PSPC Runner-Up Julien Martini on his Breakout Year in Poker

PSPC Runner-Up Julien Martini on his Breakout Year in Poker

Julien Martini is running deep in the EPT Monte Carlo Main Event.

Table Of Contents

  • Lucky in Poker and Love
  • Post-PSPC
  • Winning $3 Million

Stories abound of love found at the poker table, but pairing up after playing heads-up for a WSOP bracelet might be a new one. That’s a story that professional poker player Julien Martini can now tell.

It’s been a whirlwind of a year for the Frenchman Martini. Before 2018 began, he had under $160K in live cashes to his name. Now, the 27-year-old is a WSOP bracelet winner with over $4 million in career live earnings.

Lucky in Poker and Love

Since April 2018, Martini has won a $5K WPT Bellagio side event, a WSOP bracelet in $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better, finished third in the WSOP $10K Razz Championship, took second in the €1,100 EPT National at EPT Barcelona and carried his amazing run into 2019, finishing second in the $25K PokerStars Players No-Limit Hold’em Championship (PSPC) at the PCA in January.

"I won like the two biggest prizes of my life which is a bracelet and beautiful girl, Kate."

To say he’s had a breakout year is an understatement, and Martini is continuing to prove he’s here to stay. Here at the PokerStars and Monte-Carlo®Casino European Poker Tour, he already has three cashes and is running deep in the €5,300 Main Event after coming into Day 3 second in chips.

In his bracelet win in 2018, Martini defeated Seattle-based poker pro heads-up, and as the story goes, the two would later date.

"Yeah, I mean I won like the two biggest prizes of my life which is a bracelet and beautiful girl, Kate," he told PokerNewsSasha Salinger, also filling in some details on how he "trapped" her.

Julien Martini
Julien Martini played Kate Hoang heads-up for a WSOP bracelet in 2018.


For Martini, the nearly $3 million cash in the PSPC hasn’t changed too much in terms of his daily life. He’s still working hard every day to try to keep improving, though he can maybe afford to play a little less now.

"There’s no secret in poker: The more you work, the more you improve," he said.

"There’s no secret in poker: The more you work, the more you improve."

In terms of his status in poker, though, Martini is no longer under the radar, and most players — especially in France — know who he is now.

"I think everybody was watching this big event, the Bahamas event."

One result of the newfound poker fame is a new element of having to adjust to opponents playing differently against him.

"French people try new things against me. I’m like the guy to kill. But in the tournament like the EPT, other pros respect me more so I guess I just have a bit more fold equity, which is obviously a good thing in tournaments."

Winning $3 Million

With all the buildup for the biggest $25K event in history, the PSPC lived up to the hype attracting 1,039 total entries which included 320 Platinum Pass freeroll winners, two of whom made the final table of eight. Martini was one of the more experienced players at that table, and especially after sending early on by cracking his aces with ace-queen suited, the majority of the finale was all Martini.

The Frenchman was also winning the heads-up battle with Platinum Pass winner and professional poker player Ramon Colillas until the latter jumped out in front after one key hand.

In that defining hand which neither Martini nor Colillas will soon forget, Martini flopped a flush with nine-six suited, only for Colillas to go runner-runner with queen-five to turn one flopped pair into a full house to double up for most of the chips.

Even so, after finishing runner-up Martini was content, telling afterwards, "It’s a big cooler, but it happens every day in poker."

At 27, Martini has a mature understanding of the game, and doesn’t stress about the close calls. As he said after the PSPC, "Trophies will come."

You can watch the PokerNews video with Martini from Day 2 of the EPT Main Event here:

Keep following the PokerNews live updates to see if a trophy will come for Martini in the EPT Monte Carlo Main Event.


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  • Martini might be the first to later date the person he beat heads-up for a bracelet.

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