The 2019 Ante Up Poker Tour Spring Poker Classic (and that’s a mouthful for anyone to say) came to a conclusion this past weekend, with Lithuanian player Mantas Stikelis taking the first-place position. After outlasting 319 other entries altogether, Stikelis took home a prize of $18,189 from the overall total of $95,700. That prize pool also smashed the guarantee of $75,000 that was in place for the tournament.
Stikelis will also be on the cover of the March issue of Ante Up Magazine, whilst in the process of winning, he secured himself a space in the Ante Up World Championship of 2019.
Despite the fact that he still resides in Lithuania, he usually doesn’t spend much of his time there. Instead, he opts to travel the world and follow poker tournaments here, there and everywhere. “I’m on there in summer”, the winner said of his home in Lithuania. Stikelis stated that the country doesn’t have so much poker gameplay, so during the winter months, he frequently finds himself going from country to country and stopping to play online poker. “I don’t play high stakes though”, he said.
Speaking of his victory in the Ante Up Poker Tour Spring Classic, Stikelis said that he was raising while most other players spent their time folding. So, he said it became quite the “easy field”.
On the final day of the tournament, proceedings began with a total of 49 players returning. A minimum cash prize of $526 was guaranteed to 45 of them, but the money bubble burst during the first level on the second day. This was all due to Marcela Hinojos being eliminated by Eric O’Connell.
Other Details of the Tournament
Mantas wasn’t the only one getting his name mentioned after the tournament, because the second-placed player, Jesus Sicaeros of the United States took home a total of $13,159. Meanwhile, Earl Barron, also a US player, finished in third position and managed to receive $8,852 in prize money.
Stikelis was the one who started the unofficial table, operating as the chip leader, though. It was from the get-go that he began placing pressure on others around the same table, eliminating Daniel Breeze first of all. It didn’t take long for the Lithuanian pro to get rid of Johnny Large as well as Gregory O’Donahue, who finished in ninth and eighth place, respectively.
That double knockout was followed by the aforementioned Earl Barron taking out competition from Andrew Conway and Michael Kahn.
The final match between Stikelis and Sicaeros only went to two levels, with the former holding a lead over his competition. Sicaeros did manage to garner some chips to start off with, gaining a bit of hope in the process. Yet, Stikelis managed to outdo his “all in” move with ace-ten, revealing a top two pair with ace-queen snap.
As far as the next Ante Up Poker Tour is concerned, this will take place as the Ante Up World Championship, which Stikelis has earned his place to with his victory. That will then be followed by the Ante Up Norcal Classic in July.