Every single one of the 15 years we’ve been to EPT Barcelona, the cameras have been rolling, catching the best of the action and beaming it onto your TV, tablets, computers, and smartphones.

It’s a good job they’ve been there, because if they hadn’t you may not have believed that the two hands battling against each other in today’s second semi-final actually happened. These are hands that only happen online — except here they were happening right in front of our eyes and captured on tape for posterity.

Let’s get it on.


Less than 1% isn’t drawing dead

A lot of poker is about timing. It’s all well and good picking up aces or flopping the nuts, but if there isn’t another strong hand –- or someone trying to represent one -– then you may not win a big pot. Similarly, when you three-bet all-in in a standard spot you have to hope your opponent doesn’t have it. Unfortunately for Olivier Busquet, his opponent, Sven Reichardt had it in spades… and diamonds.

Still, A♠2♠ was 32% against pocket kings, that was until an 8♥8♣K♣ left Busquet all but drawing dead. Then the Poker Gods took over.


Top of the flops

“This is weird,” said James Hartigan when Vitaly Lunkin five-bet pre-flop with pocket queens. The five-bet of 656,000 was essentially a shove by Lunkin, as he’d left himself just 260,000 behind.

This strange bet by Lunkin may well have been what gave Philip Sternheimer pause for thought, even though he was holding pocket kings. The two of them got all the chips in, eventually, and as far as flops go, it was fairly favourable for Lunkin.


These are two heavyweight hands, one of them will go big and one of them will go home. Head to @PokerStarsLive to cast your vote.

Coverage of this year’s EPT Barcelona action continues here. The €100K Super High Roller takes centre stage.

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