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EPT season 5 set to kick off with first ever EPT awards

The EPT’s biggest and richest ever season, the upcoming one, will kick off in a quite unprecedented manner.  The Barcelona event will be preceded by an inauguration ceremony, during which the first ever EPT awards will be given out. These awards will be broken up into 7 categories. The good news is that two of these categories shall be open for the general public, so you too will be able to cast your vote on your favorite if you so wish. The categories are: People’s Choice, Poker Writers’, Best Newcomer, Best Performance, Best PokerStars Qualifier (remember that PokerStars is the official sponsor of the EPT), Best Overseas Player and Player of the Year. The special panel that decides the winners of the 5 categories in which the public can’t vote will include Jon Duthrie, John Caldwell, Lee Jones (a former manager from PokerStars) and Victoria Coren.

The two categories in which members of the public will have a word, are the People’s Choice and the Poker Writers’ award. To vote, all you have to do is access the official homepage of the EPT and fill out a form.

The nominees for the different categories include some well-known names for fans of the live European poker scene. Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier is one of the nominated players for the Best Performance category.

Born in 1981 in France, Bertrand Grospellier is an ex-Starcraft player turned poker professional. His biggest poker achievements came in various EPT events, so I suppose it’s safe to say he owes his celebrity status to the EPT. He’s had 4 money finishes, made 2 final tables and he won an EPT title. His online poker achievements are equally impressive, given the fact that he was the first player to achieve Supernova and Elite Supernova statuses on PokerStars. He’s also finished in the money in 6 WSOP events.
Another picturesque presence amongst the nominees for the Best Newcomer award is Annette Obrestad. Known online as Annette_15, Obrestad is a 20-year old Norwegian poker player who is a living testimony that the ultimate online poker dream can indeed come true. Born in 1988, Annette Obrestad began her online poker career playing in freerolls. She started her first bankroll this way, and to this day, according to her, she’s never spent a nickel of her “own” money on poker. She won the WSOPE’s 2007 London Main Event, taking home GBP 1 million, and she’s also had a final table presence in an EPT event: she finished second in 2007 at the EPT’s Dublin event, where she took down a $431,000 prize. Given the fact that she is not yet old enough to participate in WSOP events (held in Las Vegas) or at WPT ones (held all over the US) her achievements list in those organizations is non existent.
Mike McDonald is the only player to be nominated in three different categories. Born in 1989, the Canadian is the youngest player ever to win an EPT event. He won the EPT German Open in Dortmund, pocketing $1.3 million.

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