Mustapha Kanit soars to #1 in Italy with $834k Win at EPT Barcelona High Roller

Italian poker pro Mustapha Kanit has been appearing regularly in major live poker tournaments all over the world since 2009. With each passing year, he seems to get better and better. Now, not even two-thirds of the way through 2015, he’s already collected over $2 million, including his latest win at the 2015 EPT Barcelona High Roller for €738,759 ($834,303).

Mustapha Kanit wins EPT Barcelona High Roller

Mustapha Kanit, 2015 EPT Barcelona High Roller – photo courtesy PokerStars

Knit’s performance on the felt has been spot-on this year. Of his career total 64 live event cashes, 10 of them have come in 2015. Likewise, of his newly acquired $4,629,838 career total winnings, $2,047,832 has been harvested this year alone–and we’re still in the third quarter!

Perhaps even more impressive for the young Italian, his latest victory at EPT Barcelona shoved Mustapha Kanit to the #1 spot on Italy’s All Time Money List, surpassing Max Pescatori ($4,079,534) by over half a million. And let’s not forget he also happens to be a stellar player on the virtual felt, having amassed $4,170,036, mostly from PokerStars under the moniker “Lasagnaaammm”.

Mustapha’s performance in Barcelona was exceptional, but it didn’t outshine his largest cash of 2015. That came back in May when Kanit outlasted a field of 54 entrants in the €50,000 EPT Madrid High Roller. In that event, the Italian would survive runner-up Michael Watson of Canada (2nd; $752,518) to pocket $1,048,243 (€936,500).

The 2015 EPT Barcelona High Roller called for a much lower buy-in than the previous leg in Madrid, asking €10,000 per entry. As such, the level of participation was significantly bolstered to a field of 401. Add to that 105 re-buys, and the prize pool quickly escalated to €4,908,200.

The top 71 players would receive a slice of the proverbial cash-pie, and several high-profile mentionables made the list. They include Davidi Kitai of Belgium (69th €18,650), Isaac Haxton of Las Vegas, Nevada, USA (36th; €24,600), Adrian Mateos of Spain (17th; €47,100), and Mike McDonald of Canada (12th; €60,900).

When the final table of the high roller event commenced, Kanit bored his way through the competition to take a substantial lead going into 3-way play. Kanit held 11.63 million chips to the 7.99 million of his nearest rival, Kuljinder Sidhu of the UK, and almost twice that of American Nick Petrangelo, 5.885mm.

Based on those counts, the final three negotiated a pot-chopping deal that actually worked out perfectly since the order of stack-ranks coincided precisely with the end results of the tournament. Petrangelo fell to the rails first, collecting €592,840 ($669,513), and was soon followed out by Sidhu, who stopped by the cashier cage to collect €640,000 ($722,772) for the 2nd place finish.

Mustapha proceeded to celebrate the win amongst his wildly cheering rail as he scooped the 1st place prize of €738,759 ($834,303), as well as the esteemed title of Italy’s highest winning poker player.

2015 EPT Barcelona €10k High Roller
Final Table Results

1 Mustapha Kanit €738,759
2 Kuljinder Sidhu €640,000
3 Nick Petrangelo €592,840
4 Niklas Astedt €336,700
5 Aliaksei Boika €265,600
6 Ami Barer €206,500
7 Gerald Karlic €155,600
8 Kevin MacPhee €108,500