Day 1a Completed
Day 1a Completed
|Dominik Nitsche||888poker Ambassador||137,900||52,900|
|Dan Murariu||Unibet Poker Ambassador||83,500||32,000|
While the bracing winter wind kept players within a short radius of the Hilton (home base and tournament centre) today, the first flight of players took to the felt attempting to build their 30,000 starting stacks into towers which could take them safely into the next days' play. There were 191 Day 1a entrants, including Team PokerStars Pros Arnaud Mattern and Marcin Horecki (the former had an early exit while the latter made it through the day). They were joined by many familiar faces from the EPT: Sorel Mizzi, Maria Maceiras, Joao Barbosa, and Anton Wigg.
The ninth level saw, however, a brace of new big stacks suddenly take over the top of the leaderboard and battle amongst themselves for the end of day lead. Elias Brussianos, who ended up in the top spot with 199,600, will be looking to better his 38th place in this very event last year, while Ruslan Prydryk (181,800) has among his previous results a win in May's RPT in Yalta, and a final table at EPT Warsaw last year. Also just behind Brussianos is Nicolas Babel who spent much of the last two levels in the lead but ended the day with 191,200. Meanwhile Fernando Brito is also up there in the chip counts on 160,500 and will be looking to extend his lead in the EPT Player of the Year rankings.
Expected on Day 1b are a fair few more tables, with a heavier dusting of PokerStars Pro players, including Johnny Lodden, Liv Boeree, and Marcel Luske. The second 'shuffle up and deal' of the tournament will be shouted at noon tomorrow (local time in Prague).
Wow, very often we find that the last few hands of the night are somewhat subdued, uneventful affairs - but not this time!
On the very last hand of the night, Dermot Blain found pocket aces under the gun and Vitaly Lunkin found kings in the big blind. The chips duly went in, the aces held up, and while Lunkin will be going no further in this main event, Blain is up to 153,800.
Some last-minute misfortune for media favourite Ronan Monfort, as Jonathan Weekes opened for 2,500 in early position and the gent in the hijack called. In the cutoff, Dominik Nitsche made it 8,200 to go - and in the big blind Monfort four-bet to 17,200. Weekes and the hijack folded, but Nitsche calmly announced all in to cover.
Monfort sighed and grinned. After a while somebody (possibly Monfort himself) called the clock, and eventually he folded. Nitsche showed him pocket kings, and Monfort was down to 35,000.
It's been a long day, and with about a quarter of an hour to go it probably rankled Maria Maceiras to pick up only to find them responsible for removing almost all of her chips in one fell swoop. She had re-raised to 6,000 preflop, bet the flop when her one opponent checked to her (6,500), and bet the turn (12,000). Her opponent immediately now moved all-in for around 30k, just under her total stack and she made the call. He showed for the big set, and she could only wait while her stack dropped to 3,200 at the eleventh hour.
Maceiras is now out. It was erstwhile chip leader Nicolas Babel who finished her off, bumping his stack back up to 197,000.
Looks like Nicolas Babel is not a sure thing to end up as overnight chip leader - one Elias Brussianos is just pipping him at the moment. Also worthy of note is Fernando Brito - after spending most of the day as short stack, the EPT leaderboard frontrunner has come from nowhere to find himself on 150,000 right now.
|Dominik Nitsche||888poker Ambassador||85,000||24,750|
|Dan Murariu||Unibet Poker Ambassador||51,500||-500|
Wow, talk about running hot! Nicolas Babel is now up above the 200,000 mark, his spiking on the flop against his all-in opponent's pocket jacks in a preflop showdown to put him head and shoulders above the next man.
Nicolas Babel seems unstoppable right now, with the Frenchman hoovering up chips like they are going out of fashion, his latest victim being Oleksander Vaserfirer.
Vaserfirer raised first in from the button to 2,200 and then called the re-raise to 8,500 from Babel. The latter then check called Vaserfirer's 9,500 bet on a flop reading .
The on the turn seemed to wake up Babel who picked up a pile of chips worth 18,500 and bet them, which seemed to rock Vaserfirer. After around 90 seconds, Vaserfirer let his hand go, and with it Babel's stack grew to around 192,000.