Players Alliance sent a letter to the Department of Justice asking for players FTP balances to be returned, not deposits. … The European Poker Tour will award the "High Roller of the Year" honor after the ninth season to the player who earns the most points over the 16 events with buy-ins over 10,000 euros. … Brandon Barnes won the $5,300 buy-in Florida State Poker Championships main event for $212,500. Other notables at the final table include Adam Levy (second), Tommy Vedes (fourth), Stuart Paterson (fifth), Darryll Fish (sixth) and Micah Raskin (seventh).