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2011 European Poker Tour London High Roller Day 2: Kurganov Crushing

Igor Kurganov

Day 2 of the 2011 European Poker Tour London Poker Festival £20,000 High Roller wrapped up on Thursday. The event is down to the final eight players who are all in the money. Leading the way is Igor Kurganov with 854,000 in chips. He has a sizable lead over Robert Akery, who sits in second place with 622,000.

To start the day, 30 players remained from the original starting field of 75. Team PokerStars Pros Joe Hachem, Jonathan Duhamel and Eugene Katahclov all made it to Day 2 but failed to advance to the final.

According to the PokerStars Blog, Hachem was sent to the rail by Michael Tureniec. Hachem's pocket twos failed to win the flip against Tureniec's {A-Hearts}{6-Hearts}. Duhamel was sent off by Adrian Bussman and Katchalov was dished to the sidelines by Andrey Bondar.

On Katchalov's final hand, Bondar bet 20,000 with the board reading {8-Spades}{7-Spades}{3-Spades}{6-Diamonds}. Katchalov moved all-in and Bondar made the call holding {8-Hearts}{6-Hearts} for a turned two pair. Katchalov held {9-Spades}{9-Diamonds} but the river {2-Diamonds} didn't help and he was eliminated.

Sam Stein held the lead when Day 2 began. He took a hit early on after doubling up Byron Kaverman. The money went in on a {J-Hearts}{9-Hearts}{3-Diamonds} flop with Kaverman holding {K-Hearts}{Q-Hearts} to Stein's {3-Hearts}{3-Spades}. The turn brought the {4-Diamonds} and the river the {5-Hearts} to give Kaverman the winning flush.

On his final hand, Stein moved all-in against Olivier Busquet on an {A-Hearts}{Q-Hearts}{9-Clubs} flop. Busquet made the call with {K-Hearts}{Q-Diamonds} for second pair against Stein who was holding {A-Spades}{10-Spades}. The turn {Q-Clubs} and river {6-Clubs} allowed Busquet to win the hand and send Stein out the door.

Other notable eliminations during Day 2 included Isaac Haxton, Anton Ionel, Mike Watson, McLean Karr, Mike McDonald, Phil Collins and James Bord. Collins was bounced in 11th place by Kurganov and then Kaverman went out in 10th. From there, there was a save made for the player finishing in ninth position. The payouts were adjusted so that ninth place could collect £25,000, making Kaverman (10th) the official bubble boy. Bord fell in ninth place to officially set the final table.

Final Table Chip Counts

1Igor KurganovGermany854,000
2Robert AkeryUnited Kingdom622,000
3Adrian BussmanSweden518,000
4Olivier BusquetUSA471,000
5Joel NordkvistSweden365,000
6Sam TrickettUnited Kingdom354,000
7Philipp GruissemGermany311,000
8Michael TureniecSweden268,000

If you recognize the names of a few of these high rollers from previous events, it's because many have had plenty of success in big buy-in events on the EPT. The chip leader, Kurganov, placed second in last season's EPT Grand Final €10,000 High Roller Turbo and third in this season's EPT Tallinn €10,000 High Roller. Akery placed 13th in the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure $25,000 High Roller. Bussman came eighth in the EPT Deauville €10,000 High Roller last season. Busquet was second in the EPT Grand Final €25,000 High Roller in 2010. Philipp Gruissem won the EPT Barcelona €10,000 High Roller at the last stop on tour and Tureniec won last season's EPT Copenhagen Main Event.

The third and final day of play kicks off at 1200 BST (0400 PDT) on Thursday. Because of the ninth-place save, first place has been adjusted to £511,300. That's still a heck of a lot of money and PokerNews will have the recap after play is complete.

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