Europe's richest poker series, the PokerStars-sponsored European Poker Tour, begins its fourth season with the start of today's event in Barcelona, Spain. The event features a €8,000 buy-in and is capped at 600 entrants, echoing last year's highly successful run. The EPT Barcelona event is the first of nine on the tour's schedule, continuing with a London event next month and culminating in the April, 2008 Grand Final in Monte Carlo.
The 2006 tourney at the posh Casino de Barcelona saw last-minute entrant Phil Ivey, fresh from an event in the United Kingdom, put on a strong showing before finishing as runner-up to Bjorn-Erik Glenne, at a final table that also included David Daneshgar and Jeffrey Lisandro. Glenne, from Norway, pocketed €691,000 for his win, while Ivey claimed €371,000 in second-place money.
The 2007 edition spans the next five days, with twin Day One sessions today and tomorrow and a final table on September 1st. The mid-afternoon (Barcelona time) starts for each day's play assures that much of the action will occur at hours friendly to North American fans, and PokerNews will provide our 'Live Reporting' coverage throughout, with important developments and chip counts provided.
Registration numbers a day prior to the event indicated that 490 players had already entered, meaning that a sellout or something close is again assured. Among the noted players slated to start action today are Katja Thater, Bertrand 'ElkY' Grospellier, Annette 'Annette_15' Obrestad, Jimmy 'gobboboy' Fricke, Noah Boeken and Jon 'PearlJammer' Turner, while Wednesday starters include Greg Raymer, Humberto Brenes, Luca Pagano, Dario Minieri, Dag Martin 'dmmikkel' Mikkelsen and Isabelle Mercier.