EPT Barcelona: Crazy day for Khangah, bags huge lead after Super High Roller Day 1

August 25, 2018

36 players. 44 buy-ins. €4.4 million in prize money. And that’s only ‘so far’.

Day 1 of the EPT Barcelona €100,000 Super High Roller may be over, but registration is still open until the start of play tomorrow. That means there’s a great chance all of those numbers will increase by the time you next hear from us.

A heftier prize pool is certainly good news for Ahadpur Khangah right now, as he’s the chip leader overnight, topping the 28 survivors. Khangah won a string of huge pots late in the evening to end with a monstrous 1,555,000 stack. His closest competitors are David Peters with 634,000, and Pascal Lefrancois with 647,000.

When it rains it Ahadpurs…

Remember when this event was just a measly €50,000 buy-in? You should, because it was only 12 months ago. But there has been so much demand for big buy-in, high stakes action that this year the high roller became even more super.

The appeal of the €100K price tag seems to have lured in some faces we don’t see often on the EPT, most notably ‘Team Malaysia’ (as Mikita Badziakouski called them earlier). Richard Yong, Ivan Leow, and Wai Leong Chan are all in town, taking a break from their nosebleed games in Macau and Manila to visit sunny Spain. Their days differed, with Yong ending with 378,000, Leow bagging up 290,000, and Chan not bagging at all. He busted.

Their fellow Malaysian, Michael Soyza, also took part, hoping to continue his heater after winning the €10K opening event. However, his ace-king lost to Mathias Eibinger’s ace-jack all-in pre-flop, and he was forced (ok, not forced, but y’know, required) to fire another bullet. He ended the night with 110,000.

Linus Loeliger

Rewind back to the start of the day and Linus Loeliger was the first to arrive. The Swiss player, perhaps better known by his PokerStars moniker ‘LLinusLLove’, also had a bad time of it with his first bullet, but the second attempt proved much more fruitful. He won a big pot from Dan Smith (see 7:13pm) to shoot up the counts. But a few pots not going his way saw his stack dip to 223,000.

Daniel Negreanu

From the early birds to midday wanderers, Daniel Negreanu showed up for Level 3 and got off to a good start. While it wasn’t all smooth sailing, the Team PokerStars Pro battled through to end with 305,000.

Below you’ll find a look at the top 10 counts overnight, or you could just click here to see them all.

Name Country Chips
Ahadpur Khangah Iran 1,555,000
Pascal Lefrancois Canada 647,000
David Peters United States 634,000
Seth Davies United States 622,000
Timothy Adams Canada 587,000
Jan Eric Schwippert Germany 545,000
Patrik Antonius Finland 517,000
Jean-Noel Thorel France 496,000
Bryn Kenney United States 494,000
Benjamin Pollak France 470,000

Action resumes at 12:30pm tomorrow, so we’ll be back to play down to a final table then.

¡Buenas noches amigos! –JS

Day 1 live coverage archive

• ENTRIES: 28 left of 44, with 8 re-entries (so far)
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9:45pm: Day is done

That’s it for the night. We’ll have a full recap shortly. –JS

9:40pm: Petrangelo sent to Room 101
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

The late night bust out session has continued with Nick Petrangelo’s elimination. He was down to 101,000 and under the gun when he and Benjamin Pollak (big blind) got the chips in preflop.

Pollak: 10♦10♥
Petrangelo: A♥Q♦

The board ran a blank 4♣7♦8♠5♦K♠ and Pollak ended the day on 469,000. –MC

9:35pm: Fatehi busts as Davies soars
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

Here’s a pretty gross end to a tough day for Ali Reza Fatehi, featuring a floor ruling too for good measure.

He was in a three-way pot with Seth Davies and Linus Loeliger and it got a bit heated on the turn. By that point, the board read 8♦5♥J♣9♦ and Loeliger, in the small blind, checked.

Davies bet 27,000 and Fatehi called. Then Loeliger raised to 108,000. Before Davies had a chance to act, Fatehi moved his stack all-in, and that out-of-turn action meant Davies didn’t know what to do. He asked for his shot clock to be paused and Luca Vivaldi, the tournament supervisor, came over to make the ruling.

Fatehi was able to take his bet back, pending whatever Davies was now to do, but Fatehi was told the shove would be binding if Davies either called or folded.

Davies took three time-bank cards and then called. That meant that Fatehi’s chips went in. It was 227,000 total.

Loeliger wanted nothing further to do with it, but Davies had played this one excellently. He had the nuts with his Q♦10♠ and Fatehi’s 7♥6♥ was the inferior straight.

The 3♥ river meant nothing. Fatehi hits the rail as the day comes to a close. –HS

9:32pm: Bleak for Winter
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

Sean Winter has dropped down to 110,000 after a late blind battle loss to Anthony Zinno.

The latter opened to 15,000 from the small blind and Zinno defended his big blind. Zinno continued for 10,000 on a 4♥8♠K♠ flop and called after Winter raised to 45,000. No more chips ventured forwards as the Q♥A♦ turn and river were checked through. Zinno opened K♦6♠ and moved up to 420,000 after Winter mucked. –MC

9:30pm: Aido says goodbye
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

We missed the action, but Sergio Aido has been eliminated in the closing hands at the hands of Timothy Adams, who now has 565,000. –JS

9:25pm: Stop that clock
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

The clock has now been paused, and there are just five more hands for the night. –JS

9:20pm: Schwippert applies the pressure on Mateos
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

Adrian Mateos is down to 80,000 now after being forced into an agonising river fold by Jan-Eric Schwippert.

The hand began with a raise to 12,000 from Schwippert in early position and a call from Richard Yong a couple of seats around, then Mateos in the small blind.

Three players were therefore involved when the 9♣Q♦8♥ flop appeared. All three checked.

The Q♠ turn brought a bet of 33,000 from Mateos and a call from Schwippert, which freed Yong from further complications. And there were indeed complications when the K♠ completed the board.

Mateos bet 77,500 and Schwippert moved in for 278,500. That was more than Mateos had, but he was clearly interested in calling it off. He used four time-bank cards, shrugging his shoulders as he did, with a kind of: “What can I do?” expression.

What he could do was fold. Which is what he did. And he lives to fight another day. Schwippert has about 480,000. –HS

Schwippert chips up

9:15pm: River helps Khangah felt Sammartino
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

Ahadpur Khangah seemingly grabbed this tournament by the throat a while ago and hasn’t let go. He’s had the lead for a while now, and just increased it here in the last level after a big hand with Dario Sammartino.

It began with Sammartino opening from middle position for 11,000. It folded to Khangah in the big blind who three-bet to 29,000 and Sammartino called, then both players checked the Ah]K♠8♠ flop. The 4♦ turn then drew a leading bet of 40,000 from Khangah and Sammartino called.

The 9♦ fell on the river, and without much hesitation Khangah said he was all in. Sammartino looked toward the ceiling, seemingly not thrilled about the development, but nonetheless called for his last 165,000 or so.

He was even less thrilled by Khangah’s hand — A♦9♦ for a rivered two pair, which beat the two-pair hand Sammartino had flopped with K♣8♣.

Sammartino is out, though could still buy back in. Meanwhile Khangah has a chokehold on the top spot now with something like 1.1 million, and appears likely to end Day 1 on top. –MH

Sammartino sees the bad news

9:10pm: Thorel misses straight flush draw
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

Jean-Noel Thorel missed a straight flush draw versus Sam Greenwood. The latter has been grinding a relatively short stack for a lot of today, so that missed draw was welcome on his part.

Greenwood opened to 10,000 from under the gun and was called by Thorel from two seats along, as well as Patrik Antonius in the big blind. All three checked the 10♠3♥7♠ flop to see head to the 4♥ turn where Greenwood’s delayed 12,000 c-bet was only called by Thorel. They both then checked a blank river and Greenwood opened 6♥6♣. Thorel flashed A♥5♥ before mucking. He dropped to 460,000 and Greenwood rose to 153,000. –MC

9pm: Peters pushes out Chan
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

I picked up the action after the flop in this three-way hand, though it appeared from later evidence that David Peters had opened under the gun and earned a couple of callers, Sergio Aido (button) and Wai Leong Chan (big blind).

Peters, pre-pushing

The flop had come 2♣4♥J♥, and it checked around to Aido who bet 14,000. Chan then check-raised all in for 114,500. Peters took a short while before calling the push, and Aido got out.

Chan: K♦J♠
Peters: A♣J♦

Jacks for both, but Peters had the better kicker, and after the turn and river came Q♠ then Q♦, Chan had lost his stack. Peters bounds up to around 605,000. –MH

Chan down

8:55pm: Khangah on the charge
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

Ahadpur Khangah is putting on a clinic here this evening and is now up to around 900,000 chips. That puts him clearly in the chip lead as we enter the last 45 minutes of the day.

In the most recent pot, he powered past Linus Loeliger and left the Swiss star with about 205,000. It might have been even less than that, but Loeliger folded on the river.

The pot started with a raise to 15,000 from Khangah under the gun. Loeliger called in the big blind and the two of them saw a flop of 10♦4♠7♥. Loeliger checked and Khangah bet 25,000. Loeliger called.

The 10♠ brought a repeat in the pattern. It went check, bet (50,000) and call. That took them to the 8♥ river.

Loeliger took over the betting lead with an 80,000 tickle. But Khangah was having none of it and said he was all-in, covering Loeliger by some distance. Loeliger folded, leaving himself that 205,000. Meanwhile Khangah is a solid bet to be the end of day chip leader. –HS

The Khangah clinic

8:50pm: Three pair good for Antonius
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

Patrik Antonius’s stack has swelled to 565,000 after his river over-bet had the desired effect versus Orpen Kisacikoglu.

The latter opened off the button and Antonius called from the small blind to see a 3♦7♥9♥ flop. Kisacikoglu continued for 16,000 and Antonius check-called. The 3♣ turn was checked through to the 5♠ river where Antonius bombed for 80,000. Kisacikoglu took nearly 30 seconds and then called, but mucked upon seeing the Finn’s 7♣9♣. He dropped to 73,500. –MC

8:45pm: King Dan KOs Davies
Level 8 – Blinds 2,500/5,000 (BB ante 5,000)

A short-stacked Seth Davies began Level 8 reraising all in over a Linus Loeliger open, forcing a fold. On the very next hand Davies open-raised all in from the button for 75,500, and after pausing a short while Dan Smith reraise-shoved from the button, and Cary Katz folded the big blind.

Davies had A♦3♦ and Smith 9♥9♣. We’ll narrate the three postflop streets from Davies’s perspective.

The 7♦4♣9♠ flop? Frightful. Davies suddenly only had about a 6 percent chance to survive.

The 2♦ turn? Tantalizing. Davies had 10 outs to get there — any four and most of the diamonds.

The K♥ river? Rough. Davies was felted (but immediately bought back in).

Meanwhile Smith has 435,000 now. –MH

8:42pm: Kings over queens help Petrangelo
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

Nick Petrangelo just now got all of his chips in the middle before the flop holding K♦K♣ with Orpen Kisacikoglu there to challenge with Q♣Q♠.

There was a queen on the flop, but a king as well as the first three community cards came 4♥K♠Q♦. The turn was the 10♣ and river the A♦, and with the better set Petrangelo doubles to 210,000. Put Kisacikoglu on 175,000. –MH

Petrangelo’s back in business

8:40pm: Good bet helps Aido into the black
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

“Good bet, got me off it,” said Daniel Negreanu to Sergio Aido after the latter’s turn bet was (supposedly) crucial in seeing his two pair good on showdown.

Negreanu opened the pot with a raise to 10,000 from early position, and he picked up four callers. A J♣10♦5♥ flop was spread and Negreanu continued for 11,000. Aido (cutoff) and Wai Leong Chan (small blind) both called to see the K♥ turn where the action was checked to Aido, who bet 26,000. Negreanu folded after Chan called and the Q♣ fell on the river.

Both players checked and Chan’s J♥8♥ lost out to Aido’s K♠Q♠, who rose to 310,000. Chan dropped to 140,000 and Negreanu to 175,000. –MC

8:37pm: Give it straight to Pollak
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

I didn’t see any of this except the denouement, which was the only bit that really mattered for Benjamin Pollak. He ended up with a double after Nick Petrangelo made a big enough hand on the river to call his shove.

The board read Q♦2♣3♦5♣A♣ and Pollak got his last 105,000 in at this point. Petrangelo called with ace-king, having rivered top pair. But Pollak’s 4♠6♠ was a straight, and stayed good.

Pollak ended the hand with 370,000 while Petrangelo is down to 104,000. –HS

Pollak: straight to the point

8:35pm: Antonius collects
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

While Cary Katz was pulling up a seat, a slow hand was playing out on a neighbouring table, with Patrik Antonius belatedly pulling the trigger and picking it up.

The hand began when Orpen Kisacikoglu opened to 10,000 in the cutoff and Antonius called on the button. Sam Greenwood called in the small blind and three of them saw the 10♦5♣8♦. Three checks.

The 8♥ turn proved to be more of an action card as Greenwood bet 10,000, Kisacikoglu called and then Antonius raised to 45,000. Greenwood was quick to fold and Kisacikoglu didn’t take much longer. –HS

8:30pm: Katz takes a seat
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

Cary Katz, winner of the $100,000 Super High Roller at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure earlier this year, has arrived to take his seat here near the end of Level 7. He was postitioned in between Dan Smith and Dario Sammartino, and was amid greeting both when Smith opened a pot just now.

Katz uses first life

Sammartino was next to act in the small blind and folded, accidentally showing not one but both hole cards — 9♦5♥ — as he did. Ali Reza Fatehi then called from the big blind, and the table got a good laugh when the flop came 5♦9♣J♣ while Sammartino grinned sheepishly. It checked all of the way down and Smith won the small pot, and all speculated Sammartino’s hand probably would’ve been best.

The entry of Katz brings the field up to 43 entries so far, with 34 players currently in action. –MH

8:25pm: Fate favors Fatehi
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

I arrived over at Ali Reza Fatehi’s table just now to see him getting all his chips in the middle postflop versus Seth Davies. It was either on the K♦8♥6♥ flop or J♣ turn, but in either case he was in dire straits with K♥Q♦ for a pair of kings versus the A♠A♦ of Davies.

But the Q♠ fell on the river, saving Fatehi with two pair and pushing him back up to around 235,000. Tough luck there for Davies, who now sits on 80,000. –MH

8:20pm: Kisacikoglu doubles again as Dvoress’s read is wrong
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

It was a polarising shove from Orpen Kisacikoglu. Daniel Dvoress, his opponent, clearly thought he had nothing. But even someone as skilled as Dvoress can pick the wrong option sometimes.

Those two played a slow-burner of a pot which led to a board of 4♦3♦K♣2♠10♣ (other details are scarce, regrettably). At this stage, Kisacikoglu moved all-in for 62,000 and that left Dvoress with a tough decision.

He counted out what he would be left with if he made the call and was wrong. It would be 135,000. He then used three time-bank cards, and was still clearly pondering a fold. Eventually he pushed the calling chips forward and Kisacikoglu turned over his 3♣3♠ for a flopped set.

Dvoress had to show his hand–EPT rules mean all hands have to be shown if an all-in bet is called–and therefore we learnt that Dvoress had only 4♣5♦. He thought his pair of fours might be good.

It wasn’t. It leaves Dvoress with the aforementioned 135,000, while Kisacikoglu now has about 265,000. –HS

8:15pm: Yong floors Vogelsang, Chidwick finishes him off
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

Richard Yong has grown to 480,000 after he got a full double up through Christoph Vogelsang. We missed the hand but were present when Stephen Chidwick finished him off soon after.

He raised to 9,000 from the hijack and was called by Adrian Mateos in the next seat before Vogelsang moved all-in for 11,000. Both opponents called and an 8♥7♦5♥9♠5♣ board rolled out. The action was checked to the river where Mateos folded to a 12,000 Chidwick bet. Vogelsang opened A♠10♦ but was eliminated when he saw he was behind to Chidwick’s Q♠Q♦. He rose to 355,000. –MC

Vogelsang takes one last look

8:10pm: Khangah collects from Davies
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

They just moved the players from the table where Seth Davies and Ahadpur Khangah just played out a hand to the river, a simple shift over of everyone one table. That meant everyone had gotten up to leave by the time this one got to the end, leaving just the pair of them and the dealer.

Khangah (big blind) had bet the 5♥6♠8♦ and Davies (under the gun) called, then both had checked the 7♠ turn card. The 5♣ river paired the board, and Khangah made a big bet of 90,000, more than the size of the pot.

Khangah flopped it

Davies thought a while then called, and Khangah showed 6♦6♥ for a flopped set that had turned into a full house on the end. Khangah carries around 620,000 and the apparent chip lead to the new table, while Davies takes about 205,000 over. –MH

Davies dips

8:05pm: Pot to Aido
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

Catching the action after a 7♥J♣10♥ flop, Daniel Negreanu (big blind), Sergio Aido (middle position), and Wei Leong Chan (cutoff) all checked, then Negreanu checked again after the 10♣ turn card. Aido bet 13,000, and only Chan called.

The river was the 8♠ and Aido checked. Chan bet big — 45,000 — and Aido responded by check-raising all in for just over 130,000. Chan took his time before folding and preserving his 200,000 or so, while Aido bumped all the way up to about 265,000. –MH

8pm: Davies jams on Fatehi
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

It’s been somewhat slow out there since the break, with the end of the night edging into view. No doubt it will pick up as the threat of the re-entry period ending draws closer, but it’s definitely a little sluggish right now.

Here’s one hand worth note. Seth Davies opened to 9,000 from early position and he picked up calls from Ali Reza Fatehi in the small blind and Linus Loeliger in the big.

The K♠6♠9♦ flop was checked to the raiser, and Davies bet 18,000. Only Fatehi called.

The turn was the 10♦ and Davies now moved all-in, even though it was Fatehi’s 100,000 stack that was effective. Fatehi snap-folded.

Yep, that’s what passes for a hand of note at this stage. –HS

7:55pm: Chidwick set for a strong finish
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

Stephen Chidwick flopped a set in a three-bet pot versus Christoph Vogelsang and rose to 380,000 after it was good on showdown.

The British pro opened to 8,000 from under the gun and called after Vogelsang three-bet to 31,000 from two seats along. Vogelsang continued for 22,000 on the K♦4♣8♣ flop and was check-called by Chidwick. The 3♥J♥ turn and river were checked through and Chidwick opened 4♦4♥. Vogelsang mucked to drop to 230,000. –MC

7:50pm: Ace magnets
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

Sergio Aido has been battling uphill since he started, it seems. He must’ve been glad, therefore, to look down at K♣K♥ in the big blind and watch Pascal Lefrancois raise to 9,000 from the cutoff.

Lefrancois took the whole 30 seconds before calling the three-bet, which Aido probably didn’t mind too much either. Then came the flop — 2♦A♣4♥.

That ace on the board? Aido probably didn’t care for that so much. So he checked, and Lefrancois checked behind. Both also checked the J♦ turn and 4♦ river, and when Aido showed his kings it was good and he won a small one.

Aido keeps battling, now with 165,000, while Lefrancois is up around 490,000. –MH

Aido’s uphill battle gets a little less steep

7:45pm: Kisacikoglu kicks off with a double
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

A double-plus for Orpen Kisacikoglu here as Level 7 gets under way. He managed to find a good spot to get his stack of 56,700 in the middle, and then managed to hit one of his over-cards too.

The hand started with a raise to 8,000 from Patrik Antonius and then a quick three-bet from Jean-Noel Thorel on the button. Thorel made it 30,000. Kisacikoglu, in the big blind, moved all-in and though Antonius folded, Thorel called.

The race was set. Thorel had 7♦7♠. Kisacikoglu had A♣K♥. There was no help on the 3♦8♠2♦ flop, but the K♦ turn helped Kisacikoglu and the K♠ river made sure.

Thorel remains buoyant, with about 390,000, while Kisacikoglu lives to fight another day with about 120,000. –HS

7:40pm: Play resumes
Level 7 – Blinds 2,000/4,000 (BB ante 4,000)

Players are back and will play two more levels before Day 1 concludes.

At the last break David Peters was the shortest stack in the room. But after busting and re-entering, he’s now the chip leader. Below find the top 10 at present. –MH

Name Country Chips
David Peters United States 570,000
Ahadpur Khangah Iran 540,000
Matthias Eibinger Austria 475,000
Jean-Noel Thorel France 455,000
Dan Smith United States 430,000
Jean Ferreira Canada 430,000
Bryn Kenney United States 410,000
Nick Petrangelo United States 380,000
Adrian Mateos Spain 380,000
Pascal Lefrancois Canada 360,000

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7:15pm: Last break of the day

Six levels are done, with just two more to go. Players are taking the last 20-minute break of the day. And we are, too. –MH

7:13pm: Big pot for Loeliger before break
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

In the last hand of Level 6, Linus Loeliger took down a healthy pot from Dan Smith. It started when Loeliger opened the hijack to 6,500, picking up two callers in Smith (sb) and Dario Sammartino (bb). The dealer put out a 7♦4♠6♥ flop, and it checked to the raiser. Loeliger continued for 10,000, and both called.

The turn came the K♠ and it checked to Loeliger once more. He didn’t slow down, leading for 30,000. Only Smith would stick around to see the 2♥ river, on which Smith checked a final time. Loeliger fired 100,000, and Smith picked up calling chips but took a few moments before setting them down.

Loeliger turned over 6♦6♠ for a flopped set, and Smith could only muck. He’s down to 260,000 now, while Loeliger is up to 485,000. –JS

7:10pm: Kenney collects from Zinno
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

Anthony Zinno’s stack just took a hit, while coincidentally Bryn Kenney’s increased. Funny that.

It might be because the two just tangled in this pot. Zinno opened from the cutoff and was three-bet by Kenney in the big blind to 25,500, which was called. The flop fell 6♥A♠J♥ and it checked through to the 10♣ turn. Kenney checked it once more, and now Zinno took the betting lead for 28,000. Call.

The K♣ completed the board, and Kenney seized control of the betting again, leading out for 44,500. Zinno would think about it but ultimately folded, dropping to 215,000.

Zinno continues the battle

When the pot shipped to Kenney, he stacked up 435,000. –JS

7:05pm: Aido loses, but could have lost more to Lefrancois
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

Sergio Aido has suffered an early hit, running into a big pair in Pascal Lefrancois’s hand. Aido’s 250,000 starting stack has been trimmed to 135,000 already.

Rocky start for Sergio

Aido started this hand with a raise to 7,000. Lefrancois three-bet to 35,000 and Aido called. Then the 6♠A♠K♦ flop was clearly to Lefrancois’s liking. He bet 22,000. Aido called.

The 9♠ fell on the turn and Lefrancois slowed to a check. Aido took over with a bet of 75,000. Lefrancois called.

The 9♦ completed the board and Lefrancois checked again. Aido pondered for a bit, but then checked behind. And it was good for him that he did. Lefrancois showed his K♥K♠ for a flopped set, rivered boat, and Aido will be happy to have wriggled out of the trap.

Lefrancois is up to 360,000. –HS

Lefrancois leaps up

7pm: Did Slammy have king-five?
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

Sam Greenwood is grinding a short stack, but winning an amusing pot off his friend Nick Petrangelo has helped.

Petrangelo opened to 8,000 from the cutoff and Greenwood peeled from the big blind to see a 4♠4♣Q♥ flop that was checked by both players. Greenwood then led for 15,000 and 50,500 (leaving 500 behind) on the 10♣ turn and 9♠ river. Petrangelo called on the turn, but folded after the river bet.

“You got king-five Slammy?” asked Petrangelo. “That’s about all I can beat!” he continued before folding.

Before Greenwood raked in the pot he flashed the K♦ which prompted Petrangelo to say, “I f%&*ing knew it!” –MC

Slide the chips to Slammy

6:55pm: Adams flushed
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

Timothy Adams is the latest player out. It was, apparently, a flush over flush. I fully expect Adams will be back soon. –HS

6:54pm: Peters applies pressure
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

David Peters’ second bullet is working out rather well. He’s chip leader now.

Picking up the action on a 3♦10♥J♦10♠ board, and with 116,000 out there, Wai Leong Chan led for 60,000 and Peters just called. That brought the 7♦ on the river, and when Chan checked Peters put out a bet of 300,000. Chan only had 180,000 or so behind, so it was essentially a shove.

Chan considered it but decided to fight another day, letting it go and bringing his stack up to 570,000. –JS

6:52pm: Yong’s check-raise gets things done
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

Christoph Vogelsang thought better of becoming the meat in a sandwich between Richard Yong and Ivan Leow, although his departure pretty much ended the pot as a spectacle.

It didn’t kick off quite as spectacularly as it had seemed set to. Vogelsang opened the pot to 7,000 from the cutoff and picked up the Asian high rollers, who were sitting in the blinds. The three of them saw the 6♣K♣2♠ flop and both Leow and Yong checked. Vogelsang bet 8,000.

Leow quickly called. And then Yong raised to 28,000, all of this happening in an instant. Vogelsang then clearly saw how this could get out of hand and folded. But Leow wasn’t having any of this either. He folded.

Yong flashed the K♥ as he pushed his cards away. –HS

6:50pm: Soyza see ya later
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

He may have doubled up, but Michael Soyza couldn’t find a way back from the bad beat he took from Mathis Eibinger earlier.

He just shoved with six-seven off and ran into Wai Leong Chan’s pocket kings, which held up. Will Soyza fire another bullet? –JS

Soyza stands up

6:45pm: Soyza back in business
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

“Back in business!” said Daniel Negreanu to Michael Soyza after the latter doubled through him.

“Thank you very much,” responded Soyza. “I’m rich now!”

There was a touch of irony in Soyza’s last statement as his all-in — holding A♥J♠ — was for just 11,500. Negreanu held K♥Q♠, but the A♠9♣4♣8♦J♣ board gave his Malaysian opponent a winning two pair. –MC

6:40pm: Loeliger at the double
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

Linus Loeliger just doubled up to well over his starting stack. That’s his second starting stack, don’t forget, and there’s still an awful long way to go.

The hand began with a raise to 6,500 from Seth Davies under the gun and Dario Sammartino called a couple of seats along. Loeliger called in the small blind and that meant three of them saw a flop — Q♦8♣6♥ — and all three of them checked it.

The turn was the 7♥ and both Loeliger and Davies checked. Sammartino bet 14,000 and Loeliger raised to 44,000. This was Davies’s opportunity to slip away.

Sammartino called the check-raise, taking them to the innocuous 2♦ on the river. Sammartino checked again, but was then faced with a jam, for 112,000, from Loeliger.

Sammartino pondered but called, showing J♣J♠. But Loeliger’s 8♥8♠ had flopped a set, which was good to push him back to around 345,000. –HS

6:35pm: Soyza’s heater switches off, doubles Eibinger in huge pot
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

In less than 10 minutes, and through no fault of his own, Michael Soyza has lost most of his stack.

David Peters had opened, Mathias Eibginger three-bet, and Soyza then cold four-bet. When it folded back to Eibinger, he five-bet shoved for 234,000, and Soyza called with ace-king. Eibinger had A♣J♣, and unfortunately for Soyza, the board ran A♠7♦3♥Q♣J♠, giving Eibinger two pair on the river.

Soyza was left with just 12,500, while Eibinger is now up to 475,000. –JS

6:30pm: Peters back with a bang
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

David Peters has bought back in and gotten off to a flier second time around, getting a full double-up via Timothy Adams.

The American had top set of aces which bettered Adams’ two pair. The loss saw Adams’ stack drop to just below 100k.

Daniel Negreanu put Peters in his place soon after, though. The latter opened to 8,500 off the button and was called by Pascal Lefrancois before the Team PokerStars Pro squeezed to 40,000 from the big blind. Both opponents folded and Negreanu rose to around 330,000. –MC

6:29pm: Level 6 begins
Level 6 – Blinds 1,500/3,000 (BB ante 3,000)

You read that right. –MH

6:25pm: Thorel playing captain
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

When he’s on form, Jean-Noel Thorel is one of the most exciting players to watch. And the French veteran is playing table bully quite effectively right now, even with Nick Petrangelo, Patrik Antonius, Sam Greenwood and Daniel Dvoress, among others, for company.

In a recent hand, Greenwood opened to 5,500 from the hijack and Dvoress called from the cutoff. Thorel called on the button and Orpen Kisacikoglu called in the big blind too.

Those four saw the 10♥5♥6♦ flop and a check from Kisacikoglu. Greenwood continued for 6,000 but managed only to shake Dvoress. Thorel raised it up, making it 40,000 and Kisacikoglu called. Greenwood now departed.

The 3♣ came on the turn, which they both checked. And the also both checked the J♣ river. Kisacikoglu showed his A♥9♥ for the missed flush draw. That meant that Thorel’s A♦10♦ stayed best.

Thorel now has around 445,000, which is one of the largest stacks in the room. –HS

JNT: He’s dynamite

6:20pm: Mateos marvels
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

I’ll be honest with you right from the off: I don’t know much of anything when it comes to this hand. Other than the fact that Adrian Mateos just made an excellent call.

I don’t know how much was in the pot (I arrived too late). Nor do I know any of the action pre-river (same reason). And nor do I know the exact flop, the suits of any of the cards, or what might have given Mateos the incentive to call.

But here’s what I do know: on a queen-high board, with two eights out there, and what I think were two low cards, Richard Yong fired 30,000 into the middle and Mateos called… with just king-high.

He showed king-ten off, and Yong showed six-four off for nothing but a busted gutshot.

That great call brings Mateos up to 380,000, and dips Yong to 195,000. It got a few smiles from the table, too, with Christoph Vogelsang admitting to Mateos: “I was sure you were playing an eight.” –JS

6:18pm: Mateos a non-believer
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

Adrian Mateos was right, Stanley Choi was at it.

Mateos opened from the button and Choi defended his big blind. The flop spread 10♣4♦Q♦ and Mateos continued for 6,000. Choi check-called and both players went on to check the 2♣ turn. That offered Choi the opportunity to have a stab on the 7♠ river, but his 12,000 bet was called by Mateos and Choi had to announce king-high while showing the K♠. Mateos opened A♠2♥ and took the pot to rise to 310,000. Choi dropped to 145,000. –MC

6:15pm: Welcome Team Malaysia
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

“Welcome Team Malaysia!” said Mikita Badziakouski, giving Ivan Leow a hug as he entered the tournament room alongside Richard Yong and Wai Leong Chan. If you’re not familiar with these guys, Richard Yong is a businessman who plays plenty of high stakes poker, while Leow and Chan are both high roller pros with multi millions in tournament winnings between them.

Ivan Leow now in action

We’ve already caught one hand with Yong (see just below, 6:05pm). Meanwhile just now Chan made his presence felt in a pot, also against Daniel Negreanu.

Chan opened to 6,000 on the button and got calls from Pascal Lefrancois (SB) and Negreanu (BB), bringing the A♦3♣10♥ flop which checked through. There’d be no more betting on the J♥ turn either.

But the 9♠ river created action. It checked to Negreanu and he led out for 15,000, only for Chan to suddenly raise it up to 58,000. Lefrancois left the party, and Negreanu gave it some thought before laying it down too.

Chan is up to 315,000 now, while Negreanu is just behind him with 313,000.

Chips for Wai Leong Chan

Another Malaysian, Michael Soyza, entered just after the others. Soyza took down the €10K High Roller at the beginning of EPT Barcelona for just over €300,000, and has won six big tournaments so far in 2018. He’ll be hoping to keep the heater on throughout this one. –JS

Smiling Soyza seeks successful Spanish sequel

6:10pm: Two hands, two four-bets, two wins
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

Different players and different tables, but four-bettors are getting it done.

Bryn Kenney opened to 6,000 from the cutoff, Byron Kaverman raised to 22,000 from the small blind, but Kenney four-bet to 49,500 and Kaverman folded.

Two paces to left. Pascal Lefrancois opened to 6,000 from the cutoff, Daniel Negreanu three-bet to 22,000 from the button and Lefrancois four-bet to 60,000 and Negreanu folded. –HS

6:05pm: Negreanu names it, can’t get away
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

Daniel Negreanu put Richard Yong on the precise hand he had, but still he couldn’t get away and paid the price.

There was 34,000 in the middle and the Q♠10♣2♣K♣ out on board. Negreanu checked, Yong bet 15,000 and Negreanu called.

The Q♥ fell on the river and Yong bet 30,000. Under his breath, Negreanu said “ace-jack” in response. But after about 15 seconds, Negreanu tossed out calling chips. Yong duly turned over his A♣J♦.

“I said it!” Negreanu said. “Ace-jack.”

It was a costly way to prove himself right. Negreanu mucked, leaving himself with 270,000. Yong has about 265,000. –HS

Richard Yong joins the gang

6:02pm: Stevie takes out Peters
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

David Peters never managed to turn around his fortunes as he was taken out by Stephen Chidwick.

Peters opened to 5,000 from second position and called after Chidwick three-bet to 12,000 from the next seat. The flop came 8♣4♠2♥ and Peters check-called a 5,000 c-bet before the 10♣ turn was checked through. The 5♠ completed the board and Peters jammed for (what looked like) his last 35,000 or so. Chidwick flicked in one chip to call and took the pot and scalp with his Q♠Q♦ as Peters could only muster up 10♥9♥. –MC

6pm: First man in was out, now back in
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

We just lost Linus Loeliger, better known as “LLinusLLove” online. The Swiss player was the first to arrive earlier today, and how he’s in for a second bullet.

Nick Petrangelo had opened to 6,000 from the hijack and Patrik Antonius had three-bet to 20,000 on the button. Loeliger then four-bet shoved from the small blind for 77,000, which got a fold from Petrangelo and a snap-call from Antonius.

Loeliger – 9♦9♥
Antonius – A♠A♣

The board ran 2♥K♦J♣6♣J♥, felting Loeliger and bringing Antonius up to 293,000. Having re-entered, Loeliger is back to 250,000, while Petrangelo is on 390,000. –JS

5:55pm: Greenwood shortened further by Kenney
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

“Ay-ay-yah!” Luc Greenwood said as he tossed his cards away, losing a recent pot to Bryn Kenney and seeing his stack trimmed down to 26,500, a mere 10 big blinds. That’s the short stack at the moment, although registration remains open until tomorrow, of course.

This hand started with a raise to 5,000 from Greenwood in the cutoff. Kenney called on the button and Anthony Zinno came along in the big blind.

The 7♣Q♦9♥ flop brought a check from Zinno and Greenwood, but a bet of 8,000 from Kenney. Zinno’s cameo ended. Only Greenwood called.

The 8♠ brought two checks but then Greenwood bombed 30,000 at the A♥ river, a near pot-sized bet. Kenney is never afraid and merely raised it to 75,000. Greenwood had been caught at it, expressed his dismay, and folded.

Kenney has about 400,000 now. — HS

Kenney collecting

5:50pm: Negreanu gets Greenwood… again
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

Daniel Negreanu and Sam Greenwood have been battling hard against each other today, and every time we see them tangle it’s been Negreanu who gets the best of it. This time was no exception.

There was already 73,500 in the centre when we arrived, and the dealer had spread a K♣5♥9♦ flop. Greenwood led for 15,000, and Negreanu made the call, bringing the J♥ on the turn. Greenwood reached for more chips and continued firing for 35,000. This gave Negreanu something to mull over.

After a bit of thinking time, Negreanu grabbed a 100K stack of blue 5K chips as well as four yellow 25K chips and pushed them out simultaneously for a raise to 200,000. Greenwood snap-folded.

Chips after that one are 375,000 for Negreanu, and 111,000 for Greenwood. –JS

5:40pm: DP down but not out
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

David Peters seemed to like his hand on the turn, but not so much on the river. He folded when shoved on and dropped to 49,000. His opponent in the hand was Adrian Mateos, one of the only players in the world to match his results over the last few years.

We picked up the action on the turn where the board read 5♣10♠3♣7♠ and Peters led out for 5,500 from the big blind. Peters was stoic as ever, whereas Mateos had a confused look upon his face. The Spaniard then raised to 22,000 and Peters called. The K♣ came on the river and Peters checked to face the all-in bet. He folded allowing Mateos’ stack to swell to 275,000. –MC

David Peters: On the short side

5:35pm: Thorel gets some revenge
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

Jean-Noel Thorel just lost a pot to Daniel Dvoress when his ace-queen proved to be no good (see 5:25pm post) but the same hand just earned Thorel a 100,000-plus pot from the same opponent.

This one started with a raise to 6,000 from Dvoress and then a three-bet to 15,000 from Thorel on the button. Dvoress called and they saw the A♠7♣J♠ flop. Dvoress checked, Thorel bet 25,000 and Dvoress called.

The 6♦ turn brought another check from Dvoress and a bet of 50,000 from Thorel. Dvoress called again.

Both players then checked the 6♣ river and Dvoress said, “Seven.” Thorel turned over his A♥Q♥ and that was good to push Thorel to 285,000. Dvoress slips to 190,000. –HS

5:30pm: Winter collects when Zinno doesn’t drop the hammer
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

Just like in your home game, sometimes even the Super High Rollers bet out of turn. Sean Winter just made the poker faux pas, raising to 6,000 in the UTG+1 seat when the under-the-gun player, Anthony Zinno, hadn’t acted yet.

Zinno then decided just to flat, making Winter’s bet stand. Stanley Choi called it from the next seat over, and when it got back to Zinno he made the call too.

“It would be funny if I just dropped the hammer,” joked Zinno, implying that he should now raise having limped pre. “I like to mix it up.”

Anthony Zinno: It’s not hammer time

The flop fell A♥8♦9♠ and all three checked, taking them to the 10♦ turn. Zinno checked again, and now Winter put out a delayed continuation bet of 17,500. That was enough to get the job done. –JS

5:25pm: Dvoress quick on the out-draw
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

Daniel Dvoress got his new level off to a nice start, out-drawing Jean-Noel Thorel and picking up a small pot.

Dvoress raised his button pre-flop, making it 6,500 to go. Both Thorel, in the small blind, and Dario Sammartino, in the big, called and they took in a flop of 7♥2♥6♠. All three checked.

The J♦ fell on the turn and, after two checks, Dvoress bet 9,000. Thorel was the only man to call. They then both checked the 8♦ river and Thorel showed his A♠Q♥.

It had been ahead pre-flop, but Dvoress’s J♥Q♥ hit the turn.

From the other end of the table, Nick Petrangelo paused munching through a packet of M&Ms to suggest (in a phrase unrepeatable on a family blog) that his was surprised Dvoress hadn’t found a value bet on the end. –HS

5:20pm: Back at it
Level 5 – Blinds 1,000/2,500 (BB ante 2,500)

Players are back from break and back in action. Your intrepid blogging team was hard at work during the break, and now all of the chip counts have been updated.

Take a look below to see how the top of the leaderboard appears after four levels, while Ali Reza Fatehi (110,000), Luc Greenwood (99,000), and David Peters (83,000) are currently at the bottom of the counts. –MH

Name Country Chips
Ahadpur Khangah Iran 445,000
Dan Smith United States 440,000
Sean Winter United States 413,000
Dario Sammartino Italy 390,000
Bryn Kenney United States 360,000
Daniel Negreanu Canada 360,000
Nick Petrangelo United States 355,000
Seth Davies United States 342,000
Stanley Choi Hong Kong 325,000
Daniel Dvoress Canada 310,000

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5pm: Break time

They’ve reached the end of the fourth level and another 20-minute break. It’s kind of like halftime, as there are four more levels scheduled today. If you are a marching band, now is the time to do your thing. –MH

4:55pm: Kisacikoglu continues to slide
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Orpen Kisacikoglu hasn’t had the greatest of levels. We’ve witnessed him lose a few pots that seem to have cost him around 100,000 in total. His latest loss came at hands of Daniel Dvoress who jumped up to 260,000.

Dvoress raised from the cutoff and continued for 3,500 on a K♠6♥J♥ flop. Kisacikoglu peeled from the big blind and called the c-bet. Dvoress continued to be aggressive, leading for 23,000 and 40,000 on the 8♣7♣ turn and river. Kisacikoglu called the turn bet before check-time-bank-folding to the river bet. –MC

4:50pm: Another conversation stopper
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Timothy Adams and Matthias Eibinger were talking about soccer, specifically Sturm Graz, the team from Eibinger’s hometown. Adams said he knew about it from playing a lot of FIFA as a kid, and Eibinger brought him up to date on the club’s latest fortunes.

And then, as sometimes happens, the poker got in the way.

Adams opened from early position to 4,500. It was Eibinger’s big blind, and he responded with a three-bet to 25,500. All of a sudden, the pair were letting their chips do the talking.

Adams called, which meant this was a bloated pot as the dealer showed them the K♦A♦5♣ flop. Silence. Check, check. Then the 7♥ turn. Silence. Check, check.

The K♥ fell on the river and if anyone was laying a trap, surely this was the time to spring it. Eibinger bet 27,000 and, after a 10-second pause, Adams folded. –HS

Let your chips do the talking

4:45pm: Vogelsang not scared by Peters
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

David Peters is down to about 110,000 and attempts to rebuild in late position on a recent orbit had mixed results. He picked up a small pot from Adrian Mateos when Peters raised the button to 5,500 and Mateos defended in the big blind. A continuation bet from Peters after a flop of 3♦10♣4♠ was all it took to win that one.

Buoyed by the triumph, Peters opened to 5,000 on the next hand and this time Christoph Vogelsang called in the big blind. Vogelsang would prove more difficult to shift.

Both players checked the 6♣7♣J♣ flop and Vogelsang also checked the 8♥ turn. Peters bet 4,500 and Vogelsang called.

They then saw the 6♠ river and Vogelsang checked again. Peters bet 7,500 but Vogelsang responded with a raise to 31,000. As the seconds ticked down on the shot clock, Peters tossed his hand away. –HS

4:42pm: Antonius among us
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Patrik Antonius is the latest to enter the fray, bringing the total entries up to 29 at the moment, with 27 players currently in action. –MH

Antonius has arrived

4:40pm: Sammartino vs. Kisacikoglu
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Dario Sammartino made it 5,000 to go from the UTG+1 seat, or at least we think he did. He had a blue 5K chip in front of him anyway, but when Orpen Kisacikoglu raised to 15,500 Sammartino made the call, so we never saw any potential change given.

Anyway, after the K♦4♦4♥ flop was dealt Sammartino checked it on over to the raiser and Kisacikoglu continued for 9,500. That bet was called taking them to the 3♣ turn, and now Kisacikoglu led for 35,000. Sammartino didn’t budge.

The 7♥ river got checks from both, and Sammartino quickly turned over Q♣Q♠. Kisacokglu mucked, taking his stack down to 255,000 and taking Sammartino up to 320,000. –JS

4:35pm: Fatehi finds a jack
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Ali Reza Fatehi’s stack is the lowest in the tournament, but for every hit he takes, he seems to win a pot to bring his stack back to the same amount: roughly 125,000.

In this one he opened to 4,500 in the UTG+1 seat, and was called in two spots by Mathias Eibinger (button) and Timothy Adams (big blind). The dealer spread an 8♦3♥8♠ flop, and Fatehi continued for 5,500. Only Eibinger called.

The turn came the 9♥, and it checked through to the J♠ river. Fatehi now resumed his betting for 11,000, and after giving it a good think Eibinger made the call. Fatehi showed K♠J♦ for a rivered pair, and that was good when Eibinger mucked.

Fatehi remains at 125,000, while Eibinger drops a little to 220,000. –JS

4:30pm: Red kings good for Sammartino on scary board
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Dario Sammartino managed to get a decent amount of chips in preflop with two red kings, and just as well, as none went in postflop on a scary board.

Orpen Kisacikoglu had raised to 4,500 and was called in one spot before Sammartino squeezed to 26,000 from the big blind. Only Kisacikoglu called and both players checked the J♠3♠10♠7♠Q♥ board all the way through.

Kisacikoglu then mucked, dropping to 300,000, when Sammartino opened K♥K♦ to rise to 270,000. –MC

Some for Sammartino

4:25pm: Choi catches up with Ferreira
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Stanley Choi opened to 5,000 in the cutoff and picked up only one customer: Jean Ferreira in the small blind. Both these two players are relatively recent arrivals, but Choi had lost a little from his 250,000 starting stack before this hand began, while Ferreira had added to his.

Jean Ferreira is here

Ferreira checked the J♥K♥10♣ flop and Choi continued with a bet of 6,000. Ferreira called. The K♦ turn brought a repeat of the pattern: Ferreira checked, Choi bet 15,000 and Ferreira called.

The 9♦ river hit the potential straight draw and both players checked. Ferreira showed his A♠10♠, but Choi had flopped the best of it with K♣2♣.

After that, both Ferreira and Choi have around 260,000. –HS

4:20pm: Ahadpur bets big, gets paid by Peters
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Ahadpur Khangah started this event with a bang, but since then his stack had deflated somewhat. After this last pot though, he’s back up over the 400K mark.

David Peters opened to 4,500 from the hijack and Khangah defended the big blind to see the 6♦A♣4♠ flop. Peters continued for 4,000 when checked to, and Khangah made the call to bring the 6♥ on the turn. Check check.

The 4♥ river was an interesting one, as it double-paired the board and provided an ace kicker. Khangah took his time, using up a time bank card before leading out for 35,000. This bet got the rest of the table’s attention.

Peters took his time too, and after a time bank card was used he tossed in a single chip to indicate a call. Khangah flipped over A♥6♠ for a full house, and Peters mucked, taking his stack down to 144,000.

Khangah has moved back to 420,000 now. –JS

4:15pm: The pros and cons of a check-raise
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Just now two hands played out on neighbouring tables each featuring a check-raise. Things worked out well for Jean Ferreira, who picked up a small pot from Anthony Zinno. But it turned out to be a misfire for Nick Petrangelo, who lost one to Orpen Kisacikoglu.

In the first, Zinno opened to 3,000 from the hijack and Ferreira called from the big blind. After the dealer put the K♣4♠6♦ flop down, Ferreira checked and Zinno bet 5,500. Ferreira then sprang into action with a raise to 16,500 and Zinno waited all of one second before folding.

Next door, Petrangelo and Kisacikoglu got to a flop for the absolute minimum. They were small blind and big blind, respectively, and Petrangelo completed with Kisacikoglu checking his option. It brought them to the 8♥A♦K♥ flop.

Petrangelo bet 2,000 and Kisacikoglu called, but both players then checked the A♠ turn. The 2♥ on the river prompted a check from Petrangelo and then a bet of 3,500 from Kisacikoglu.

Petrangelo then put out 32,000 — a near 10x raise. It gave Kisacikoglu pause for thought, but he then called. Petrangelo showed his 8♦7♥, which he likely knew wasn’t winning this one. Kisacikoglu turned over his A♣3♣, which was a winner.

Petrangelo has about 240,000 now. Kisacikoglu has 310,000. –HS

Everybody is on the clock

4:10pm: Two all-ins, one double-up
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

Pascal Lefrancois and Jean-Noel Thorel were both all in on two separate tables. One managed to double, while the other forced a fold from their opponent.

We were watching as Lefrancois opened to 5,000 from the hijack before Daniel Negreanu three-bet to 18,000 from the next seat. Lefrancois came back with a four-bet to 46,000 and the Team PokerStars Pro called. The flop spread 5♠4♥Q♣ and Lefrancois continued for 28,000. Call. As the turn came out as 4♦ the cry of “all in and call” was heard from the adjacent table.

We dashed over (took two steps to the right in reality) to see that Thorel had shoved for 101,500 (just over pot) on the turn of a 3♣6♣8♥2♠ board, holding 7♣7♥. Linus Loeliger was his opponent in the hand and made the call with A♣5♣ for a big combo draw. He missed on the 8♦ river and dropped to 80,000.

We went back to the original table to see that the turn had been checked by both players and the 9♠ had filled up the board. Lefrancois moved all-in for what looked like 135,000 and Negreanu wasted little time in folding. –MC

4:05pm: More for Negreanu
Level 4 – Blinds 1,000/2,000 (BB ante 2,000)

This one seemed to go open, three-bet, call pre-flop between Pascal Lefrancois in the cutoff and Daniel Negreanu on the button. It was just those two to a flop of 6♠5♠4♣. They both checked.

The turn brought the 9♥ and Lefrancois bet 15,000. Negreanu called. Then the 6♦ completed the board and Lefrancois took nearly his full 30 seconds before announcing a bet of 16,000, adding a single red chip to the three blues he eventually moved forward.

Negreanu seemed a little suspicious, but made the call. Lefrancois then turned over 10♠10♦, which was an over-pair to the co-ordinated board. Negreanu had an over-pair too. But crucially his K♣K♦ was an over pair to the over-pair to the coordinated board. And Negreanu took this one.

He moves to around 360,000, which represents a nice start for the Team PokerStars Pro. –HS

4pm: Welcome to the game, Stanley
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

One of the recent arrivals is Stanley Choi, but there’s no welcome period in this game. It’s straight down to business.

Choi had opened and was called by both Bryn Kenney and Anthony Zinno. The flop fell 9♥7♠10♠ and Choi continued for 9,000, but Kenney then raised it up to 28,000. Zinno let his hand go, and eventually Choi would too.

Kenney is up to 395,000 now, while Choi’s starting stack takes an early hit. –JS

Stanley Choi joins the field

3:50pm: Winter felts Adams
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Sean Winter opened for 4,500 from the button, and it folded to Timothy Adams who made it 21,000 to go from the big blind. Action back on Winter, he paused a beat then four-bet to 45,000. Adams sat quietly a few moments, then announced he was all in with the 146,000 he had behind and Winter snapped.

Adams: 10♦10♥
Winter: A♦A♥

The board ran out an uneventful 2♠J♥4♠6♥5♥, and Adams lost his first entry, though he is already buying back in to take a second attempt. Winter meanwhile bounces all of the way up to about 495,000 as Level 3 nears its conclusion. –MH

Winter storms up leaderboard

3:47pm: Zinno takes from Adams
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Anthony Zinno’s stack is approaching 400,000 after he flopped a set and got paid versus Timothy Adams.

The latter opened to 3,500 from middle position and was called by Zinno and a fly swatting Sean Winter in the blinds. The flop came 5♦A♠3♣ and Adams continued for 3,000. Winter stepped aside after Zinno called. The turn was the 9♥ and Zinno led out for 12,000 and was called. Adams called another 40,000 on the 7♥ river and nodded before folding once he had seen Zinno’s 3♠3♦. –MC

3:45pm: Negreanu gets Greenwood
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Sam Greenwood kicked this one off with a 3,500 under-the-gun open, which Ali Reza Fatehi called in the cutoff. Daniel Negreanu came along from the small blind too, and it went three-ways to the 7♣3♠A♦ flop.

It checked over to the raiser and Greenwood continued for 3,500 once more. Fatehi let his hand go, but Negreanu raised it up to 12,500. Call.

The 6♠ then hit the turn, and Negreanu carried on betting, this time making it 10,000. Greenwood had a plan though, coming over the top for 40,000. That plan was quickly scuppered when Negreanu announced all-in for just shy of 200,000. Greenwood folded instantly.

“Ha! Got him!” said Negreanu as he raked in the chips, and Greenwood flashed him a smile. He dips to 215,000, while Negreanu is up to 290,000. –JS

3:37pm: Two tables, two all-ins, one bust-out
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

We’ve had our first elimination of the day, and unfortunately for Nick Petrangelo, he’s the one who lost the lot.

The hand began with a 3,500 open from Timothy Adams in the hijack, which Petrangelo called in the cutoff. Seth Davies then squeezed to 15,000 on the button, which shook off Adams but got a call from Petrangelo.

The two went heads-up to a 6♠2♠2♥ flop, on which Petrangelo check-called a 14,000 continuation bet. The K♦ then landed on the turn, and now the bet from Davies was 26,000. Petrangelo check-called once again.

The board was completed by the J♥, on which it checked to Davies a third time. He announced all-in, which was really just a bet of roughly 40,000 as that’s what Petrangelo had behind. He snap-called and showed K♥10♥ for top pair, but that was no good as Davies’ K♠Q♥ had him out-kicked.

Davies increased to 335,000 with that bust-out, and Petrangelo quickly went to re-enter. He’s already back in on his second bullet.

Nick Petrangelo: First man down

At the same time that hand was playing out, a big pot developed between Luc Greenwood and Jean-Noel Thorel. The board read 5♦8♠7♣10♣8♥, and Thorel had fired 35,000 only for Greenwood to shove for 130,500. Thorel used up a couple of time bank cards before laying it down, and Greenwood showed him 10♠10♥ for a boat.

Counts after all that are:

Seth Davies – 335,000
Nick Petrangelo – 250,000 (re-entered)
Luc Greenwood – 280,000
Jean-Noel Thorel – 135,000. –JS

3:35pm: Thorel trips up Loeliger
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Jean-Noel Thorel has gotten his stack back up to 150,000 after he made trips in a three-way pot.

Linus Loeliger opened to 3,500 from the cutoff and was called by Thorel and Luc Greenwood in the blinds. All three players checked the Q♥7♥7♣ flop before Loeliger’s delayed 6,000 c-bet on the 3♦ turn was only check-called by Thorel.

Both checked the 5♣ river and Loeliger mucked when Thorel opened 7♦6♣. –MC

3:30pm: Fast start for Khangah
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Arriving on the turn with the board showing 7♠4♠10♠8♣, recent arriver Ahadpur Khangah had checked from the small blind and Christoph Vogelsang had bet 21,000 from the button, a big bet relative to the size of the pot.

Khangah responded with a big check-raise to 75,000, and after thinking a while Vogelsang called.

Ahadpur Khangah: Fast start

Khangah checked again after the 5♦ river, and when Vogelsang bet 70,000 Khangah called right away. Vogelsang showed J♠9♥ for a turned straight, but Khangah had flopped a flush with Q♠8♠ and won the pot.

Just like that, Khangah springs up to 440,000, while Vogelsang has 170,000. –MH

3:25pm: Everything gets there on the river
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Sometimes the river card is a real killer, where everything gets there for your opponent. The look on Pascal Lefrancois’ face just now told us all we needed to know.

The Canadian star opened from the cutoff and was called by Sam Greenwood in the big blind. The flop fanned J♣10♦2♣ and Greenwood treated Lefrancois’s 3,000 c-bet to a check-raise to 12,000. Call.

Greenwood kept up the aggressive line on the turn with a lead for 15,000 but soon faced a raise to 52,000. He used a time bank chip and called to the A♣ river where he used another time bank chip before leading for 139,000, leaving just 500 behind.

Lefrancois wasn’t happy inside and folded to drop to 280,000. –MC

3:20pm: Big call from BK
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Earlier today Nick Petrangelo was joking with Bryn Kenney and the rest of their table, getting a laugh after saying something along the lines of “BK will call with any cards if the pot is big enough.” Just now a hand took place between the pair that perhaps illustrated the point.

Petrangelo had raised preflop to 4,000 and gotten called by Kenney from the blinds, then Kenney check-called a continuation bet of 8,000 from Petrangelo after the 10♦Q♠7♦ flop. The turn was the 2♣ and Kenney checked again, then called once more after Petrangelo had fired 31,000.

Bryn Kenney: Big call

The river was the 9♠. Kenney checked again, and this time Petrangelo bet 90,000, an amount representing more than half of his stack and also more than half what Kenney had left. The latter thought a while and finally called, and when he did Petrangelo instantly pushed his cards face downward to the dealer to concede the pot.

Before scooping, Kenney decided to show one of his cards — the 4♣!

Kenney bumps up to 340,000 with that pot, while Petrangelo slips to around 100,000. –MH

3:15pm: Khangah in the house
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Ahadpur Khangah has now sat down, taking our field up to 23 players. — HS

3:10pm: Fatehi takes one down
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

While Daniel Negreanu was quizzing Linus Loeliger about his online persona, Matthias Eibinger was busy opening the pot to 4,000 under the gun. It folded over to Ali Reza Fatehi on the button who called, and when it got to Negreanu he defended his big blind and ante.

The flop fell A♠7♥5♥ and it checked to Eibinger. He continued for 2,500, but Fatehi took over with a quick raise to 8,500. Negreanu chucked his hand away, but Eibinger called to see the turn.

It came the J♥, putting three hearts out there, and Fatehi continued for 11,500 when it checked to him. Eibinger was done with the hand though and quickly folded, taking his chips down to 271,000 and bringing Fatehi up to 123,000.

Ali Reza Fatehi: Rebuilding

Negreanu had one more question for Loeliger before the next hand started. “So what have you been up to Linus?” he asked. “Grinding?”

We didn’t catch Loeliger’s response, but he did then open the next pot only for everyone else to fold. –JS

3:05pm: Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s play some cards
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Daniel Negreanu has taken his seat here to start Level 3, and while he knew just about everyone at his table he needed to confirm with one of them, Linus Loeliger.

“Are you Linus from online poker?” asked Negreanu. “That ‘LLinusLLove’ guy?” he added.

Loeliger grinned in response.

“Maybe?” he said, getting a laugh from the table.

“Maybe?” repeated Negreanu. “Now I know that’s who you are.” –MH

3pm: Negreanu in the house
Level 3 – Blinds 1,000/1,500 (BB ante 1,500)

Off they go in Level 3, and there’s a new player. You might know him. He is sitting between Pascal Lefrancois and Matthias Eibinger. His name is Daniel Negreanu. — HS

Daniel Negreanu: New player!

Download the PokerStars LIVE! app with all tournament information. Available for IOS and Android.

2:40pm: Let’s take a break

That’s two levels down, so time for the first 20-minute break of the day. –MH

2:40pm: Chidwick takes one away
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Stephen Chidwick managed to negate a positional disadvantage in a three-way squeezed pot to take one down.

Orpen Kisacikoglu opened to 3,000 from first position and was called by Chidwick (cutoff) before Adrian Mateos squeezed to 14,000 off the button. Chidwick was the only caller and he called another 10,500 on the Q♣8♠5♦ flop. The 6♦ turn was checked by both players before Chidwick led for 17,000 on the J♣ river. Fold. –MC

2:35pm: No call for Pascal
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Mikita Badziakouski opened for 3,000 from middle position, Pascal Lefrancois called from the button, and the pair saw the flop come 7♦K♠2♦. Badziakouski checked, Lefrancois bet 3,500, and Badziakouski called. The 3♦ turn then brought a leading bet of 11,000 from Badziakouski, called by Lefrancois.

The river was the 7♥, and this time Badziakouski bet 32,000. Lefrancois sat quietly for nearly half a minute, then announced a raise to 107,000. That sent Badziakouski into the tank for a short while, then he said a one-syllable word.

In response Lefrancois tabled his hand — 2♠2♥ for a flopped set that became a full house on the river — but as he did Badziakouski was pushing his cards face down toward the dealer.

Pascal Lefrancois: Boat

“Why did you show?” asked Badziakouski, and Lefrancois said he had thought Badziakouski called. The dealer had heard Badziakouski correctly, though — he’d said “fold,” which frankly can sound a little like “call” — and the table chuckled at the misunderstanding.

Someone suggested it might be better to say “pass” in such a spot instead of “fold,” as the word provides a better contrast sound-wise.

“But then he might think you were saying his name,” cracked Sam Greenwood from across the table while gesturing toward Pascal, earning more laughs.

Lefrancois has 325,000 now, Badziakouski 275,000. –MH

2:30pm: Pieces of eight
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

When you hear “pieces of eight” you probably think of a pirate’s parrot (Long John Silver’s parrot, to be precise). But did you know the phrase’s relevance to Spain?

Well let me learn you, dear readers. The “piece of eight” that parrot was squawking about was actually a Spanish dollar – a silver coin worth eight Spanish reales. It’s what the pirates were after, basically.

As we’re in Spain, and this hand involved three important eights, it all seems relevant. It kicked off with a raise from the sole Spaniard, Adrian Mateos, who made it 2,500 from the UTG+1 seat. He would be called in three spots by Orpen Kisacikoglu (button), Jean-Noel Thorel (sb), and David Peters (bb).

Adrian Mateos: Chopping

The three saw a 2♣7♥K♣ flop which checked around to the 6♣ turn. It checked to Mateos and he now led for 6,500, which only Kisacikoglu called.

Both checked the 8♦ on the river, and it turned out both had caught a piece of that eight (see what we did there?). Mateos showed 8♠9♠ for a turned up-and-down draw which rivered a pair, and Kisacikoglu revealed 8♥9♥ for the exact same.

The two chopped up the treasure, but Mateos was a bit richer afterwards with 275,000 to Kisacikoglu’s 255,000. –JS

2:25pm: Small Win-ter
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Luc Greenwood has dipped below 200,000 (198k) after he lost a small battle of the blinds to Sean Winter, who rose to 315,000.

Greenwood completed from the small blind and then called after Winter raised to 4,000 from the big blind. Winter continued for 3,000 on a 7♣5♦2♣ flop and was check-called before the 10♣10♥ turn and river were checked through. Greenwood announced king high as he opened K♣6♦ and lost out to Winter who took the pot with 3♣3♠. –MC

2:20pm: Eibinger’s the winner
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Despite the blinds remaining the same, Level 2 has a different air about it so far. More aggressive. Bigger pots.

We arrived at this one with a 10♦4♣Q♣ flop out there, and Mathias Eibinger checked it to his sole opponent, Sam Greenwood. The latter led for 7,000, only for Eibinger to bump it up to 28,000. Greenwood considered it for as long as his shot clock would allow, before making the call.

Matthias Eibinger: Prospering in Level 2

The K♥ then landed on the turn, and Einbinger slowed things down again with a check. That let Greenwood in for a 15,000 bet, which would be called, taking them to the 9♦ river. Check check.

Eibinger flipped over Q♠10♣ for a flopped two pair, and that was good as Greenwood mucked. He’s down to 183,000 now, while Eibinger climbs to 310,000. –JS

2:15pm: He takes from the left to give to the right
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Soon after Mikita Badziakouski won that huge off Ali Reza Fatehi he was giving some of those chips won to Linus Loeliger.

Loeliger opened to 2,500 from the hijack and Badziakouski defended his big blind. The flop fell K♦10♦8♣ and Loeliger checked. Badziakouski bet 3,500 and Loeliger raised to 12,000. Badziakouski called. Loeliger led for 21,000 on the 4♣ turn and was called again before the J♣ river was checked through. Loeliger opened A♦A♠ and Badziakouski mucked. –MC

2:10pm: Kisacikoglu scarfs chips from Chidwick
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Just now Orpen Kisacikoglu raised before the flop, orpening… er, opening from middle position before donning his characteristic scarf to cover the lower half of his face.

It folded around to Stephen Chidwick in the small blind who three-bet to 12,500, and Kisacikoglu called. The flop came K♥K♣4♠, Chidwick bet a smallish 6,000, and Kisacikoglu called again.

Orpen Kisacikoglu: The scarfed man

Then after the 6♦ turn Chidwick checked and watched Kisacikoglu bet 13,000. Chidwick fired a check-raise to 60,000, and after a nearly-30-second pause Kisacikoglu called, leaving himself about 90,000 behind. The 5♠ river brought anticlimactic checks from both players.

Chidwick showed A♣10♠ for ace-high, while Kisacikoglu had K♦Q♦ for trip kings to take it.

O.K. is doing okay, back up to around the starting stack of 250,000, while Chidwick slips a little to 220,000. –MH

2:05pm: Fatehi’s stack falls as huge pot goes to Badizakouski
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

We’ve had our first monster pot in this Super High Roller, and Mikita Badziakouski is the man who scooped it.

Picking up the action on the turn of a 10♣6♠2♦/8♠ board, we learnt that both Badziakouski and Ali Reza Fatehi had put 10,000 in each on the flop. Badziakouski now led the turn for 20,000 from the big blind position, and Fatehi called from the under-the-gun seat.

The A♣ river completed the board and Badziakouski let his time bank tick all the way down before betting 100,000. Fatehi snap-called, but mucked when he was shown 10♠10♥ for a flopped set.

Mikita Badziakouski: Flops set, gets paid

Fatehi’s tournament has got off to a bad start, with his 250,000 starting stack down to 110,000 after that one. Badziakouski is the early chip leader now with 320,000. –JS

2pm: Value for Vogelsang
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Jean-Noel Thorel opened for 2,500 from late position and got called by Christoph Vogelsang in the big blind. Both checked the K♥10♠10♥ flop, then Vogelsang led for 6,500 after the 5♠ turn and Thorel was quick with the call.

Christoph Vogelsang: Chipping up

The river was the 2♠ and Vogelsang checked. Thorel gathered together a bet of 15,000 and Vogelsang called it in a flash. Thorel had A♣K♠ for kings and tens, but Vogelsang had the Brunson — 10♣2♣ — and won the pot with trip tens.

Vogelsang chips up to 295,000 while Thorel is at 185,000 now. –MH

1:55pm: A Winter blast
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

The following was the last hand of Level 1, but I didn’t get a chance to tell you about it until about 15 minutes into Level 2. But the blinds are the same, so let’s not quibble.

Sean Winter had started things with a raise to 2,500 from the cutoff, then Timothy Adams three-bet from the button. Adams had 10,000 in front of him when I arrived, so the reraise might have been that or a bit less. Whatever it was, Winter four-bet to 27,000 and Adams called, creating a decent-sized pot before the 2♠6♣8♣ flop arrived.

Winter promptly blasted for another 50,000, and Adams spent one time bank card but no more chips as he let his hand go. Winter took about 320,000 into the second level, while Adams had 180,000. –MH

1:50pm: No showdown, no problem
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

This particular blogger hasn’t seen a single showdown throughout the first level of play, which has just come to an end. As they say, “That’s poker!”

The good thing about high rollers though is that the action is always in full flow and Sean Winter is at the heart of it on table three.

In one hand, he squeezed to 15,000 from the big blind after a Nick Petrangelo raise to 3,000 and a Seth Davies call. Davies was the only caller but he too folded on the river of a 5♠7♦J♣10♦10♣ board when Winter led for 47,000.

Two hands later, Winter was at it again. Sam Greenwood opened to 2,500 from the cutoff and called after Winter three-bet to 9,000 from the next set. A 10♠7♣5♦ flop was spread and Greenwood check-folded to a 9,000 c-bet. –MC

1:45pm: Level up
Level 2 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

They’re into Level 2 now, with 23 players now involved. Bryn Kenney and Ali Reza Fatehi are two of the most recent additions. We’re also expecting at least three Asian high rollers in this event (word reaches that Stanley Choi, Richard Yong and Ivan Leow are en route) as well as Daniel Negreanu. So with re-entries open until tomorrow, we’ll likely comfortably push past 30 entries for this one. — HS

1:40pm: Getting tricky
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

This may not have been the biggest pot, but an interesting hand just played out between Linus Loeliger and Mikita Badziakouski which got our attention.

Loeliger kicked it off with a 3,000 open on the button, and Badziakouski defended his big blind. So far so standard.

Well, when the A♦10♦10♥ flop landed things picked up. We’re used to seeing players size down their c-bets, but when Badziakouski checked, Loeliger’s c-bet was just half his pre-flop open. Badziakouski gave it some thought, and called the 1,500.

The turn came the J♥, and it went check check to the 4♠ river. It checked to Loeliger again, and now he sized up to 5,000. Badziakouski seemed interested, and used up all of his 30 seconds before laying it down.

Linus Loeliger: Sizing up on the river

Badziakouski is down to 218,000 now, while Loeliger is on 255,000. –JS

1:35pm: A game of partial information
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

With the board showing 3♥6♠4♠10♠, Seth Davies led for 2,000 from the blinds then watched Timothy Adams raise to 8,000 from late position. Davies called the raise, then checked after the river brought the 5♠ to put a fourth spade on the board.

Adams fired 25,000, then after a pause Davies announced a big check-raise to 97,000. Adams rechecked his cards and folded, and Sean Winter piped up from across the table with the familiar requests to “Show the bluff! Show one card!” Davies resisted, but then Winter offered something less familiar.

“I folded ace-seven of spades,” he claimed, prompting a quizzical grin from Adams and a response from Winter. Didn’t quite pick up what Winter said, but from the way Adams responded that might have been a bluff.

Sean Winter: Ace-seven of spades?

Davies is up to 280,000, while Adams has slipped to around 200,000. –MH

1:30pm: Thorel gets value
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Jean-Noel Thorel has either been the most active player so far, or we just happen to always be hanging around when he enters a pot. Either way, he played this one well, managing to squeeze out some value from Stephen Chidwick which is no easy feat.

With no action in front of him, Thorel opened the button to 2,500 and Chidwick defended the big blind, bringing an A♥9♠A♦ flop. Both checked it to the 6♠ turn, where Chidwick check-called a 4,000 delayed c-bet.

The J♥ completed the board and when Chidwick checked a final time Thorel fired for 6,000. That bet was called, and Chidwick quickly mucked his cards when Thorel turned over A♣8♥ for trips.

Thorel sits with 270,000 now, while Chidwick is on around 260,000. –JS

1:25pm: Cry me a river
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Three river bets and three river folds.

Dan Smith and Orpen Kisacikoglu had amassed a pot worth around 70,000 by the time a board rested as 7♥J♣Q♥5♠J♠. Smith (small blind) used a time bank before leading with a 60,000 bet. Kisacikoglu was sat in the big blind and didn’t have the goods to call.

David Peters (UTG) opened to 2,500 the very next hand at the same table and Jean-Noel Thorel defended his big blind. Thorel checked all three streets of a 5♥5♣J♣10♦4♦ board to face bets of 2,000, 7,500 and 32,000. He folded on the river.

Sean Winter was the next player to benefit from some river aggression. He was heads-up with Nick Petrangelo and they had reached the turn of a 3♣J♠9♣3♥ board. Winter led for 10,500 from the blind and Petrangelo called from second position. The 6♠ completed the board and Petrangelo folded to Winter’s 50,000 bomb. –MC

1:20pm: Petrangelo doing the ordering
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Nick Petrangelo just stepped away from his table to place an order with one of the circulating wait staff. “One double espresso and one Americano,” came the order, then Petrangelo quickly moved back to his seat in time to play his small blind.

Luc Greenwood had opened to 2,500 and Sean Winter called, and the action was on Petrangelo. He checked his cards and fired a three-bet to 15,000. That was more than anyone else wanted to pay to see a flop, and Petrangelo took it.

The caffeine is coming for Petrangelo. Chip-wise, he’s already been served a few as he’s up to 275,000. –MH

1:15pm: Two out of three Greenwoods
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Luc Greenwood has now joined his twin brother Sam in this tournament, albeit at a different table, and he’s wasted no time before getting into the thick of it. All we need now is their older brother Max to hop in and complete the set.

One Greenwood (this one is Sam)

Sean Winter kicked off the hand with a 2,500 open from the UTG+1 seat, which Nick Petrangelo called on the button. Greenwood (Luc that is) called from the big blind, and the three saw a 6♠2♠K♥ flop which checked to Petrangelo. He led out for 2,500, only for Greenwood to check-raise it to 9,500. That got Winter out, but Petrangelo stuck around.

Another Greenwood (this one is Luc)

The A♣ then hit the turn, bringing a check from both players. The 5♥ then completed the board, but there’d be no more action in this one. Greenwood turned over his 3♥5♠ for a flopped gutshot that rivered a pair, while Petrangelo took it down with K♣J♦ for a pair of kings. –JS

1:10pm: Loeliger four-bets, collects
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Linus Loeliger opened to 2,500 from under the gun. Strong.

Mikita Badziakouski then three-bet to 8,500 from the button. Also strong.

It folded back to Loeliger. He thought a moment, then made it 26,000 to go. Even stronger.

Badziakouski leaned forward and asked what Loeliger had behind. Too strong decided Badziakouski, who released his cards. Both players sit with about 235,000 at the moment. –MH

1:05pm: Temporary conversation killer
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

Daniel Dvoress and Mikita Badziakouski were deep in conversation but it all stopped when they entered a pot together.

Daniel Dvoress: Conversation killer

Dvoress opened to 3,000 off the button before Badziakouski three-bet to 15,000 from the small blind. Dvoress took almost 30 seconds before he came back with a four-bet to 41,000. After Badziakouski folded, Dvoress immediately picked up from where he left off, “Yeah, so I…..” –MC

1pm: More Thorel action
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

More Jean-Noel Thorel action to report, as the Frenchman has been typically active from the start. That said, in two recent hands he found it necessary to step aside when others applied pressure.

In the first, JNT raised to 2,500 then saw David Peters three-bet to 8,500 on his left, forcing folds all around including from Thorel. Then it was Stephen Chidwick raising to 2,500, Dan Smith calling from late position, then Thorel reraising big to 15,000, getting calls from both Chidwick and Smith.

The flop fell A♥7♣Q♠ and Thorel checked, and when Chidwick bet 15,000 that got both Smith and then Thorel to fold. –MH

12:55pm: Triple barrel JNT
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

If Jean-Noel Thorel ever went into professional wresting I think the name in the title would suit just perfectly. The Frenchman is in his 70s though, so we think that boat has sailed.

Jean-Noel Thorel: Mr Triple Barrel

He won a three-way pot after his 8,000, 12,000 and 15,000 triple barrel was enough to oust Stephen Chidwick and Orpen Kisacikoglu in a hand. The latter, who got off to a great start this festival by making €10,000 early high roller final table yesterday, opened to 3,000 from the cutoff and was called by Thorel in the next seat and Chidwick in the big blind. Chidwick bailed on the flop but Kisacikoglu hung around to see all of the 5♦10♥Q♠J♥2♠ board before admitting defeat on the river. –MC

12:50pm: A little less for LLinusLLove
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

After Mikita Badziakouski opened to 3,000 from the cutoff, and Nick Petrangelo three-bet to 13,500 on the button, the action was on Switzerland’s Linus Loeliger in the small blind. He took a look at the shot clock, enquired whether it was a minute or 30 seconds long, then folded.

Y’see, Loeliger is still relatively new to the high roller live poker scene. But new to the game he is not. Playing under the PokerStars screen name LLinusLLove, Loeliger has a high stakes cash game graph that most would be jealous of, and is widely considered to be one of the best NLHE heads-up players in the world.

Anyway, he folded in that hand, but would get involved in the next. Action folded to Mathias Eibinger on the button and he opened to 2,500, which both Loeliger (sb) and Daniel Dvoress (bb) called. The flop fell J♥5♥Q♠, and it checked around.

That brought the 3♦ on the turn, and it also brought Sam Greenwood, who took his seat between Eibinger and Loeliger as the hand was happening. Loeliger now led out for 5,000, which shook off Dvoress but got called by Eibinger. The dealer put the 9♣ river down, and after a bit of thinking Loeliger continued for what looked like roughly 7,500. We can’t be sure, as Eibinger tossed in a single chip instantly to call.

Loeliger turned over Q♥10♦ for top pair, but that was no good as Eibinger had rivered the best of it with J♣9♦. –JS

12:45pm: First hands
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

They are playing poker. No-limit hold’em is the game.

Two tables are in action to start, with both kicking off with limped pot, blind-versus-blind hands.

In one, Nick Petrangelo limped in from the small and Matthias Eibinger checked from the big, then Petrangelo led for 1,000 on a 7♥K♠3♥ flop and Eibinger called. Petrangelo checked after the A♥ turn, then called Eibinger’s bet of 2,500, then both checked the 8♠ river. Petrangelo tabled Q♥7♣ for a pair of sevens and won it.

At the other table, it was Seth Davies calling from the small and Timothy Adams checking from the big. There Davies check-called a bet of 1,000 after the 6♣3♦Q♦ flop, both checked the A♣ turn and 9♥ river, and Davies won the hand with 10♥3♣ for treys. –MH

12:40pm: Shuffle up and deal
Level 1 – Blinds 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

The early arrivals include Linus Loeliger, Seth Davies, Nick Petrangelo, Jean-Noel Thorel, and Timothy Adams. –MH

12:35pm: Off they go!
Level 1 – Blinds: 500/1,000 (BB ante 1,000)

With 14 players seated already, we have a tournament! Cards are in the air and play has begun. — HS

EPT Barcelona: Cards now in the air

12pm: Our August date in Spain

Good morning everybody and welcome to Barcelona. That’s a sentence someone has been writing on PokerStars Blog every August for the past 15 years.

Yes, here we are again in sunny Catalonia, specifically Casino Barcelona, which has played host to Europe’s most popular poker festival every summer since 2004. It was here that the European Poker Tour first started, and it’s never been off the schedule ever since.

Barcelona harbour: Park up and play

Of course, the player pool has changed radically, and their demands have shifted too. Those ever-evolving requirements account for our presence here today, with the €100,000 Super High Roller tournament about to kick off.

For many years, the most anyone ever paid to sit down on the EPT was about €10,000. Even last year it was “only” €50,000 to play the biggest tournament on the schedule.

But in keeping with what we’ve seen across the poker world, the buy-ins keep getting bigger and now it requires six figures just to join the game. No doubt something like 50 people will over the coming day or so, and there’ll be a seven-figure score for the champion.

Play today is due to get under way at 12:30pm and last for eight levels. Here’s what you need to know:

Buy-in: €100,000 (€98,000 to prize pool; €2,000 fee)
Re-entry: Unlimited (until start Day 2)
Starting stack: 250,000
Starting blinds: 500/1,000 (big blind ante: 1,000)
Shot clock: 30 seconds (six time bank cards per player)
Schedule: Eight one-hour levels. No dinner break.

Download the PokerStars LIVE! app with all tournament information. Available for IOS and Android.

PokerStars Blog reporting team on the €100,000 Super High Roller: Marc Convey, Martin Harris, Jack Stanton and Howard Swains. Photography by Joe Giron/PokerPhotoArchive and Neil Stoddart.


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