Moolhuizen Triumphs Over Žerjav in HU to Win Record-Breaking FPS Main Event (€470,830)

The PokerStars’ 2024 calendar kicked off with a spectacular start as the European Poker Tour (EPT) Paris featured the record-breaking France Poker Series (FPS) Main Event. Hosted in the iconic Le Palais des Congrès in the heart of Paris, the event marked a significant moment in France’s history with an astonishing 4,149 entries.

It was Mateusz Moolhuizen, a professional player from the Netherlands, who emerged victorious in the record-breaking €1,100 FPS Main Event, clinching the title and a hefty €470,830 prize after a heads-up battle against Slovenia’s Blaž Žerjav.

Moolhuizen is no stranger to the pressures and the grinds of big-field tournaments. His poker resume boasts several wins, including the 2011 Unibet Open Malta Main Event for €117,000 and a €880 Bounty event at the Master Classics of Poker for €44,945 in 2013. However, one of his most memorable moments came in 2022 at the $1,500 NLHE Monster Stack event of the World Series of Poker (WSOP), where he was a card away from winning a coveted WSOP bracelet. Despite suffering a gut-punching two outer beat on the river, he secured $597,362, marking his best career result.

When asked about his secret to success in large tournaments, Moolhuizen humorously remarked, “Run good, I would say. Other than that, it’s looking them in the eyes, and you know if they are full of bull****.” His approach and vibrant personality were on full display at the final table, where he showcased his skill and his way of injecting charisma into the game. “I like to be colorful. Poker is full of robots, and I prefer to give poker a little bit of boost to make a stream more entertaining with a table talk,” Moolhuizen explained.

While Moolhuizen celebrates his victory, stay tuned for an exclusive interview with Blaž Žerjav, as the Slovenian pro shares his insights, experiences from the FPS Main Event, and what it was like to navigate through the largest field in the tournament’s history to secure a runner-up finish.

2024 FPS Main Event Final Table Results

PlacePlayerCountryPrize
1Mateusz MoolhuizenNetherlands€470,830
2Blaž ŽerjavSlovenia€294,530
3Yassine BaqalFrance€210,220
4Enis RouissiFrance€161,710
5Kacper PyzaraPoland€124,390
6Scott MargeresonUnited Kingdom€95,680
7Pierre MerlinFrance€73,580
8Julien DuveauFrance€56,590
9Pietro CorsiItaly€43,540

2024 FPS Main Event Final Table Action

France’s Enis Rouissi entered the final day as the big chip leader, with a stack more than double that of his closest competitors. At the opposite end, Blaž Žerjav and Scott Margereson were on the short end of the stick, looking for opportunities to double up and stay in contention.

Margereson’s tournament run ended in sixth place for €95,680 after his pocket threes fell to Moolhuizen’s pocket nines. On the flip side, Žerjav’s odds improved dramatically as he secured crucial double-ups. His first one came against the chip leader Rouissi, where Žerjav’s ace-five held up against Rouissi’s king-jack, a classic race situation that turned in Žerjav’s favor. His second double-up involved a pair of pocket eights besting Kacper Pyzara’s pocket fours.

Blaž Žerjav

Kacper Pyzara, who also streamed poker, CS:GO, and AmongUs on Twitch, pushed his short stack all-in with A10 against Rouissi’s A7. The initial board 2Q2 seemed to favor Pyzara, but the poker gods brought a 7 on the turn, shifting the lead to Rouissi and ultimately sending Pyzara to the rail in fifth place with €124,390.

At this point, Žerjav started accumulating chips, most notably through a bold bluff catch against Rouissi. Rouissi, holding 62, fired three barrels on a 9AQ38 board, only to be called by Žerjav’s Q10. Rouissi, a big chip leader only a few minutes ago, pushed all-in with pocket queens, only to be outdone by Žerjav’s pocket kings. With no help from the board, Rouissi was eliminated in fourth place, pocketing €161,710 for his efforts.

Yassine Baqal’s resilience was on full display as he faced off against Žerjav, managing to double up twice before succumbing in their final and third encounter. Holding Q10 against Žerjav’s KJ, Baqal found no help on a board of A2J810, exiting the tournament in third place.

Heads Up

The heads-up battle between Moolhuizen and Žerjav started on an even footing with 62,000,000 chips each. Dutch took the early chip lead and extended it in a key moment of the heads-up. Žerjav limped in with Q4, and Moolhuizen checked his option with K10. The flop came down 943, and Moolhuizen, holding nothing but king-high and a backdoor flush draw, decided to check-raise. Žerjav called with a pair of fives.

The turn card 10 favored Moolhuizen in a big way, and Žerjav called his turn bet to see a river 2 as Moolhuizen moved all-in. After five minutes and some table talk between the two, as Žerjav learned Moolhuizen’s favorite food is sushi, he ultimately decided to fold.

In the final hand of the day, Moolhuizen pushed all-in with A7 and was called by Žerjav, who held KQ and nine big blind stack. The board ran out 105562, sealing Moolhuizen’s victory with a flush and crowning him the FPS Main Event champion, while Žerjav secured a respectable second place with €294,530.

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