EPT Barcelona: Day 2, level 10-12 updates (800-1,600, ante 200)

August 29, 2011


4.41pm: Break it up
That’s the end of level 12. Players are on a 15-minute break, and we’ll be heading over to a new post. Join us there. — SY

4.40pm: Vanders-missing
Benny Spindler started a big hand but went on to play no further part in. Bear with me. With a stack of 160,000, he open-raised to 3,200, getting a call from Andre Barroco a few seats along. Kevin Vandersmissen then made it 10,200 before Tome Moreira called from the button. Still with me?

Spindler then got out of the way, but Barroco called and the three of them saw a 9♦2♥8♣ flop. Barroco checked, Vandersmissen made it 16,000 which was called suspiciously quickly by Moreira. It was back on Barroco, who thought for a good two minutes before folding.

The turn was Q♣ and this time Vandersmissen checked. Moreira then put enough yellow chips, worth around 50,000, into the middle to put his opponent all-in. Call.

Moreira: A♦A♣
Vandersmissen: K♦Q♠

Moreira was nicely ahead, and avoided any nastiness on the 7♥ river to win a chunky pot, busting Vandersmissen in the process. Moreira, from Portugal, is up to 190,000. — SY

4.38pm: Darcourt wins with aces, still a bad beat
Over on the busy table, the board was showing 10♦10♥Q♠8♦. Victor Ramdin had bet 10,000, called by Bryn Kenney, before Guillaume Darcourt re-raised to 25,000. Ramdin got out of the way, as did Kenney after a couple of moments.

Darcourt won the pot, but did not look overly pleased, slapping down A♦A♣ on the table. “That’s a bad beat,” said Ramdin. “We thought you had a ten.” The paired flop had slowed everyone down a bit, diminishing the value the Frenchman hoped to get from his pocket rockets. He’s up to 430,000 now, so don;t feel too sorry for him. — SY

4.36pm: Ruthenberg out
Sebastian Ruthenberg, the German Team PokerStars Pro, is out. The Germans have not had a great time of it here, but Team PokerStars SportStar Boris Becker is still flying the flag. He’s got about about 45,000. — SY

4.35pm: Fernandez flying
Leo Fernandez has doubled up, calling Jorge Lopez’s shove with A♥A♠ with J♦J♠J♣10♥. The turn came Q♥, the river 9♠ sending Lopez to the rail and taking Fernandez up to 220,000. – SB

4.30pm: Correction II
Here on the PokerStars Blog we always let the truth get in the way of a good story, so with that in mind another correction is called for.

ALL players will get their buffet ticket, regardless of whether they are eliminated or not, thus ending what could have been a fascinating analysis of the game, played by hungry players, at the end of Day 2. – SB

4.24pm: Van den Berg cracks aces
Erik van den Berg has just cracked Filip Verboven’s aces after getting it in on a 4♣10♦Q♦ flop with A♦8♦. The turn blanked but a diamond on the river pushed the pot to the Dutchman. He’s back up to 100,000. — RD

4.21pm: Lundmark’s title defence sunk by kings
Both Kent Lundmark (big blind) and Florin Ionut Pandilica (small blind) were fairly short stacked and both were packing heat. Lundmark held jacks but his Romanian opponent had kings. The Swede’s title defence has com to a close. — RD

ept barcelona_day 2_kent lundmark.jpg

Last year’s champ Kent Lundmark

4.20pm: Duhamel out, then out again
Jonathan Duhamel is out although we cannot say we saw it. The first we noticed he was gone was when a TV camera team asked him to return to his table and relive the experience again, all while trying to act natural. Duhamel is a good port and obliged, later tweeting:

@JonathanDuhamel: “Good time to be card dead, busto somewhere around 260th..67s with 7bb got called by A7, debating between chilling or playing 2k side event..”

4.15pm: “The Buffet Bubble”
Tournament staff have repeated the dinner break instructions, essentially that there will be an extended break of 30 minutes after four levels but no dinner break per se. However, a buffet is available later for all players still in the main event.

This presents players with another quandary, a “buffet bubble” if you like. Elimination today literally tears up a player’s meal ticket with only survival guaranteeing a means to free food. Another angle to contend with in what is already a fascinating and complex tournament. – SB

4.12pm: Darcourt busts Cates, takes chip lead
Guilluame Darcourt has just knocked out Dan Cates to chip up to a little over 400,000. I missed the action, the board and even the hands. Darcourt’s stack is taking up far too much of the table. — RD

4.07pm: Barbero out
This happened on the TV stage, so we are yet to get details, but it appears Team PokerStars Pro Nacho Barbero is out. He had over 170,000 not so long ago, so something dramatic has befallen him. — SY

4.05pm: Kravchenko survives
Alex Kravchenko was all-in, moving in from under the gun for 11,100. It folded around to Sami Kelopuro who made the call. Everyone else mucked. Kravchenko’s 10♦J♦ was up against A♣K♣, and his hand shot ahead on the 3♥4♣7♦J♣9♠ board. That sends the Russian Team PokerStars Pro up to 24,000. Still short, but he’s worked with less before now. — SY


Clinging on: Alex Kravchenko

4pm: Switching tables
The table that was on the main stage, featuring Eugene Katchalov and Leo Fernandez, has now moved back into the main room. Katchalov has regained some of his overnight stack, now on 140,000, while the Argentinian has slipped a little to 135,000.

Meanwhile, the main stage now features the table involving Team PokerStars Pros Andre Akkari, Ville Wahlbeck and Nacho Barbero. While that should make for some good TV, sadly it robs us of being able to cover one of the better tables properly. — SY

3.55pm: A few hands from that table
I’ve been following that juicy table. You know the one, it’s loaded with chips and interesting players. I’m not being lazy, it’s an interesting slice of the tournament, right? Agreed.

Hand one: Dan Cates opened from middle position to 3,200 and was called by Noureddine Ziane in the big blind. No action on the flop and Cates shot out 5,500 on the 10♣7♦A♠2♥ turn, which Ziane called. A J♠ on the river is checked to Cates who lumped in 15,000. Fold. Cates up to 130,000.

Hand two: Jefri Islam opened under-the-gun for 3,600 and Sam El Sayed called in the big blind. El Sayed bets the river of a A♦J♣2♦7♣10♦ board to win the pot and move back up to 185,000.

Hand three: Islam defended his big blind against Guilluame Darcourt but passed to a c-bet on a low flop.

Hand four: It’s Cates again. He opened under-the-gun and is called by El Sayed in the hijack. The 9♥A♣6♦ flop is checked. Cates also checked the 9♦ turn, which El Sayed bet for 9,000. Insta-call from Cates. The river is an innocuous 4♠ and Cates opted to check-call 25,500 looking very unhappy when shown J♦9♣ for trips. Cates down to 95,000, El Sayed up to 220,000.

Also, Joseph Cheong, Allen Bari and Dmitry Vitkind have bitten the dust. Not literally, they’ve just been knocked out of the tournament. — RD

3.50pm: No Mercier
Jason Mercier is out of the main event. He got his stack of 23,700 in with K♦Q♦ only to run into Antoine Junillon with A♦A♥ and Vitali Grigoriev with A♠A♣.

With the cameras in place the board was dealt 6♠5♠3♦10♠9♥ sending Mercier to the rail while his chips were divided between the aces. – SB

3.40pm: Weisner heads for the door
Melanie Weisner is out, moving in with J♣J♥ for around 20,000. She was called by former EPT Vilamoura winner Antonio Matias who showed A♥K♣. The board ran 9♣2♦K♠K♦3♠ to send Weisner to the rail and leave Matias with 110,000. – SB

3.35pm: Heinz gives it the beans
Jose Miguel Martinez Garnes was in action again in the next hand, opening for 3,500. Pius Heinze then moved all-in from the button for 22,600. Garnes called and the dealer stopped them turning over their cards to allow time for the cameras to arrive. After a minute of waiting it was decided to press on without them.

Heinz showed 6♠6♥ to Garnes’s A♦Q♠.

The board ran 7♥9♠8♥K♥2♠ to double up Heinze. Garnes slips to 120,000. – SB

3.30pm: Garnes garners chips from Selbst
Jose Miguel Martinez Garnes opened in early position, making it 3,500. The action was folded to Menny Ram Menashe Ben Haim in the cut-off who tanked for a several minutes before calling. Vanessa Selbst was on the button and also called in about one fifth of the time.

The flop came 3♣3♠9♦. Garnes bet 4,200 and again Ben Haim went into the tank, making each decision look like a call for his tournament life. After consulting his cards again he passed, leaving it to Selbst to call. The turn came 2♦. Another 8,500 from Garnes prompting Selbst to fold. Selbst still on around 300,000. – SB

3.22pm: Coming back
Players are slowly filing back into the room for the start of level 12. Blinds are now 800-1,600 with a 200 ante. The average stack is around 81,000. — SY

3.05pm: Twenty minute break
That’s the end of the second level of the day. Come back shortly and hit that refresh button. — RD

3.03pm: Darcourt’s table getting more interesting
Guilluame Darcourt is up to 270,000 and his table, already containing Victor Ramdin, Dan Cates and Bryn Kenney, now also houses Sam El Sayed (on his direct left, 230,000) and Sam Razavi (direct right, 65,000).

It’s not exactly a dream move for UKIPT Cork winner Razavi who now has two of the largest tournament stacks to his direct right, but he could always take a leaf out of Diego Ivan Arbuello’s book. The Argentinian opened to 2,500 and then jammed for 82,000 when Darcourt three-bet him to 7,000. The pink-haired Frenchman passed after a long tank, perhaps a Hollywood, but that table’s going to be a fun one. — RD

ept barcelona_day 2_guilluame darcourt.jpg

The pink hair seems to be working for Frenchman Guilluame Darcourt

3pm: Weisner all-in
Melanie Weisner just moved all-in for 10,300. It was crunch time for Weisner who got a call from Andreas Samuelsson who turned over A♦6♥. Weisner had a pair, showing 7♥7♠.

The board ran 10♦4♥3♥3♣J♥ and Weisner lives, although the situation is still dicey. – SB

2.57pm: Time to go
The rate of eliminations today has been breathtaking. We started out with 407 and already we are down to around 290. In other words, we’ve lost a quarter of the field.

Carry on like this, and we’ll crown our champion at about 9pm*.

* We will not

2.55pm: Wahlbeck into six figures
On a flop of 9♣A♥5♦ 3203 checked from the big blind, as did a player in early position. Luis Vale then raised to 5,000 from the hijack which Ville Wahlbeck called on the button. The big blind passed, as did the early position player before the 6♥ turn card.

At this point Vale moved all-in for 12,300. Wahlbeck, taking a break from reading on his iPad and talking to Johnny Lodden, called. Vale showed A♠J♣ but Wahlbeck had that beat with A♦Q♦. The river was a 3♦ and Vale, eyebrows raised, was out. Wahlbeck up to 115,000. – SB

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Team PokerStars Ville Wahlbeck

2.48pm: No back-to-back
Ronny Kaiser is out, moving in with pocket kings only to get called by pocket aces. No help came on the board and the EPT Tallinn champion is out.

Lucien Cohen is also out, moving in with pocket fives but running into the pocket jacks of David Sonelin. – SB

2.45pm: Selbst joins the leaders
Team PokerStars Pro Vanessa Selbst is up to 300,000 after her pocket queens overtook Michael Schurpf’s pocket aces to double her up. They were all-in pre-flop, and the flop of 9♣J♦K♠ brought hopes of a straight for Selbst. But the turn was Q♠, giving her a set, followed by the meaningless 4♣ river. — SY

2.40pm: Two Stars of TV
Two of the better-stacked Team PokerStars Pros are now on the feature TV table (no webcast here, they are filming for future TV shows). Here sits Leo Fernandez (160,000) and on his immediate left Eugene Katchalov (110,000). However, following any action is impossible on the TV set, so the occasional chip update will have to suffice. – SY


We can see you: Eugene Katchalov

2.35pm: Beach babe
Chris Moneymaker has just Tweeted about one of Barcelona’s many benefits: “Beach time in sunny Barcelona! Bonus of busting early.” The former WSOP champ busted way back on level one of Day 1B when his full house was rivered by a bigger full house. — SY

2.30pm: Copani caught in eye of Irene’s storm
Irene Bennett, a PokerStars qualifier from Switzerland, is over 130,000 after busting Juan Copani. He had raised to 2,600 from early position and got a call from Topi Palenius in the next seat. It was folded around to Ms Bennett (which sounds like a character from Pride and Prejudice) who re-raised to 8,500.

At this point, Copani moved all-in for about 50,000. While Palenius got the jitters and folded, Bennett made the easy call:

Copani: Q♠Q♥
Bennett: K♣K♠

It was a lovely spot, and the board ran A♠6♦9♠6♣9♥ to send the chips Bennett’s way. — SY

2.25pm: Darcourt on course
Overnight chip leader Guillame Darcourt is back up to around 260,000 after eliminating another player with his pocket fives. — SB

2.20pm: Mercier lives
Jason Mercier just doubled up to around 44,000 against Kevin Stani. His chips went in with A♥Q♥ against Kevin Stani’s A♦K♠. The board ran 9♥3♦Q♣5♥10♦ to keep Mercier alive. Stani meanwhile drops to around 53,000. – SB

2.18pm: Lombard up
Arnaud Lombard moved all-in with J♣10♣ for 15,000 and was called by Anatoly Gurtovoy with A♣K♥. The board ran 4♣3♣J♥Q♦J♦ to double up Lombard and leave Gurtovoy with around 12,000. – SB

2.15pm: Duhamel left short
Jonathan Duhamel has been left with just 21,000 after four-bet shoving pocket jacks into the pocket queens of EPT Grand Final runner-up Torsten Brinkmann, who is now up to 87,000. — RD

2.08pm: Darcourt dented, Kenney joins the fray
Last night Guilluame Darcourt admitted to making moves and running bluffs on his way to taking the overnight chip lead. One thing is for certain he’s happy to get involved and others are more than happy to call him down.

On a board reading 3♦4♠2♦2♣ Darcourt led 22,000 out of the blinds into Jefri Islam who tank-called with around 70,000 behind. Darcourt appeared to give up on the hand and checked the Q♣ river. Islam checked behind and showed 9♥9♦ to beat Darcourt’s A♠3♠. Darcourt down to 220,000, Islam up to 130,000.

It looks like a tough table. Victor Ramdin (80,000) and Dan Cates (125,000) were drawn there first thing and they have since been joined by PCA Super High Roller third place finisher Bryn Kenney (75,000). — RD

1.55pm: Telling it straight
Luca Pagano was realistic about his chances at the break.

“I am very close to the beach,” said Pagano before putting it another way. “I think in this tournament I will finish… on the beach.”

Sure enough that’s where he’s headed now after two pots put an end to his Barcelona campaign. The first, a three-way pot, left him crippled.

ept barcelona_day 2_guilluame darcourt.jpg

Luca Pagano now has time for his Speedos

Nick Yunis opened from under the gun for 3,000 before Pagano moved all-in for 17,500 from the small blind. Driss Bouchoiri was in the big and moved all-in too. Then Yunis called all in for 16,900.

Yunis: J♠J♦
Pagano: A♣J♣
Bouchoiri: K♥Q♥

The board ran 4♦7♦2♠10♥8♦ leaving Pagano with just 1,200, which he got in on the next hand. No luck. He’s off to the beach. – SB

1.47pm: Back into it
Play has resumed. We have 351 players left, 407 started the day. That’s 56 players gone in that first 75 minutes. More carnage, please. — RD

1.33pm: Break time
That’s the break. Players have 15 minutes to stretch their legs before returning for level 11.

1.32pm: Players lost
Looking back at this last level we can wave goodbye to a lot of EPT regulars including Alain Roy, Jon Spinks, Laurence Houghton and James Mitchell, as well as Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern and Marcin Horecki. Congratulations and commiserations to UKIPT champ Max Silver who made his first EPT Day 2 and promptly four-bet jammed K♥Q♥ into pocket aces. — RD

1.31pm: Kaiser arrives
Jason Mercier didn’t have to wait long for the vacancies at his table to be filled, one of which was taken by EPT Tallinn champion Ronny Kaiser.

Kaiser was quickly in action against Francisco “El Tren” Torres, who has swapped his card protecting model of Thomas the Tank Engine for I think, unless I miss my guess, Toby, the Tram Engine, or maybe Diesel, who, according to the official Thomas the Tank Engine website, thinks “diesel is better than steam”.

Regardless he took on Kaiser with the board reading 9♠8♦6♠2♦A♣. Kaiser bet 16,000 which Torres raised to 35,000, both players having about 80,000 behind. Kaiser, holding his hood around his neck as he did in Tallinn, tanked for a while before folding.

Torres showed an A♥ and said something to Kaiser which made him grin. They play on. – SB

1.30pm: Vacancies
Jason Mercier’s table is seven handed and he wants to know why. The floor is called and the very reasonable explanation is given that tables are breaking so fast that they’re filling empty seats with those, rather than balancing, which is what they did yesterday when play was ten handed.

Atanas Gueorguiev opened the next hand from middle position, opening for 2,200. Raul Mestre raised to 5,400 on the button before Gueorguiev moved all-in for 26,700 more. Mestre called, easily covering his opponent, and showing 9♣9♥ to Gueorguiev’s 5♣5♦.

But Mestre’s advantage soon disappeared as the board ran 5♥2♦3♦7♠4♠. Mestre harumphed on the flop, and looked devasted by the river, his eyebrows all over the place, his lips performing the Artur Wasek “whinny”* (kind of like Lauren Bacall’s instructions to put your lips together and blow, only less seductive).

* Naturally we would never dare say this to his face.

1.28pm: Ramdin ruminations
The PokerStars video team catch up with Victor Ramdin.

1.30pm: Primal scream
Lucien Cohen made a name for himself in Deauville last season for two reasons. Firstly, and most importantly, he won the event for €880,000. Secondly, there were his wild, in-your-face celebrations after winning a hand. Some liked it, others did not.

Today, aside from the cries of ‘all-in and call’ from the dealers, it’s been peaceful in the tournament room. Suddenly, however, a loud shriek shoots up from across the room; a raucous, Gallic cheer. Yes, it was Monsieur Cohen. However, closer inspection of the table revealed just why he had reason to be pleased: he had just tripled up against two pairs of pocket kings.

Short-stacked Cohen had A♥5♥ and was up against the cowboys of both David Sonelin and Avram Bogdan. The board had run 8♦4♥3♦A♠4♣ to seal the deal for Cohen, who now sits with 36,000. Sonelin is still comfortable with 160,000.

If Cohen keeps building and makes it deep, we’d better all purchase some earphones. — SY

1.25pm: One up, one down
Sebastian Ruthenberg seems to have had an accident at some point, down to 16,000 from his 46,000 starting stack. But fellow Team PokerStars Pro Jonathan Duhamel is working on his grinding stone, up to 33,000 from his starting point of 18,000. — SY

ept barcelona_day 2_jonathan duhamel.jpg

Jonathan Duhamel on the grind

1.20pm: No gold for Silver
Max Silver, who won UKIPT Dublin last year for €72,000, will not be adding to his trophy cabinet here. He was all-in for his last 35,000 with K♦Q♥ but was up against Alvaro Tarrazon’s pocket aces. A king on the flop brought some hope for the Brit, but the rest of the board bricked. — SY

1.15pm: Rettenmaier back on the offensive
Marvin Rettenmaier is up to 157,000 after flatting with kings pre-flop and getting three streets of value out of Dmitrij Fadeev who caught top pair top kicker on a 9♠J♥Q♦6♦3♠ board with A♥Q♥. Mad Marvin has Boris Becker (40,000) on his left. — RD

1.07pm: Selbst KO’s Horecki and Mitchell
Team PokerStars Pro Vanessa Selbst has just knocked out fellow team pro Marcin Horecki and James Mitchell in a three-way cooler. Selbst had opened under-the-gun and had been shoved on by Mitchell for 22,000 from the small blind. Horecki moved all–in from the small blind for 66,000 and Selbst, with around 70,000, made the call.

Mitchell: A♠Q♦
Horecki: A♥Q♣
Selbst: A♣K♠

Great spot for Selbst and with the board running out J♥7♥9♦8♦3♠ she moves up to 155,000 taking two scalps with her. — RD

ept barcelona_day 2_vanessa selbst.jpg

Vanessa Selbst: now well chipped

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Martin Horecki: now out

1.05pm: Is anybody out there
We know from our analytics that we have bumper readership of our Barcelona coverage. It would be nice to hear from some of you, so feel free to send us a comment using the comment box at the bottom of the page. It’s free! — SY

1.01pm: Meanwhile, at the sharp end
A new contender for chip leader has emerged in Andrej Vinogrodskij. The details are sketchy but the Lithuanian won a huge pot, one that leaves him with around 270,000. It came against Gustavo Kein from Argentina, Vinogrodskij flopping a straight with 5♣7♣ against Kein’s flopped top set with pocket nines. The board ran 6♥9♠8♥Q♠7♥. – SB

1pm: Pastor coming up short
When French PokerStars qualifier Maurice Schulmann open-raised from early position, Juan Manual Pastor, sitting in the small blind, looked down at his cards and smiled to himself. He showed no outward emotion, of course. The Spanish Team PokerStars Pro had Q♣Q♠, and with Schulmann only having around 18,000 behind, he elected to move all-in for around 50,000.

Schulmann, though, got just what he wanted – he flipped over K♣K♠ sending Pastor’s eyes rolling skyward, a deep sigh seemed to go on for ten seconds.

Pastor needed help, but the 2♥J♠9♣7♣7♥ board provided none of it. Pastor down to 30,000. — SY

12.55pm: Vamooo! Akkari off smartly
Andre Akkari had a good finish to Day 1A, and his Day 2 has started pretty well, too. Guillermo Garcia Gomez de Barreda (don’t you just love Spanish names?) had raised to 2,100 which Team PokerStars Pro Akkari called. Then Matt Waxman from the USA, sitting in the small blind, pushed for 18,200 total.

While the Spanish bloke with the long name got out of the way (after a long dwell, mind you), Akkari elected to call. It was a smart move; his reasoning that he was in a race. That’s exactly what happened: Akkari flipped over 3♥3♣, while Waxman had K♠Q♠.
Akkari’s plan worked perfectly, with the board running J♦4♦8♥5♣4♣. He adds more to his stack, now sitting with 128,000.

The man from Brazil won a WSOP bracelet this summer – who’s to say he could not add an EPT title here? Looking to stop him is Team PokerStars Pro Ville Wahlbeck, who sits in seat one, next to Tobias Reinkemeier in seat two. Nacho Barbero has since turned up, too. Tough table. – SY

12.50pm: Interesting match-ups
Team PokerStars Pro Marcin Horecki was not hugely impressed to find team mate Vanessa Selbst two to his left. Jan Skampa, the former EPT Prague champion is also at this table. Good news for Horecki, who started today with 66,000, is that the table is one of the early breakers.

Elsewhere, Day 1B chip leader Guillaume Darcourt shares a table with US Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin. — SY

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Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin

12.47pm: Kravchenko sends one to the rail
Alex Kravchenko just eliminated Francesco Brambilla, sending him to the rail when his Q♠Q♣ held firm against Brambilla’s A♥K♦. — SB

12.45pm: Correction
It turns out the “all-in triangle” was not something Laurence Hougton had broght with him, it is in fact something the dealers use as a visual aid to the TV cameras floating around waiting to film a players’ last stand. Looking back it did seem strange that someone like Houghton, a serious pro who wears sparkly t-shirts should want to keep with him a gaudy trinket. So yes, everything I said about the “all-in chip” was correct. Everything written about the “all-in triangle” was, hmm, completely wrong. — SB

12.42pm: Mattern knocked out by optimistic speculation
Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern has just been knocked out in a spot where he looked good to triple up.

Mattern opened under-the-gun with pocket kings and was raised by Anatolii Ozhenilok in middle position. Big stack Mario Adinolfi made the call. The action passed back to Mattern who moved all-in for 21,400 in total. Ozhenilok re-shoved to isolate for around 35,000 and Adinolfi decided to come along for the ride. Ozhenilok tabled pocket tens, Adinolfi a speculative ace-ten.

An ace on the board chipped Adinolfi up to 220,000, possibly into the chip lead, and EPT champ Mattern to the rail. — RD

12.37pm: All change
Nacho Barbero has now moved tables. He now sits with Ville Wahlbeck and Andre Akkari on the table next to the TV stage.

12.36pm: Houghton out
Over on Luca Pagano’s table Laurence Houghton moved in for the last of what had started today as a stack of 12,800. Not only that, he threw in an “all-in triangle” (or something), a triangle with the words “all-in” written on it. It’s the first sighting of something like this since the infamous “all-in chip” of the World Series several years ago which, legend has it, resulted in at least one player being declared all-in after their “all-in chip” accidentally rolled forward and onto the table.

Houghton’s triangle is not binding though, it’s just for show, and he got a caller in Haykel Vidal who showed Q♠10♣ to Houghton’s K♠K♣.

Houghton was good on the Q♣2♥7♣ flop but the queen would prove fatal. The turn was fine, coming 8♥ but the river card Q♦ sent Houghton to the rail in silence. Vidal showed humility, resigned to a little good luck.

“Please, don’t do that to me…” said Luca Pagano.

12.30pm: All-ins abound
“All-in and call!” can be heard across the tournament floor as dealers announce to roaming camera crews that there’s action to be seen. Players whose tournament fate has been caught in the lens so far include EPT London winner David Vamplew (doubled to 39,000 with ace-king to ace-jack) and Team PokerStars Pro Nacho Barbero.

Barbero had opened from the small blind into Olvedo Vincent Heinze, who three-bet and then flatted Barbero’s four-bet. No respect for the Argentinian. On a 10♠4♠6♥ flop Barbero led and then called all-in for 46,100.

Barbero: Q♠Q♣
Heinze: 8♥7♥

The turn gave both players a cheer; Q♥. Barbero faded the straight and flush draws to double up to 120,000. — RD

ept barcelona_day 2_nacho barbero.jpg

Nacho Barbero: crushing the nonchalant way

12.20pm: Ramdin gets them in
Another all-in, this time Victor Ramin waiting for the cameras with his chips in the middle, against Nicholas Newport. Ramdin had him covered, just, and showed Q♦Q♣ to Newport’s A♥Q♥.

The board ran 5♥K♠6♣5♣4♥ to all but double up Ramdin, up to around 40,000, while Newport heads for the door. – SB

12.15pm: First of many
Needless to say the short stacks are wasting no time in getting their chips into the middle. Javier Sanz is one of them, although unlike others relying on a face card, he just woke up with pocket aces. Even more fortuitous was that Raul Mestre woke up with pocket kings and immediately called.

The board ran Q♦2♣10♠J♦7♣ to double up Sanz. – SB

12.12pm: The chip list
You can check the chip counts of all the big dogs throughout the day by clicking on this link. Tracking the full 407 players would be a task even Hercules would fail so we cut it down to the biggest stacks and some of the biggest names left in. As players emerge fighting into the fray we add them to the list and those that are knocked out get struck from the list. Simple, eh? You’d think so… — RD

12.08pm: And we’re off
A little later than planned, cards are in the air. Tournament boss Toby Stone has just confirmed we will play six levels, 75 minutes each, with a short break between each. Around dinner time, the break will be extended to 30 minutes. — SY

11.55am: As one
Some predictable things: it’s hot and sunny outside, the beach is crowded, today will be a wonderful spectacle of poker. It’s Day 2 of EPT Barcelona, meaning the field will combine as one for the first time today.

In total, 407 of them return having survived the rough and tumble of their relative Day 1 battles. We’re still waiting for confirmation, but the suggestion is that today we will play six levels, each now 75 minutes long, with a short break after every one.

That should take us up to something like 9pm tonight.

So who to look out for today? Team PokerStars Pros flying high include Eugene Katchalov and Leo Fernandez. But the man they are now all chasing is pink-haired Frenchman Guillaume Darcourt with 195,300. — SY


Eugene Katchalov, 153,100 chips

PokerStars Blog reporting team (in order of arrival today): Simon Young (in time to do this post, the chip counts, seat draw and widget), Rick Dacey and Stephen Bartley (better have a good excuse about the traffic).


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