On Tuesday, High rollers from all over the world came to the Czech Republic to play in the European Poker Tour Prague €50,000 Super High Roller. At day's end, 41 unique players had ponied up the €50,000 buy-in, with seven of them entering more than once after busting early to make for a total amount of 48 entries. That number can still grow as registration is open until 15 minutes before the start of Day 2.
On Day 1, the schedule dictated just eight levels of play, so by the time the clock struck half past nine, the chips went into the bags.
Day 1 Top 10 Chip Counts
It was the first time Prague was the stage for a an EPT super high roller. Last year's poker festival in Prague had just a "regular" high roller with a price tag of €10,300, and Ivan Soshnikov won that event. Interestingly enough, it was Soshnikov who made headlines in this event. Soshnikov not only entered the EPT Prague €50,000 Super High Roller, he was also still in the Eureka Main Event, which was going on at the same time in the same room. Soshnikov multi-tabled the €1,100 and €50,000 buy-in tournaments, and things got a little tricky for him. At one point his table in the Eureka Main Event broke and he couldn't find his stack.
Then there was the situation where Soshnikov said "ninety-eight," but tossed in two T25,000 chips in a big pot against World Series of Poker Main Event champion Martin Jacobson on the river. The floor ruled he had to bet 98,000 and not 9,800 as some players at the table suggested. Jacobson eventually folded, but had the feeling there was an angle to Soshnikov's move. The Russian himself explained he meant to say "forty-eight," meaning 48,000.
To top it all off, Soshnikov ended his tumultuous day with more chips than anyone, bagging up 905,000. He busted Team PokerStars Pro Online's Isaac Haxton in the last level of the day with ace-king to sixes, and also busted Fedor Holz with aces to a flopped top pair with king-queen. It wasn't the first time busting for Holz, as earlier the World Championship of Online Poker Main Event winner busted to Brian Roberts. Holz's last chips went in with ace-ten in that hand, and Roberts made the call with two queens.
Jacobson ended with 337,000 after a solid day of work. The Swede first doubled his neighbor David Peters with tens to kings, but doubled in the second-to-last level of the day with kings of his own to qualifier Igor Pihela's queens.
Stephen Chidwick had some amazing results here last year, finishing third in both the Eureka Main Event (€92,500) and the EPT Main Event (€378,000). The UK pro is trying to better that this year, and he started out great with picking off Christoph Vogelsang's big bluff. Chidwick check-called on the flop, turn, and river with top set and caught Vogelsang bluffing with a missed straight draw. That catapulted Chidwick up the leaderboard, and he ended the day with 557,000.
Vogelsang bought back in, and he wasn't alone doing so. Peters, Connor Drinan, Jean-Noel Thorel, Joseph Cheong, Holz, and Haxton all did the same. Adrian Mateos wasn't willing to put up another €50,000 after busting as the first player to go, but the World Series of Poker Europe champion could still reenter before Day 2. Mike McDonald was the one holding the axe in Mateos' elimination, winning the hand with a flush against the Spaniard's straight.
The remaining 32 players will return Wednesday, Dec. 10, at 12 p.m. local time. The plan is to play down to a final table of eight, or 10 levels, whichever comes first. PokerNews will again provide you with all the updates you can ask for, so stay tuned for more action from the floor in Prague.