Serghei Lisii, 25, from Moldova became the champion of the MPNPT @ Battle of Malta 2019 Main Event and took home €247,167 alongside the coveted trophy. Having visited Malta for the first time, Serghei claimed his victory by surviving the 4,657 strong field at Europe’s biggest live poker tournament.
MPN: How are you feeling after winning the Battle of Malta 2019 Main Event, the biggest live poker tournament in Europe?
Serghei: I’m feeling good, didn’t notice a change in life yet but everything is ahead. I arrived home a few days ago to settle down and rest from people.
MPN: What was your strategy during the tournament? How did you find the field in the first flights?
Serghei: I played a lot online and studied with very strong and famous players, that’s why the field seemed rather weak to me and I made all decisions in favor of active play which ultimately paid off. It became a bit more difficult when there were two tables left because of the pressure of money and I started to make mistakes and lose chips at every level, but then luck hit me in time and I didn’t have time to look around as we were heads up.
MPN: How would you describe the heads up with Steven van Zadelhoff?
Serghei: Steven is obviously much more experienced and stronger than me (both mentally and physically LOL) but my slight advantage was in understanding that he underestimated me and didn’t expect such a game from me that I showed before we made a deal… I was able to level our chances and perhaps earn respect in his eyes after two hours of playing heads up. Steven turned out to be a very pleasant, friendly and cheerful person. I realized that it was a huge money for me and offered a deal which he agreed to equal conditions and I respect him for this. I began to play much worse just as he did after we made the deal, but luck and the spirits of warriors of Malta were on my side that day. Thanks to Steven for this battle!!!
MPN: Are you planning on playing other live poker tournaments in the near future?
Serghei: Yes, I plan to go to Rotterdam on November 13 to the WSOPC and then visit Amsterdam and MCOP series. I opened RedStar Poker yesterday and saw that they sent me €150 for a tournament that was in my package but I couldn’t play it in Malta and I decided to add a deposit and play satellites to Madrid… So maybe will see you there!!! If we talk about Malta and the future series of these organizers I can say that my friends and I will definitely visit this place because of their high level organization as well as loyalty to players. I have to tell you something funny: when we took pictures with Steven he accidentally broke his trophy but the organizers quickly replaced it as if they had anticipate such a situation. But that’s not all… My priority baggage with trophy was mixed up and sent as standard baggage when I was flying home in transit through Turkey. I think you already guessed what happened next. I opened the box with a broken trophy and thought – they’ve took away my memory… I called the representative person of Casino in Malta and said that my trophy was broken and asked to deliver a new one while I would cover all expenses. A few hours later I received a message that the management of the Casino ordered me a new trophy and all expenses were covered by the organization of the series. I’m surprised and very grateful. I want to tell everyone about this.
MPN: Do you know what you’re going to do with your prize money yet?
Serghei: I’ll play 445 tournaments at €555 buy-in level…! In fact, I don’t have any plans for making big purchases, I’ll just try to use this money to do what I couldn’t afford before. I’ll travel more, I’ll play offline poker more, I’ll take care of my health and finally I’ll try to get a visa to the US to visit WSOP.
MPN: What do you like doing in your free time, do you have any hobbies?
Serghei: I’ve been playing football for 15 years but stopped last year because of losing shape due to the fact that I spend a lot of time at the computer. I’m a big fan of Liverpool football club and several times a year I visit their away matches in the Champions League and probably this is my main hobby. I don’t miss any of their games and sincerely believe that they will win the title of Premier League this year. I am going to the restaurant with my friends today to celebrate my victory and watch the Liverpool Cup match.
Congratulations Serghei, hope we’ll see you at MPNPT Madrid next February!