GUKPT Goliath Smashes Record to Become Biggest Event Outside of the US

The Grosvenor UK Poker Tour (GUKPT) Goliath has proved once again that tournament poker outside of the US is thriving.

Florian Dimitrie Duta.

Romanian pro Florian Dimitrie Duta has won the largest live poker tournament outside of the US. (Grosvenor)

Continuing the momentum set by the World Series of Poker (WSOP) in Las Vegas this summer, the Goliath has broken its own attendance record. After opening the registration desks on July 28, the cashiers collected a total of 7,584 entrance fees over the course of seven starting flights.

Goliath Smashes Targets

With players flocking to Coventry’s Ricoh Arena in their droves, the first-place guarantee of £100,000 always looked beatable. Eventually, when the final £125 buy-in was collected, the top prize was pushed to £101,450.

According to the statistics, the 2018 GUKPT Goliath will go down as the largest live poker tournament outside of the US. In breaking the record, this year’s event also surpassed the target set by the Goliath back in 2017.

On that occasion, 6,385 entries were collected prior to Elliot Marais taking the title and £85,760. This time around, Romania’s Florian Dimitrie Duta was the man whose name will go into the record books.

Heading into the final table, Duta was one of the most experienced players. With deeps runs at EPT and WSOP circuit events, as well as a £350,000+ win at the Wynn Summer Classis this year, he was the man to beat.

Duta Becomes the Goliath

Despite some early pressure from the likes of Mariusz Czech and Warwick Brindley, Duta was able to close out the tournament with A♣6♠. Following a brief reset, a quick heads-up match between Duta and Brindley ensued.

Within three hands, the match was over after Duta shoved all-in from the button. With only 9bbs, Brindley called and found himself ahead with A♠8♣.

However, that advantage was soon lost as the 6♣ on the river gave the Duta an unbeatable pair. After the match, the Romanian spoke to the GUKPT’s live reporting team and described his latest win as “awesome.”

In addition to breaking another record, this year’s GUKPT Goliath saw the unveiling of a new poker pro. As part of a year-long promotion, Grosvenor has partnered with former cruiserweight and heavyweight boxing champion David Haye.

In what’s come to be known as David vs. Goliath, Haye will learn the nuances of poker from a team of pros before taking part in the 2019 event. Given the ex-boxer’s love/hate relationship with the British public, there’s a strong chance next year’s GUKPT Goliath will see even more people turn up in a bid to knockout Mr Haye.

GUKPT Goliath 2018 Main Event Result

1st Florian Duta – £101,450

2nd Warwick Brindley – £73,100

3rd Mariusz Czech – £52,500

4th Bogdan Bolboceanu – £37,150

5th Ricky Read – £25,650

6th Craig Mariner – £17,950

7th Ioana Belet – £14,050

8th Gordon Paterson – £11,600

9th Joe Stoyles – £10,000

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