4.50pm: Juanda to the break
A quiet spell on table three, with John Juanda initiating most of the action. Three hands pass, each raised by Juanda who showed ace-king in one, ace-queen in the next (“It’s getting worse,” he’d said).
Then as the break approached Per Ummer opened for 105,000 from the button which Juanda called from the big blind for a flop of K♥A♦3♥. Juanda checked to Ummer who bet 150,000. Juanda called for an A♥ turn card. Now Juanda made it 200,000. Ummer, who could pass as a villain with his cropped white hair, tanked for a while, the others at the table disappearing for the break. Eventually he folded, keeping his stack at the 2,150,000 level. Juanda up and up as they head into the break. — SB
4.45pm: End of the level
Level 25 has come to an end. The final 11 players have a 15 minute break. — MC
4.40pm: Perrins’ dreams ended
Matt Perrins is our 12th place finisher taking home £35,000. Tom Marchese raised to 105,00 from the hijack before Perrins moved in for 881,000 from the button and Fernando Brito moved in for 890,000 from the big blind. Marchese stepped out of the way and left them to it. Showdown:
“Ace from space” shouted one of Perrin’s railers but the board came a disastrous 7♣J♠3♦6♠Q♣. It was just one of those days for Perrins where nothing went right. — MC
4.28pm: Ummer takes no prisoners
Per Ummer cuts a dash at the table with his close-cropped silver hair. He gives a look of not wanting to be messed with – even if your name is John Juanda.
Ummer started this one off with a raise to 110,000 from the button, and Juanda came along for the ride from the small blind. Both players checked the Q♠4♣8♠ flop, but on the 6♥ turn Juanda bet 140,000. Call from Ummer. On the Q♦ river Juanda tried again, 178,000 this time. Ummer gave it a good think, then decided to re-raise to 400,000. That was enough to put Juanda in his place, and he mucked. — SY
4.20pm: Nulli and void
A short while ago pocket sixes cost Robert Nulli 190,000 and he’s just been eliminated by Kyle Bowker who held pocket sixes. Nulli raised from the button and then called all-in for 950,000 when Bowker shoved from the SB. Showdown:
The board ran 3♥5♠8♠7♥10♥ to propel Bowker up to 5.1 million. He lost the chip lead to Juanda for about two minutes but has it back again now. Nulli takes home £30,000 to Italy for his 13th place finish. — MC
4.10pm: Juanda aggression
Two years ago John Juanda came second in the EPT London High Roller event. A few minutes ago the American took a giant step towards going one better than that, and winning this main event. It came at a cost, and paying Juanda’s bill was Team PokerStars Pro Thomas Bichon.
Bichon had opened for 105,000 and Juanda called from the button. The flop came 2♣Q♦10♠. Bichon bet again, 125,000, causing Juanda to pause. He took the two towers of chips – one blue, one yellow – at the very front of his stack and pushed them forward, a raise to 260,000.
Bichon looked on, absolutely still, his leather jacket zipped up to the neck, aviator glasses, dark stubble, insignia on his sleeve. He looks like a fighter pilot, shot down and under interrogation. His only movement was to raise to 415,000. Juanda called.
On the 6♥ turn Bichon announced he was all-in. Totalled up it was 804,000 more. Juanda asked for conformation and then began separating the amount from his stack, quietly to himself. If this were a London bus you’d change seat and get off a stop or two early. He called.
Juanda turned over A♣Q♥, Bichon Q♠J♠.
Bichon muttered something, standing on the 2♦ river card. A hand shake and a good luck from him. The last of the Team PokerStars Pros out in 14th. Juanda up to 4.6 million. — SB
4pm: Perrins not happy with chop
Robert Nulli raised from under the gun to 95,000 and it was folded all the way around to Matt Perrins in the big blind, who announced all-in for 750,000. Nulli wasted no time calling, and found his A♣Q♠ was in a race with Perrins’ 5♥5♣. It started badly for the Italian when the flop came 7♦5♦4♥ to give Perrins a set. But the 6♠ turn and 8♣ river straightened the board for a chop. — SY
3.45pm: Bichon decks the Hall
John Hall opened this pot with a raise to 95,000 and got a call from Thomas Bichon in the big blind (the only remaining Team PokerStars Pro). On the 4♣3♦A♣ flop, Bichon checked, Hall bet 125,000 – and now Bichon raised to 340,000. Hall didn’t like that one bit, and mucked. — SY
3.40pm: Hall of Pain
John Hall just doubled up through Per Ummer in a hand that leaves both players with 2 million chips.
Hall opened for 75,000 from under-the-gun and Ummer called from the cut off. The flop came 5♣3♥A♥ and Hall bet 95,000. Ummer immedaietly slid 200,000 into the middle, causing Hall to look again. He then announced all-in, words that prompted Ummer to nod sideways. It was no easy call for the Swede who spent several minutes in thought before calling what would be 698,000.
Hall turned over 5♥5♠, to audible “ooohs” from those watching. Ummer paused and then turned over A♠J♦.
The turn came J♠, giving Ummer outs, but the rier Q♥ didn’t help.
“Never easy is it?” said Hall. “Never easy.” — SB
3.37pm: Level up
Welcome to level 25, folks. Blinds are now 20,000-40,000 with a 4,000 ante. — SY
3.35pm: Excitement… for moment
David Vamplew raised to 60,000 and Matt Perrins moved all-in for 696,000. Vamplew took a while before making the call:
A nice spot for Perrins to double up, but the board ran A♦K♦7♠7♥4♦ for a split pot. Move on, nothing to see here. — SY
3.30pm: Hachem hounded out
The very next hand John Junada was at it again. This time it was Team PokerStars Pro Joe Hachem that felt the force. He pushed for his last 350,000 from the button before Juanda pushed as well, from the small blind. The BB folded to leave it as a heads-up showdown:
Hachem : A♠5♦
On seeing Juanda’s hand Hachem ironically said “Jeez John, do you ever get any hands?”
The board ran 2♦J♦8♣10♠9♠. Hachem shook Juanda’s hand and wished everone luck before he left . Juanda really on a roll and is up to 2.7 million now. — MC
3.25pm: Jannick Wrangled
Jannick Wrang opened for 70,000 which John Juanda raised to 210,000. When the action returned to Wrang, who announced all-in for 550,000, Juanda was happy to call.
“It’s my favourite hand,” said Juanda, turning over J♦J♠.
“King-ten, ‘Thomas Kremser’, is not so good,” quipped tournament director Thomas Kremser.
The board ran 7♦Q♠5♣6♠2♦. Wrang tapped the table, wishing players good luck. — SB
3.18pm: Back to two tables
Players are back and we’re down to two tables. This is how the players now line up, together with their approximate chip counts:
Artur Wasek, 1.1million
Rumit Somaiya, 1.6million
Per Ummer, 3.2million
Jannick Wrang, 560,000
Thomas Bichon, 1.35million
Joe Hachem, 400,000
John Juanda, 2.25million
John Hall, 1million
Tom Marchese, 2.4million
Steven Levy, 1.45million
Matt Perrins, 750,000
Robert Nulli, 980,000
Kyle Bowker, 4million
Fernando Brito, 1.2million
David Vamplew, 1.6million
Kayvan Payman, 1.7million
We’re back in action. — SY
With that, we are down to 16 players. That means the middle of the three tables is being broken and the surviving players there are filling the other two. They are all on a quick 15-minute break. — SY
3.04pm: O’Shea crashes out
John O’Shea is the latest to go. It was folded around to him on the button and he shoved for around 340,000, getting a call from Artur Wasek in the big blind. O’Shea was in great shape with A♠J♠ against Wasek’s A♣5♠, but the board ran 5♣J♣4♣3♣3♦ to give Wasek a flush.
With that, O’Shea said his farewells to the rest of the table, while Wasek, something of a man mountain, let out a noise like an excited horse. Don’t tell him to his face, though. — SY
3pm: On the Marchese
Tom Marchese had taken a chunk out of Kyle Bowker’s chip lead. John O’Shea started proceedings with a raise to 65,000 from under-the-gun before Marchese made it 190,000 to go from the next seat. Bowker cold called the three-bet from the BB and O’Shea called as well to go to the 5♣7♠6♥ flop. Bowker led for 150,000 and was only called by Marchese to see the 6♣ river. Bowker announced he had jacks but he lost out to Marchese’s Q♣Q♠.
After the hand O’Shea is down to 420,000, Bowker is down 3.88 million and Marchese is up to 2.7 million. — MC
2.50pm: No Chance
A massive hand just came up from out of nowhere, one that has got the room talking and sent the overnight chip leader Chance Kornuth to the rail.
It has been a rough day for Kornuth, battered around from the start, losing chips first to Tom Marchese and then to Kyle Bowker. It would be Bowker that would take what Kornuth had left.
Kornuth opened for 62,000 in the cut off which Bowker raised 150,000 more in total from the button. The action was back on Kornuth who thought things through for a moment then moved all-in. When Bowker called in a flash the writing was on the wall for Kornuth, who turned over J♦9♦ to tackle Bowker’s K♠K♥.
The cameras arrived as players on other tables caught wind of what was going on. Kornuth stood, took a sip from a giant cup of coffee and awaited the board.
6♣Q♠7♠7♦3♣. Kornuth had pushed his stack away on the turn, defeated. He’d started the hand with nearly 2 million and all that now belongs to Bowker. He’s up to 4.4 million. — SB
2.45pm: Double up for Brito
Fernando Brito doubles up, getting all-in on the river of a J♦5♣6♦10♦J♣ board against David Vamplew. Vamplew only had A♠K♦ for ace high, and what made that worse was that Brito had pocket sixes for the flopped set. That puts Brito up to 1.20million. — SY
2.40pm: Still slugging it out
The battle between Tom Marchese and Chance Kornuth is becoming a feature of today’s play. They’ve at it again. This time Marchese made it 70,000 and Kornuth re-raised to 176,000. Call.
The flop was K♣5♣9♠ and Kornuth bet 78,000 before Marchese, the bigger of the two big stacks, pushed it up to 262,000. Kornuth was having none of it, moving all-in and getting an insta-fold. — SY
2.35pm: Brito rockets to double-up
Matt Perrins has doubled-up Fernando Brito after a pre-flop all-in showdown. Perrins raised and then called the shove from Brito with 6♠6♣. Brito tabled A♠A♦ and the board ran 8♦3♠7♦5♣2♣. The man from Portugal is up to 700,000 and Perrins is down to 650,000. — MC
2.30pm: Juanda piles on the pressure
John Juanda is up to 1.8 million after forcing Rumit Somaiya off hand. Somaiya raised from under-the-gun and Juanda called. The flop came 8♦10♣2♦ and Juanda check-raised Somaiya’s 110,000 c-bet up to 235,000. The Brit called before he folded to Juanda’a 400,000 lead on the J♥ turn. Somaiya folded leaving himself with 1.6 million. — MC
2.22pm: Hall still in the room
Tom Marchese raised pre-flop from middle position and John Hall shoved all-in with several towers of yellow chips. Marchese called, showing K♣K♠ while Hall turned over 9♦9♠. But it wasn’t over for Hall who caught a nine on the flop, the board running 9♣Q♣A♦3♣6♠. 207 sat back down. — SB
2.10pm: Bowker takes his Chance
Kyle Bowker has won a massive 2million pot to knock back Chance Kornuth into the pack. Cornuth had raised from under the gun to 62,000, but in the next seat along Bowker made it 150,000. Back to Kornuth, who now made it 188,000 on top. Now it was Bowker’s turn to be uber-aggressive – and his move was to go all-in for another 860,000.
Kornuth thought for a good few minutes and elected to make the call. He’ll wish he hadn’t:
The flop was devastating for Bowker, coming 6♦10♥J♣ and matching a pair for Kornuth. But the turn was K♥, shooting Bowker back ahead, where he remained on the 3♣ river. With that, Bowker moves to more than 2.1million, while Kornuth is back down to 1.5million. — SY
1.44pm: End of the level
That’s the end of level 23. Players are now on a 15-minute break. — SY
1.43pm: Hachem all-in
Team PokerStars Pro Joe Hachem and Rumit Somaiya got it all in pre-flop. Hachem, who was at risk, had A♣K♠ and was up against A♥K♥. “I think I’d prefer it if you had ace-queen,” said Hachem. “I’ll tell you if I like my hand after the flop.”
In the event, the board ran 4♥3♠J♠K♦8♣ and they chopped it. — SY
1.40pm: Bari busto
Allen Bari is the latest player to bust. Tom Marchese raised to 51,000 before Chance Kornuth three-bet to 132,000 from the cut-off and Bari moved all-in for just over 500,000. Marchese moved all-in as well prompting Kornuth to fold.
As Bari tabled 9♦9♠ he said: “Ace king, one time,” but he was out of luck as Marchese tabled Q♣Q♠. The board ran 5♦6♣4♣K♥3♠ to bust Bari and send Marchese to 2.6 million. Bari takes home £21,000 for his 19th place finish. — MC
1.35pm: Still time to play charity event with an overlay
It’s the second day one of the big charity event here at the Hilton Metropole in aid of Cancer Research UK. There’s a £100,000 guarantee and there’s looking likely to be a nice overlay, so plenty of value there while helping out a good cause. Registration will remain open for a few hours yet. Get to Edgware Roadto take your seat.– SY
1.30pm: Brito brilliant
As Zito was departing Fernando Brito was doubling up, all-in with 4♥4♠ getting a call from Robert Nulli who showed 10♠K♥. The board ran J♠2♥2♠4♣10♥. Brito plays on. — SB
1.25pm: The elimination of Gustavo
The Main Event is down to 19 players after the elimination of Gustavo Zito. The Italian moved all-in from the cut off after an early position bet of 56,000 from Joe Hachem. Next to Zito was Rumit Somaiya who called the all-in, turning over A♠A♣ when Hachem folded. Zito was out of his chair as he turned over A♦Q♦. The board ran 10♣9♣6♦A♥Q♠ sending Zito to the rail. — SB
1.20pm: Marchese wins a monster
Tom Marchese has won a massive 2million pot from Chance Kornuth. Marchese made it 50,000, Kornuth made it 88,000 on top before Marchese announced it would be another 200,000. Kornuth did not move a muscle, aside from checking back on his cards once more. He announced all-in and Marchese called in a flash:
Kornuth had him well covered, but losing would make a sizeable dent in his substantial stack – it would be a one million hit. The board ran 7♦3♣8♦8♠5♦ and Marchese raked in the monster to shoot him over 2million. Kornuth still well over 2million. — SY
1.15pm: Button versus big blind
The big stacked button never has a hand, right? When David Vamplew raises to 52,000 and you have 460,000 in the big blind with A♠10♦, you’re normally good, right? Not this time. When Keven Stammen moved all-in Vamplew made the call with A♦Q♥ after a count and his hand held through the 6♥5♣8♠5♠6♦. Another one lost. — MC
1.05pm: Kagawa departs
Another player departs, this time Japan’s Maasaki Kagawa, who shoved with 9♣9♦. He was called by Kyle Bowker who showed A♣K♠. The board was kind to Bowker, delivering the ace straight away, A♠8♣3♣3♥10♥. Kagawa, who came seventh in the high roller event here two years ago, departs in 22nd place. — SB
12.55pm: Pair beats Per
John Juanda and Per Ummer stared down at each other from opposite ends of the table. Both had checked the 4♣3♦9♠ flop for a 7♣ turn, at which Juanda bet 87,000. Ummer called for a J♠ on the river. Both checked; Juanda taking the pot with A♠4♠, sneaking past Ummer’s K♥A♣. — SB
12.50pm: Chad Brown busted
Three Team PokerStars Pros become two after the elimination of Chad Brown. Italian Robert Nulli opened from the cut off for 55,000 and Brown raised all-in with J♠10♠ on the button for around 200,000. Nulli called showing A♣K♦ and busted Brown on a board of 6♣6♥A♥4♠Q♦. Brown out in 23rd place. — SB
12.40pm: Burland out
Jamie Burland is out, getting all-in with pocket tens against Per Ummer’s A♥K♥. It was a huge race with Burland being all-in for around 700,000 – and Ummer won it when the board ran 7♠9♥8♥K♣2♠. Ummer is now chasing down Chance Kornuth’s chip lead. — SY
12.35pm: Chance would be a fine thing
It’s all about Chance Kornuth at the moment. He’s absolutely crushing his table. John O’Shea made it 42,000 and Artur Wasek called before Kornuth three-bet to 178,000. O’Shea looked a confident man, and announced: “Another 250,000 more,” moving one and a half towers of blue, 10,000 chips across the line. Wasek folded quickly but Kornuth announced calmly that he was all-in. O’Shea looked aghast, and folded.
A few hands later he was at it again. This time Tom Marchese made it 47,000 and Kornuth called. Kornuth then check-called Marchese’s 52,000 bet on the A♠3♠K♥ flop, and repeated the trick on Marchese’s 148,000 bet on the J♥ turn.
The river came J♣ and Kornuth checked again, this time Marchese checked behind. That was much to Kornuth’s annoyance, he had rivered a full house with K♠J♦. Marchese showed Q♠6♠ for the missed flush draw. — SY
BLINDS UP: 12,000-24,000 with a 2,000 ante.
12.25pm: Bichon barges to 1.6 million
First hand in and Joe Hachem tosses ace-king face up at Per Ummer,having raised pre-flop but subsequently finding no-one to call. Ummer, putting his chips in order, gave a short nod of acknowledgement. It’s a tricky table, featuring Ummer and Hachem but also John Juanda and Thomas Bichon, who was in action next.
Jannick Wrang made it 46,000 after the action was folded around to him in the small blind. Bichon was in the big blind and called for a 8♣10♠6♥ flop. Wrang checked to Bichon who bet 65,000, Wrang calling it. It was same again on the 7♠ turn, Wrang check-calling Bichon’s bet of 96,000. Then the river card 4♣. Wrang checked, Bichon checked too, turning over 7♣5♣.
Wrang seemed to hesitate, checking his hand to make sure he really couldn’t beat Bichon’s straight. He couldn’t. Bichon up to 1,660,000 while Wrang drops to 800,000. — SB
12.15pm: Chance taking no prisoners
Chip leader Chance Kornuth is weilding his big stack with devastating effect. Artur Wasek took him on just now and came away with a bloody nose. And Wasek is a BIG bloke. The man from Poland opened with a raise to 47,000 before Chance re-raised to 106,000. Call.
The flop came 10♠2♥A♦ and Wasek checked, Chance bet 38,000 and Wasek check-raised to 130,000. Call! On the 7♠ turn Wasek fired out 120,000, but then Chance took it slow and steady before re-raising once more, this time to a hefty 498,000.
Wasek looked disgusted, like a boy who’s mother had taken away his favorite toy. He mucked. — SY
12.07pm: Brown pushes….
and gets no callers. Chad Brown, the Team PokerStars Pro, was the shortest stack at the start of the day and moved his 200,000 or so over the line when he was under the gun. Everyone folded, and Brown turned over A♦Q♦. — SY
12.05pm: Welcome to Day 4…
12.01pm: Any time
Player are unpacking their bags and making their stacks once more. We’ll be under way shortly. — SY
11.35am: Cranking it up
Just 24 players remain in the EPT main event, each now guaranteed at least £21,000. The plan today is to get down to our final table of eight players, no matter how little or how much time that takes.
Top of the tree is Chance Kornuth with more than 2.3million, but behind him are a bunch of guys capable of taking down the huge £900,000 first prize, including Team PokerStars Pros Joe Hachem, Chad Brown and Thomas Bichon.
Today’s seat draw, meanwhile, is lurking here. — SY
PokerStars Blog reporting team (in order of soccer team performance this weekend): Simon Young (Ipswich Town, win), Stephen Bartley (Tranmere Rovers, draw), and Marc Convey (Crystal Palace, lose)
Photos (c) Neil Stoddart and Mickey May.