PokerStars Festival London: Stylianos Nykteridis finishes as chipleader in Main Event Day 1B

January 25, 2018

It has been a busy day here at The Hippodrome Casino in central London. We have just seen the Main Event Day 1B draw to a close and out of the 280 players who took a seat today, we concluded the night with 84 making it through, who join yesterday’s 46 Day 1A finishers. Day 2 will take place on Saturday. (Day 1B overnight chip counts)

Day 1B chipleader Stylianos Nykteridis

There have been ups, there have been downs and at the end of it all, Stylianos Nykteridis finished at the top of today’s field, taking 264,600 chips through with him. You may remember reading about the three-way all in he had with aces, which held and catapulted his stack skywards.

Other notable stacks are Fraser MacIntyre (262,300), who is only in second place by a whisker and Robert Scott (227,300), in third.

Fraser MacIntyre – hot on Nykteridis’s heels

We will also see Team PokerStars Pro Jake Cody again on Saturday and he brings 173,100 with him. He is joined by Florian Duta (210,500), Joe Johnson (85,000), Sam Ho (109,000) and Orpen Kisacikoglu (66,900), who are all still in the running.

Team PokerStars Pro Jake Cody

It’s not often the Main Event is a sideshow, but today it was as the High Roller played to a finish. On offer was £73,990 and a $30,000 PSPC Platinum Pass. Dragos Trofimov, a Moldovan Chemistry student, found the right elements and he earned the victory. Read all about it here.

We will be back tomorrow for Days 1C and 1D, our final two flights for the Main Event, with play kicking off at 12pm. Join us then.

Day 1A coverage archive

• PLAYERS: 84 of 280
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11pm: Day 1B is in the books
Level 12: Blinds 1,000/2,000 ante 300

That’s the end of Day 1B, a wrap of the days play is on the way. –NW

10:45pm: Three more hands
Level 12: Blinds 1,000/2,000 ante 300

The clock has been paused and they’ll be three more hands before play is done for the day. –NW

10:40pm: Mac the knife
Level 12: Blinds 1,000/2,000 ante 300

Fraser MacIntyre is really flying now, as he just eliminated PokerStars Media coordinator Jan Kores. The latter told us the details of his demise. There was a raise to 4,500 and a call before the action reached Kores. He looked down at A♠K♠ and three-bet shoved for 57,900 total. MacIntyre then called cold with pocket queens and the other two players folded. The board didn’t help Kores and he was eliminated. MacIntyre has around 250,000 now. –NW

10:30pm: Mac attack
Level 12: Blinds 1,000/2,000 ante 300

Fraser MacIntyre is running up a stack in this Main Event. The Scotsman, who was runner-up in the High Roller at the PokerStars Festival Dublin back in September, is closing in on the 200,000 mark. –NW

10:20pm: All under one roof
Level 12: Blinds 1,000/2,000 ante 300

Ok so technically all the players in this tournament have been under the same roof throughout the day, but they’re now all in the same room. Just 100 players remain and there’s 30 minutes left in the day. –NW

10:05pm: Level 11 bust outs
Level 11: Blinds 800/1,600 ante 200

Level 11 has not been kind to Rafael Rojano Ramos, Guy Taylor, Christopher Walker, Adam Cowley, Ning Lu, Mohammed Ullah, Melanie Meyer, Melanie Meyer, Steve Watts, Ryan Kermiche, Florent Estegassy, Thomas Haney and Jonathan Wong as they’ve all headed to the exit. 110 players of the 280 who played today remain in. –NW

Steve Watts

9:50pm: Costin builds
Level 11: Blinds 800/1600 (ante 200)

Cristinel Costin has built up to close to average stack but it came at a price for Rajiv Sakaria.

Arriving at the table just as the flop was about to be dealt, we didn’t see how much Sakaria’s had at the start of the hand but he was covered by Costin.

Costin A♣Q♥
Sakaria 3♣3♦

They were off to the races when the money went in but the 5♥6♥A♦ flop changed that, with Costin moving a long way ahead. Neither the 10♦ turn or K♣ river recovered the hand for Sakaria and he heads out. Costin has chipped up to about 70,000. –LY

9:40pm: Cody climbing as Perati perishes
Level 11: Blinds 800/1,600 ante 200

Poker can be a cruel game sometimes, Muhamet Perati juust lost two big pots in a row to go from comfortably stacked to out in under five minutes. In the first hand – which took place right at the end of level 11 – Karl Roth opened to 2,700, Perati three-bet to 8,000 from the small blind and Roth smooth called.

On the 4♦7♣Q♥ flop Perati relinquished the betting lead, electing to check-call a bet of 6,000 from Roth. The 4♠ turn checked through and the 4♣ completed the board. Perati check-called again, this time for 11,000, and Roth showed K♥Q♦. Perati couldn’t beat it and he mucked his hand.

On the very next shuffle – albeit now into level 12 – Jake Cody opened to 3,500 from late position, Perati shoved for around 30,000 and Cody snap called. The Team PokerStars Pro had K♥K♣ and was looking to fade the A♦4♠ of Perati. A 5♦6♦9♠8♠4♥ run out kept Cody in front and boosted him to around 90,000. –NW

Cody’s on the up

9:25pm: No luck for Holmes
Level 10: Blinds 600/1200 (ante 200)

Down to his last 5,200 chips, Martin Holmes must have been delighted to find K♠K♥ under-the-gun. He must have been even more delighted to get action from Chao Xia on his left, meaning the pot would be more than a double up for him, should he win.

No one else took an interest, and Xia showed 10♦10♥, making Holmes the 4-1 favourite but the runout changed all that.


It was a set for Xia and a farewell to Holmes. Meanwhile Xia has about 85,000 in front now. –LY

9:15pm: Stylianos Nykteridis takes the chip lead
Level 10: Blinds 600/1,200 (ante 200)

Stylianos Nykteridis is up to 250,000 after scoring a huge double up and eliminating a player in the same hand. He was all-in pre-flop for 106,800 holding pocket aces and up against a bigger stacks pocket jacks and the A♠10♠ of Abdullah Gonulcan, who was all-in for 32,000.

The 3♥6♣2♠7♦7♥ run out kept the aces in front and Nykteridis now has a chip leading stack of over 200 big blinds. –NW

9:05pm: De Siqueria falls to Christie
Level 10: Blinds 600/1200 (ante 200)

The board read 10♣A♥3♥Q♥ by the time we came to the table. De Siqueria had checked the turn and was facing a bet of 18,500 from Fraser Christie, which was over half his remaining stack.

The river was a 4♥ and De Siqueria didn’t hang about, deciding to lead for his last 12,000. The four heart board and bet from De Siqueria evidently wasn’t enough to push off Christie. It was the correct call too as he had the best of it with 3♦3♣ and a set. De Siqueria’s top pair A♣J♦ couldn’t match up and as he walked away, Christie was stacking the large pile of chips that had come his way. It looks like he has around 150,000 now, which is not far off three times the average. –LY

Fraser Christie

9pm: Will Debs be back?
Level 10: Blinds 600/1,200 (ante 200)

Deborah Worley-Roberts is among the latest batch of exits. She’s got a second bullet in the chamber and may well be back for another bite at the cherry tomorrow. The same can’t be said of Mercedes Osti and David Kahan, they’ve both busted their second chance. –NW

8:45pm: The final quarter
Level 10: Blinds 600/1,200 (ante 100)

Nine levels are in the books and the players are back to play the final three levels of the day. –NW

7:40pm: Dinner time
Level 9: Blinds 500/1000 (ante 100)

We are three quarters of the way through Day 1B, which means only one thing… it’s dinner time. We’ll meet you back here in an hour. –LY

7:35pm: Back to back all ins
Level 9: Blinds 500/1000 (ante 100)

Different players but same table.

First Mercedes Osti set Alexander Skriabin all in on a J♥2♦K♣ flop. He called and they turned over…

Osti Q♠10♣
Skriabin K♥9♥

Osti’s outs were live and she was looking to hit her open ended straight draw. The 4♣ turn and 7♦ river failed to deliver though and she only has 7,300 chips left to play with.

Next hand it was Rahim Tadj-Saadat’s who went all in A♠J♥. He jammed over an early position open and was looked up by Gianluca Trebbi with A♣Q♥. There were no more callers and Trebbi was the significant favourite.

It came J♠Q♣2♦ and the jack in the window gave Tadj-Saadat some hope but it didn’t last long, with a queen also dealt on the flop. The Q♦ turn sealed the deal for Trebbi and he doubles to 45,000, whilst Tadj-Saadat is down to 8,000. –LY

7:25pm: Sick KO for Kateian
Level 9: Blinds 500/1,000 ante 100

Our thanks to Scott Kateian for relaying his bust out hand to us, even more so as it’s one that should carry a health warning. Yeah, it’s a sick one. He told us: “There was a raise from under-the-gun to 3,000, I’ve got aces and 21,000. I ship it and he calls with A♣K♣. The flop came K♣9♦K♦.”

There was no miracle one outer for Kateian on the turn or river and that sick bad beat sent him to the bar. Fair play to Kateian for having the wherewithal to want to relive the hand and let us know what happened. –NW

7:15pm: Labarriere takes from Cody
Level 9: Blinds 500/1000 (ante 100)

Labarriere had kicked off the betting with a 2,100 raise in middle position. He found one caller before action was on Jake Cody in the small blind. The Team PokerStars Pro squeezed to 9,000 and Labarriere wasn’t prepared to go anywhere just yet and made the call and they went heads up to the flop.

J♣4♣10♦. It was a draw-heavy flop and Cody opted to check and Labarriere did the same. The 6♣ saw another check from Cody and Labarriere bet a relatively small 7.6. Cody peeled and the dealer placed a 2♥ on the river. This time it was a check apiece once more and the cards were flipped on their backs.

Cody 6♥8♥
Labarriere 10♥9♥

Both players had a pair but Labarriere’s was the higher and he takes the pot. –LY

7pm: All out
Level 9: Blinds 500/1,000 ante 100

Players continue to tumble out of this tournament at a rate of knots. Some of the fallers from level eight were: Alper Gocer, Scott Kateian, Serge Hamsin, David Gassian, Carl Ohlund, Charlie Combes, Katie Lindsay, Thomas Ward, Luke Haward and Evangelos Bechrakis. –NW

6:45pm: Meanwhile, in the suburbs…
Level 8: Blinds 400/800 (ante 100)

They may not be in the hustle and bustle of the main card room but a few players have been making their mark on their respective tables in The Lounge room and bar area.

Mickael Gaillet (158,000), Eren Hassan (120,000) and Rokas Asipauskas (112,000), have been making strides today. Gaillet, a PokerStars Spin&Go Qualifier, has over five times starting stack and is one to watch whilst the rest of today’s flight plays out. –LY

6:35pm: Chip counts
Level 8: Blinds 400/800 ante 100

Here are a few counts of names, notables and big stacks in the Main tournament room:

Julien Sitbon, 124,000
Orpen Kisacikoglu, 120,000
Jan Kores, 102,000
Joe Johnson, 96,000
Jake Cody, 70,000
Robert Schiffbauer, 68,000
Fraser MacIntyre, 53,000
Luke Haward, 48,000
Deborah Worley-Roberts, 46,500
Joe Hindry, 45,000
Mike Panteli, 43,000
Scott Kateian, 23,000
Kelly Saxby, 9,800

Julien Sitbon

6:30pm: Sakaria doubles through Allai
Level 8: Blinds 400/800 (ante 100)

Rajiv Sakaria was nursing a short stack leading up to this hand but he has found a double against Adrien Allai. The money went in pre and the players turned over…

Sakaria A♦K♦
Allai K♣J♣

Sakaria was a long way ahead at the start of the hand and the 6♦5♥4♣5♣4♠ board didn’t change that. Although still short, Sakaria’s stack is heading in the right direction. –LY

6:20pm: Still time to take your seat
Level 8: Blinds 400/800 ante 100

As level seven turned into level eight an announcment was made letting everyone know that this is the last level of late registration. –NW

6:10pm: Kalfas felted
Level 7: Blinds 300/600 ante 100

Down to just 10,600, Stavros Kalfas moved all-in from under the gun. He didn’t have to wait long for a call as Abdullah Gonulcan – who was next to act – did just that. Everyone else folded and the cards were turned over.

Kalfas: A♠K♣
Gonulcan: A♥6♥

Kalfas had the upper hand and the 4♥Q♦5♠ flop didn’t seem particularly dangerous. The 8♠ turn gave Gonulcan some additional outs and the 7♦ river filled his straight and eliminated Kalfas. –NW

6pm: Glerfoss out
Level 7: Blinds 300/600 (ante 100)

Jogvan Glerfoss would have been very happy with his spot. He was looking at A♦K♣ in the hole and had 7,800 chips left, or 13 big blinds. Not only that, but there had been a 1,500 open from under-the-gun and two further calls, putting about 5,500 in the pot.

Glerfoss’s jam made it past the first two opponents and only Giulio Di Salvo stood in the way of scooping a relatively tidy pot. It wasn’t to be though. After some deliberation, Di Salvo decided the price was right and he made the call.

Glerfoss was ahead with A♦K♣ but Di Salvo was very much live with J♥10♥.

The dealer put J♠4♥5♣ out on the flop and with a jack in the window, Di Salvo pushed into the lead. There was a 10♣ on the turn and Di Salvo had now improved to two pair, leaving Glerfoss with only four queens to hit. The river came 3♥, which shut down Glerfoss’s hopes of a small stack comeback. He will have to use his re-entry if he wants a chance of the trophy or the $30,000 Platinum Pass to the PokerStars Player’s Championship. –LY

5:45pm: Chipless
Level 7: Blinds 300/600 ante 100

There’s no easy way to say this, but if you’ve come to this url looking for updates on: Jack Roos, Robinder Singh Dinsa, Vladislavs Rutkovskis, Gary Miller, Julien Dumas, Laszlo Szollar, Marios Hadjicostis, Scott Reynolds, David Phelan, Jurgen Bachmann, Sebastien Cornuel, Steffen Carl, Sylvain Etcheber, Christophe Taillandier, Shayne Liddle, Rajkumar Anandanaya, Nicolas Arribas, Christopher Day, Danny Blair, Guillaume Marrucho, Lefteris Stylianou, Hong Wang, Einar Porolfsson, Artur Palaj, Andre Lopes, Katie Swift, Alessandro Spina, Damien Wierzbicki, Nils Henningsson, Mickael Tadesse, and Werner Lootsma, unfortunately the update is that they’re all out. –NW

5:35pm: Cimbolas time
Level 7: Blinds 300/600 ante 100

Anyone who watched the live stream of the recent PokerStars Championship event in Prague will be familiar with Matas Cimbolas. The Lithuanian player made the final table of that event, finishing seventh for €104,000. He’s a chatty character who sometimes flirts with the line, but never crosses it. He’s in the process of buying into this event and we’ll be seeing him in the Main Event soon. –NW

5:25pm: Halfway home
Level 7: Blinds 300/600 (ante 100)

The half-time oranges have been consumed and the remaining players are back in their seats. Six levels down, six to go. –NW

5:05pm: It’s that time again
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (ante 75)

Yes that’s right, players are on a break. We’ll be back in twenty minutes for more live updates. See you then. –LY

5pm: Flush over flush
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (ante 75)

The Q♣3♥7♠5♥6♥ board was out and Giulio Di Salvo had made, what looked to be, a bet of 6,425. When Luke Haward upped it to 15,000, Di Salvo didn’t seem to like the spot too much but flatted.

Di Salvo Q♥J♥
Haward A♥7♥

Di Salvo’s queen high flush was no good against Haward’s ace high one but he can console himself with the fact that he still has chips in play. –LY

Luke Haward

4:55pm: Rokas and rolling
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 ante 75

Rokas Asipauskas now has a stack of around 110,000 after eliminating Joachim Haraldstad. By the time I joined the table the hand was over, but a 5♥J♣9♥10♦4♦ board was still on the felt as were Asipauskas’s hole cards – 5♦5♣ – he’d flopped a set and the pot looked fairly chunky. As for Haraldstad, this was his second bullet so his Main Event chances are over. –NW

4:45pm: The final four
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 ante 75

Pssst, there’s a High Roller going on and it’s awarding a $30,000 Platinum Pass to the winner. What’s more they’re down to the final four and Luke Schwartz is still in. Follow that tournament to its conclusion here.

4:35pm: Straight flush in the house
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (ante 75)

Our very own Jan Kores flopped a straight flush and if that wasn’t dreamy enough, he managed to get paid too. As we didn’t witness the hand in person, Kores filled us in on the details.

It began with an open from Kores and two calls, one behind and one in the big blind.

The flop was 6♣4♣3♣, giving Kores the stone cold nuts with 5♣7♣. He continued for 1,900 and was check-raised by Georgios Kotoumpas who had upped it to 3,800. Naturally Kores wasn’t going anywhere and the two of them went to the turn.

It was a 3♦ and Kotoumpas bet again, the price was 6,000. Kores flatted and the dealer put the 7♥ out on the river. Kotoumpas pushed 8,200 over the line and Kores moved all in over the top for around 33,000, which was enough to cover Kotoumpas.

Kotoumpas went deep into the tank until eventually the clock was called. Before his minute had elapsed, he made the call and turned over J♣9♣. He had also flopped a flush and just couldn’t get away from it.

Bad news for Kotoumpas but great news for Kores who has around 65,000 to play with. –LY

4:25pm: Level five fallers
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 ante 75

Over 270 players have entered this Day 1B flight, but as the blinds go up the number of exits follow suit and that was noticeable during level five. There were over 20 eliminations with Alexandru Cinca, Tomas Touma, George Alexander, Stefan Ragalie, Firas Nassar, Jimmy Cheron, Chris Gordon, Mark Houghton, Martin Bader, Luca Albino, Andrew Christoforou, Bo Thorsen, Robert Lim, Nam Catzel, Paul Newey, Andrea Salvatore and Alex Lynskey. –NW

Chris Gordon

4:10pm: Taking it down without showdown
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 (ante 50)

Two pots on two different tables had two things in common: each was won without showdown and involved a decent amount of chips.

The first featured Florian Duta and though we missed the beginning of the hand, he managed to secure a pot of over 50,000, after jamming 36,000 all in preflop. Not a bad scoop at all for Duta, who is ranked 11th on Romania’s all time money list.

Simultaneously, Robert Schiffbauer took down a pot, though the action a little different. The flop was out and it read 2♣J♠10♣.

Schiffbauer had checked and after a 1,100 bet and a 3,600 three bet, he popped it up to 15,500 and won the pot. Why leave your fate to chance, when you can take it down without showdown? –LY

4:05pm: Cody arrives
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 ante 50

Jake Cody is in the house. He was way up in the gods in a room near the Poker Deck (The Hippodrome’s permanent poker room) sharing a table with Fraser MacIntyre and Kevin Allen. That table has now broken and he’s been moved down into the main tournament room –NW

3:55pm: Big pot for Johnson
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 ante 50

“It’s nothing interesting,” said Deborah Worley-Roberts to me as I arrived at table 12. She was wrong. I’d followed a member of the floor staff to her table as there was a ruling needed. The situation was this, Joe Johnson had raised to 800, Alexios Zervos had three-bet to 2,300 but the big blind had missed this bit of the puzzle. He’d called the 800 and that was when the floor was called. It was ruled that his 800 had to remain in the pot and it was now his decision to call the extra or fold. He folded. However, Johnson didn’t follow suit and he called.

So it was heads-up then and the flop fell Q♣5♠2♠, Johnson check-called 2,300 and the A♣ fell on the turn. Again Johnson checked and once more Zervos bet. He fired out 5,000, Johnson check-raised all-in and Zervos snap called. Johnson showed A♦{Qh] for top two pair, whilst Zervos had A♠10♠ for a pair and flush draw. The J♥ completed the board to eliminate Zervos and Johnson, who won the High Roller here last year, is now up to 70,000. –NW

3:40pm: Kisacikoglu builds
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 (ante 50)

Orpen Kisacikoglu has just three barrelled in a pot against Konrad Zalewski and the result is a very nice addition to his stack.

Though we missed the preflop action. When the 5♥6♥Q♦ flop came out, Kisacikoglu had position and had bet 2,500, which Zalewski check-called.

It was much the same story for the 10♥ turn and 9♣ river, with Kisacikoglu barrelling each street and Zalewski check-calling the 5,000 and 12,900 bets.

We’ll never know what Zalewski was calling with as he mucked when Kisacikoglu tabled a turned flush with K♥8♥. Kisacikoglu has built up to around 55,000, which is not too shabby at all at this stage. –LY

Orpen Kisacikoglu

3:30pm: Bounsall bounces one
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 ante 50

Thirteen is unlucky for some, but not Alex Bounsall, he’s in seat one at table 13 and he’s up to 67,000 after eliminating Dipesh Kachwala. The hand began with Bounsall raising from middle position, Kachwala smooth called from the hijack, only for Ittai Gluska to three-bet to 3,300 from the button.

Both opponents called so it was three to a flop of 7♦6♠K♦. The action was checked to Gluska and he bet 4,400. That bet didn’t shake Bounsall, he called and Kachwala then moved all-in for 14,000 total. Gluska swiftly mucked and Bounsall then took a deep breath and sighed. “Flush draw or a set?” he asked, more to himself, than anyone else. He got a count and then decided to call. Kachwala showed Q♦J♦ for a flush draw, whilst Bounsall had K♠Q♠ for top pair. The K♥ turn improved him to trips and he faded the flush outs on the 5♥ river. –NW

3:20pm: Ragalie out to Alexander
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (ante 50)

We arrived in time to see an all in bet from Stefan Ragalie. He had his last 6,250 chips in and it was up to George Alexander whether or not to make the call. When he did though, it was he who needed to hit.

Alexander 8♥9♥
Ragalie A♠4♣

The dealer spread 9♣K♥5♣ on the flop and Alexander went into the lead with a pair of nines. By the time the 6♠ was dealt on the turn, Ragalie was looking for one of the three remaining aces only. It wasn’t to be though, the Q♠ secured the pot for Alexander and Ragalie headed out the door. –LY

3:00pm: Di Salvo takes from Stafford
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (ante 50)

Play was on the river as we arrived at the table and 5♠7♦K♥8♦9♥ was out on the board.

Robert Stafford was facing a bet of 5,525 from Giulio Di Salvo. It was about a third of his remaining chips and he tanked for a minute or so before making the call.

Di Salvo 4♦6♦
Stafford A♦K♦

Both players had a flush draw on the turn but Di Salvo had already picked up a straight by that point and with Stafford not improving from top pair, it was Di Salvo’s pot. –LY

2:50pm: Back in the saddle
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (ante 50)

Play is back underway, during the break Jake Cody arrived, he’s not yet taken his seat, but his entrance into this Main Event is imminent. One player who arrived during the break and has entered the tournament is Kevin Allen. –NW

2:30pm: It’s a break
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (ante 25)

Well it’s a twenty minute break now so there’s time to make a yourself a beverage of your choice, before our coverage continues.

If that’s too long to wait, why not take a look at the coverage of the High Roller? The final table has resumed and we will play to a winner today. To see what’s going on click here. –LY

2:25pm: A couple of bust outs as the break looms
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (ante 25)

As we near the end of Level 3, players are getting ready to take their first break of the day.

Ghassan Bitar and Francois Robert have busted though, so their break starts early. Perhaps they will look for a satellite to jump in as they still have a re-entry each for the Main Event? –LY

2pm: Fatshort not so short!
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 ante 25

A poker tournament is a marathon, not a sprint but the opening three levels have been more like a middle distance race with lots of jockeying for position and the odd burst of speed. Big pots have not been hard to find and I just saw one play out between Benjamin Fatshort and Martin Bader.

I picked up the action on the turn of a J♣3♠2♠J♥ board to see Fatshort betting 4,000. Bader called and the 6♠ completed the board. The river didn’t slow Fatshort down, he moved all-in for 11,275 into a pot of around 12,500, and Bader wanted a count. He tanked for a couple of minutes, twirling the chips required to call between his fingers as he did so.

He’d obviously got off to a good start as he had about 27,000 back in total. After some more tank time Bader made the call and Fatshort turned over A♦J♦. Bader couldn’t beat it and the dealer – as per the all-in rules – showed that Bader had hero called with 5♠5♥. That pot boosts Fatshort to over 37,000. –NW

1:55pm: An interesting river for Schaaf and Worley-Roberts
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (ante 25)

There were four players in the hand facing a flop that read 7♠Q♥9♣. Deb ‘The Destroyer’ Worley-Roberts bet 800 when it checked to her on the cut-off and she got two calls.

The A♥ turn slowed everyone down with a check apiece and the dealer placed a 5♥ on the river. Michael Schaaf made a bet of 3,500 and found a caller in Worley-Roberts.

She didn’t look surprised when Schaaf turned over the flush with K♥J♥ but said “how can I fold that?” as she showed 5♠5♣ for a set. –LY

1:40pm: Mr and Mr UKIPT
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 ante 25

We often called Jake Cody ‘Mr UKIPT’ in reference to him being an ever present on the now defunct UKIPT tour. It wasn’t mere bluster either, Cody racked up 12 Main Event cashes, no one managed more. But, one player managed to equal Cody and that player is Thomas Ward.

The Scotsman, who’s playing today, made three UKIPT final tables, with a second place finish in London in 2013 the closest he came to a title. The £116,845 is the biggest cash of the career. The player who beat him to the title that day was a relative unknown at that point, but he certainly isn’t now as it was Sergio Aido who pipped him to the win. –NW

Thomas Ward

1:35pm: Early bust outs
Level 2: Blinds 75/150

Four more players have already made their departure today. Patrick Hailstone, Bryn Larkman, Craig Sweden ane Oliver Marcel are all out but fear not, they have only used one entry so we may see their return yet in one of the later flights. –LY

1:25pm: Four Rooms
Level 2: Blinds 75/150

We’re not talking about the popular TV show that sees members of the public attempt to sell their valuable and collectible items in exchange for a cash offer from one of the four dealers. Instead we’re talking about the Main Event set-up here at The Hippodrome Casino, where the only thing on players minds is collecting chips. We’ve over 250 players playing Day 1B and, as a result, the players are currently operating in four different areas.

Main Room – 12 tables
Lounge Area – 5 tables
Bar Area – 3 tables
Jimmy’s Room – 2 tables

With late-registration open until the end of Level 8, it’s possible that a fifth area – The Poker Deck – may be needed. –NW

1:10pm: Not the sort of double he was looking for
Level 2: Blinds 75/150

A double in poker is always good right? Wrong. Andrey Andreev has just achieved the kind that no one wants. On Tuesday he was the first player eliminated from the High Roller and today he’s the first player out of the Main Event. Fortunately for the Russian player each of those events allows for a single re-entry. He’ll be back tomorrow. Israel Avraham is also out. –NW

Andrey Andreev

12:55pm: The Main Event continues to attract
Level 2: Blinds 75/150

We are less than an hour into Day 1B and we have already exceeded the number of runners compared with yesterday. 187 players have turned up so far, and with late registration open until the end of level 8 (around 6:45pm), we expect a lot more.

Aside from the main card room, there are six tables set up in the lounge and three in the bar area, which is where PokerStars Live at the Hippodrome sponsored player Kelly Saxby, is sat at the moment. -LY

Kelly Saxby

12:40pm: Floor!
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

The sound of chip riffling was shattered by a shout from Deborah Worley-Roberts. “Floor, table 12,” she said and Luca Vivaldi – the tournament director – was soon on the scene. They’d already been action from Worley-Roberts, who’d raised from under-the-gun. Trouble was the small blind had three cards! As floor decisions go this one was fairly easy, misdeal was the ruling, “Damn, I knew you were going to say that,” said Worley-Roberts and she exposed A♠Q♠. The players pitched their cards back to the dealer and the big blind showed that he had pocket kings! Suddenly Worley-Roberts wasn’t feeling so perturbed by the misdeal. –NW

12:30pm: James Mitchell has taken his seat
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

Professional player James Mitchell has just arrived and will be joining the other 161 hopefuls who have already registered for today’s flight.

Mitchell will be hoping to improve on his 10th place finish in last year’s Main Event and this is his first entry, he still has two chances to do so. -LY

12:20pm: Fancy seeing you here…
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

If you come down to The Hippodrome Casino today, you’ll find a bustling atmosphere. We’re only 20 minutes into the day here but it already feels as if the Main Event has moved up a gear from yesterday’s sedate start.

It’s still somewhat quiet – it’s not just the antes that haven’t kicked in yet but the caffeine also – but there are a lot of well known faces dotted around the three separate areas that the tournament is currently being played in. There’s Chris Gordon and Kelly Saxby, both on home turf as PokerStars Live at the Hippodrome Sponsored Players, Gordon is at the same table as Deborah Worley-Roberts.

Come on now Chris, having Worley-Roberts at your table isn’t that bad

‘Deb’s the Destroyer’ so nearly won a WSOP bracelet last summer, finishing runner-up in the Ladies event. Followers of the UKIPT will also know her from that tour. She’s had a few deep runs, including a fifth place finish at UKIPT3 Cork in 2013. Most recently she finished 19th in the PokerStars Festival Dublin Main Event.

Deb’s the Destroyer

Elsewhere we’ve spotted Andrey Andreev, Orpen Kisacikoglu, Craig Sweden, Scott Kateian, Joel Hindry and Ben Morrison. And, last but not least, Jan Kores. He’s usually on our side of the felt as he’s the lead Media Coordinator at PokerStars Live events. He’s got a rare event off and is playing the Main Event today. We really hope he doesn’t win the event though, we kind of need him for the PCA in 2019! –NW

12:15pm: Kisacikoglu isn’t messing around
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

There was some early betting going on at table 4 and businessman turned poker professional, Orpen Kisacikoglu was at the centre of it.

The board read 5♠8♠10♦6♥ and Senol Karahasan checked to Kisacikoglu, who made it 1,000 to proceed. Karahasan called and the dealer placed a 10♣ on the river.

It was another check from Karahasan and Kisacikoglu barrelled, this time making the price 2,775. It didn’t take too long for Karahasan to make the call. Kisacikoglu showed 3♣4♣ for a missed straight draw and Karahasan took the pot with 3♥8♥. “You are brave” said Kisacikoglu as the dealer shipped over the chips. -LY

12pm: Off we go
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

Cards are in the air on Day 1B of the PokerStars Festival London Main Event. With 129 players already in their seats and a steady stream of players waiting to collect their seat cards, we’re going to go out on a limb and say this flight will eclipse the 149 runners who played Day 1A. –NW

11:20am: We go again

It’s time for the second of the four starting flights in the £500,000 guaranteed PokerStars Festival London Main Event. Yesterday 149 players took their shot and started the journey towards winning a Platinum Pass worth $30,000. Only 46 survived and we may see some of the vanquished today as this event allows for a single re-entry into a different starting flight.

That’s not something that Karan Dewan will have to consider, he finished as the top dog yesterday, bagging a healthy 273,000. We expect that to be beaten over the next two days, but Dewan can now put his feet up until Day 2 on Saturday.

Karan Dewan – Day 1A chip leader

Today’s stanza will follow much the same pattern as yesterday. The action kicks off at 12pm, with 12 45-minute levels scheduled. Players begin with a 30,000 starting stack and blinds kick off at 50/100. Make it through that and come 10.30pm you’ll be moving onto Day 2. Should things not go to plan then there’s a Main Event satellite tonight at 7pm for anyone needing a second bullet. Cards in the air at noon. –NW

PokerStars Blog reporting team on the £990 Main Event: Nick Wright and Lisa Yiasemides. Photography by Mickey May.

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