EPT London: Sun still shining

October 02, 2009

In the background Boris Becker does another piece to camera about the high roller, you may even have seen it on EPTLive. But in the foreground though is another PokerStars SportStar – Fatima Moreira de Melo.

She may be less high profile than Becker, whose hair shines the same colour gold as De Melo’s wrist watch, but De Melo is a woman of many talents. Not least in that resume is career as a Dutch international hockey player, winner of over 100 caps (*appearances* to our American friends) and sporting awards in her native Holland. She’s also a musician and television presenter and meets the requirements superficial males like for their hanging calendars. Next on her radar is a poker career and right now she’s in a good spot for a few lessons. On her immediate right is reining World Champion Peter Eastgate.

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Fatima Moreira de Melo

Eastgate only has a month to run on the lease to that title. When the next November Nine gather in Las Vegas in four weeks time they’ll play to dethrone the Dane. Eastgate, for his part, doesn’t seem the type to look back. Actually he looks tired, so looking forward is probably tough too. But he still resembles a kid, like when he showed his bracelet to the world looking like a boy trying on his dad’s watch. Here he wears three layers, the same boy told to dress warm before going outside.

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Peter Eastgate

“I’ve never folded kings before,” he says, throwing out some hard earned wisdom, but people listen as he explains he’s never found the right circumstances. Then he takes another pot, this one against Andrea Gandini, before returning to a conversation with De Melo.

When a player busts out they hardly notice. Darus Suharto points this out, giggling to himself, clearly a man who has made peace with his own sixth place World Series near miss. His year paralleled Eastgate’s in some ways, cashing again in a PCA side event, the same event Eastgate won, but it’s only the winner people remember.

There’s still a month until the Eastgate name gives way to the next in line for adulation. Right now he sits with 83,000. It would be quite a way to mark the anniversary.

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