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European Poker Tour -- Grand Final Day 4

Final Table Found On Day 4; Venezuelan Ivan Freitez Leads


Ivan FreitezThe daily bus journey must have been one of angst early afternoon with 24 players rearing to go and €1.5 million on the line on day 4 of the PokerStars European Poker Tour Grand Final main event. It was crunch time and 16 players would be either pleased with their efforts or disappointed by end of play. There would be plenty more in store for the remaining eight however.

Leading the final table is Venezuelan Ivan Freitez. He ended the day with a little less than 6 million in chips. Although Freitez has cashed twice on the EPT so far this season, this will be his biggest cash no matter where he comes as he is now guaranteed at least €130,000. Tomorrow will be interesting as his play has so far attracted some criticism in regards to angle shooting, with Tournament Director Thomas Kremser keeping a close eye on play as the event approaches its final leg.

Also among final-table players is day 3 chip leader Eugene Yanayt. He had an up and down day and ended fourth in chips with just over 2.4 million. Team PokerStars pro Alex Gomes is also in the top 10. If Gomes is the last man standing he will become the third person to win poker’s triple crown as he already has a WSOP and a WPT title under his belt.

Fellow Team Pro member Juan Maceiras is also in the running and could become the first Spanish winner of an EPT. One of the victims of Maceiras’ wrath on day 4 was team-mate Victor Ramdin. All the chips went in preflop with local hero Maceiras holding pocket sixes and the American pro tabling A-Q. The pair was good and Ramdin rocked out in 23rd place for €40,000.

Here is the final table and their chip counts:

Ivan Freitez (Venezuela) 5,995,000
Juan Maceiras (Spain) 3,150,000
Andrey Danilyuk (Russia) 2,645,000
Eugene Yanayt (USA) 2,420,000
Torsten Brinkmann (Germany) 1,875,000
Alex Gomes (Brazil) 1,670,000
Tamas Lendvai (Hungary) 1,655,000
Andrew Li (USA) 1,210,000

Ole Kristian Nergard who went from hero to almost zero late on day 3 made a round trip to and from the casino on day 4 as it wasn’t long after play started when the Norwegian was sent to the rail. Nergard, who started the day at the bottom of the chip counts, made his move with pocket tens and found himself up against Jose Nadal and his pocket queens. The board fell A-A-6-K-5 and Nergard got off the rollercoaster that was his Grand Final main event with an added €40,000 in his pocket.

Ankush MandaviaGeorges Yazbeck had a moment of glory when he doubled through American PokerStars player Ankush Mandavia with kings versus nines respectively. The chips went in on a flop of 7Diamond Suit 6Club Suit 3Diamond Suit and the QHeart Suit turn and 4Club Suit river made no difference, doubling up Yazbeck to the million mark with Mandavia dropping to 380,000.

Mandavia was not next to go however, and surprisingly it would be Yazbeck to go soon. Not before, perhaps the sportiest of the bunch, tennis pro Raemon Sluiter, went out in 22nd for €40,000. The Dutchman held pocket kings while his opponent Tamas Lendvai held AClub Suit KHeart Suit. An ace dropped on the flop to seal the deal for Lendvai and send Sluiter out of the event.

American Yazbeck was indeed next. He bet 45,000 from the button and Torsten Brinkmann called from the small blind. The flop was dealt QSpade Suit 5Spade Suit 2Diamond Suit and Brinkmann checked. Yazbeck bet 180,000 and Brinkmann called to see the 4Diamond Suit on the turn. Brinkmann checked once again and Yazbeck took this moment to make his final stand. He moved a stack of 700,000 into the middle and Brinkmann thought about it for a few moments, eventually calling with KDiamond Suit QClub Suit. Yazbeck held QHeart Suit JClub Suit and the 8Spade Suit on the river could not help him out. He was sent to the exit in 21st place for €40,000, while Brinkmann will take his seat at the final table tomorrow.

Others to receive €40,000 for their efforts were Hugo Lemaire (20th), Jose Nadal (19th), Gerardo Godinez (18th), and Litterio Pirrotta (17th). While making the pay jump to €50,000 was Domantas Klimciauskas (16th) and Shiraz Soltaninassab (15th).

Dag Palovic saw some hope when he doubled through fellow Team PokerStars Pro Alex Gomes with ADiamond Suit KSpade Suit over AClub Suit QHeart Suit. However his end was nigh and he left at the hands of Pedro Pellicer with A-K versus Q-Q respectively when the pocket pair held. Palovic received €60,000 for 14th place.

Thomas PetterssonPellicer would take down one of the biggest pots in the tournaments later in the day with A-K versus Simon Higgins’ pocket nines. The board fell A-Q-8-10-J and Higgins who started the day third in chips began his downward spiral. The final hand for the Brit came when his A-10 lost out to Freitez’s A-K. He took home €70,000 for 12th place. Pellicer however would follow him out in 11th for the same amount.

The player to bubble the final table was Thomas Pettersson. His A-K was busted by Maceiras’ pocket queens when the board brought a queen. Both he and 10th place finisher Alessandro Limblici received €95,000 for coming so close to the final day of play.

Check back tomorrow to find out who will be the winner of the 2011 EPT Grand Final. Catch all the action via the live stream from 2 p.m. (local time) and enjoy the added spectacle of being able to see the players’ whole cards from 11 p.m. or indeed peruse the “live blog feed”:live blog feed at your leisure.

All photographs courtesy of Neil Stoddart.