Day 2 Completed
Day 2 Completed
One of poker’s enduring myths is the curse of the chip leader and here at the stunning Casino de Monte-Carlo that came true as Al De Carolis, who began the day in top spot, was the last man out today. In keeping with the day, it was a cooler as De Carolis ran queens into Rick Salomon’s kings for his final 25 big blinds.
When the final eight return tomorrow at noon to play for the first prize of €11,111,111 this is how they’ll stack up:
It took just under five hours of play to go from 24 to 8 and for most of that time, Andrew Pantling, who started the day seventh in chips, held the chip lead. He survived a couple of early dents in the opening hour before his stack began trending upwards.
While Pantling was leading at the first break, the truth is that the opening two levels were all about Paul Phua. In that 90-minute period, Phua took care of Patrick Madden (aces versus kings), Tony Bloom (jacks versus ace-nine), Mark Teltscher (jacks versus ace-ten) and, most notably, Guy Laliberté. The One Drop founder got his final 15 big blinds in with ace-queen and was in great shape against Phua’s king-queen. However, the former Macau junkiteer flopped top two pair and the turn and river bricked to send Laliberté to the rail.
Quickly the final three tables became two and up on the feature stage we saw, potentially, a tournament-defining pot play out between Bob Safai and Pantling. The chips flew in on the turn of a board. Safai had the nuts with queen-ten and Pantling had two-pair with nine-eight. An eight on the river filled Pantling up and sent a shell-shocked Safai tumbling out. “So sick,” said Antonio Esfandiari, who was watching on as Safai’s coach. That pot gave Pantling almost a quarter of the chips in play and he upped the aggression accordingly.
Whilst that was undoubtedly the hand of the day it was far from the end of the action as big pots were the order of the day. Paul Newey and Talal Shakerchi had been eliminated by the time Al De Carolis briefly reclaimed the chip lead. An accidental flop re-raise from De Carolis worked out pretty well as Pantling set him in holding top pair and De Carolis called with a backdoor straight and flush draw. He hit the straight draw on the river, which knocked Pantling down to second spot.
The final dozen players soon became nine as Sean Dempsey, Paul Phua and Jason Strasser were eliminated by Elton Tsang, Rick Salomon and Brandon Steven respectively. Just like that the unofficial final table was set. Jack Effel offered the players the chance to play down to six which would mean everyone who would come back on the final day would’ve been in the money, but a couple of players objected and wanted to stop with eight left as planned.
On just the twelfth hand of the unofficial final table, a kings versus queens encounter between Salomon and De Carolis meant the latter bubbled the final table and play was done for the day. Two players will leave empty handed tomorrow, that much we know.
The elite eight will return at 11:45am local time and many of them may will be wearing a tuxedo as there’s a company providing them if they’ve not traveled with one of their own. We’re also promised a theatrical entrance and beginning to what’s shaping up to be a fantastic final table, during which levels will increase to one-hour in length. This is what the final eight will be playing for tomorrow:
Join us from noon local time for what promises to be a thrilling conclusion to this very special tournament.
Hand #12: From the hijack, Rick Salomon opened for 750,000. The cutoff folded but Alfred De Carolis on the button moved all in for what appeared to be a little over 7.5 million. Both blinds released instantly.
"How much is that Al?" asked Salomon seconds before he called, "I have kings."
Alfred De Carolis:
The start of day chip leader was in trouble, and would find no help from the board: .
Jack Effel asked how the table was feeling and James Bord was very clear he wanted to quit for the day because he was tired. Salomon agreed, as he hadn't slept yet he said.
And so it was agreed play was done for the day, even though Voulgaris wanted to play on till the bubble was done for.
Hand #6: Andrew Pantling raised to 650,000 from early position and Elton Tsang called from the button. The flop came and Pantling continued for 1,000,000. Tsang folded.
Hand #7: Haralobos Voulgaris pushed all in from middle position and got no callers.
Hand #8: Anatoly Gurtovoy raised to 700,000 from middle position and Andrew Pantling called from the big blind. Both players checked the flop and the came on the turn. Pantling led out for 1,000,000 and Gurtovoy folded.
Hand #9: Cary Katz limped from middle position. Andrew Pantling limped behind from the button. James Bord completed from the small blind and Haralobos Voulgaris checked his option in the big blind.
The flop fell and Bord led out for 500,000. All three other players folded.
Hand #10: From the cutoff, Andrew Pantling raised to 650,000. Haralabos Voulgaris in the small blind counted his stack (3,925,000), thought about it for a bit, and announced all in. The big blind and Pantling both instantly folded.
Hand #10: From middle position, Brandon Steven raised to 800,000. Anatoly Gurtovoy called from the big blind and check-called 800,000 on as well. Both checked the on the turn and Gurtovoy bet 1.5 million on the river. Steven folded.
Hand #1: The button was with Andrew Pantling and he called after Al De Carolis had opened to 1,200,000 from under-the-gun. The two of them saw a flop and De Carolis check-called a bet of 1,400,000. The hit the turn and De Carolis check-folded to Pantling's second barrel of 2,600,000.
Hand #2: Andrew Pantling raised to 650,000 and won the blinds and antes.
Hand #3: James Bord raised to 700,000 from the cutoff and met no resistance.
Hand #4: Andrew Pantling raised it up to 650,000 from middle position and called after Anatoly Gurtovoy three-bet to 1,500,000 from the small blind. A bet of 1,500,000 from Gurtovoy on the flop earned him the pot.
Hand #5: The action folded to Al De Carolis and he limped in from the cutoff, Elton Tsang completed from the small blind and Cary Katz checked his option. A board rolled off, Tsang bet 450,000 on the river and De Carolis looked him up. Tsang showed which was good versus the of De Carolis.
By Neil Stoddart.
The original plan today was to play down to eight players. There are now nine players remaining, and it's still fairly early, so tournament director Jack Effel polled the players about whether they'd like to continue to play until the bubble bursts. Most players didn't express a strong opinion either way, but Alfred De Carolis objected to playing past eight players. So for now, the plan is still to play until they reach eight.
|6||Alfred De Carolis|
Jason Strasser pushed all in from the button, and Brandon Steven called from the small blind.
Steven tabled . "I have an overcard," Strasser told him as he turned over .
The flop came to give Steven top set and leave Strasser drawing thin. The turn was the . And the river was the to give Strasser two pair, still not good enough. Steven won with his set and Strasser hit the rail.
With Strasser's elimination, the remaining nine players are redrawing to the unofficial final table.