Irishman Marc Macdonnell finished with the chip lead after Day 4 of the 2015 PokerStars.com European Poker Tour Prague Main Event. Macdonnell will take 3.6 million in chips to the penultimate day, followed by Gleb Tremzin with 3.535 million and Benjamin Lamprecht with 3.19 million. Just 23 players remain.
Day 4 Top 10 Chip Counts
The day started with 69 competitors. In the first level, no less than 19 were knocked out. Clyde Tjauw Foe from the Netherlands was the first to go, followed by Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov and then Ben Dobson. Portuguese pro Joao Vieira and Jeffrey Hakim were also among the early bust outs, and the field was thinned quickly of pros.
Two-time EPT Prague finalist David Boyacyian came into the day with a short stack, but was looking to continue his quest for a third final table in this event. He was knocked out in 57th place for €13,720, though, with the Dutchman losing out with pocket tens against Kitty Kuo's eights. Despite the win in that hand, it wasn't the start of a big upswing for Kuo. She ultimately busted in 47th place, but did cash to follow up her cashes in the EPT Barcelona and EPT Malta main events this season.
Ramin Hajiyev, who took third in the €25,500 Single-Day High Roller for €250,900 earlier this week, busted in 45th for €16,200. He was followed by Belarusian pro Anton Astapau in 43rd. Astapau made two big final tables at the 2015 Asia Championship of Poker for a total just shy of half a million dollars, but he didn't make the fifth day of play in Prague.
The biggest storyline of the day was that of Niall Farrell, who came off winning the most recent EPT in Malta for €534,330. Farrell went through big swings on Day 4, and those swings ultimately resulted in him crashing down in 40th place for €16,200. Farrell folded top set on the river to a shove with straight and flush possibilities on the board against Macdonnell, and from there he never recovered.
The highest grossing live tournament player left in the field was Andrew Chen, but he got knocked out in 38th place for €19,040. The Canadian pro, with $4.5 million in live tournament earnings and both an EPT and World Series of Poker runner-up finish, sat on a short stack for many hours, before busting with jack-ten to Lukasz Mroczek's pocket sevens.
The biggest pot of the day was played out on the featured table between Ori Miller and Lamprecht, and the latter got all his chips into the middle holding pocket queens. Unfortunately for him, Miller showed pocket aces for a pot worth 2.7 million and Lamprecht was well behind. But as fortunes had it, a queen came on the flop to give Lamprecht the chip lead for the time being.
Shortly thereafter, Tremzin took over the chip lead when he knocked out Robert Layne III, and the only player to surpass him was Macdonnell.
Macdonnell had a stellar day and didn't back down from battles with many of the players that are still going strong. His biggest live tournament result came earlier this year when he finished second in a WSOP gold bracelet event for $155,876, but he'll have a big opportunity to land his own personal best as a first-place prize worth €921,540 is at stake in this event.
Play will resume on Tuesday, Dec. 15 at 12 p.m. CET. That's when the last EPT main event of the calendar year will play down to its final six, and the PokerNews Live Reporting team will be with you every step of the way.