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Buy-In: $10,000 + $300
Prize Pool: $15,132,000
Entrants: 1560

PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Main Event

  • Jan 08, '11 - Jan 15, '11
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Updates on Final Day (Jan 15, 11)

 
 

2011 PCA $25K High Roller: Day 2, level 17 updates (4,000-8,000, 1,000 ante)

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpg1050pm: Mercier loses more


Jason Mercier is down to 375,00 chips now after two more back-to-back losses. The first hand saw him raise from the button and be called by Philipp Gruissem in the big blind. Gruissem then check-called a 19,000 flop bet and a 27,000 turn bet before the two players checked the river. The final board read 2Diamond Suit5Heart Suit2Club Suit9Spade SuitKSpade Suit and Mercier tabled AClub Suit10Club Suit but lost out to Gruissem’s trips with KHeart Suit2Heart Suit.

The next hand Mercier raised from the cut-off and Erik Seidel called from the big blind. The flop came 5Diamond Suit9Heart Suit5Heart Suit and a Seidel check-raise took the pot down. — MC

10.40pm: Seidel doubles


Eric Seidel is up to 160,000 after doubling through Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier. Mercier raised to 16,000 and called when Seidel shoved for around 75,000 from the big blind with AClub SuitKDiamond Suit. Mercier was live with 10Club Suit9Club Suit but the board came a Seidel friendly 4Heart Suit3Spade Suit2Spade Suit7Heart SuitKClub Suit. Mercier is down to 470,000 now and on a real slide. — MC

10.25pm: Lykov edges into the chip lead


While Max Lykov was taking a chunk out of Tyler Reiman with pocket kings to move up to 660,000, fellow Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier was doubling up Ravi Raghavan to 400,000. The combined effect moves Team PokerStars Pro Lykov into the chip lead. — RD




pca_high roller_max lykov.jpg

Lykov moves into the chip lead, for the moment…




10.15pm: Affleck doubles, again


Matt Affleck hasn’t had an easy ride today and has survived with numerous double-ups. He can add another double-up to his collection courtesy of chip leader Tyler Reiman. Reiman opened to 17,000 and then shoved when Affleck three-bet him to 42,000. Affleck called off his 189,000 stack with QHeart SuitQDiamond Suit, dominating Reiman’s 9Club Suit9Spade Suit. The board ran JSpade Suit10Diamond Suit3Diamond Suit7Heart Suit5Spade Suit. Jason Mercier has moved up to top spot without playing a hand. — MC

10.05pm: Reigning Reynolds


Will Reynolds is the reigning champ here at the PCA High Roller but he’s going to have to get some double ups going if he’s going to do the same again. He’s down to 142,000. — RD

Table one


1. Govert Metaal – 441,000


2. Rob Akery – 301,000


3. empty


4. Tom Marchese – 258,000


5. Shander de Vries – 262,000


6. Will Reynolds – 142,000


7. Tom Bedell – 306,000


8. Moritz Kranich – 170,000

Table two


1. Matt Affleck – 170,000


2. David Baker – 410,000


3. Matt Marafioti – 455,000


4. Brandon Stevens – 375,000


5. Max Lykov, Team PokerStars Pro – 546,000


6. Leo Fernandez, Team PokerStars Pro – 355,000



7. empty


8. Tyler Reiman – 760,000

Table three


1. Brett Richey – 262,000


2. empty


3. Jason Mercier, Team PokerStars Pro – 728,000


4. Ravi Raghavan – 198,000


5. Philipp Gruissem – 458,000


6. Erik Seidel – 84,000


7. Will Molson – 212,000


8. Ryan Fair – 390,000




pca_high roller_will reynolds.jpg

Reigning High Roller Will Reynolds




PokerStars Blog reporting team at the PCA High Roller (in disorder): Rick Dacey and Marc Convey.



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 

2011 PCA Main Event: Final table preview



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 

2011 PCA $25K High Roller: Day 2, level 15 updates (2,500-5,000, 500 ante)

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpg8.43pm: He’s owed a few


Matt Affleck’s post dinner roller-coaster ride continued with a double-up courtesy of Daniel Alaei. Alaei raised to 13,000 from early position and was called on the button by Tyler Reiman before Affleck shoved for 55,000 from the small blind. Alaei re-shoved to isolate and it worked as Reiman folded.

Affleck: JSpade SuitJHeart Suit


Alaei: 9Club Suit9Diamond Suit

The board ran 6Heart Suit3Spade SuitJClub SuitQClub Suit8Diamond Suit. It was a fortunate spot for Affleck to find jacks but as Will Reynolds just pointed out – he’s owed a few. If you’re not sure what we’re referring to cast your eyes over <a href=“”_blank">He’s owed a few Matt Affleck’s post dinner roller-coaster ride continued with a double-up courtesy of Daniel Alaei. Alaei raised to 13,000 from early position and was called on the button by Tyler Reiman before Affleck shoved for 55,000 from the small blind. Alaei re-shoved to isolate and it worked as Reiman folded. Affleck: JSpade SuitJHeart Suit Alaei: 9Club Suit9Diamond Suit The board ran 6Heart Suit3Spade SuitJClub SuitQClub Suit8Diamond Suit. It was a fortunate spot for Affleck to find jacks but as Will Reynolds just pointed out – he’s owed a few. If you’re not sure what we’re referring to cast your eyes over this article by Howard Swains from the WSOP main event last summer. — MC">this article by Howard Swains from the WSOP main event last summer. — MC

8.30pm: Freddy Deeb busted


Freddy Deeb plays the game his way and with over $7 million in tournament winninsg it’s difficult to argue. Deeb lost all but 19,000 of his chips to Ravi Raghavan playing fast and loose with KClub Suit2Diamond Suit to KDiamond SuitJDiamond Suit post-flop. He got it in the next hand and managed to chop against a dominating hand, then stole the blinds uncontested.

The next hand he called a raise on his big blind from Jamie Armstrong and check folded the 5Diamond Suit9Club Suit3Diamond Suit flop leaving himself with 25,000. He was still alive when I left the table, by the time I was sat down writing this he was gone. — RD




pca_high roller_freddy deeb.jpg

Freddy Deeb wont be adding to his tournament winnings here




8.21pm: Another man down, Rajkumar walking


Vivek Rajkumar has quickly followed Fernando Brito on the rail. We’re not exactly sure how it happened but he fell to Brandon Stevens and his winning hand of pocket nines. Stevens is most famous for bubbling the WSOP main event final table last summer, finishing in 10th place. He is up to 485,000 now and is a long way towards not bubbling this event. — MC

8.14pm: Alaei cracks Affleck


Affleck had been in shoving mode and had managed to get himself up to 250,000 when he got it all-in against Daniel Alaei with pocket kings to pocket nines. Alaei had shoved back from from the big blind and flopped a nine on the 9Spade SuitJHeart Suit7Club Suit4Heart Suit7Heart Suit board to double through. Affleck, looking glum, is back down to around 100,000, Alaei is up over 200,000. — RD




pca_high roller_daniel alaei.jpg

Daniel Alaei, thankful of a nine




8.10pm: Stubborn defending


A lot of the hands we’ve witnessed Erik Seidel play today have been from the blinds and to be fair he’s had a lot of success . You’d expect a seven-time bracelet winner to be able to play well from any position though. Brett Richey has managed to shake the poker legend of the last time he defended from the big blind. Richey raised to 12,000 from the hijack and Seidel called to see the 4Diamond Suit2Diamond Suit6Spade Suit. Richet c-bet for 18,000 and Seidel called but check-folded to a 38,000 bet on the 7Spade Suit turn. Richey is up to 290,000 and Seidel drops a little to 320,000. — MC

8.05pm: Fernando Brito busted


Fernando Brito has just been busted by Jason Mercier with ace-queen to his king-queen. Nothing dramatic, entirely standard, and the Season 7 tournament leader board frontrunner is out. Mercier now pushing towards 800,000. — RD

pca_high roller_fernando brito.jpg

Fernando Brito has busted




8pm: Affleck into shoving mode


Matt Affleck’s stack is down to the point where he wants to get them in and he just did. Josh Arieh raised to 12,500 from the cut-off and Tyler Reiman called from the button before Affleck moved all-in for 130,00 from the small blind. Arieh tanked for a few minutes but folded and Reiman’s cards quickly followed into the muck. — MC

7.50pm: We’re off


Jason Mercier is the chip leader with a stack pushing 700,000. — RD

7.45pm: High Rollers are back in the house


Our High Roller field is filtering back into the tournament area ready to resume play. The plan is to play down to the final table or until 3am, whichever should come the soonest. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for the big stacks to cut a swathe through the field in the next couple of hours. This has nothing to do with the bar times here at the Atlantis Hotel and Casino. — RD

pca_high roller_final four tables.jpg

The final four tables of the PCA High Roller




PokerStars Blog reporting team in the Bahamas (in order of dinner break activity): Rick Dacey (shaved) and Marc Convey (slept) .



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 

2011 PCA $25K High Roller: Day 2, level 15 &amp; 16 updates (3,000-6,000, 500 ante)

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpg

9.48pm: Arieh and Armstrong out, down to 21


Josh Arieh and Jamie Armstrong have fallen and Matt Marafioti has been shifted over to table two to balance the tables. Break time. Join us in a new two level post in 15 minutes. — RD

9.40pm: Could’ve gone broke


Brandon Steven shouted: “Oh my god, I saved so much money,” after he and Max Lykov showed down on a 10Spade Suit7Spade Suit3Spade Suit3Club Suit2Diamond Suit board.

The hand started with a Lykov raise to 13,000 from first position and a Steven defend in the big blind. Steven checked in the dark and called a 16,000 c-bet from the Russian. Steven also check-called 34,000 bet on the turn and 82,500 bet on the river before proudly revealing 6Spade Suit4Spade Suit for a flopped flush. Lykov soon showed him the bad news as he had a bigger flush with QSpade Suit9Spade Suit to move up to 640,000 chips. Steven drops to 300,000 chips but could and maybe should have lost a lot more. — MC




pca_high roller_brandon steven.jpg

Brandon Steven loses big but doesn’t go bust




9.30pm: Three tables


We’ve been at three tables for a little while now and they look at bit like this from what I can see. — RD

Table one


1. Govert Metaal 


2. Rob Akery


3. Matt Marafioti


4. Tom Marchese


5. Shander de Vries


6. Will Reynolds


7. Tom Bedell


8. Moritz Kranich

Table two


1. Matt Affleck


2. David Baker


3. Ryan Julius (now busted)


4. Brandon Steven


5. Max Lykov, Team PokerStars Pro


6. Leo Fernandez, Team PokerStars Pro


7. Josh Arieh


8. Tyler Reiman

Table three


1. Brett Richey 


2. Jamie Armstrong


3. Jason Mercier, Team PokerStars Pro


4. Ravi Raghavan


5. Philipp Gruissem


6. Erik Seidel


7. Will Molson


8. Ryan Fair




9.22pm: Julius busted by Lykov with a sick river


Max Lykov is a ferocious player and sometimes that means he’s going to get it in a little light. Unfortunately for Ryan Julius that also means that when gets it in light he’s going to outdraw your monster from time to time.

Julius opened from the hijack to 13,500 and Lykov three-bet from the button to 28,500. Julius came back over the top for 58,500 and Lykov moved all-in. Julius couldn’t call fast enough putting his 220,000 stack across the line.

Julius: KHeart SuitKSpade Suit


Lykov: KSpade SuitQClub Suit

The flop didn’t look great for Lykov; JHeart Suit2Spade Suit3Heart Suit, but the turn brought the chance of a gutshot with the ASpade Suit. “Ten,” said Lykov calmly, not calling for it, not predicting its arrival, but actually summoning from the ether and putting it into the dealer’s hand. The 10Club Suit hit the river and Julius burst out of his seat and away from the tournament floor understandably a little distraught about the suckout. Lykov is on around 500,000. — RD

9.20pm: Better and better for Fair


Ryan Fair has eliminated Jamie Armstrong after a pre-flop all-in showdown. Armstrong raised from under-the-gun and quickly called all-in when Fair shoved from the big blind. Fair tabled ADiamond SuitJDiamond Suit which matched up badly against his opponent’s QDiamond SuitQSpade Suit. He needn’t have worried though as the board just got better and better for him as it came JClub Suit3Club Suit8Diamond SuitKDiamond SuitASpade Suit. The ace on the river was the nail in the coffin for Armstrong and he bolted from the tournament area. — MC

9.10pm; Lost in the jungle, man


Dan “jungleman12” Cates is out after a battle of the blinds with Team PokerStars Pro Leo Fernandez. Cates raised from the small blind and called all-in when Fernandez set him in from the big blind. They were off to the races as Cates held 7Diamond Suit7Heart Suit to Fernadez’s ADiamond SuitJClub Suit and the board ran KDiamond Suit5Spade SuitKHeart Suit6Heart SuitAClub Suit. Fernandez up to over 400,000 now. — MC

9pm: Reiman busts Alaei to claim the chip lead


Tyler Reiman has just busted Daniel Alaei to chip up to 750,000, just ahead of Jason Mercier. Reiman opened for 12,500 and Alaei jammed from the blinds for a little over 100,000. Reiman made the call.

Reiman: 8Club Suit8Heart Suit


Alaei: QClub SuitQSpade Suit

Great spot for Alaei to double up, right until Reiman hit a four flush on the 6Heart SuitKHeart Suit5Heart Suit3Spade Suit3Heart Suit river. “Sorry,” said the baby-faced Reiman as he raked in another pot. — RD




pca_high roller_daniel alaei.jpg

’I’ll get my coat’ – Daniel Alalei busts out of the High Roller




LEVEL UP: BLINDS 3,000-6,000, ANTE 500


8.55pm: Marafioti lets off some steam


Matthew Marafioti just lost his cool slightly with Norwegian Tom Bedell. Bedell raised to 12,000 from early position to face a Marafioti three-bet to 37,500. Bedell went into the tank and seemed of unsure what to do until Marafioti said something to him that made him call.

The flop came down 6Spade Suit2Diamond Suit2Heart Suit and Bedell asked his opponent “What should I do here?” Marafioti was silent to the question. Bedell then led for 24,000 and Marafioti folded.

It was now that Marafioti started to speak and he vented: “If you’re going to angle me like that, I’m going to call the clock on you every time. You tank every hand and now you lift you’re cards up so I can see the bottom one.”

“I didn’t show you a card” Bedell responded “Look, I have pocket nines (he flashed 9Club Suit9Spade Suit). Why would I show you a nine?”

Tom Marchese and Will Reynolds added their thoughts by asking Marafioti why he folded if he saw a nine. Marafioti did not respond. — MC


He’s owed a few


Matt Affleck’s post dinner roller-coaster ride continued with a double-up courtesy of Daniel Alaei. Alaei raised to 13,000 from early position and was called on the button by Tyler Reiman before Affleck shoved for 55,000 from the small blind. Alaei re-shoved to isolate and it worked as Reiman folded.

Affleck: JSpade SuitJHeart Suit


Alaei: 9Club Suit9Diamond Suit

The board ran 6Heart Suit3Spade SuitJClub SuitQClub Suit8Diamond Suit. It was a fortunate spot for Affleck to find jacks but as Will Reynolds just pointed out – he’s owed a few. If you’re not sure what we’re referring to cast your eyes over this article by Howard Swains from the WSOP main event last summer. — MC

8.30pm: Freddy Deeb busted


Freddy Deeb plays the game his way and with over $7 million in tournament winninsg it’s difficult to argue. Deeb lost all but 19,000 of his chips to Ravi Raghavan playing fast and loose with KClub Suit2Diamond Suit to KDiamond SuitJDiamond Suit post-flop. He got it in the next hand and managed to chop against a dominating hand, then stole the blinds uncontested.

The next hand he called a raise on his big blind from Jamie Armstrong and check folded the 5Diamond Suit9Club Suit3Diamond Suit flop leaving himself with 25,000. He was still alive when I left the table, by the time I was sat down writing this he was gone. — RD




pca_high roller_freddy deeb.jpg

Freddy Deeb wont be adding to his tournament winnings here




8.21pm: Another man down, Rajkumar walking


Vivek Rajkumar has quickly followed Fernando Brito on the rail. We’re not exactly sure how it happened but he fell to Brandon Stevens and his winning hand of pocket nines. Stevens is most famous for bubbling the WSOP main event final table last summer, finishing in 10th place. He is up to 485,000 now and is a long way towards not bubbling this event. — MC

8.14pm: Alaei cracks Affleck


Affleck had been in shoving mode and had managed to get himself up to 250,000 when he got it all-in against Daniel Alaei with pocket kings to pocket nines. Alaei had shoved back from from the big blind and flopped a nine on the 9Spade SuitJHeart Suit7Club Suit4Heart Suit7Heart Suit board to double through. Affleck, looking glum, is back down to around 100,000, Alaei is up over 200,000. — RD




pca_high roller_daniel alaei.jpg

Daniel Alaei, thankful of a nine




8.10pm: Stubborn defending


A lot of the hands we’ve witnessed Erik Seidel play today have been from the blinds and to be fair he’s had a lot of success . You’d expect a seven-time bracelet winner to be able to play well from any position though. Brett Richey has managed to shake the poker legend of the last time he defended from the big blind. Richey raised to 12,000 from the hijack and Seidel called to see the 4Diamond Suit2Diamond Suit6Spade Suit. Richet c-bet for 18,000 and Seidel called but check-folded to a 38,000 bet on the 7Spade Suit turn. Richey is up to 290,000 and Seidel drops a little to 320,000. — MC

8.05pm: Fernando Brito busted


Fernando Brito has just been busted by Jason Mercier with ace-queen to his king-queen. Nothing dramatic, entirely standard, and the Season 7 tournament leader board frontrunner is out. Mercier now pushing towards 800,000. — RD

pca_high roller_fernando brito.jpg

Fernando Brito has busted




8pm: Affleck into shoving mode


Matt Affleck’s stack is down to the point where he wants to get them in and he just did. Josh Arieh raised to 12,500 from the cut-off and Tyler Reiman called from the button before Affleck moved all-in for 130,00 from the small blind. Arieh tanked for a few minutes but folded and Reiman’s cards quickly followed into the muck. — MC

7.50pm: We’re off


Jason Mercier is the chip leader with a stack pushing 700,000. — RD

7.45pm: High Rollers are back in the house


Our High Roller field is filtering back into the tournament area ready to resume play. The plan is to play down to the final table or until 3am, whichever should come the soonest. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for the big stacks to cut a swathe through the field in the next couple of hours. This has nothing to do with the bar times here at the Atlantis Hotel and Casino. — RD

pca_high roller_final four tables.jpg

The final four tables of the PCA High Roller




PokerStars Blog reporting team in the Bahamas (in order of dinner break activity): Rick Dacey (shaved) and Marc Convey (slept) .



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 

2011 PCA Main Event: Day 6, level 29 updates (blinds 50,000-100,000, 10,000 ante)

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpg5.52pm: Palacios pushing


Max Weinberg made it 230,000 from the under the gun with 4Spade Suit4Heart Suit and it was folded around to Bolivar Palacios. He looked very interested and no wonder – he had QClub SuitQHeart Suit. He pushed all-in. It was another 1,785,000 to Weinberg, who folded. — SY

5:48pm: Oliver tries, gives up against Stein


Oliver came in for a raise to 220,000 with QDiamond Suit5Diamond Suit and go the call from Sam Stein’s 5Spade Suit5Club Suit and Galen Hall’s AClub Suit5Diamond Suit On a flop of 3Diamond Suit4Heart Suit[9h. Oliver led at the pot for 340,000, Stein called, and Hall got out of way. On the 10Club Suit turn, Oliver checked and opened the door for Stein to steal the pot with a bet. —BW

5.38pm: Good fold, Ionel


It’s been a bit cagey since the Plouffe exit. On this one, Ionel raised to 215,000 from under the gun with ASpade SuitJHeart Suit before Sam Stein re-raise all in ADiamond SuitKClub Suit. Ionel gave it a moment or two’s thought before tossing his cards into the muck. — SY

5:27pm: Plouffe river, eliminated in 8th for $202,000


Chris Oliver limped in with king-jack and was faced with a raise from Sam Stein. Then Philippe Plouffe shoved all-in. Oliver got out of the way, and Stein made the call.

Plouffe QSpade SuitQHeart Suit


Stein AClub SuitKHeart Suit

Plouffe looked good for the double-up…until the river. The board ran out 10Diamond Suit10Heart SuitJClub Suit4Diamond SuitADiamond Suit and Plouffe was gone in eighth for $202,000.—BW

5.15pm: Play starts


Play is under way, although we missed the first several hands because of technical difficulties in the media room that for once were not my fault. Anyway, we have a feed now and it appears all eight players are still in. Phew! — SY




4:06pm: Final table beginning (apparently)


The inside of the Imperial Ballroom looks different today. There is a giant wall blocking where the TV set used to be. We tried to walk in and were threatened by a man with a gun (no, not really, but it was close).

The final table is beginning behind that wall, but even we can’t see what’s going on in the sequestered area. Because it’s all being broadcast on ESPN3.com (starting at 5pm) and ESPN2 (simulcast starting at 10pm) with hole cards shown, the final table is playing out under the highest security. We begged and pleaded, but even we have been run off to the media room to watch this thing happen.

To maintain an historical record, we’ll report everything we see here. However, we don’t blame you if you watch on ESPN or PokerStars.tv.

While we wait for the broadcast to begin, here’s a look at the big fireworks display we all watched and fondly remember (sort of) at the PokerStars party last night.

pca_fireworks.jpg

Fireworks before the final table

PokerStars Blog final table reporting team in the Bahamas (in order mental acuity): Simon Young (1%) and Brad Willis (.5%)



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 

2011 PCA $25K High Roller: Day 2, level 13 updates (1,500-3,000, 300 ante)

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpg4.50pm: Reiman clear at the top


We don’t have the hand details but Tyler Reiman has just eliminated Masa Kagawa to move clear at the top of the field with 550,000 chips. — MC

4.42pm: Busted flush draws


Dan Heimiller would’ve been a happy man if his flush draw came in versus Tom Bedell but it didn’t and he’s dropped to 90,000 in chips. Bedell raised from the hijack and Heimiller defended from the big blind to see the 9Heart Suit8Club SuitKClub Suit flop. Bedell c-bet for 8,000 and Heimiller check-raised to 22,000. Bedell tanked for two minutes and called. The turn came AHeart Suit and Bedell bet 28,500 when checked to him. Heimiller called before both checked the 4Diamond Suit river. Heimiller claimed to have missed his flush draw and so had Bedell but he had a pair with his JClub Suit9Club Suit and that was enough to claim the pot. — MC

4.32pm: Players are returning to their seats


Play is due to restart in two minutes. We’re down to the final 45 players, around a third of the starting field. Only a third of those remaining will make the money with 16th place paying out $55,490 and a massive $1,072,890 for first. — RD

PCA 2011_25K High Roller_Day 2_Joe Giron_JGP0823.jpg

Team PokerStars Pro Nacho Barbero rails Max Lykov on a break from World Cup duty




PokerStars Blog reporting team in the Bahamas (in order of sandwich consumption): Marc Convey (a finely balanced BLT) and Rick Dacey (a melted cheese monstrosity).



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 

2011 PCA $25K High Roller: Day 2, level 13 &amp; 14 updates (2,000-3,000, 400 ante)

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpg6.35pm: Dinner break


The remaining 29 players are now all on a 75 minute dinner break.

6.34pm: Seidel moving up the gears


Erik Seidel is touching the 300,000 mark after moving his aggression up a notch or two. Firstly, he was sat in the big blind and facing an early position raise to 10,000 from overnight chip leader, Ryan Fair. Seidel three-bet to 28,000 only for Fair to four-bet to 45,700. Seidel was having none of it though and put in a decisive five-bet to 103,000. Fair slid his cards into the muck.

The very next hand Seidel was in the small blind and three-bet to 25,000 after the button opened with a min raise to 8,000. This raise was good enough to take that pot down too. — MC

6.29pm: Sneaky Seidel picks up a small one


Erik Seidel just won a small pot from Jason Mercier after opening his range wide and trying to hit a hidden monster. Mecier opened for 8,000 from middle position and Seidel called in the cut-off. Mercier fired 8,300 at the flop and Seidel made the call. Neither player put any further chips in on the 7Club Suit turn or the QHeart Suit river.

Seidel’s 5Diamond Suit2Diamond Suit took the pot. — RD

6.23pm: Pot control by Arieh


Josh Arieh is up to 250,000 after winning a pot against Team PokerStars Pro Max Lykov. Arieh raised from under-the-gun and was called by both players in the blinds. The flop came 2Heart SuitQHeart Suit9Club Suit and Arieh c-bet for 17,800. He only found a caller in Lykov from the small blind. The turn came 7Diamond Suit and both players checked to the 7Spade Suit river. Lykov led for 23,000 and Areih called with KHeart SuitQClub Suit, which was good against Lykov’s 10Diamond Suit10Spade Suit. The Russian drops a little to 260,000 chips. — MC

6.20pm: Pre-break snapshot


Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier is the current chip leader with 680,000. Vanessa Rousso and John Racener have zero chips now (if you’re new to poker that means they’re out…). — RD




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Team PokerStars Pro Vanessa Rousso is out




6.10pm: Heimiller bust


Dan Heimiller is out. The cards were being swept away by the dealer but it looked as though Heimiller was very short and shoved from the button with pocket nines. Erik Seidel was in the big blind and made the call with queen-ten and hit a ten on the turn. – MC

6pm: Akery knocks out Jaka


Faraz Jaka likes a gamble it seems. These last few days we’ve seen his chip stacks swing all over the place. He was on over 300,000 a short while ago but now, after taking a 200,000 plus flip against Brit Rob Akery, he is out. Akery raised from the small blind to 8,000 and Jaka three-bet to 27,000 from the big. Akery moved a large stack of blue 5,000 chips across the line to put Jaka all-in. He obliged.

Jaka: AHeart SuitJDiamond Suit


Akery: 8Club Suit8Heart Suit

The board turned a gusthot draw for Jaka but he failed to connect and Akery raked in the chips. He’s up to 330,000 now. “Wow,” mouthed Akery as Jaka walked away. — RD

5.45pm: Sunar busts to Molson


Surindar Sunar is out after Will Molson rivered a flush on him. Sunar had let his stack get very short when he called a Molson under-the-gun min raise whilst sat in the small blind. The flop came AHeart SuitKDiamond Suit4Heart Suit and Sunar checked to face a bet that was enough to put him all-in. He had 18,500 left and thought for a good few minutes before calling with KClub SuitQHeart Suit. Molson turned over the flush drawing 10Heart Suit9Heart Suit and the board ran out AClub Suit5Heart Suit. “Unlucky and good call”, said Molson before Sunar made his exit. — MC




pca_high roller_surinder sunar.jpg

Surinder Sunar won’t be adding to his lengthy list of live cashes




LEVEL UP: BLINDS 2,000-4,000, ANTE 400


5.32pm: Mercier monster the end for Maceiras


Jason Mercier has joined Tom Marchese as a monster 500,000 stack after dumping out fellow Team PokerStars Pro Juan Maceiras.

The Spaniard had started the hand with around 200,000 and had opened for 8,000 under-the-gun. Mercier three-bet to 19,000 and Maceiras tested the water out with a four-bet to around 40,000 (it may have been 45,000). Mercier clicked it back and Maceiras moved all-in for the remainder of his stack. Mercier made the call fearing the worst. As it turned out his QHeart SuitQSpade Suit was crushing Maceiras’ pocket sevens. No help on the flop and Mercier raked in a 400,000 pot to take him up to half-a-million. Just a few seats to his right – past Eric Seidel and short stack Surinder Sunar – is Tom Marchese who has a similar amount of chips. That could get very messy. — RD




pca_high roller_jason mercier.jpg

Mercier feeling at home with his usual monster stack




5.28pm: Jaka takes another scalp


Faraz Jaka has taken out another player to move to over 300,000 chips. He opened to 6,500 from the hijack before Max Lykov three-bet to 16,000 from the cut-off and Tony Gregg four-bet to 38,300 from the button. Jaka sat there for a while before five-betting to 106,000. This prompted a quick fold from Lykov but a quick all-in from Gregg for less than 150,000. Jaka made the call to create a showdown.

Jaka: ADiamond SuitQHeart Suit


Gregg: 9Heart Suit9Club Suit

The board ran JSpade Suit2Spade SuitQDiamond Suit7Spade Suit3Heart Suit to pair Jaka’s queen and eliminate Gregg. — MC

5.15pm: Because Fernandez Khan


Team PokerStars Pro Leo Fernandez is up to around 460,000 chips after winning a monster pot and eliminating Hafiz Khan. There was an early position raise to 10,000 that Freddy Deeb three-bet to 42,000 from the hijack before Fernandez moved all-in for 210,900 from the small blind. Khan was in the big blind and his eyes opened wide when he looked at his cards. He too moved all-in. The original raiser folded and Deeb open folded ace-queen.

Fernandez: KHeart SuitKSpade Suit


Khan: QDiamond SuitQClub Suit

The board ran JClub SuitAHeart Suit2Diamond Suit9Spade Suit7Heart Suit to end the tournament for Khan. — MC




pca_high roller_leo fernandez.jpg

Kings good for Leo Fernandez




5.10pm: Metaal rocks on


This is a six-bet shove that Kyle Julius will be thinking about for some time. Was it the best idea to make that final move into Govert Metaal, who had perhaps been playing a little tighter than most?

Julius had opened the pot from early position and Metaal had three-bet to 15,000. Julius opted for a four-bet to 27,400 and his Dutch opponent waited but a short while before coming back over the top for just over 50,000 total.




pca_high roller_kyle julius.jpg

Kyle Julius




“How much you got back?” asked Julius, craning his neck to get a proper look at Metaal’s stash. He had around 100,000. Julius moved in and Metaal was only too happy to make the call with AHeart SuitADiamond Suit leaving the American drawing thin and a little frustrated with ASpade SuitQDiamond Suit. The board ran out JClub Suit4Diamond SuitAClub Suit9Diamond Suit9Heart Suit for Metaal to rake in a monster 300,000 pot. Julius had him covered but was left short.




pca_high roller_givert metaal.jpg

Govert Metaal’s five-bet induced the shove




One player that obviously didn’t like the move was Phillip Gruissem who looked up at myself and my German colleague, smiled and shook his head. — RD

* Kyle Julius is now out.

5pm: Lodden lost


Team PokerStars Pro Johnny Lodden is out. He got the last of his chips in with deuces but failed to overcome Faraz Jaka and his pocket sixes. — MC

4.50pm: Reiman clear at the top


We don’t have the hand details but Tyler Reiman has just eliminated Masa Kagawa to move clear at the top of the field with 550,000 chips. — MC

4.42pm: Busted flush draws


Dan Heimiller would’ve been a happy man if his flush draw came in versus Tom Bedell but it didn’t and he’s dropped to 90,000 in chips. Bedell raised from the hijack and Heimiller defended from the big blind to see the 9Heart Suit8Club SuitKClub Suit flop. Bedell c-bet for 8,000 and Heimiller check-raised to 22,000. Bedell tanked for two minutes and called. The turn came AHeart Suit and Bedell bet 28,500 when checked to him. Heimiller called before both checked the 4Diamond Suit river. Heimiller claimed to have missed his flush draw and so had Bedell but he had a pair with his JClub Suit9Club Suit and that was enough to claim the pot. — MC

4.32pm: Players are returning to their seats


Play is due to restart in two minutes. We’re down to the final 45 players, around a third of the starting field. Only a third of those remaining will make the money with 16th place paying out $55,490 and a massive $1,072,890 for first. — RD

PCA 2011_25K High Roller_Day 2_Joe Giron_JGP0823.jpg

Team PokerStars Pro Nacho Barbero rails Max Lykov on a break from World Cup duty




PokerStars Blog reporting team in the Bahamas (in order of sandwich consumption): Marc Convey (a finely balanced BLT) and Rick Dacey (a melted cheese monstrosity).



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 

2011 PCA $25K High Roller: Day 2, level 13 &amp; 14 updates (2,000-4,000, 400 ante)

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpg6.35pm: Dinner break


The remaining 29 players are now all on a 75 minute dinner break.

6.34pm: Seidel moving up the gears


Erik Seidel is touching the 300,000 mark after moving his aggression up a notch or two. Firstly, he was sat in the big blind and facing an early position raise to 10,000 from overnight chip leader, Ryan Fair. Seidel three-bet to 28,000 only for Fair to four-bet to 45,700. Seidel was having none of it though and put in a decisive five-bet to 103,000. Fair slid his cards into the muck.

The very next hand Seidel was in the small blind and three-bet to 25,000 after the button opened with a min raise to 8,000. This raise was good enough to take that pot down too. — MC

6.29pm: Sneaky Seidel picks up a small one


Erik Seidel just won a small pot from Jason Mercier after opening his range wide and trying to hit a hidden monster. Mecier opened for 8,000 from middle position and Seidel called in the cut-off. Mercier fired 8,300 at the flop and Seidel made the call. Neither player put any further chips in on the 7Club Suit turn or the QHeart Suit river.

Seidel’s 5Diamond Suit2Diamond Suit took the pot. — RD

6.23pm: Pot control by Arieh


Josh Arieh is up to 250,000 after winning a pot against Team PokerStars Pro Max Lykov. Arieh raised from under-the-gun and was called by both players in the blinds. The flop came 2Heart SuitQHeart Suit9Club Suit and Arieh c-bet for 17,800. He only found a caller in Lykov from the small blind. The turn came 7Diamond Suit and both players checked to the 7Spade Suit river. Lykov led for 23,000 and Areih called with KHeart SuitQClub Suit, which was good against Lykov’s 10Diamond Suit10Spade Suit. The Russian drops a little to 260,000 chips. — MC

6.20pm: Pre-break snapshot


Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier is the current chip leader with 680,000. Vanessa Rousso and John Racener have zero chips now (if you’re new to poker that means they’re out…). — RD




pca_high roller_vanessa rousso.jpg

Team PokerStars Pro Vanessa Rousso is out




6.10pm: Heimiller bust


Dan Heimiller is out. The cards were being swept away by the dealer but it looked as though Heimiller was very short and shoved from the button with pocket nines. Erik Seidel was in the big blind and made the call with queen-ten and hit a ten on the turn. – MC

6pm: Akery knocks out Jaka


Faraz Jaka likes a gamble it seems. These last few days we’ve seen his chip stacks swing all over the place. He was on over 300,000 a short while ago but now, after taking a 200,000 plus flip against Brit Rob Akery, he is out. Akery raised from the small blind to 8,000 and Jaka three-bet to 27,000 from the big. Akery moved a large stack of blue 5,000 chips across the line to put Jaka all-in. He obliged.

Jaka: AHeart SuitJDiamond Suit


Akery: 8Club Suit8Heart Suit

The board turned a gusthot draw for Jaka but he failed to connect and Akery raked in the chips. He’s up to 330,000 now. “Wow,” mouthed Akery as Jaka walked away. — RD

5.45pm: Sunar busts to Molson


Surindar Sunar is out after Will Molson rivered a flush on him. Sunar had let his stack get very short when he called a Molson under-the-gun min raise whilst sat in the small blind. The flop came AHeart SuitKDiamond Suit4Heart Suit and Sunar checked to face a bet that was enough to put him all-in. He had 18,500 left and thought for a good few minutes before calling with KClub SuitQHeart Suit. Molson turned over the flush drawing 10Heart Suit9Heart Suit and the board ran out AClub Suit5Heart Suit. “Unlucky and good call”, said Molson before Sunar made his exit. — MC




pca_high roller_surinder sunar.jpg

Surinder Sunar won’t be adding to his lengthy list of live cashes




LEVEL UP: BLINDS 2,000-4,000, ANTE 400


5.32pm: Mercier monster the end for Maceiras


Jason Mercier has joined Tom Marchese as a monster 500,000 stack after dumping out fellow Team PokerStars Pro Juan Maceiras.

The Spaniard had started the hand with around 200,000 and had opened for 8,000 under-the-gun. Mercier three-bet to 19,000 and Maceiras tested the water out with a four-bet to around 40,000 (it may have been 45,000). Mercier clicked it back and Maceiras moved all-in for the remainder of his stack. Mercier made the call fearing the worst. As it turned out his QHeart SuitQSpade Suit was crushing Maceiras’ pocket sevens. No help on the flop and Mercier raked in a 400,000 pot to take him up to half-a-million. Just a few seats to his right – past Eric Seidel and short stack Surinder Sunar – is Tom Marchese who has a similar amount of chips. That could get very messy. — RD




pca_high roller_jason mercier.jpg

Mercier feeling at home with his usual monster stack




5.28pm: Jaka takes another scalp


Faraz Jaka has taken out another player to move to over 300,000 chips. He opened to 6,500 from the hijack before Max Lykov three-bet to 16,000 from the cut-off and Tony Gregg four-bet to 38,300 from the button. Jaka sat there for a while before five-betting to 106,000. This prompted a quick fold from Lykov but a quick all-in from Gregg for less than 150,000. Jaka made the call to create a showdown.

Jaka: ADiamond SuitQHeart Suit


Gregg: 9Heart Suit9Club Suit

The board ran JSpade Suit2Spade SuitQDiamond Suit7Spade Suit3Heart Suit to pair Jaka’s queen and eliminate Gregg. — MC

5.15pm: Because Fernandez Khan


Team PokerStars Pro Leo Fernandez is up to around 460,000 chips after winning a monster pot and eliminating Hafiz Khan. There was an early position raise to 10,000 that Freddy Deeb three-bet to 42,000 from the hijack before Fernandez moved all-in for 210,900 from the small blind. Khan was in the big blind and his eyes opened wide when he looked at his cards. He too moved all-in. The original raiser folded and Deeb open folded ace-queen.

Fernandez: KHeart SuitKSpade Suit


Khan: QDiamond SuitQClub Suit

The board ran JClub SuitAHeart Suit2Diamond Suit9Spade Suit7Heart Suit to end the tournament for Khan. — MC




pca_high roller_leo fernandez.jpg

Kings good for Leo Fernandez




5.10pm: Metaal rocks on


This is a six-bet shove that Kyle Julius will be thinking about for some time. Was it the best idea to make that final move into Govert Metaal, who had perhaps been playing a little tighter than most?

Julius had opened the pot from early position and Metaal had three-bet to 15,000. Julius opted for a four-bet to 27,400 and his Dutch opponent waited but a short while before coming back over the top for just over 50,000 total.




pca_high roller_kyle julius.jpg

Kyle Julius




“How much you got back?” asked Julius, craning his neck to get a proper look at Metaal’s stash. He had around 100,000. Julius moved in and Metaal was only too happy to make the call with AHeart SuitADiamond Suit leaving the American drawing thin and a little frustrated with ASpade SuitQDiamond Suit. The board ran out JClub Suit4Diamond SuitAClub Suit9Diamond Suit9Heart Suit for Metaal to rake in a monster 300,000 pot. Julius had him covered but was left short.




pca_high roller_givert metaal.jpg

Govert Metaal’s five-bet induced the shove




One player that obviously didn’t like the move was Phillip Gruissem who looked up at myself and my German colleague, smiled and shook his head. — RD

* Kyle Julius is now out.

5pm: Lodden lost


Team PokerStars Pro Johnny Lodden is out. He got the last of his chips in with deuces but failed to overcome Faraz Jaka and his pocket sixes. — MC

4.50pm: Reiman clear at the top


We don’t have the hand details but Tyler Reiman has just eliminated Masa Kagawa to move clear at the top of the field with 550,000 chips. — MC

4.42pm: Busted flush draws


Dan Heimiller would’ve been a happy man if his flush draw came in versus Tom Bedell but it didn’t and he’s dropped to 90,000 in chips. Bedell raised from the hijack and Heimiller defended from the big blind to see the 9Heart Suit8Club SuitKClub Suit flop. Bedell c-bet for 8,000 and Heimiller check-raised to 22,000. Bedell tanked for two minutes and called. The turn came AHeart Suit and Bedell bet 28,500 when checked to him. Heimiller called before both checked the 4Diamond Suit river. Heimiller claimed to have missed his flush draw and so had Bedell but he had a pair with his JClub Suit9Club Suit and that was enough to claim the pot. — MC

4.32pm: Players are returning to their seats


Play is due to restart in two minutes. We’re down to the final 45 players, around a third of the starting field. Only a third of those remaining will make the money with 16th place paying out $55,490 and a massive $1,072,890 for first. — RD

PCA 2011_25K High Roller_Day 2_Joe Giron_JGP0823.jpg

Team PokerStars Pro Nacho Barbero rails Max Lykov on a break from World Cup duty




PokerStars Blog reporting team in the Bahamas (in order of sandwich consumption): Marc Convey (a finely balanced BLT) and Rick Dacey (a melted cheese monstrosity).



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 

2011 PCA Main Event: Final table player profiles

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpgAlthough the Main Event final table has already started, we won’t be seeing it until 5pm. In case you still did not know, this event is being televised by ESPN with cards UP, with an hour delay. It will be on ESPN3 at 5, then later this evening on ESPN2.

Here’s how they line up at the final table:




Seat 1: Mike “Sowerss” Sowers, 24, Thomasville, North Carolina – PokerStars player – 3,685,000


It’s been about seven years since Mike Sowers’ interest in poker was sparked by the movie ‘Rounders’. Sowers spent the next two years studying psychology and business at the University of North Carolina Charlotte, but he eventually abandoned that venture to focus solely on poker. It would be hard to question that decision now. Sowers has already racked up more than $2.5 million dollars in online winnings, and has spent the last four years steadily building a reputation as one of the most successful and feared tournament players in the online realm. Sowers’ biggest score came in September 2009 when he took down the PokerStars’ WCOOP $10,000 High Roller event for $448,500. Sowers has also cashed more than $1.5 million in live tournaments – including five WSOP cashes and two WSOP final tables in the last three years. In January 2008, he won the Borgata Winter Open for $399,000. About a year later, he finished third at the LA Poker Classic for $654,797. So far he’s made more money online than live but he is already guaranteed $200,000 so far, and a third place or better finish will push his live earnings ahead of his online earnings to date.

Seat 2: Max “$Kill Game” Weinberg, 20, Chicago, Illinois – 3,350,000


Weinberg was studying psychology at Arizona State university when he dropped out after one semester to start playing full time. Online he favors heads-up Sit and Goes in the $500 to $5,000 range and reckons he is up some $300,000 to date. He came to the PCA with his friend Gabe Paul who qualified online on PokerStars in a SuperNovas’ freeroll. He said: “I’ve always looked forward to playing the World Series and I turn 21 in April so this is kind of a warm-up. I’ve had some luck to make it this far.. in the first few hours of Day 1, I had pocket 7s and was all in with a 789 flop against Aces. I hit a 5 on the river for a straight.”

Seat 3: Chris “ImDaNuts” Oliver, 21, Holiday, Florida, USA – 19,670,000


Chris, who goes into the PCA final with 42% of the chips in play, is one of the highest-ranked online players in the world with $500,000 profit to his name last year. He plays online tournaments from $5 buy-ins up, but now wants to concentrate more on live events. His biggest live cash to date was a round $5,000 at a WSOP event. He’s already guaranteed $202,000 here, and with a huge chip lead going in to the final table he expects to make much more than that. If he takes the $2.3million top prize he intends to buy a house. Chris dropped out of high school to play poker, a decision that his parents were not too happy about. But now they are pleased with his decision and have been following his progress in this event on the PokerStars Blog.

Seat 4: Bolivar “Ramux” Palacios, 27, Santiago de Veraguas, Panama – PokerStars player – 2,445,000


The name Bolivar Palacios may sound familiar if you’ve been following the Latin American Poker Tour. Palacios has made three LAPT final tables to date – his best finish being LAPT Rosario in Argentina, where he came in second for $188,280. He is now guaranteed to beat this figure at the PCA. Palacios, known as ‘Ramux’ online, was an industrial engineer for five months until he received a check for $300 and deposited it online. Since that deposit, he has cashed for $350,000 in lifetime winnings online. Palacios will be the only Latin American at the table and is a member of the “Rat Pack of Panama” – a group which includes Jose Severino, Victor Lemos and Jose Miguel de la Guardia. Palacios’ reported ambition is “to become a millionaire” – a goal he will definitely achieve with a fourth-or-better finish here at the PCA.

Seat 5: Sam Stein, 23, Henderson, Nevada – PokerStars qualifier – 5,855,000


Sam is a professional poker player who came up through the online ranks and began trying his luck in the brick and mortar world as soon as he turned 21. Since then, he’s managed to collect more than $1.1 million in career tournament earnings. His biggest cash was when he was runner-up to Tom Marchese at the first NAPT event at the Venetian last February for $522,306. This followed another big cash at last year’s PCA where he was runner-up in a $5,000 buy-in NLHE side event for $168,390. At last summer’s WSOP, he bubbled the final table in the $ 10,000 Pot Limit Hold’em Championship, coming tenth for $44,000. Stein grew up in Los Angeles, but currently resides in Henderson, Nevada – just outside Las Vegas. He won his seat to the PCA on Boxing Day in a $2,100 qualifier.

Seat 6: Anton Ionel, 43, Bucharest, Romania – PokerStars qualifier – 3,530,000


Ionel is a businessman from Bucharest. The 43-year-old has been playing poker for ten years, having started to play live in casinos in Romania. Ionel has played several European Poker Tour events before, playing the Grand Final in Monte Carlo, as well as cashing at EPT Budapest in 2008. This, however, is his first PCA which not surprisingly he has described as an “amazing experience”. It will also be his biggest career win, topping his previous best result in Timisoara, Romania. His progress in the Main Event is being watched by his 16-year-old-daughter who is following the action online from back home.

Seat 7: Philippe Plouffe, 31, Lachenaie Quebec, Canada – PokerStars qualifier – 1,555,000


Plouffe, who runs a café in Lachenaie, Quebec, has been playing poker for ten years now – and at a serious level for the last seven years. He started playing with friends and now plays around 60 hours a week. He’s engaged to be married and has a three-year-old son. Philippe prefers to play live rather than online and, although he plays cash games regularly, he prefers tournaments and intends to play more if he thrives at the final table. His favourite players are Phil Ivey and Patrik Antonius.

Seat 8: Galen ‘GasparLeMarc’ Hall, 24 San Francisco – 6,435,000


Hall has been a professional poker player for over a year but he started playing poker in high school about ten years ago. Initially he played Limit Hold’Em but switched to Heads-Up Sit&Gos early on. Nowadays he is an all-round player and also plays PLO/PLO8 and – of course – NLHE. Hall is ranked in the top 50 on the Pocket Fives-ranking and last year he cashed for about $1 million (around $200,000 profit). Even so, the PCA payout is huge for Hall and this is by far his best result. He said he hadn’t even looked at the payouts yet because “the most important thing is to just win it.” If he wins the PCA Main Event, he plans to put the money towards going to Stanford University in 2012. In his spare time, Hall is involved in the start-up venture Identify.com and his ultimate goal is to start a business of his own.

Here’s a video ahead of the final table…



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 

2011 PCA Main Event: Day 6, level 29, 30 &amp; 31 updates (blinds 80,000-160,000, 20,000 ante)

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpg10.50pm: Stein picks on Hall


Sam Stein raised it up with KDiamond Suit[10h] and Galen Hall re-raised with A-2. Stein must have got a decent read as he moved all-in, forcing Hall to fold his weak ace. — SY

10:45pm: Hall picks on Oliver


Chris Oliver came in for a raise to 475,000 from JDiamond Suit10Diamond Suit and Hall defended in the big blind with 8Club Suit6c]. Both players checked to the ADiamond Suit on the turn. Hall went after the pot with a 450,000 bet. Oliver, with no pair and no draw, raised to 1.1 million. Then Hall hit his flush with the 9Club Suit on the river. Hall checked to Oliver who bet 950,000. Hall raised to 2.7 million and Oliver turbo-mucked. —BW

10.30pm: Mike Sowers eliminated in 5th place for $700,000


Wow! Mike Sowers is out after falling in a huge hand to Chris Oliver. Sowers had raised with 4Club Suit4Diamond Suit only for Oliver to re-raise to 775,000 with 8Spade Suit2Heart Suit. He’d been three-betting super light a lot, and Sowers made the call. The flop was 3Diamond Suit8Heart Suit2Spade Suit, giviving Oliver two pair. Oliver bet 1.3million and out of nowhere Sowers moved all-in for around 5.5million. Oliver called instantly. The KClub Suit turn and 7Club Suit river changed nothing.

Sowers left with $700,000, while the remaining four players are now guaranteed at least $1 million! — SY

mike_sowers_pcaft_bust.JPG

Mike Sowers gets the bad news

10:19pm: Oliver remains frisky


Mike Sowers came in for a raise to QDiamond SuitJSpade Suit and Chris Oliver out of the small blind with 3Club Suit[2h. Sam Stein surprised them both calling in the blind with KClub Suit10Club Suit. On a flop of QSpade Suit4Club Suit6Heart Suit, Oliver led for 1.15 million and got calls in both spots. On the 3Spade Suit turn, thi time everybody checked. The 5Club Suit came on the river, giving Oliver the straight. He came out betting again, this time for 1,875,000. Stein got out of the way almost immediately but Sowers thought for a good long while. Finally, Sowers folded. With that pot, Oliver moved up to 22,415,000, around half the chips in play. —BW

10.05pm: We’re back (for real)


No mistake this time, the five remaining players are back at the table, and Chris Oliver has taken the first pot raising with 10-3 offsuit and betting at the missed flop. — SY

9.35pm: No, we’re not back


Sorry, folks,. The TV is showing a replay of some of the earlier action. We thought the first hand looked familiar! As you were. — SY

9.32pm: We’re back


Bellies full, thirst quenched, we’re back for the PCA Main Event final table. Five players remain. — SY

8.30pm: Dinner break


That’s it for now. We’re on a dinner break. Here are the chips which some will digest better than others: — SY

Chris Oliver, 16,800,000


Galen Hall, 10,200,000


Mike Sowers, 8,595,500


Sam Stein, 7,585,000


Anton Ionel, 2,445,000

8.25pm: Hall bests Oliver


Galen Hall has become far more active of late, and he and Chris Oliver saw a 7Heart Suit4Spade SuitJHeart Suit flop. Hall, with KHeart Suit7Diamond Suit bet 275,000 and Oliver called with 9Heart Suit8Club Suit. The turn was 4Club Suit and Hall bet again, 325,000 this time, and that was enough to force a fold. — SY

galen_hall_pcaft.JPG

Galen Hall

8.14pm: Oliver takes some back


Galen Hall raised with KHeart Suit3Club Suit and Chris Oliver called with QSpade SuitJSpade Suit. The flop was QHeart Suit6Diamond SuitAClub Suit and Hall bet 275,000. Oliver called. The turn was QClub Suit and Oliver checked his trips for Hall to check behind. On the 2Diamond Suit river Oliver bet 260,000 only for Hall to raise to 740,000 with air. Oliver called quickly to take the pot. — SY

8:09pm: Chris Oliver has a real hand, but Stein’s is real-er


Chris Oliver came in for a raise to AHeart SuitJHeart Suit. For him, that’s a monster. The problem was Stein had KClub SuitKSpade Suit and made it 860,000 more. Oliver made the call and they saw a 8Diamond Suit6Club Suit7Club Suit. Oliver checked, Stein led at it, and Oliver uncharacteristically gave up. —BW

7.58pm: Bolivar Palacios eliminated in 6th place for $450,000


Galen Hall raised with ADiamond Suit4Spade Suit and Bolivar Palacios from Panama shoved with KDiamond SuitJDiamond Suit for 1.7million. Call. The flop was 8Heart Suit9Heart Suit4Club Suit and Palacios’s fans on the rail were on their feet. The turn was QClub Suit opening up a gutshot draw for Palacios, but the river was 3Diamond Suit and he busted in sixth for $450,000. — SY

boliver_palacios_pcaft.JPG

Bolivar Palacios

7:53pm: Three pairs, three raises, no flop


Anton Ionel came in for a raise to 380,000 with 5Heart Suit5Club Suit. Galen Hall re-raised to 930,000 with 9Spade Suit9Club Suit. Not to be outdone, Sowers woke up in the big blind with JHeart SuitJClub Suit, good enough for a re-raise to two million. Ionel and Hall both got out of the way and Sowers put up another 1.5 million in his stack. —BW

7.46pm: Trucks ‘n stuff


While we’re delighted you are taking the trouble to read our written words, you may like to know this is available to watch live now (with an hour delay) on ESPN3 on the intertubes, and later on ESPN2 on TV.

All that means some pretty impressive tech work is going on behind the scenes. We won’t pretend to understand what any of it does, but here’s a truck with a big dish on top. It probably beams pictures. Somewhere. — SY

big_truck.JPG

No idea what this truck does

7.42pm: Palacios shoves…


… and picks up the blinds and antes with pocket queens. — SY

7.40pm: Playing again


Players are back at the table and blinds are now 80,000-160,000 with a 20,000 ante. — SY

7.30pm: Chips


We’d hate for you to be bored during the break, so here are the current chip counts. — SY

Chris Oliver, 18,835,000


Galen Hall, 9,195,000


Mike Sowers, 7,730,000


Sam Stein, 5,170,000


Anton Ionel, 3,965,000


Bolivar Palacios, 1,615,000

7:19pm: Break time


The final table players have taken a break. They’ll be back soon, as will we.

Here’s our chip leader Chris Oliver.

chris_oliver_pca_mainft.JPG

Chris Oliver

7:11pm: Hall gets a small one


Hall came in for a raise to 270,000 and got calls dorm Mike Sowers’ KDiamond SuitJDiamond Suit and Anton Ionel’s AHeart SuitQDiamond Suit. Hall checked, Sowers bet 525. Ionel got out of the way, but Hall called with his 5Club Suit5Spade Suit. On the ASpade Suit turn, both players checked. THe river was the 2Diamond Suit. Both players checked and Hall picked up the pot. —BW

6.58pm: Double up for Ionel


Anton Ionel doubled up in unconventional fashion (according to commentator Daniel Negreanu). He flat called with 7Spade Suit7Heart Suit and was called by Galen Hall with 86Club Suit before Mike Sowers re-raised to 450,000 with ASpade SuitKClub Suit. Ionel called and then it kicked off on the 5Spade Suit3Diamond Suit3Spade Suit flop, with Ionel moving all-in for 2.3million total, and Sowers making the call. The turn was QHeart Suit and river QSpade Suit to send the chips to the man from Romania.

He then spoke in his native language to pals on the rail, which Negreanu kindly translated for the viewers. — SY

6:52pm: Sowers tests the deuces never loses axiom


Mike Sowers came in for a raise with deuces, and Stein re-raised him with QHeart SuitJClub Suit. That made the flop, QSpade Suit2Heart Suit5Heart Suit, pretty fun.

Sowers checked, Stein bet 450,000, Sowers made it 960,000 more. Stein made the call to see the AClub Suit turn. Sowers pushed 1.7 million into the middle, which was apparently too much for Stein to handle.

Sowers moved up to more than ten million in chips. —BW

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Mike Sowers

6.42pm: Sowers’ pot


Mike Sowers raised with ASpade Suit[10c] and Chris Oliver called with 6Spade Suit6Diamond Suit. The flop was [10d]9Heart Suit4Diamond Suit and Sowers’ continuation bet got through even before his chips had crossed the line. — SY

6.36pm: Max Weinberg eliminated in 7th place for $300,000


Weinberg, left short by the hand below, was always going to push all-in at the first opportunity, and that happened on the very next hand. Galen Hall had bet 240,000 with JDiamond Suit[10c] and Weinberg moved all-in for 760,000 with AClub Suit8Spade Suit. Hall called. The 9Club Suit[10d]KDiamond Suit flop sent Hall into the lead, and the QClub Suit turn improved him to a straight. The KClub Suit river sealed the deal and sent Weinberg to the rail.

We’re already down to six players. — SY

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Max Weinberg

6.34pm: Blinds up


We’ve moved into level 30 and blinds are now 60,000-120,000 with a 15,000 ante. — SY

6:33pm: Wild hand from beginning to end


Well, this is why it’s fun to watch this thing on TV with hole cards revealed.

Chris Oliver came in for a raise with AHeart Suit2Club Suit. Stein, who has been wanting to play a lot of pots with Oliver, made the call, Gallen Hall picked up on it and put in a re-raise bluff with king-deuce. Sowers wasn’t buying it from Hall either and pushed all-in with ASpade SuitJClub Suit. That looked like a good plan until Max Weinberg woke up with QHeart SuitQDiamond Suit. The bad thing for Weinberg was the board ended with four spades: 2Heart Suit6Spade Suit7Spade Suit 5Spade SuitJSpade Suit and Sowers took down the big pot. Weinberg, meanwhile, is crippled and below one million. —BW

6.30pm: Queens no good


Chris Oliver raised with KClub Suit9Club Suit and Sam Stein called with QDiamond SuitQClub Suit. Both checked the 8Diamond Suit7Diamond SuitKHeart Suit flop, then Oliver bet 130,000 when the AClub Suit hit the turn. The river was 7Club Suit and both checked. Oliver’s paired king was good. — SY

6:25pm: Today is not yesterday for Ionel


It was 255,000 from Galen Hall with AHeart SuitKHeart Suit. Anton Ionel called out of the big blind with JDiamond Suit10Diamond Suit. Ionel checked, Hall bet out 220,000, and Ionel check-raised to 460,000. That put the action back on Hall who apparently smelled a rat and called. On the ASpade Suit turn, both players checked. The QSpade Suit came on the turn, Ionel bluffed for for 545,000.

“You didn’t bluff once yesterday,” Hall said, then grudgingly made the call for the win. -

That hand took Ionel’s stack below the 2 million mark. -BW

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Anton Ionel

6.15pm: Weinberg takes one


Max Weinberg opened with a raise to 240,000 with [10h]7Heart Suit and was called by Sam Stein with KHeart SuitQHeart Suit. The flop was 7Spade SuitADiamond Suit5Diamond Suit, pairing Weinberg’s 7, and he bet 315,000 only for Stein to re-raise to 785,000. Call. The turn came [10c] and Stein checked then folded when Weinberg moved all-in with two pair. — SY

6.06pm: Oliver steals, wins


Chris Oliver raised with air, 6Diamond Suit4Heart Suit, and Sam Stein just called with ADiamond SuitKDiamond Suit. The flop was QClub Suit8Heart Suit[10h] and Oliver made a 315,000 continuation bet. Call. The turn was 6Heart Suit and now Oliver checked, and Stein checked behind. The river was 3Club Suit and both checked again. Oliver’s paired six was good. — SY

6:02pm: No action for Palacios


When Chris Oliver came in for a raise to 260,000, Bolivar Palacios probably figured he was about to double up with pocket aces. Unfortunately for him, Oliver only had 8Diamond Suit4Spade Suit and folded to a re-raise. —BW

6pm: The ‘in’ crowd


As you will have gathered by now, this final table is being played out behind closed doors Fort Knox-like security. Only a lucky few are able to watch it live, a maximum of four people per player. This is what they look like…

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5.52pm: Palacios pushing


Max Weinberg made it 230,000 from the under the gun with 4Spade Suit4Heart Suit and it was folded around to Bolivar Palacios. He looked very interested and no wonder – he had QClub SuitQHeart Suit. He pushed all-in. It was another 1,785,000 to Weinberg, who folded. — SY

5:48pm: Oliver tries, gives up against Stein


Oliver came in for a raise to 220,000 with QDiamond Suit5Diamond Suit and go the call from Sam Stein’s 5Spade Suit5Club Suit and Galen Hall’s AClub Suit5Diamond Suit On a flop of 3Diamond Suit4Heart Suit[9h. Oliver led at the pot for 340,000, Stein called, and Hall got out of way. On the 10Club Suit turn, Oliver checked and opened the door for Stein to steal the pot with a bet. —BW

5.38pm: Good fold, Ionel


It’s been a bit cagey since the Plouffe exit. On this one, Ionel raised to 215,000 from under the gun with ASpade SuitJHeart Suit before Sam Stein re-raise all in ADiamond SuitKClub Suit. Ionel gave it a moment or two’s thought before tossing his cards into the muck. — SY

5:27pm: Plouffe river, eliminated in 8th for $202,000


Chris Oliver limped in with king-jack and was faced with a raise from Sam Stein. Then Philippe Plouffe shoved all-in. Oliver got out of the way, and Stein made the call.

Plouffe QSpade SuitQHeart Suit


Stein AClub SuitKHeart Suit

Plouffe looked good for the double-up…until the river. The board ran out 10Diamond Suit10Heart SuitJClub Suit4Diamond SuitADiamond Suit and Plouffe was gone in eighth for $202,000.—BW

5.15pm: Play starts


Play is under way, although we missed the first several hands because of technical difficulties in the media room that for once were not my fault. Anyway, we have a feed now and it appears all eight players are still in. Phew! — SY

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Final table players

4:06pm: Final table beginning (apparently)


The inside of the Imperial Ballroom looks different today. There is a giant wall blocking where the TV set used to be. We tried to walk in and were threatened by a man with a gun (no, not really, but it was close).

The final table is beginning behind that wall, but even we can’t see what’s going on in the sequestered area. Because it’s all being broadcast on ESPN3.com (starting at 5pm) and ESPN2 (simulcast starting at 10pm) with hole cards shown, the final table is playing out under the highest security. We begged and pleaded, but even we have been run off to the media room to watch this thing happen.

To maintain an historical record, we’ll report everything we see here. However, we don’t blame you if you watch on ESPN or PokerStars.tv.

While we wait for the broadcast to begin, here’s a look at the big fireworks display we all watched and fondly remember (sort of) at the PokerStars party last night.

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Fireworks before the final table

PokerStars Blog final table reporting team in the Bahamas (in order mental acuity): Simon Young (1%) and Brad Willis (.5%)



This EPT is brought to you by PokerStars, the official sponsor of the European Poker Tour. Win your way into the biggest events Europe has to offer at Europe.

 
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