Tom Middleton may well win this final table. He’s certainly one of the most experienced and talented of the final eight. But if he does so he’ll have won it using an unorthodox style of play which has delivered him the chip lead for each of the past three days.
Middleton has gone all Middle Ages on everyone, putting into practice the medieval practice of usury — the lending of money at alarming high levels of interest. Only Middleton hasn’t lent money, he’s lent chips.
The main event finalists, or “customers” as Middleton calls them
Middleton’s plan is simple. He starts the day as chip leader and then slowly gives away a big portion of his chips, which others use to make some chips for themselves. Towards the end of the day, he then calls in his loans, with interest, returning to the top of the pile as players’ bag up.
Today could well be the same. Others will lease elements of Middleton’s stack, like a colour television, before the time comes when, unable to make the payments, they must inevitably return it. It’s been a devastating tactic so far. Will it deliver Middleton the win today?
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Stephen Bartley is a PokerStars Blog reporter.