Live updates from day one, level eight of the EPT London High Roller event brought to you by Stephen Bartley, Howard Swains and Simon Young.
Blinds: 500-1,000 (100 ante)
We’re now on a 15-minute break and we’ll get on with some housekeeping. Chip-counting, in other words.
10.33pm: The raising machine
Sammy George has moved on to ElkY’s table, which they also share with William Thorson and Joe Cada. This one could get tasty.
On George’s very first hand, ElkY raises it up to 3,000. “It’s the raising machine,” observed George before mucking.
10.31pm: Coren on the up
Vicky Coren has been tweeting maniacally about her up-and-down day, slumping to a short stack, then doubling up with aces and then hitting her starting stack of 50,000. At time of writing, her most recent tweet is 40 minutes old, decrying her table position among a host of big stacks. But on a recent wander past, she had about 140,000, so things seem to be going very well now. No doubt a new tweet is imminent and we can find out how things got that way.
10.30pm: Steady Eddie
It may seem as though we’re neglecting the man leading this thing, Adolfo Vaeza, because his chip count has been at 295,000 for about three hours. But I’ve just been to check on the amiable Uruguayan for the fourth time in the past 180-odd minutes, stood and diligently counted his chips again, and what do you know, he’s still got 295,000.
10.25pm: Per has peers
Well scratch one Ummer. After valiant attempt to set his tournament on fire he did, but in the bad sense. It’s now burnt to a crisp. It was made that way in a pot worth close to 200,000.
ElkY started it, making it 3,000 pre-flop which Joe Cada called before Ummer made it 11,500. ElkY then raised to 31,500 as Cada stepped aside. With the chain reaction reaching meltdown Ummer moved all-in with pocket kings, ElkY called with ace-king. The flop brought two aces and a five, the turn and river a seven on each. Ummer is out. ElkY moves up to 195,000.
10.20pm: Per peerless
Per Ummer has doubled up again, this time through Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier. ElkY had raised pre-flop to 3,000 which Ummer called from the small blind. On the 6♠4♠2♦ flop Ummer checked before ElkY made it 4,800. Ummer then raised to 11,000 before ElkY moved all-in. Ummer called showing pocket sixes to ElkY’s pocket kings. The ace on the turn and seven on the river were harmless. Ummer now up to 85,000.
10.15pm: Kagawa doubles
Masaaki Kagawa doubled up through Bryn Kenney, leaving the American scratching the felt. The Japanese player had an up-and-down straight draw with his Q-J against Kenney’s top two, kings and tens. The nine on the river was very good for Kagawa but disastrous for Kenney. He’s still in, but down to less than 10,000. Kagawa is up to about 30,000.
10.10pm: Tuck in
There was an all-out PokerStars eat-all-you-can cannibalism buffet going on a few moments ago when the Team PokerStars Pro duo of Humberto Brenes and William Thorson got to a flop with the PokerStars-sponsored November Niner Joe Cada.
In fact, they’d got all the way to the turn with about 6,000 in the pot, and the four cards revealed: Q♦6♣9♦9♣. Cada checked, Brenes bet 5,000, Thorson folded and Cada now raised another 11,500. Brenes agonised but eventually folded, yielding the pot to Cada.
At around this point, another November Niner Kevin Schaffel dropped by for a good bit of railing. At the moment, he is able to stand at the side of a poker tournament without anyone so much as shaking his hand. That kind of anonymity will be over soon, once the World Series final table stuff hits our screens.
10.01pm: Um and Ummer
Per Ummer just doubled up, his pocket sevens surviving against pocket sixes. “I folded six-seven,” said Humberto Brenes before the board was dealt, but that made no difference. 8♠10♦2♠9♦Q♠. Ummer back to around 40,000.
9.45pm: Texting to victory
Vicky Coren, who types text messages in between playing hands – her thumbs working like pistons, made it 2,400 from under the gun. The only action she gets is from Joe Hachem in the small blind and Henri Kettunen in the big. They call and get a 8♣Q♠6♦ flop in return. The blinds check but Coren keeps firing, 3,500 which Hachem calls while Kettunen folds. Now a 3♥ on the turn. Hachem and Coren check before a K♥ river card. Hachem checks, Coren made it another 3,400. Hachem considered this for a minute and called. Coren showed her cards – K♠J♠. Hachem shook his head, using a chip to flick his cards to the muck. Coren up to 58,000 now.
9.35pm: Another level
We’re into level eight. This and a couple more and we’re done for the night. Here’s a picture of Humberto Brenes blowing a bubble by way of celebration.