Day 3 Completed
Day 3 Completed
Day 3 of the 2016 PokerStars.com EPT Malta Main Event saw a field of 90 get diminished to just 30 hopefuls. All the remaining players are guaranteed a share of €15,540 out of the total prize pool of €2,269,800, but have their sights set on the massive payday of €355,700, which will be handed out this Saturday in Casino Portomaso.
Five levels of 90-minutes were scheduled to be played, but only four of them were needed to get down to 30, and it was decided to move the last level of the day to Day 4. It was Britain's Tomas Macnamara who bagged the overall chiplead. Macnamara was the only player to bag more than a million in chips, and will return tomorrow with 1,028,000 to play with. Dmitry Yurasov (844,000), Sarah Herzali (769,000), Aliaksei Boika (688,000) and Benjamin Pollak (665,000) rounded out a star-studded top five.
Macnamara's previous best result on the EPT was a 13th place at the EPT12 Dublin Main Event for a payday of €32,870. The Brit chipped up a lot during the first level of the day while the bubble had not burst yet, and continued to build his stack throughout the next levels. Among others, he sent Yung Hwang to the rail with pocket tens versus pocket fives.
Three former EPT champions are still in contention for a second title: EPT8 Berlin champion Davidi Kitai (627,000), EPT8 Madrid winner Frederik Jensen (481,000) as well as PCA 2014 champion Dominik Panka (368,000) made it through to Day 4. Panka already reached the final table of the IPT8 Malta Main Event at the Casino Portomaso a few days ago. Further notables that will return to the tables include German poker prodigy Ole Schemion (613,000), start-of-the-day chip leader Guillaume Diaz (560,000), Malta's Konrad Abela (367,000), Walter Treccarichi (182,000) and IPT8 Malta Main Event champion Ismael Bojang (147,000).
Day 3 of the EPT Malta Main Event started off near the bubble, as three poor souls needed to be shed before the money was reached. The first to go was Jerry Odeen, who's pocket kings got cracked by Mikita Badziakouski's ace-seven when the latter flopped an ace. Alain Fluri ran ace-queen drawing dead in Yurasov's nut flush and left with nothing as well.
The dubious honor of bubble boy went to Benjamin Philipps, who attempted to squeeze into the money with a severe short stack. Eventually, Philipps was basically forced in from the big blind with queen-deuce, which was no match for Tomas Macnamara's pocket sevens. The remaining 87 players were all guaranteed at least €8,070.
Right after the bubble had burst, a flurry of short stacks got eliminated from the tournament. American superstar Maria Ho, EPT 7 Prague winner Roberto Romanello, €10,300 High Roller winner Dietrich Fast, Dutch demolishers Paul Gresel and Kees van Brugge, former November Niner James Akenhead and Nicaraguan hopeful Armando Collado Lanuza all fell in the early stages.
Gianfranco Visalli saw his run in the Main Event come to a screeching halt after losing most of his chips to Frederik Jensen. Visalli, who topped the leaderboard throughout the tournament, moved in with pocket sevens on an eight-high board. Jensen, holding just eight-six, called it off and took most of Visalli's chips in the process.
Two hands later, Visalli got the rest of his stack in with queen-six of clubs on a board containing a queen and two clubs. Xixiang Luo held ace-queen and dodged Visalli's outs to send the Italian packing in 47th place.
Jean Montury, who won the EPT 11 Malta Main Event back in March last year, saw his dreams of winning a second title come to an end. The Frenchman moved in with ace-queen, but needed to hit versus Aliaksei Boika's pocket queens. The board failed to provide help for Montury, and together with Niall Farrell's bust on Day 1 a new winner will be crowned on Saturday.
The second to last bustout of the day was Miguel Riera Suarez, who tried to hit a pay jump with his short stack. Riera stalled multiple times, but his tablemates and floor staff quickly acted to halt Riera's antics. When Riera had all but 5,000 of his stack in the middle, the Spaniard immediately got the clock called on him and had just thirty seconds to act. Riera was forced to commit the rest of his chips with queen-jack suited earlier that he'd liked, and failed to improve versus Armin Mette's ace-queen, missing out on the pay jump.
American hedge fund manager Dan Shak was the last to go. Shak shoved 130,000 with the optional nine-trey suited and Yury Gulyy called with ace-king suited.
"It is my son's birthday on Friday, I am actually rooting for you," said Shak, who could book his plane ticket home after Gulyy's hand held up. With Shak gone, 30 players remain after three days of play.
Day 4 will restart at 12 p.m. local time with blinds of 5,000 / 10,000 and an ante of 1,000. Five levels of 90 minutes have been scheduled, but with three days still to play a level will probably get cut. Follow all the action live on PokerNews.com throughout the day.
Day 4 Seat Draw
The full recap of the day will follow shortly.
After losing another pot, Dan Shak was left short and pushed two hands in a row. The first one got through, but the second one didn't. Shak pushed for around 130,000 and Yury Gulyy in the small blind reshoved to get the big blind out of the way.
"It is my son's birthday on Friday, I am actually rooting for you," Shak said.
The board ran out and Shak was eliminated in 31st place, he will be flying back home for the birthday tomorrow.
In one of the last hands of the day, Dong Zhao and Ismael Bojang built a large pot on the flop and turn.
The flop was and from the big blind, Bojang checked to Zhao on the button. The Chinese made a bet of 22,000 only to see Bojang check-raise to 65,000.
That wasn't enough for Zhao who popped it up once more and made it 165,000 to go, which left him with only 161,000 behind. Bojang made the call and the fell on the turn.
Bojang checked to his opponent and Zhao moved in for his last 161,000. Bojang took several minutes to think about it, but in the end he made the call.
Zhao's seven-deuce flopped a pair and a flush draw, that improved into a flush on the turn. Bojang's top pair was drawing dead and the on the river was meaningless.
The clock has been stopped with 13 minutes remaining on the level and the last three hands will be played.
After picking up some more chips from Ismael Bojang the previous hand, Elie Saad raised from the hijack to 16,000. Xixiang Luo moved all in for his last 99,000 and Saad called.
The board ran out and Luo doubled.
With a payjump of almost €3,000 between 32nd and 31st, Miguel Riera tried everything he could to make it with his short stack. Riera had been stalling for the past twenty minutes and had the clock called on him multiple times already.
In his final hand, Riera raised to 60,000, leaving himself with just 5,000 behind. Armin Mette reraised all in for 196,000 behind him. Back on Riera, the Spaniard once again wanted to take copious amounts of time.
His tablemates and the tournament staff were having none of it though. Riera instantly got the clock called on him and the brush gave him just 30 seconds to act, due to prior behavior.
At the end of his slashed timebank, he flicked the extra chips in holding and Mette had . The board provided no help for Riera, who's attempt to ladder up eventually failed. All the remaining players are now guaranteed €15,540.
Dan Shak raised to 16,000 from under the gun and Guillaume Valle flat-called on the button. On the flop, Shak continued for 28,000 and Valle called before doing so again on the turn for 40,000. After the river, Shak led for 100,000 and Valle called.
Shak turned over the for a pair of sevens, which Valle had beat with to claim the pot with two pair.
Benjamin Pollak just profited nicely off back-to-back double paired boards, and is now nursing a healthy stack of more than 700,000.
First, German Louis Cartarius ran a bluff against Pollak on a board, but Pollak wasn't going anywhere and scooped the pot after Cartarius quickly mucked following the 43,000 river call.
The very next hand, Pollak got a few streets of value from Dan Shak when Pollak bet both turn and river with on a board of .