Swedish best friends Robert Berglund and Rasmus Eriksson came to the 2016 Battle of Malta with the dream of making the final table together.
They accomplished that and so much more Monday night.
Berglund beat Irishman John Finnighan Linkins heads-up to take home €160,000, which was the single biggest payout in Battle of Malta history.
In addition Eriksson incredibly finished third for €67,000. Together the pair will take home €227k back to their hometown of Falun, Sweden.
Scandis Dominate Crazy Final Table
The Battle of Malta has always had a large Nordic presence but this is the first year the event featured a Scandinavian winner.
Not only did Sweden’s Berglund and Eriksson finish top 3 but Norway’s Robert Sverre Eik put up a good fight from the short stack to finish seventh for €29,000.
The other Swede at the final table, Jonas Hähnert, finished ninth to add €14,540 to the Scandinavian haul.
It wasn’t all about the Swedes at the final table as Ireland’s John Finnighan Linkins put in a strong performance that eventually earned him €110k for second place.
American student Lawrence Brandt, who was a long way from his home of Tempe, Arizona, also played very well to take 5th for €46,500.
Here’s a complete look at the final table payouts:
1. Robert Berglund, Sweden - €160.000
2. John Finnighan Linkins, Ireland - €110.000
3. Rasmus Eriksson, Sweden - €67.000
4. Gonzalo Pro Fernandez, Spain - €56.000
5. Lawrence Brandt, USA - €46.500
6. Flaviano Cammisuli, Italian - €37.500
7. Robert Sverre Eik, Norwegian - €29.000
8. Giorgio Ligasacchi, Italian - €21.400
9. Jonas Hähnert, Sweden - €14.540
Bonkers Three-Way All-In Chop
The final table was a rollercoaster for Spain's Gonzalo Pro Fernández who went from short stack to chip leader to out of the tournament in a series of incredible events.
Nothing was more spectacular than a three-way all-in that went south for Fernández.
Fernández was all-in with A♦ A♥ against American Lawrence Brandt with 8♣ 8♥ and Rasmus Eriksson with 9♣ 9♦.
The Spaniard had a very good chance to knock out both players and take an overwhelming lead in the tournament.
Instead the board ran out 5♣ 4♦ 3♥ 2♠ 6♠ to put a straight on the board and provide an unlikely chop and deny Fernández what could have been a tournament-defining hand.
Fernández ended up finishing in fourth place to take home €56,000.
Live Stream Brings Final Table to Life
It was another record-breaking year for the Battle of Malta with 1,813 entries to create a nearly €900,000 prize pool.
One of the many new additions this year was the final table live stream sponsored by Betsson, Betsafe and NordicBet.
The GPL’s Roland Boothby got in the booth with a rotating list of hosts to provide real-time coverage of the final table.
It turned out to be a spectacular final table to watch with the chip lead trading back and forth numerous times and intense action all around.
Hundreds tuned in on Twitch to watch the final table play out.
There was even a free roll on Betsson/Betsafe/NordicBet in conjunction with live stream that gave away a package to the 2017 Battle of Malta.
Watch Final Table Highlight Video
Today's final table was the most exciting in Battle of Malta history and you can experience it for yourself in just three minutes.
Check out the highlights below and check back tomorrow for a full recap of the 2016 Battle of Malta.