EPT12 Malta: Jaroslaw Sikora leads. Jaka and Greenwood in pursuit

October 28, 2015

We’re into the interesting bit. Sure, those early stages can produce some important moments, flagging up the early signs of a player in form. But Day 3 is where things are turned up a notch, for there is money involved now, and that’s ball game.

But not everyone was entitled to a share when play began today. Some 131 players returned, but only 95 would have something to show for their efforts by the end of the day. But it felt like a long day, except perhaps for Jaroslaw Sikora, who leads with a stack of 1.65 million tonight.

sikora_jaroslav_malta12_28ot15.jpgChip leader Jaroslaw Sikora
Sikora has been among the leaders since Day 1, and spent today in the same way, with his arms either side of an ever expanding stack. Behind him is Alexander Ivarsson who can claim an almost identical story.

Then things get familiar. Faraz Jaka is in third place, while Sam Greenwood is in fourth place. Both, along with Niall Farrell in fifth place, are within sight of the lead, and will be the principal challengers tomorrow.

faraz_jaka_wrap_2_malta15.jpgFaraz Jaka
Elsewhere there was a new record for cashes on the EPT, set by Team Pro Johnny Lodden, who bags up 399,000 and is a guaranteed his 21st cash finish tonight.

johnny_lodden_malta12_28oct15.jpgJohnny Lodden
Here are the full chip counts at the end of Day 3:

Name Country Status Chips
Jaroslaw Sikora Poland PokerStars player 1,457,000
Alexander Ivarsson Sweden PokerStars player 1,306,000
Faraz Jaka USA PokerStars qualifier 1,200,000
Niall Farrell UK PokerStars player 1,160,000
Sam Greenwood Canada PokerStars player 1,160,000
Giulio Spampinato Italy 785,000
Alen Bilic Bosnia and Herzegovina PokerStars player 745,000
Apostolos Bechrakis Greece PokerStars qualifier 720,000
Mike McDonald Canada PokerStars qualifier 689,000
Michael Ho Canada 680,000
Darrell Goh Ireland 633,000
Mikael Jean Lebanon 598,000
Kitty Kuo China PokerStars qualifier 574,000
Bjorn Geissert Germany PokerStrars player 526,000
Rainer Kempe Germany PokerStars qualifier 490,000
Andreas Chalkiadakis Greece 482,000
Gianluca Escobar Italy 447,000
Shannon Shorr USA PokerStars player 407,000
Johnny Lodden Norway Team PokerStars Pro 399,000
Ferdinand Le Pichon France 364,000
Ivan Luca Argentina PokerStars qualifier 349,000
Hani Bahna Canada 344,000
Jens Lakemeier Germany PokerStars qualifier 336,000
Akim Aouine France 308,000
Ezequiel Kleinman Argentina PokerStars qualifier 301,000
Erik Scheidt Germany PokerStars player 283,000
Mikko Turtiainen Finland PokerStars qualifier 282,000
Natasha Barbour USA 280,000
Daniel Dvoress Canada PokerStars qualifier 278,000
Marcin Wydrowski Poland PokerStars qualifier 257,000
Nabil Mohamed Abdien Cardoso Spain 255,000
Pierre Chevalier France 240,000
Anton Bertilsson Sweden PokerStars qualifier 216,000
Kevin Lee Sharp Canada PokerStars qualifier 176,000
Bryn Kenney USA PokerStars qualifier 172,000
Antonio Chemi Italy 164,000
Enrico Camosci Italy PokerStars player 162,000
Thomas Muehloecker Austria PokerStars qualifier 135,000
Paul Berende Netherlands PokerStars qualifier 108,000
Antonio Mitrotta Italy 103,000

But the day was dominated by the bubble, one which lasted longer than expected and included some short stack heroics.

As Nick Wright put it earlier, the bubble brings with it various degrees of relief:

“They’re delighted to now have locked up a cash because… they’ve essentially achieved their goal. The mid-stacks are happy because now they can actually start playing some poker… and the big stacks are happy because well, they’re a big stack.”

While Christopher Adler is the unhappiest man in Malta tonight, going out on the bubble, the happiest is surely Andrew Atkinson, out in 95th place after having survived the bubble with less than a small blind.

out_bubble_malta12_28oct15.jpgChristopher Adler would go out on the bubble
The relief on his face will be one of the lasting images of the event, the scene of those at his table congratulating him, will prove the lasting meme. It was hard not to feel he’d earned every cent of his €9,320 min cash (shattering his previous best cash by nearly €9,000). Not bad given he qualified on PokerStars for €32.40.

andrew_atkinson_worry_wrap_malta12_28oct15.jpgIt was a nail biter for Andrew Atkinson
Then the not so cheerful fallers made their way to the payout desk, among them Matthias de Meulder, Joni Jouhkimainen, Jeff Rossiter, Isaac Haxton, Govert Metaal, Christoph Vogelsang, Steve O’Dwyer and Dan Smith.

isaac_haxton_ept12malta_28oct15.jpgIsaac Haxton among the fallers today
While you can fill the rest of your evening with side event action, it leaves 40 players to return tomorrow for Day 4, when they’ll play down to 16 and move a step closer to the final table on Saturday. Coverage will continue here on the PokerStars Blog, where you’ll find live updates and live coverage every step of the way from 12pm.

Join us then.


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Stephen Bartley is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.

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