Updates from day 2, levels nine and ten of EPT Prague, brought to you by Stephen Bartley, Marc “The Conv” Convey, Howard Swains and Simon Young.
Latest selected chip counts are on the chip count page. The EPT tournament structure can be found on the EPT tournament structure page. Full details of the payout structure and prizewinners is on the payout structure and prizewinners page.
Level 9: 500-1,000 (100 ante)
Level 10: 600-1,200 (100 ante)
2.50pm: Another one down
Level ten has been and gone. Short break before level eleven is upon us.
2.45pm: Levi v De Mel
Interesting one this. The turned board was K♠10♣K♥4♥ and Priyan de Mel bet 3,200. Nicolas Levi re-popped it to 15,000 – call. On the J♠ river, de Mel seized the initiative and bet 16,000, sending Levi into the tank for four minutes. He did his best to get a read off the Brit, even asking the rather old-school “Do you want me to call?”, but that was met with just a shrug of the shoulders. Eventually Levi came to the conclusion that he was beat, and folded.
2.40pm: Table of death
This is one of the toughest tables I’ve witnessed in a long time at an EPT. Tell me where the value spot is in this line-up?
Seat 1. Jeff Sarwer
Seat2. Kristian Kjondal
Seat 3. Nic Levi
Seat 4. John Kabbaj
Seat 5. Priyan De Mel
Seat 6. Manuel Bevand
Seat 7. Alain Roy
Seat 8. Evgeniy Zaytsev
Seat 9. Juha Lauttamus
The first hand I witnessed saw Evgeniy Zaystev raise to 3,000 from the cut-off and Kristian Kjondal call from the big blind to see a 10♦3♣K♠ flop. Kjondal check-called a 4,000 bet and a 9,500 on the 3♥ turn before folding to a 32,000 bet on the K♦ river.
The next hand Priyan De Mel opened proceedings with a 3,000 raise from under-the-gun that was called by Alain Roy, Juha Lauttamus and John Kabbaj in the big blind. De Mel then led out for 8,000 on the 7♣6♣8♦ flop and was called by Roy before Lauttamus raised to 17,400. Kabbaj folded, De Mel called but Roy moved all in for 24,400 total. Both opponents called and then De Mel moved all in on the 8♠ turn. The move seemed to shock Lauttamus but he called off his remaining 70,000 chips.
De Mel – K♦K♠ for two-pair.
Alain Roy – 9♣10♣ for a straight and flush redraw.
Lauttamus – 10♥9♥ for the same straight.
The river came 5♥ despite De Mel asking for the board to be paired. De Mel down to 70,000, Roy up to 51,000 and Lauttamus up to 190,000.
2.20pm: Kravchenko out in three-way coup
Team PokerStars Pro Alex Kravchenko is out. He open-shoved with 11 big blinds with pocket eights, then Jakob Karlsson, a PokerStars player from Sweden, called behind. But it didn’t stop there, as Swedish PokerStars qualifier David Sonelin moved all in, called by Karlsson.
Karlsson had aces, and they stayed ahead of Sonelin’s pocket jacks and Kravchenko’s eights to bust both players. He’s up to 130,000 now.
2.15pm: Video action
Here’s how the video team set out the start of play today…
2.10pm: JP Kelly out
As the title suggests, Team PokerStars Pro JP Kelly will be progressing no more in Prague. His demise was a bit cruel, to be honest.
Bastian Trachte, a PokerStars player from Germany bet out, Kelly moved all-in and got an insta call:
The flop looked as though we were heading for a chop, coming 6♠Q♣3♦, but the 10♦ turn and 9♦ river secured the nut flush for Trachte, who now sits on 140,000.
2.05pm: Cao foils Horecki
Pre-flop, and Marcin Horecki, the Polish Team PokerStars Pro, has bet 23,400 in response to an opening raise from Rui Cao. Cao, however, is no no mood to give and pushed out a might stack of yellow, 5,000 chips – amounting to around 130,000. Horecki thinks a while, and then folds. “Nice hand,” he said. The Pole still has a healthy 60,000 to play with.
Also on this table is Team PokerStars Pro Sandra Naujoks, who has shot up to 134,000 after starting the day on 71,700.
2.00pm: Lack of heart saves Horecki
Four players saw a K♥2♥3♣ flop. The player in the small blind led out for 5,500 only to be raised to 15,000 by Polish Team PokerStars Pro Marcin Horecki. The other two players folded but the small blind made the call to see the K♦ turn. Both players checked as they did on the Q♦ river. Horecki opened 3♥5♥ for a pair and busted flush draw and took the pot as the small blind also had a busted flush draw with A♥6♥. Horecki chuckled as he raked in the pot, armed with the knowledge that a third heart would have been a disaster for him. As it stands he’s doing well on 104,000.
1.55pm: In the feature corner
Our features department spent an entire orbit in the company of Arnaud Mattern, Marcel Luske and Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier today. You can read all about it in the latest A Round With…. post.
1.45pm: Thater departs; another sickener
Katja Thater is building up a library of bad beat stories this year, one that is gradually becoming more and more grim. Her latest just sent her to the rail in Prague and it went like this: Thater moved all in from early position for her last 18,000. Everyone folded to the player in the small blind, who also moved all in for 45,000. “Perhaps he didn’t see my chips,” Thater said, because when the dealer announced showdown, he seemed surprised to have to show his cards.
No wonder: he had queen-four to Thater’s ace-queen. But a four on the flop was the last thing Thater wanted to see, and out she went.
1.40pm: Back again
Players are back again and we’re in to level ten. Blinds are 600-1,200 (100 ante). 264 players are still in the hunt.
1.30pm: Pagano lets one go
As the rest of the field got up to enjoy their first break of the day, Luca Pagano remained in his seat, locked in battle with Ovidiu Balaj. The board was A♥K♦6♣, and with around 16,000 in the middle already, Balaj had moved all in for 28,000.
Pagano clearly fancied the call, but could not quite bring himself to pull the trigger.
He took his glasses off and gave the Romanian the staredown. A crack of the knuckles, a little sigh – and the Italian folded. Just four minutes of the break remained for him to stretch his legs.
1.27pm: Level done
It’s the end of the first 75-minute level of the day and players have taken a 15-minute break. That’s the way we roll on day two: levels now last an additional 15 minutes and there’s a break after every time the claxon sounds.
At the beginning of the day, the tournament director Thomas Kremser explained all this to his staff (most of whom knew already) but he added with his characteristic Austrian dry humour: “Thank you dealers for all your hard work so far. I know we didn’t have many breaks, but I tell you something … it’s not going to get better.”
Well, they’re one level closer to the end of the day now and 264 players remain.
1.25pm: Good, no not good
Jeff Sarwer opened for 2,500 in middle position. Patrice Tordjamn called in the cut off, as did the blinds for a flop of 6♦5♥Q♥. The action was checked to Sarwer who made it 6,000. Tordjamn folded but Priyan De Mel in the small blind raised to 18,600. Sarwer removed his sunglasses and smiled when Vlad Vasilescu countered by moving all in from the big blind for 16,500 more.
“Air and a flush draw perhaps?” asked Sarwer before folding. De Mel called showing 7♥6♥ to S6’s 7♠8♠. “My queen was good,” said Sarwer before watching the Q♦ on the turn and J♥ on the river. “No it wasn’t.”
De Mel stacked up around 170,000 after the pot while Vasilescu departed for the rail.
1.15pm: Pieter de double
Rob Akery opened the pot the pot with a raise and was called by Adolphe Ariche in the next seat before Dutch Team PokerStars Pro Pieter de Korver moved in for over 40,000. Akery folded but Ariche called with 10♠10♣. De Korver gave a little fist pump as he revealed J♦J♠ and he was even happier after the board ran 7♠3♠5♣7♥2♠ to put him up to 90,000.
1.10pm: Questions to follow
On a flop of 9♣Q♦6♥ Patrice Tordjamn checked to Priyan de Mel who bet around 3,500 from the button before Tordjamn raised double that. De Mel called for a 7♥ on the turn. Again Tordjamn checked and De Mel made it 7,500. Tordjamn called for a J♥ on the river. Another check from Tordjamn. De Mel then began a process of inquiry inside his head. He mumbled to himself while staring at the board. The answers were in there somewhere, he just had to look hard enough.
“Ok, I check,” he said, showing Q♥J♦. Tordjamn mucked, leaving De Mel to wonder what just happened and to conduct a post-mortem with his table mates.
1.05pm: Blind battle
Konstantin Puchkov and Team PokerStars Pro Katja Thater saw a 7♣3♦8♠ flop. The former bet out only to see the later move all in. Puchkov called for his tournament life with Q♦8♥ for top pair whereas Thater could only muster second pair with J♦7♥. The board ran out A♣9♦ sending Thater down to 16,500 and her opponent up to 40,000.
1pm: Hedlund heads out
The noisy Swede Peter Hedlund is out, losing a classic coin flip against, in his own words, “a poor French player”. It’s HEdlund’s 41st birthday today – we suggest you quickly by some shares in some Czech breweries.
12.55pm: Action stations!
This is one of those hands that starts off simply enough, gets interesting, then very interesting, then a little crazy.
It’s on table 18 where a 2,500 bet has been called in two spots before Jeff Sarwer decides to re-raise to 8,800. On his left, Marek Krupar decides to make his stand and moves all-in fir around 15,000. Two seats further along sits John Kabbaj. He studies his opponents, takes in their stacks and does the calculations. He decides to move all in as well!
Kabbaj was the table big stack – around 140,000 – and everyone, including Sarwer runs for the hills, leaving only the all-in Krupar to take him on:
The board runs 10♠Q♠J♠, giving Kabbaj a Royal Flush draw for added drama, but the 2♦ turn and 9♦ river ensured he got a straight, not that he needed that to win. Kabbaj up to 165,000, Krupar out.
12.50pm: Pagano stepping on the gas
You might think Luca Pagano is one of those steady players, but you’d be wrong. His record number of cashes in EPTs shows he knows when to change gears, and it seems he’s just slipped from third into fourth. On his table, which he shares with fellow Team PokerStars Pro JP Kelly, he’s making moves with his big overnight stack.
He has three-bet several times pre-flop already to take down pots, but sometimes he does have a hand. On this one, with a board showing 2♣A♥3♠10♠9♦, he tabled 5,000 and got a call. His opponent was quickly shown the bad news – Luca had 10♦10♥ for a turned set.
The Italian is up to more than 170,000.
12.45pm: ElkY aggression
There are a fair few juicy tables out there right now – none more so than this, which has three Team PokerStars Pros in ElkY, Marcel Luske and Arnaud Mattern. ElkY and Luske just got involved in a meaty tussle, when on a turned board of 6♦K♥K♠5♦ Luske bet 6,000 and ElkY called.
On the Q♦ river Luske reached for more chips, and this time tossed 11,000 into the middle. ElkY was having none of that, however, and re-raised to 25,500. Luske thought about it, but decided it would be best to get out of the way.
12.40pm: Le Roux
Kenneth Strandli opened from second position with a raise to 3,000 that Martin Valle called from the next seat before Anthony Roux moved all in for 22,000. Strandli then moved all-in to isolate and it worked as Valle folded. Roux’s K♣K♦ were in great shape against Strandli’s Q♠Q♥ and they stayed that way through the J♦9♠2♦2♣3♠ board. The Frenchman up to around 50,000.
12.25pm: Lights, camera, then what?
Marcel Luske is curently doing battle over on ElkY’s table,alongside Arnaud Mattern. But yesterday he delved into the dark arts of photography, as the video blog team demonstrate:
Watch EPT 6 Marcel Luske Photo Lesson on PokerStars.tv
12.20pm: Early action
Betrand “ElkY” Grospellier is straight into gear with two early raises. In the first pot he raised from mid position and was called by both blinds to see a K♥10♦7♣ flop. ElkY continued with a 3,300 be that was called only by Ramin Henke in the small blind. Both checked the 6♦ turn before Elky folded to 6,500 bet on the 6♠ river.
The very next hand he raised again to 2,300 before Luc Greenwood three-bet to 6,500 from the cut-off and Luca Falaschi four-bet to 16,500 from the small blind. ElkY lifted up pocket jacks and folded them but Greenwood set the Italian all-in. Falaschi shrugged a little and called with 9♠9♥ and he faced the Greemwood’s A♠K♠. The board wasn’t too shabby for the Canadian as it came 7♣K♥Q♥A♣K♦. We’re one Italian down.
12.15pm: Firing back
On a flop of 8♣10♦5♠ the Italian Giovanni Cantonati bet 3,100. There were others in the hand but only Leo Margets took him on, raising to 7,500. Cantonati tapped the table and folded.
12.10pm: Sarwer stung
Jeff Sarwer just took an early hit against Mickael Sebban. Sebban had moved in with pocket kings and was called by Sarwer with King-Queen. The board ran out: 2♣4♦9♠8♣3♠. “Thanks Jeff for gifting me that,” said Sebban.
“It’s not so much of a gift,” countered Sarwer before adding, “I’ve got to talk to these young kids about this. They say king-queen never loses… pre-flop.” But Sarwer rarely shows any concern for hands like this and paid his bill to Sebban. “16,800… oh well.”
12.05pm: First move
Thierry van den Berg just moved all in within minutes of the start. It came after a raise under the gun from Frank Jacobsen. Van den Berg was in the big blind and shoved, but Jacobsen showed no interest.
12pm: Back for day two
Players are taking their seats, unsealing bags of chips and stacking up. Cards should be in the air shortly.