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Buy-In: $5,051 + $316
Prize Pool: $2,045,168
Entrants: 420

EPT Tallinn No-Limit Hold'em Main Event

  • Aug 11, '10 - Aug 16, '10
  •  

 
 

Updates on Final Day (Aug 16, 10)

 
 

Mattern misses record as Kevin Stani wins EPT Tallinn

ept-thumb-promo.jpgThis week was always going to be one of firsts: it was the opening event of the PokerStars European Poker Tour Season 7, and the first time the whole jamboree had stepped foot in Tallinn, Estonia (not that a jamboree can step anywhere, but you know what I mean). What we did not anticipate, however, was that this would so nearly be the week in which a record was set, when a player would become the first to win two EPT titles.

That became a real possibility late on Day 3 when Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern, who won EPT Prague back in Season 4, raced towards the top of the leaderboard. Then he held the chip lead after Day 4 to ensure he began the final table as firm favorite for the title. Unfortunately for the Frenchman, he fell short right at the death, busting in third. And it’s unfortunate for us, because it means we’ll be writing about the lack of a two-time EPT champion for months, maybe years more to come.

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Arnaud Mattern

But while Mattern is devastated tonight (although the pain is eased by €160,000), Kevin Stani is as happy as a hippo in a mud bath. €400,000 wealthier after beating Konstantin Bilyauer heads-up, Stani also now joins Mattern and the 56 other EPT champions in having a monkey climb on his back and cling on for dear life. That monkey – a member of the stubborn long-nosed, curly-tailed doublusschampus family – is proving annoyingly difficult to budge.

So how did it all get to this? Well, although Mattern was on top at play’s start, no-one had really taken much notice of Kevin Stani, the young PokerStars qualifier from Norway. And that was a mistake. Stani proved a lethal opponent, building his stack quietly all afternoon, content with letting Mattern and Bilyauer trade the chip lead.

While those two knocked each other about, Stani struck like a cobra. First he leapt up and spat venom into the eyes of Dutchman Steven van Zadelhoff to bust him in sixth place, and a little later the same ugly fate befell Dimitry Vitkind in fourth place; two big scalps that sent Stani into the lead for the first time. He never gave it up.

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Kevin Stani

Mattern, who began three-handed play third in chips, threatened to make a comeback and was looking like a potential monkey-killer once more. He was even eating bananas at one point as if trying to coax the chimp close enough before springing the fatal trap. But Stani had other ideas. And, like Zadelhoff and Vitkind before him, it was Mattern who became the victim.

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Going bananas: Arnaud Mattern

First Stani weakened the Frenchman with an audacious bluff holding nothing more than [7h][8h], the second time he had used those cards to represent something much, much bigger. Then came the killer hand. And it was horrible. Mattern was all-in pre-flop with pocket queens, Stani had pocket threes. A three slapped on the turn, Mattern was out, Stani was even bigger in chips… and the monkey was alive and well.

So it was down to heads-up, which Stani started as a two-to-one chip daddy against Bilyauer. They prodded at each other a few times, taking small nibbles of the stacks, but it was Stani who was to build up momentum, edging to a 10-1 cheap lead. Bilyauer managed one double up before being finished off by the cobra.



Stani raised to 250,000 and was called to go to a [3c][9h][2s] flop. Both checked. The turn came [4s] and Bilyauer led for 375,000 only to face a raise to 875,000 from the Norwegian. Call. The river came [8d] and Bilyauer led again, this time for 1.2 million, committing half his remaining stack. Stani tanked for two minutes then quietly announced “All-in”. Bilyauer stood out of his seat and looked resigned. He took off his sunglasses and made the call but mucked upon seeing Stani’s [6s][5c] for the turned nut straight.

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Konstantin Bilyauer

While these were the main stories of the day, we should not forget the other players in this intricate plot. First out was Bassam Elnajjar from Lebanon, walking his A-Q into the pocket aces of Mattern. He was followed swiftly by Nicolo Calia, who was finished off by Bilyauer just moments after being crippled by Miko Jaatinen. Jaatinen himself went in fifth, sandwiched between the exits of Stani’s victims, Hadelhoff and Vitkind.

That left us with the three, followed by the survival of the monkey, and finally victory for Stani. A humble winner, and we’ll be sure to see more of him in the future.

Congratulations to Kevin Stani – KevBoyStar on PokerStars – for winning his title and €400,000, a nice addition to his bankroll that is already swollen with a a 127th finish at this year’s WSOP Main Event worth $57,102.

After lifting his trophy, he said: “I’ve had lots of tough times outside of poker but I said to myself that I’m going to stick with poker and things will get better and they have. It feels great to have won an EPT.”

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Stani’s moment of victory

So we bid farewell to Tallinn. With 420 players at the Swissotel it’s been a terrific addition to the EPT circuit, and the event’s success bodes well for the remainder of Season 7. We’ll be back for EPT Vilamoura in just a couple of weeks.

Before you head-off, make sure you catch up with all of today’s events in detail by clicking on the links below:

Levels 25 & 26

Levels 27, 28 & 29

Final table player profiles

You’ll find all of Tallinn’s prizewinners on the prizes and payouts page, and then make sure you have the best possible knowledge of the earlier days’ play by reading our end-of-day wraps:

Day 1A: Tallinn, a city for sporting comebacks – just ask Ville Wahlbeck

Day 1B: House! Who is leading the field at EPT Tallinn?

Day 2: Jonathan Weekes proves Day 2 is EPT moving day

Day 3: Bad day for monkeys as Arnaud Mattern shines at EPT Tallinn

Day 4: The battle for Tallinn: Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern fronts final table charge

And if after all that you still want more – and you don’t mind reading gobbledegook – cast your eyes over our coverage in Swedish or German.

My thanks go to EPT photographer Neil Stoddart for his fine work throughout the week, and to my fellow scribes Marc Convey, Rick Dacey and Nick Wright for losing so much money to me at Suffolk Pokerâ„¢ writing beyond the call of duty.

Until Vilamoura, it’s goodnight from Tallinn.

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Bilyauer: Strangely out of focus

All pictures © Neil Stoddart



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.

 

EPT Tallinn Final Table: Level 27 & 28 updates (40,000-80,000, ante 5,000)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg6.25pm: Three-bet Bilyauer

Bilyauer wins another small pot with a three-bet from big blind. Stani had made his usual 200,000 open and was raised by Bilyauer to 505,000. Stani passed. — RD

6.20pm: Bilyauer takes a small one

Stani raised from the small blind and was called by Bilyauer. Both players checked through to the [td][3c][9h][6s] turn before Bilyauer bet 300,000, which was enough to win the pot. — RD

6.15pm: Stani takes more then gives some back

Kevin Stani looked lie he was taking complete control of this heads-up battle but Konstantin Bilyauer showed he still has fight in him.

Bilyauer raised to 200,000 from the button and was called by Stani to go to a [qh][5s][8h] flop. Stani checked raised his opponent’s 275,000 c-bet up to 600,000 and that did the trick.

Two hands later Bilyauer raised to 200,000 from the button and was called to go to the [9s][7c][ad] flop. Both players checked to see the [4c] where Stani led for 250,000 only to fold to a shove from his opponent. —MC

6.05pm: Big pot, small value bet

We’re a little way into heads up now and on a board of [5s][7c][6c][ad][2d] with close to one million in the pot Kevin Stani bet 150,000 on the river. His young Russian opponent, Bilyauer, called but mucked upon being shown pocket tens. Stani had opened the action from the button. Stani has quite some chip lead now. — RD



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Kevin Stani: The inaugural EPT Tallinn winner?

5.55pm: Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern eliminated in 3rd place (€160,000)

Arnaud Mattern has been eliminated so there will be no EPT double champion crowned here in Tallinn. Not long after bluffing him Kevi Stani took the rest of his chips by hitting a two-outer. Stani raised to 200,000 from the SB to face a three-bet to 550,000 from the Frenchman. Stani quickly moved all-in and Mattern snap-called his 2.4 million stack off.

Stani: [3s][3c]

Mattern: [qc][qh]

The [2h][kd][5h] flop was very safe for Mattern but he fell behind on the [3h] turn. The third heart opened up the chance of a re-draw for Mattern but the flush card or queen failed to come on the [9c] river. Stani now has twice as many chips as Konstantin Bilyauer going into heads-up play. —MC

5.48pm: Arnaud Mattern is all in

The Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern is all-in against Kevin Stani with his tournament at risk. Details to come shortly. — RD

5.40pm: Massive pot, monster bluff

Bluffing with the [7h][8h] hold cards may soon have to be called ‘pulling a Stani’ because the Norwegian has just pulled his second huge bluff of the final table with them. He earlier five-bet shoved with them into Bilyauer but this time it was against Arnaud Mattern. The Team PokerStars Pro had three-bet Stani’s 180,000 button raise to 560,000 total. Stani made the call.

At this point the atmosphere got very tense as the air thickened at the final table. A huge pot was brewing with only Bilyauer looked relaxed as the storm set in. The flop of [qs][ks][4d] was enough for Mattern to lead another 650,000 into the middle and as everyone held their breath Stani lined up three large stacks of 25,000 chips and made a large raise to 1,500,000. It was too much for Mattern who passed his hand. Stani flipped [7h][8h] face up onto the table to show a huge naked bluff. — RD

5.35pm: Back and forth

Arnaud Mattern and Konstantin Bilyauer played out two hands with each winning one. The first hand saw Mattern raise from the button and Bilyauer call from the SB to see a [kd][9d][4d] flop. The Russian check-raised Mattern’s 210,000 c-bet up to 530,000 to force a fold. The very next hand Bilyauer raised to 180,000 then fold to a 560,000 three-bet from Mattern in the BB. —MC

5.30pm: A few hands from the final table

Hand 1: Mattern raised the button to 180,000 and was called by Bilyaver in the small blind and both players checked the flop down to the [2h][6d][3h][ac][2c] river. Bilyauer turned over [ks][qc] for a king-high winning hand.

Hand 2: Stani limped the small blind and Mattern checked behind. Stani led the [ac][2c][2s] flop and the Team PokerStars Pro passed.

Hand 3: Mattern button raised to 180,000 and scooped the blinds to take an easy little pot. — RD



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There were eight, now there are just three left



5.20pm: First hand back

Arnaud Mattern limped from the SB and then called a raise to 185,000 from Konstantin Bilyauer in the BB. No betting took place through the [3s][6s][8d][jh][jc] board and Konstantin took the pot with his [ad][7c]. —MC

5.15pm: Back from break

The final three are back in their seats and the first hand is being dealt… right… about… now!

5pm: BREAK TIME

Level 27 done and dusted. See you in 15 minutes for level 28.

4.57pm: Slow play

The title of this individual post may be more than a little misleading. There hasn’t been a slow played pair of aces or a trappy set but play itself has slowed down. The three final combatants (Mattern, Stani and Bilyauer) have slowed down in these final pay jumps. — RD

4.55pm: Kremser the clown as play slows

It’s been a quiet ten-minute phase of the final table, with no pots or action of note. But tournament boss Thomas Kremser livened it up with a little humour. He was standing in front of a tall screen, behind which a photographer reached up and poked his camera over the top to get a nice overhead picture of the table. The hapless snapper poked his camera up once more, and this time Kremser put his hand in front of it. Only when the photographer reviewed his work a few moments later did he realise his snap was of a huge Austrian hand and not of our final table. — SY

4.50pm: Showdown

Not many pots are getting through all the streets but this one did. Stani limped the small blind into Arnaud Mattern who checked behind (again). Both players checked through to the [5h][jd][4d][3c] turn which Stani bet 80,000 into. Mattern raised to 250,000 and Stani called. The Norwegian check-called around 200,000 on the [9d] river and showed [kd][jh] to take the pot. — RD

4.45pm: Konstantin three-bets…

…Arnaud Mattern’s raise from the small blind. Mattern passed without too much thought. — RD

4.40pm: Cagey, but it’ll do

Another pot goes Arnaud Mattern’s way. He raised to 150,000 from the button and only Konstantin Bilyauer called from the small blind. Both checked the [jh][2h][as] flop, and they didn’t seem to like the [6d] turn either. But on the [6h] river Mattern bet 160,000 and got a reluctant call from the Russian. [jc][3c] for Mattern,

and that was good enough to take the pot. — SY

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Mattern back in the groove

4.30pm: Limped action

Stani limped the small blind to Mattern’s big blind and the Frenchman checked to see a [3h][kd][4h] flop. Stani led for 75,000 and was called by Mattern. Stani gave up with a check-fold on the [3c] turn when Mattern bet 320,000. Still plenty of play left in this three-handed final. — RD

4.25pm: Mattern motors on

Konstantin Bilyauer made it 140,000 from the button and only Arnaud Mattern called from the big blind. The Frenchman check-called Bilyauer’s 225,000 bet on the [4s][7h][10h] flop and both then checked down the [qc] turn and [8d] river. [6d][7d] for the Russian, but he was behind Mattern’s [kh][10d] all the way.

Here’s the current state of play

Kevin Stani, 5.2million

Arnaud Mattern, 4.2million

Konstantin Blyauer, 3.55million – SY

4.15pm:‘Oh, you’re kidding’

Konstantin Bilyauer opened to 135,000 from the button and Kevin Stani made the call from the small blind. On the [6h][9h][9d] flop, Stani check-called the Russian’s 170,000. Then, on the [as] turn, Stani check-called again, this time for 240,000. Both then slowed down to a check on the [10c] river. [ks][8s] for Bilyauer, [qh][10h] for Stani, which was good enough for the pot. “Oh, you’re kidding,” bemoaned Bilyauer. —SY

4.10pm: Major mistake by Stani

Kevin Stani has so far appeared very calm and collected but that image has just been tarnished thanks to the Norwegian misreading his hand and checking down a full house. Bilyauer had bet 250,000 on the turn of a [9c][4d][6c][6d] board which Stani has called in position. Both players then checked on the [ac] river with Stani showing [ah][6h] for a boat. “I thought I had ace-eight,” said a slightly embarrassed Stani who asked Bilyauer: “You calling the river?” All he got was a nod from the Russian. “It was a very conservative check,” joked Stani desperately trying to see the funny side of checking behind such a monster hand. — RD

4pm: What about the monkey business?

The monkey on the back of every former EPT champion, which to date has ensured none of them have won a second EPT title, is still in danger of being shot strangled humanely put to sleep. Team PokerStars Pro and EPT Prague Season 4 champion Arnaud Mattern is one of our three remaining players, and a win here would make EPT his EPT history… and make chimp-lovers very sad indeed. — SY

3.55pm: Just the three left

We’re down to three-handed play after PokerStars qualifier Kevin Stani busted Dimitry Vitkind in fourth. Konstantin Bilyauer started it with a button raise to 140,000, which both Stani called from the small blind and Vitkind from the big blind.The flop came [7s][5c][3d], Stani checked, Vitkind bet 300,000, Bilyauer folded – then Stani moved all in, covering Vitkind easily.The Russian thought only for a second or two before making the call.

Stani: [8c][8d]

Vitkind: [5h][6h]

Vitkind was in need of help to save his tournament life, but none arrived on the [kh] turn or [7h] river. Vitkind leaves with €120,000. — SY

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4th place finisher Dmitry Vitkind

3.52pm: Dimtry Vitkind eliminated in 4th place for €120,000

Details coming right up.

3.50pm: Mattern keeps firing

Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern opened the button for 140,000 and was called by Kevin Stani in the big blind. Mattern shot out a c-bet of 175,000 on the [3s][kd][th] flop, which was called, and another 220,000 on the [7d] turn. The second bullet did the job as Stani relinquished his hand. — RD

3.45pm: Four-handed action

We are very much at the business end of this tournament here in Estonia with some big pay jumps over the final four spots.

1. €400,000

2. €250,000

3. €160,000

4. €120,000

(Full payouts can be found here)

There’s a lot to play for and the pressure the players are putting each under is immense. Dmitry Vitkind opened to 130,000 from the cut-off and Arnaud Mattern three-bet from the button to 320,000. Konstanin Bilyauer four-bet from the big blind to 1,000,000 forcing both players out of the pot. Nice pick up for Bilyauer. — RD

3.35pm: Play resumes

The players are back for Level 27. Here’s how the players stack up right now:

Konstantin Bilyauer — 4,300,000

Kevin Stani — 3,555,000

Arnaud Mattern — 3,420,000

Dmitry Vitkind — 1,305,000

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Bilyauer happy with his position at the top

PokerStars Blog reporting team (with hair styles): Nick Wright (curly), Simon Young (shaggy), Marc Convey (floppy) and Rick Dacey (short and thick).

All photos © Neil Stoddart



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.

 

EPT Tallinn Final Table: Level 27, 28 & 29 updates (50,000-100,000)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg7.35pm: Congratulations to Kevin Stani, EPT Tallinn champion (€400,000)

Kevin Stani has defeated Konstantin Bilyauer to become the inaugural winner of EPT Tallinn. He opened the pot with a raise to 250,000 and was called to go to a [3c][9h][2s] flop where both players checked. The turn came [4h] and Bilyauer led for 375,000 only to face a raise to 875,000 from the Norwegian. Call. The river came [8d] and Bilyauer led again, this time for 1.2 million and committed half his remaining stack in the process. Stani tanked for two minutes then quietly announced “All-in”.

Bilyauer stood out of his seat and looked resigned. He took off his sunglasses and made the call but mucked upon seeing Stani’s [6s][5c] for the turned nut straight.

For a full list of the payouts please go to our prizewinners page. A full wrap of the day’s play will be up shortly for your entertainment. But for now, that’s a wrap from Tallinn. —MC

7.30pm: Kostanin Bilyauer eliminated in second place (€250,000)

Details to come but that means Kevin Stani has won. — RD

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Konstantin Bilyauer exits EPT Tallinn in second place for €250,000

7.25pm: Bilyauer rivers it

Bilyauer opened from the button to 250,000 and was called by Stani in the big blind. The Norwegian check-called 300,000 on the [as][7s][ts] flop before both checked the [9d] turn. The board paired on the river with the [7c] and Stani checked leaving Bilyauer to bet 500,000. It was a big decision for Stani who eventually made the call. — RD

7.15pm: Anti-climax

A multi-million chip pot took place that was building to what might have been the last hand but it ended in a split pot. Kevin Stani called from the button and then called a 300,000 raise from Konstantin Bilyauer. Stani then called 450,000 on the flop and 700,000 on the turn. The board read [8d][ah][kc][6c][2h] and it looked like Bilyauer was going to move all-in but he checked, as did Stani. They both tabled ace-five and took their chips back. —MC

7.10pm: Bilyauer shoves the river

Kevin Stani limped the small blind and Bilyauer made it 300,000 from the big blind. Stani called so that both players could see the [jc][as][6d] flop. Bilyauer led out for 450,000 and was called by Stani before both players checked the [4c] turn. Bilyauer then shoved the remainder of his stack – somewhere in the region of 2,000,000 – into the middle. Stani thought long and hard before he eventually passed. — RD

7pm: Stani starts to grind away again

Kevin Stani has taken two small pots of Konstantin Bilyauer to chip away at his stack again. The first hand Stani raised pre-flop to 250,000 and was called before both checked the [2s][7c][4s] flop. A 225,000 Stani bet on the [4h] river was enough to take it down.

In the next hand Stani called a 250,000 raise before both players checked it down. The final board read [4c][9s][8s][jc][4s]. Stani reavled [ah][4h] for trip fours and the pot as Bilyauer folded. —MC

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Can Kevin Stani convert his chip lead into the EPT Tallinn title?

6.50pm: ALL-IN!!!

It’s a pre-flop shove and call. Bilyauer gets it all-in from the small blind and is called by Stani. Bilyauer shows [qh][kd] to Stani’s pocket sevens. The board runs out [ts][5d][4s][kh][2c] and Bilayuer survives to double up. Stani still has the chip lead. Keep an eye on how the chip swings develop by clicking here. — RD

6.40pm: PLAY RESUMES

6.35pm: Players are on a five minute break

6.35pm: Two more pots for Stani

Right at the end of Level 28 Kevin Stani took two more pots off Konstantin Bilyauer to open up an 11.07 million to 1.59 million chip lead.

In the first hand Bilyauer raised from the button and was called to go to a [4s][kc][tc] flop where both players checked. Stani check-called a 275,000 bet on the [jh] river before both players checked the [3c] river. Stani tabled [qc][7c] for a flush and the pot as his opponent folded.

The next hand got to the river without betting on any previous streets. The board read [9s][8h][kd][4d][jc] and it was here that Stani bet 325,000 and was called. He tabled [ks][jh] for two-pair and the pot as Bilyauer folded. —MC

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Heads up at the EPT Tallinn: who will be champion?

6.25pm: Three-bet Bilyauer

Bilyauer wins another small pot with a three-bet from big blind. Stani had made his usual 200,000 open and was raised by Bilyauer to 505,000. Stani passed. — RD

6.20pm: Bilyauer takes a small one

Stani raised from the small blind and was called by Bilyauer. Both players checked through to the [td][3c][9h][6s] turn before Bilyauer bet 300,000, which was enough to win the pot. — RD

6.15pm: Stani takes more then gives some back

Kevin Stani looked lie he was taking complete control of this heads-up battle but Konstantin Bilyauer showed he still has fight in him.

Bilyauer raised to 200,000 from the button and was called by Stani to go to a [qh][5s][8h] flop. Stani checked raised his opponent’s 275,000 c-bet up to 600,000 and that did the trick.

Two hands later Bilyauer raised to 200,000 from the button and was called to go to the [9s][7c][ad] flop. Both players checked to see the [4c] where Stani led for 250,000 only to fold to a shove from his opponent. —MC

6.05pm: Big pot, small value bet

We’re a little way into heads up now and on a board of [5s][7c][6c][ad][2d] with close to one million in the pot Kevin Stani bet 150,000 on the river. His young Russian opponent, Bilyauer, called but mucked upon being shown pocket tens. Stani had opened the action from the button. Stani has quite some chip lead now. — RD

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Kevin Stani: The inaugural EPT Tallinn winner?

5.55pm: Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern eliminated in 3rd place (€160,000)

Arnaud Mattern has been eliminated so there will be no EPT double champion crowned here in Tallinn. Not long after bluffing him, Kevi Stani took the rest of his chips by hitting a two-outer. Stani raised to 200,000 from the SB to face a three-bet to 550,000 from the Frenchman. Stani quickly moved all-in and Mattern snap-called his 2.4 million stack off.

Stani: [3s][3c]

Mattern: [qc][qh]

The [2h][kd][5h] flop was very safe for Mattern but he fell behind on the [3h] turn. The third heart opened up the chance of a re-draw for Mattern but the flush card or queen failed to come on the [9c] river. Stani now has twice as many chips as Konstantin Bilyauer going into heads-up play. —MC

5.48pm: Arnaud Mattern is all-in

The Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern is all-in against Kevin Stani with his tournament at risk. Details to come shortly. — RD

5.40pm: Massive pot, monster bluff

Bluffing with the [7h][8h] hold cards may soon have to be called ‘pulling a Stani’ because the Norwegian has just pulled his second huge bluff of the final table with them. He earlier five-bet shoved with them into Bilyauer but this time it was against Arnaud Mattern. The Team PokerStars Pro had three-bet Stani’s 180,000 button raise to 560,000 total. Stani made the call.

At this point the atmosphere got very tense as the air thickened at the final table. A huge pot was brewing with only Bilyauer looked relaxed as the storm set in. The flop of [qs][ks][4d] was enough for Mattern to lead another 650,000 into the middle and as everyone held their breath Stani lined up three large stacks of 25,000 chips and made a large raise to 1,500,000. It was too much for Mattern who passed his hand. Stani flipped [7h][8h] face up onto the table to show a huge naked bluff. — RD

5.35pm: Back and forth

Arnaud Mattern and Konstantin Bilyauer played out two hands with each winning one. The first hand saw Mattern raise from the button and Bilyauer call from the SB to see a [kd][9d][4d] flop. The Russian check-raised Mattern’s 210,000 c-bet up to 530,000 to force a fold. The very next hand Bilyauer raised to 180,000 then fold to a 560,000 three-bet from Mattern in the BB. —MC

5.30pm: A few hands from the final table

Hand 1: Mattern raised the button to 180,000 and was called by Bilyaver in the small blind and both players checked the flop down to the [2h][6d][3h][ac][2c] river. Bilyauer turned over [ks][qc] for a king-high winning hand.

Hand 2: Stani limped the small blind and Mattern checked behind. Stani led the [ac][2c][2s] flop and the Team PokerStars Pro passed.

Hand 3: Mattern button raised to 180,000 and scooped the blinds to take an easy little pot. — RD

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There were eight, now there are just three left

5.20pm: First hand back

Arnaud Mattern limped from the SB and then called a raise to 185,000 from Konstantin Bilyauer in the BB. No betting took place through the [3s][6s][8d][jh][jc] board and Konstantin took the pot with his [ad][7c]. —MC

5.15pm: Back from break

The final three are back in their seats and the first hand is being dealt… right… about… now!

5pm: BREAK TIME

Level 27 done and dusted. See you in 15 minutes for level 28.

4.57pm: Slow play

The title of this individual post may be more than a little misleading. There hasn’t been a slow played pair of aces or a trappy set but play itself has slowed down. The three final combatants (Mattern, Stani and Bilyauer) have slowed down in these final pay jumps. — RD

4.55pm: Kremser the clown as play slows

It’s been a quiet ten-minute phase of the final table, with no pots or action of note. But tournament boss Thomas Kremser livened it up with a little humour. He was standing in front of a tall screen, behind which a photographer reached up and poked his camera over the top to get a nice overhead picture of the table. The hapless snapper poked his camera up once more, and this time Kremser put his hand in front of it. Only when the photographer reviewed his work a few moments later did he realise his snap was of a huge Austrian hand and not of our final table. — SY

4.50pm: Showdown

Not many pots are getting through all the streets but this one did. Stani limped the small blind into Arnaud Mattern who checked behind (again). Both players checked through to the [5h][jd][4d][3c] turn which Stani bet 80,000 into. Mattern raised to 250,000 and Stani called. The Norwegian check-called around 200,000 on the [9d] river and showed [kd][jh] to take the pot. — RD

4.45pm: Konstantin three-bets…

…Arnaud Mattern’s raise from the small blind. Mattern passed without too much thought. — RD

4.40pm: Cagey, but it’ll do

Another pot goes Arnaud Mattern’s way. He raised to 150,000 from the button and only Konstantin Bilyauer called from the small blind. Both checked the [jh][2h][as] flop, and they didn’t seem to like the [6d] turn either. But on the [6h] river Mattern bet 160,000 and got a reluctant call from the Russian. [jc][3c] for Mattern, and that was good enough to take the pot. — SY

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Mattern back in the groove

4.30pm: Limped action

Stani limped the small blind to Mattern’s big blind and the Frenchman checked to see a [3h][kd][4h] flop. Stani led for 75,000 and was called by Mattern. Stani gave up with a check-fold on the [3c] turn when Mattern bet 320,000. Still plenty of play left in this three-handed final. — RD

4.25pm: Mattern motors on

Konstantin Bilyauer made it 140,000 from the button and only Arnaud Mattern called from the big blind. The Frenchman check-called Bilyauer’s 225,000 bet on the [4s][7h][10h] flop and both then checked down the [qc] turn and [8d] river. [6d][7d] for the Russian, but he was behind Mattern’s [kh][10d] all the way.

Here’s the current state of play

Kevin Stani, 5.2million

Arnaud Mattern, 4.2million

Konstantin Blyauer, 3.55million — SY

4.15pm:‘Oh, you’re kidding’

Konstantin Bilyauer opened to 135,000 from the button and Kevin Stani made the call from the small blind. On the [6h][9h][9d] flop, Stani check-called the Russian’s 170,000. Then, on the [as] turn, Stani check-called again, this time for 240,000. Both then slowed down to a check on the [10c] river. [ks][8s] for Bilyauer, [qh][10h] for Stani, which was good enough for the pot. “Oh, you’re kidding,” bemoaned Bilyauer. —SY

4.10pm: Major mistake by Stani

Kevin Stani has so far appeared very calm and collected but that image has just been tarnished thanks to the Norwegian misreading his hand and checking down a full house. Bilyauer had bet 250,000 on the turn of a [9c][4d][6c][6d] board which Stani has called in position. Both players then checked on the [ac] river with Stani showing [ah][6h] for a boat. “I thought I had ace-eight,” said a slightly embarrassed Stani who asked Bilyauer: “You calling the river?” All he got was a nod from the Russian. “It was a very conservative check,” joked Stani desperately trying to see the funny side of checking behind such a monster hand. — RD

4pm: What about the monkey business?

The monkey on the back of every former EPT champion, which to date has ensured none of them have won a second EPT title, is still in danger of being shot strangled humanely put to sleep. Team PokerStars Pro and EPT Prague Season 4 champion Arnaud Mattern is one of our three remaining players, and a win here would make EPT history… and make chimp-lovers very sad indeed. — SY

3.55pm: Just the three left

We’re down to three-handed play after PokerStars qualifier Kevin Stani busted Dimitry Vitkind in fourth. Konstantin Bilyauer started it with a button raise to 140,000, which both Stani called from the small blind and Vitkind from the big blind.The flop came [7s][5c][3d], Stani checked, Vitkind bet 300,000, Bilyauer folded – then Stani moved all in, covering Vitkind easily.The Russian thought only for a second or two before making the call.

Stani: [8c][8d]

Vitkind: [5h][6h]

Vitkind was in need of help to save his tournament life, but none arrived on the [kh] turn or [7h] river. Vitkind leaves with €120,000. — SY

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4th place finisher Dmitry Vitkind

3.52pm: Dimtry Vitkind eliminated in 4th place for €120,000

Details coming right up.

3.50pm: Mattern keeps firing

Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern opened the button for 140,000 and was called by Kevin Stani in the big blind. Mattern shot out a c-bet of 175,000 on the [3s][kd][th] flop, which was called, and another 220,000 on the [7d] turn. The second bullet did the job as Stani relinquished his hand. — RD

3.45pm: Four-handed action

We are very much at the business end of this tournament here in Estonia with some big pay jumps over the final four spots.

1. €400,000

2. €250,000

3. €160,000

4. €120,000

(Full payouts can be found here)

There’s a lot to play for and the pressure the players are putting each under is immense. Dmitry Vitkind opened to 130,000 from the cut-off and Arnaud Mattern three-bet from the button to 320,000. Konstanin Bilyauer four-bet from the big blind to 1,000,000 forcing both players out of the pot. Nice pick up for Bilyauer. — RD

3.35pm: Play resumes

The players are back for Level 27. Here’s how the players stack up right now:

Konstantin Bilyauer — 4,300,000

Kevin Stani — 3,555,000

Arnaud Mattern — 3,420,000

Dmitry Vitkind — 1,305,000

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Bilyauer happy with his position at the top

PokerStars Blog reporting team (with hair styles): Nick Wright (curly), Simon Young (shaggy), Marc Convey (floppy) and Rick Dacey (short and thick – I thought we were talking about hairstyles? Ed).

All photos © Neil Stoddart



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.

 

EPT Tallinn Final Table: Level 25 & 26 updates (25,000-50,000, ante 5,000)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg3.24pm: Konstant pressure

Konstantin Bilyauer continues to grow his stack skywards. In the last hand before the break he raised to 125,000 on the button and was called by Dimitry Vitkind in the big blind. Both players checked the [10s][10h][Ac] flop, before Vitkind bet 125,000 on the [4d] turn, a bet Bilyauer called. It was back to the flop tactics on the [7h] river though as both players checked. Bilyauer’s [Jd][Js] besting Vitkind’s [7c][5c]. — NW

3.20pm: BREAK

That’s a fifteen-minute break at the EPT Tallinn final table with just four players left. Chip counts have been done each hand by a full and accurate chip count is taking place now. — RD

3.15pm: Vitkind a non-believer of Bilyauer

The two remaining Russians just clashed in a pot that actually made it to showdown. Dimitry Vitkind raised to 130,000 from the button and was flat called by Konstantin Bilyauer in the big blind. The flop was a monotone [3h][4h][Kh], Bilyauer checked, Vitkind bet 175,000 and Bilyauer called. The turn was the [As] and both players checked to the [6c] river which Bilyauer led for 375,000. After a minute or so of thought Vitkind made the call only to be shown the very nutty [Ah][8h] by Bilyauer. — NW



3.10pm: Norwegian moves

Kevin Stani just upped the gambling stakes by five-bet jamming on Konstantin Bilyauer and showing [7h][8h]. Bilyauer opened to 125,000 from the button only to face a three-bet to 300,000 from Stani in the small blind. The Russian’s response was to four-bet to 725,000 but he quickly snap-folded when Stani quickly moved all-in. Game on, ladies and gentleman! —MC



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Kevin Stani just opened up a five-bet shove can of whoop’ass



3pm: Vitkind up, Vitkind down

Hand One: From the small blind Dmitry Vitkind raised to 150,000 and Arnaud Mattern called from the big blind. On the flop of [Ac][6h][7h] Vitkind c-bet 175,000 and was called. The turn was the [4h] Vitkind fired again, this time 375,000 which enough at any rate to force a fold from Mattern.

Hand two: Vitkind was involved again, raising to 130,000 from the button and getting looked up by Konstantin Bilyauer in the big blind. The flop fell [9c][7s][3d]. Bilyauer check-raised Vitkind’s c-bet of 155,000 to 405,000 and Vitkind folded. Bilyauer showed [5d][6s]. — NW



2.55pm: First big hit for Mattern

Arnaud Mattern has doubled-up Konstantin Bilyauer to 3.7 million denting the Frenchman’s chances of becoming the first double EPT champion. Mattern raised to 125,000 from first position and was called by the Russian to go to a [5c][4s][ac] flop. Mattern led for 150,000 only to face a 1.7 million all-in bet from Bilyauer. Mattern got a count and made the call but wasn’t happy to see what he was facing. Bilyauer opened [4d][4c] for a set and Mattern tabled [ah][qd] for top pair. The board ran out [jd] and [tc].

With that Bilyauer takes over the chip lead and Mattern slips to second with 3.4million. It really is anyone’s game right now. — MC



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“So who do you think’s going to win?”



2.50pm: Mattern wins another

This is getting repetitive but Arnaud Mattern continues to stretch his lead, this time he took chips from Kevin Stani. The Team PokerStars Pro made it 120,000 to go from the button and was flat called by Stani from the big blind. The flop of [Kh][4s][4c] was checked through. On the [3s] turn Stani check-called a bet of 140,000. The [7h] fell on the river and Stani checked once more. Mattern fired again, this time 310,000. Stani thought long and hard about his next move, he cut out the call and riffled those chips for a couple of minutes before eventually surrendering his hand. — NW

2.42pm: Falling like flies

Incredible, it’s been a whole five minutes since a player has been knocked out. Of course, as the short stacks get knocked out it’s deepens the stacks of the chip leaders and a little more time is needed thinking through some of these tournament changing decisions. — RD

2.40pm: Red battle

Two hands out of three Dmitry Vitkind has three-bet fellow countryman Konstantin Bilyauer. Once was enough for Bilyauer though as he four-bet jammed Vitkind on his second attempt and received a quick call for a 2.6 million showdown:

Bilyauer: [as][ts]

Vitkind: [7c][7h]

The board ran [3h][3c][3s][8c][9s] to make a full house for Vitkind. Vitkind has had to battle with a short stack for over a day but now has a stack where can do more than just move all-in pre-flop. —MC

2.35pm: Mikko Jaatinen eliminated in fifth place (€80,000)

Steven Van Zadelhoff had barely left the table before another bust out occurred. Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern raised to 120,000 from the button and Mikko Jaatinen moved all-in for around 800,000 from the small blind. Konstantin Bilyauer got out the way and Mattern quickly made the call.

Jaatinen: [Ks][9d]

Mattern: [Ac][Kh]

The board ran out [4s][2d][7d][10s][Kd]. Jaatinen takes home €80,000 and Mattern streches his lead up to 5,250,000. — NW



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Mikko Jaatinen: wins €80,000 for his fifth place finish



2.30pm: Steven van Zadelhoff eliminated in sixth place (€63,000)

The Dutchman moved all-in from the small blind for around 900,000 and was quickly called by Kevin Stani from the big blind.

Van Zadelhoff: [Qd][9h]

Stani: [Qh][Qs]

Flop: [6h][7h][8h]

Van Zadelhoff picked up a few outs with his open-ended straight draw.

Turn: [4s]

River: [6c]

Van Zadelhoff wins €63,000 for his sixth place finish and we’re down to five players. — NW



ept tallinn_final table_steven van zadelhoff.jpg

Steven van Zadelhoff: sixth place finsish at EPT Tallinn for €63,000



2.20pm: Piling on the pressure

Arnaud Mattern is really bullying the table at the moment. Konstantin Bilyauer opened to 125,000 and was called by Kevin Stani before Mattern three-bet to 420,000 from the big blind. Both players thought hard about their decisions but neither decided to play on further in the hand. The Frenchman has amassed such a stack that he’d be able to take them on without putting his tournament life at risk – a fact that both players would be more than aware of. — MC

2.12pm: Three in a row for Arnaud

The Team PokerStars Pro has won the first three hands after the break, gaining 110,000 a time. He’s now got just over 4,000,000 in chips. Check out our chip counts page for official counts. — NW

2.05pm: Back in their seats



Play has started again. Quick reminder of chip counts for the final six players.

1 Konstantin Bilyauer, Russia, 3,659,000

2 Steven van Zadelhoff, Netherlands, 908,000

3 Kevin Stani, Norway, PokerStars qualifier, 2,327,000

6 Dmitry Vitkind, Russia, PokerStars qualifier, 888,000

7 Arnaud Mattern, France, Team PokerStars Pro, 3,948,000

9 Mikko Jaatinen, Finland, 928,000

We’re updating the chips every single hand so keep checking on the chip count page by clicking here or on the ‘Latest chip count’ link on the right. We’ve got a new iPad and have stationed ourselves just a few feet away from the action to bring you the most up to date tournament counts the EPT has ever seen. Viva the iPad revolution. — RD

1.50pm: LEVEL 25 COMPLETE



There is a 15 minute break for the players. The chip counts are up to date on the chip count page.

1.50pm:Missed river bet

Konstantin Bilyauer felt he missed a river value bet against Arnaud Mattern and expressed so to the Frenchman. Mattern opened to 95,000 from the cut-off and was only called by the Russian to see a [5s][7s][5d] flop where he check-called a 125,000 bet. Both players checked down the [qc] turn and [ad] river. Bilyauer opened [ac][jc] for the pot as Mattern mucked .—MC

1.45pm:Jaatinen cripples Calia, Bilyauer busts him

As earlier reported Nicola Calia is out in seventh place, his demise took place in two consecutive hands. In the first he moved all-in for 605,000 from the cut-off and was called by big blind Miko Jaatinen, who had 480,000 total. Jaatinen had pocket sevens, Calia [Ad][8s] and he did not improve. On the second Calia moved all-in for his last 121,000 and Konstantin Bilyauer made the call having already invested 40,000 from the big blind.

Calia: [Kd][9d]

Bilyauer: [7h][4c]

The board ran out [Jh][4d][6h][2c][3c] Bilyauer’s flopped pair of fours was enough to send Calia to the rail. —NW



ept tallinn_final table_nicolo calia.jpg

Nicolo Calia: 7th place finish at EPT Tallinn

1.38pm: Nicolo Calia eliminated in 7th place for €47,000

Details with you shortly.

1.34pm: First double-up of the day

Russian Dmitry Vitkind has emerged from being in a dominated position to double-up to more than 900,000. He moved all-in from the small blind after Mikko Jaatinen raised from mid-position. Jaatinen called with [ac][kc] and was in great shape against Vitkind’s [ah][jh].

That all changed on the [3c][qh][5h][7d][4h] board with Vitkind making a flush on the river. Konstantin Bilyauer openly showed his delight by cheering at his fellow countryman’s result. —MC

1.29pm: Jaatinen jams

From the small blind Arnaud Mattern raised to 100,000, from the big blind Mikko Jaatinen quickly moved all-in for 900,000 in total, just as fast Mattern released his hand. -NW

1.25pm: Dutch delight

A limped pot is a rare thing at this final table but that’s what just happened. Konstantin Bilyauer completed from the small blind and Steven van Zadelhoff checked his option. On

the [3d][8s][10h] flop Bilyauer check-folded to van Zadelhoff’s bet of 75,000. —NW

1.20pm: Picking on the chip leader

Arnaud Mattern is getting used to folding at the moment. He raised to 90,000 from under-the-gun but folded to a button three-bet to 280,000 from Kevin Stani. The very next hand he folded from the big blind when Dmitry Vitkind moved all-in from the small blind. Something tells me that this won’t affect him too much, though. —MC

arnaud_mattern_ept_tallinn_ft.JPG

Arnaud Mattern

1.15pm: Chip leaders applying the pressure

The last three pots have been won uncontested pre-flop. Two have gone to Arnaud Mattern, the other to Konstantin Bilyauer. Between them the two of them have almost eight million of the 12 million chips in play. —NW

1.10pm: Mattern lets one go

Arnaud Mattern is looking to pick his spots wisely as he tries to navigate his way to a victory. He let a hand go after Mikko Jaatinen three-bet him all-in for over 600,000. Mattern raised to 95,000 from the button before the Finn made his move from the small blind. The Frenchman lifted up his cards ([ks][tc]) for all behind to see and folded after giving it a minute’s thought. —MC

1.05pm: Bilyauer building with a boat

And yet again the Russian bested Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern. The Frenchman opened to 95,000 on the button and was flat called by Konstantin Bilyauer from the big blind. Both players checked the flop of [7s][Qs][Ac] and the pattern was repeated on the [Jd] turn. The [Qc] fell on the river and the Russian led out for 260,000, Mattern announced call. Bilyauer showed [Jc][Jh] to claim the pot. Mattern is at least losing small pots and winning the big ones. — NW

1.02pm: All-in and fold

Kevin Stani opened to 90,00 from the cut-off, Nicolo Calia was next to act and the Italian moved all-in for 545,000. It folded back to Stani and he elected to fold. — NW

12.52pm: Bassam Elnajjar elimination details

Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern has extended his chip lead by eliminating Bassam Elnajjar. Mattern raised from under-the-gun to 95,000 (second hand in a row he’d raised) before Mikko Jaatinen three-bet to 265,000 from the next seat along. The Elnajjar moved all-in for 860,000 from the small blind.

Mattern got a count of both players’ stacks, thought about his decision for a minute and then moved all-in. The Finn folded to leave it as a heads-up showdown:

Mattern: [ac][ad]

Elnajjar: [ah][qh]

The flop came [3h][jh][5s] giving Elnajjar a flush draw, bu the [6s] turn and [qs] river handed the pot to the Frenchman.

Remember you can review the chip counts, which are being updated constantly, on our chip count page. —MC

arnaud_mattern_shakes_hands_tallinn.JPG

Arnaud Mattern shakes Bassam Elnajjar’s hand

12.48pm: Bassam Elnajjar eliminated in 8th place for €32,000

He was busted by chip leader Arnaud Mattern – details to follow in a few moments. — SY

12.38pm: First all-in of the day

Steven van Zadelhoff has become the first player to move all-in today. Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Matter raised to 95,000 from the cut-off before the Dutchman moved all-in for around 800,000 from the BB. Mattern asked for a count before passing. —MC

12.30pm: Mattern continues to run good

He had the button on the first hand! Steven Van Zadelhoff raised to 95,000 from under the gun 1 and took the pot down uncontested. —NW

12.27pm: And we’re off!

The EPT Tallinn final table has begun! Here are your players – all friends for now… — SY

ept_tallinn_final_table.JPG

12.25pm: Short delay

Things are a little slow in getting going, what with player interviews and pictures to get done and dusted. We’ll be under way shortly. — SY

11.55pm: Welcome to Final Table day at EPT Tallinn:

The final eight players return today after four long days of poker with the aim of claiming the inaugural EPT Tallinn title. Team Poker Stars Pro Arnaud Mattern leads the way with 3.72 million chips but not too far behind are Kevin Stani and Konstantin Bilyauer. Between them, the three have around three-quarters of the chips in play. A certain five players from Finland, The Netherlands, Lebanon, Italy and Russia still have a say in this tournament though and cannot be counted out.

It’s final table day so the start of play will be a little delayed while the players do all their interviews and have their photos taken. Be sure to join us back here shortly for the start of play. In the interest of fair play we will start play at the beginning of Level 25 rather than play out the remaining 14 minutes that was left on the clock last night.

ept tallinn_day 4_arnaud mattern.jpg

Arnaud Mattern: The man they are all chasing

PokerStars Blog reporting team (in order of staff sit and go placings last night): Nick Wright (1st), Simon Young (2nd), Marc Convey and Rick Dacey (these fish were way down the field).

All photos © Neil Stoddart



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.

 

EPT Tallinn final table player profiles

ept-thumb-promo.jpgThe final table of EPT Tallinn begins at noon today (edit: things are running a little behind schedule). While it would be easy to talk only about Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern and his chance of being the first double EPT winner, there are eight players still in this.

So, without further delay, here are your EPT Tallinn final tablists:

Seat 1: Konstantin Bilyauer, 22, Moscow, Russia – 2,498,000

Student Bilyauer is playing only his second major live tournament. His first was in Egypt at the Red Sea Poker Cup in March where he bubbled the Main Event. He said he is feeling nervous about the final but has held his own so far. He busted Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier on the first day and eliminated Russian Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov early on Day 4. Bilyauer, who is currently studying for his Masters in International Relations at Moscow State University, is being cheered on in Tallinn by his friends Leo Khinchuk and Andrey Osipov.

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* * * *

Seat 2: Steven ‘SvZff’ van Zadelhoff, 31, Netherlands – 805,000

Dutch pro Van Zadelhoff first gained headlines when he won the PokerStars Sunday Million in April 2007 for over $160,000. Originally from Holland, van Zadelhoff and his girlfriend moved to Malta at the beginning of 2010 to avoid Holland’s punitive taxes on poker winnings. The change has already reaped rich rewards. Van Zadelhoff said: “I stopped smoking two years ago and now I’ve lost 30 kg. I’m physically fit and also I have mental stability. I don’t have the IRS taxing half my winnings. It’s definitely helped my game. I feel free now. It’s been a very good half year.” Van Zadelhoff, who has already earned more than a million dollars in live tournaments and is currently tenth in the Netherlands All Time Money list, has min-cashed three times at EPTs but this is by far his best EPT result to date. He started Day 4 as a short stack but has steadily built up and now has 805,000.

ept tallinn_day 4_steven van zadelhoff.jpg


* * * *

Seat 3: Kevin Stani, 27, Stavanger, Norway – PokerStars qualifier – 2,586,000

Stani has been playing poker for seven years after taking up the game while studying Business Management in Dakota. Once he graduated in 2003, he turned pro and has been playing full time ever since. He started off only playing tournaments but now splits his time 50/50 between tournaments and cash games. He has enjoyed good online results: fifth in last year’s $10,000 High Roller WCOOP for around $130,000 and he also won the PokerStars Sunday 500 about a year ago for approx. $100,000. His best live result to date was 127th place in the WSOP Main Event in Las Vegas last month for $57,102. He also came 127th in a WSOP $2,000 side event.. but he has gone well past 127th at EPT Tallinn and could well be heading for a career-best live cash. Stani was one of the last players to qualifier for EPT Tallinn, winning his seat in a $530 qualifier on PokerStars just a few days before the event began. This is his third EPT – he cashed in San Remo and was close to the money at last season’s Grand Final.

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* * * *

Seat 4: Nicolo Calia, 57, Rome, Italy – 637,000 chips

Retired software developer and nuclear engineer Calia first took up poker three years ago when his nephew opened a card room in Rome and invited him along. It was there that he won a seat to EPT4 San Remo in 2008 and he hasn’t looked back since. He cashed in both the San Remo main event and a side event and is now a familiar face on the EPT circuit. His biggest cash so far was when he was runner-up in the £1,500 EPT London NLHE side event for $96,275 and he also cashed in two WPT Championships (Venice and Barcelona) as well as this year’s WSOP Main Event, finishing 170th for $57,102. The married father-of-two has a total of seven EPT cashes to his name but this is his first EPT Main Event final table. He said: “Poker has been my big passion for two years. I have often made it to the last three tables, but never the final. I am very proud and excited to play my first EPT final table”.

nicolo_calio_ept_tallinn.JPG


* * * *

Seat 5: Bassam “Bissobentley” Elnajjar, 50, Beirut, Lebanon – 744,000 chips

Elnajjar has been playing poker for years but only took up Texas Hold’em about three years ago. Online he has had a few small cashes but he often competes in – and wins – the twice-weekly tournaments held at Lebanon’s only casino, the Casino du Liban. The Lebanese poker community is very close and and Elnajjar is being cheered on here in Tallin his friend and countryman Nicolas Chouity, the EPT6 Grand Final winner. This is Elnajjar’s first EPT.

bassam_elnajjar_ept_tallinn.JPG


* * * *

Seat 6: Dmitry Vitkind, Moscow, Russia – PokerStars qualifier – 502,000 chips

Vitkind, who won his seat to EPT Tallinn in a $22 Rebuy satellite on PokerStars, has cashed three times on the EPT including 73rd at the EPT6 Grand Final in May for €25,000. He also came tenth in a PCA side event in January. His best live result though was third place in the $5,000 Bellagio Cup in Las Vegas in July for $97,000. He also came third at PokerStars Russian Poker Series side event in Riga last week for €7,000. He won his trip to Riga on PokerStars.

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* * * *

Seat 7: Arnaud Mattern, 30, Paris, France – Team PokerStars Pro – 3,720,000 chips

Before taking up poker in 2004, Arnaud was a well-known backgammon player. His poker career started online with both cash games and tournaments, Limit and No Limit. By 2006, he was also enjoying success at live events including wins in London and Italy. He first came to international attention when he took down the inaugural EPT Prague event in Season 4 for €708,400. He came close to winning a second title the next season when he came fifth at EPT Warsaw. He has cashed at several EPTs since then and went deep in last year’s WSOP-E in London. In May this year he made the final of the WPT in Paris, finishing seventh for €82,000. He is known for his mathematical approach to the game and has been described as “disciplined, cold and calculating”.

ept tallinn_day 4_arnaud mattern.jpg


* * * *

Seat 8: Mikko Jaatinen, 31, Espoo, Finland – 1,166,000 chips

Jaatinen has been playing poker for six years but just as a hobby. This is by far his biggest result to date so far. He is a post-graduate student studying for a PhD in Economics. Mikko was competing in Tallinn alongside his better-known brother Jussi who is a very successful player in his own right and will be able to offer more than ample support for the final. His studies are the main priority in his life right now so even if he manages to win EPT Tallinn, he says he will still be selective in how many EPTs he plays in the future.

ept tallinn_day 4_mikko jaatinen.jpg




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EPT Tallinn Day 4: Level 23, 24 & 25 updates (20,000-40,000, ante 4,000)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg7.35pm: Done for the day

With the elimination of Jonathan Weekes play is done for the day. The final eight will return at 12pm tomorrow to battle for the first prize of €400,000. Leading the way is Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern who is still in with a shout of becoming the first two-time EPT winner. A full wrap of today’s dramas will be with you shortly. —NW

7.34pm: Final table chips

Here’s what they’ll be sitting down with tomorrow. Arnaud Mattern should sleep well tonight: — SY

Arnaud Mattern, France, Team PokerStars Pro, 3,720,000

Kevin Stani, Norway, PokerStars qualifier, 2,586,000

Konstantin Bilyauer, Russia, 2,498,000

Mikko Jaatinen, Finland, 1,166,000

Steven van Zadelhoff, Netherlands, 805,000

Bassam Elnajjar, Lebanon, 744,000

Nicolo Calia, Italy, 637,000

Dmitry Vitkind, Russia, PokerStars qualifier, 502,000

7.30pm: Johnathan Weekes eliminated in 9th place

There will be no British player at the final table of EPT Tallinn as Jonathan Weekes has been eliminated in ninth place. It folded to Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern in the small blind and he raised to 115,000, Jonathan Weekes moved all-in for 690,000 and before his chips had crossed the line Mattern had announced call.

Weekes: [Ah][8d]

Mattern: [As][Qs]

Flop: [Qd][Js][3h]

Mattern was now well in the lead

Turn: [9h]

Weekes could win by hitting a ten.

River: [4s]

It was not to be and the Brit shook hands with Mattern as he left the table. The Team PokerStars pro is the chip leader with 3,950,000. —NW

7.20pm: 2.5 million chip race

Kevin Stani is up to over 2.5 million chips after winning a race against chip leader (former now) Konstantin Bilyauer. Bilyauer opened to 95,000 and then called the 1.251 million all-in push from the Norwegian. Big showdown hand:

Biliauer: [as][kh]

Stani: [jd][jc]

The board ran [2s][th][9c][4d][qs] to send the monster pot Stani’s way. -MC

7.10pm: Orange chips

They’re worth 25,000 each and were introduced when the players combined to one table. A few hands ago Jonathan Weekes moved all-in from the cut off for approximately 700,000 and received no callers. He did though get a cheer from a couple of friends of his on the rail and he turned to them and said: “Woo, got my first orange chip,” he’ll be hoping to get his hands on a lot more of them no doubt. —NW

7.05pm: Back to no flops

In a succession of hands we saw all the action conclude before the dealer had a chance to impress with her flop-dealing skills.

Hand 1: It’s folded around to Kevin Stani in the small blind, who moves all-in to take the blinds and antes.

Hand 2: Steven van Zadelhoff makes it 95,000 from the cut off, and Stani moves all in for the second hand running, from the button. It’s 1,150,000 total for Van Zadelhoff, and that’s too much.

Hand 3: Konstantin Bilyauer makes it 100,000 and takes the blinds and antes.

Hand 4: This time it’s folded around to Nicolo Calia and the Italian moves all in for his 450,000 – and takes the blinds and antes. — SY

6.55pm: Big stacks playing pots

The two biggest stacks at the table Konstantin Bilyauer and Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern have certainly not been afraid to play pots against each other. In a recent example Mattern made it 95,000 to go pre-flop from middle position and Bilyauer called on the button. The flop fell [4h][As][6h] Mattern check folded to Bilyauer’s bet of 180,000. —NW

6.45pm: Abusing the bubble?

There are two bubbles in every tournament; the money bubble and the final table bubble. At both junctures you’ll find big stacks trying to put pressure on the smaller stacks, playing on the fact they have the chips to bust them. It’s a powerful weapon to have as no-one wants to bust in 9th and miss out on the shenanigans tomorrow.

Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern put in a three-bet to 265,000 from the BB after Nicolo Calia raised to 100,000 from the hijack. Calia had around a million back and thought for an age before folding. Mattern over the three million mark now. —MC

6.30pm: Dmitry doubles

The first showdown of the ‘final table’ was of the all-in variety. Bassam Elnajjar opened to 92,000 from middle position and next to act Dmitry Vitkind moved all-in for 288,000. It folded back to Elnajjar who called:

Vitkind: [Ad][Jc]

Elnajjar: [Ac][10d]

The board ran out [Js][3c][2s][Qc][8d]. Elnajjar is down to around 750,000. —NW

6.25pm: Level up

We’re into level 25. There was no break as players just had one when they were breaking to one table.

6.15pm: I see no flops

It’s all raise and take at the moment, so not a lot of detail on this one except to say Kevin Stani, Arnaud Mattern, Nicolai Callio, Konstantin Balyaur and Bassam Elnajjar have all raised pre-flop to take the blinds and antes. — SY

6.10pm: Play resumes

There is eight minutes left of Level 24.

6.05pm: Final Nine Table draw and chip counts

Seat one: Konstantin Bilyauer — 3,869,000

Seat two: Steven van Zadelhoff — 843,000

Seat three: PokerStars qualifier Kevin Stani — 1,048,000

Seat four: Nicolo Calia — 628,000

Seat five: Bassam Elnajjar — 1,029,000

Seat six: Dmitry Vitkind — 368,000

Seat seven: Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern — 2,900,000

Seat eight: PokerStars qualifier Jonathan Weekes — 758,000

Seat nine: - Mikko Jaatinen: - 1,472,000

5.55pm: Bilyauer wins another big pot

At the same time as Vallo Maidla was being eliminated on table two, a big hand played out on table one. Kevin Stani opened to 70,000 on the button and was three-bet by Arnaud Mattern to 255,000 total. Next to act was Konstantin Bilyauer and he cold four bet to 630,000 total. Stani looked pained, he took his sunglasses off, starred at Bilyauer and thought for a long time. He had perhaps 1,000,000 back. No one was quite sure what he was going to do, perhaps even Stani himself? Eventually he folded.

Team PokerStars Pro Mattern no asked of Bilyauer, “Will you show if I fold?” The Russian didn’t answer, Mattern and Bilyauer are the two biggest stacks both with over 3,000,000. Eventually Mattern folded [Jd][Js] face up, Bilyauer responded in kind showing [ad][kd]. Stani intimated that he had folded the best hand, claiming he had pocket queens. —NW

5.50pm: Re-draw

The remaining nine players are now being sat at one table following a redraw, the details of which will follow shortly. This is not the ‘real’ final table, of course, as we need to lose one more player to make a proper final table of eight. — SY

5.45pm: Vallo Maidla eliminated in 10th place for €25,000

The Estonian moved all in for his last 293,000 with [qc][10c] and got a call from Finland’s Mikko Jaatinen who tabled [5d][5s]. Jaatinen, with more than a million chips, had Maidla well covered, and took all his chips when the board ran a harmless [6d][9s][7s][2d][kh]. — SY

mikko_jaatinen_ept_tallinn_4.JPG

Mikko Jaatinen

5.40pm: Poor old Vitkind

Dmitry Vitkind is the short stack with 300,000 and by his expressions every time he looks at this cards and folds he’s very card dead. To make matters even worse for him he just got a walk in the BB and that would normally be a good thing but when you have ace-king you certainly want action. He open folded and gave out an almost resigned laugh. —MC

5.35pm: Igor Ivashkiv eliminated in 11th place for €18,000

Bassam Elnajjar was the assassin. He opened to 92,000 from early position and Ivashkiv moved all-in for 326,000 from the small blind, Elnajjar quickly called.

Ivashkiv: [Ac][6s]

Elnajjar: [Ah][Jd]

The board ran out [7d][3d][4s][4d][9h]. One more elimination and they’ll be a re-draw of the final nine. —NW

5.20pm: Small one for the Norwegian

Steven van Zadelhoff and Kevin Stani have been at it again in the blinds. Once again it was a limped pot, this it brought a [3d][kh][2c] flop. Stani check-called a 65,000 bet before they checked through the [7s] turn. The river came [ks] and the Norwegian led for 130,000 prompting a fold from Van Zadelhoff. Van Zadelhoff on around 800,000 to Stani’s 1.45 million. —MC

5.10pm: Mattern takes a nibble

Arnaud Mattern just reminded Konstantin Bilyauer that this tournament has more than one big stack.

It was folded around to the Frenchman in the small blind who raised to 65,000. On his left, the big stack of Bilyauer, who made the call. Both checked the [js][7d][ah] flop, but on the [kh] turn Mattern made it 75,000 – again Bilyauer called. When the [9c] fell on the river, Mattern wasted no time in firing out 140,000 – call. Mattern had [ad][10d], Bilyauer [as][4s].

With that, Mattern rose to 2,650,000 and Bilyauerwas pegged back to 3,275,000. — SY

konstantin_bilyaver_ept_tallinn_41.JPG

Konstantin Bilyauer

5.05pm: Konstantin continues to crush

His stack is only going in one direction at the moment, upwards. He just won a meaty pot against Jonathan Weekes. The British player raised under the gun (I missed the exact amount but it was around 75,000) and was called by Bilyauer in the big blind. The flop fell [Qh][8c][Js], Bilyauer checked, Weekes bet 130,000 and Bilyauer called. On the [10c] turn Bilyauer led out for 230,000, Weekes had around 600,000 total and elected to fold. —NW

4.55pm: Small one for the Dutchman

Steven van Zadelhoff has taken a small pot off Kevin Stani in a battle of the blinds. A limped pot brought a [5s][6s][3h] flop where Van Zadelhoff called a 30,000 bet to see the [ah] turn. Stani check-called a 55,000 bet before they checked through the [kc] river. Van Zadelhoff tabled [ts][5h] and it was good as his Norwegian opponent folded. —MC

4.40pm: Bilyauer busts Ojala to extend lead

Well, life is good when your’e running well. So it is for Konstantin Vilyaver, who has just knocked out Toni Ojala to increase his lead further over second-placed Arnaud Mattern.

Bilyauer opened with a raise to 70,000 – and then called when Ojala moved all-in for 335,000. Ojala had a good deal of hope, his [ad][jd] not far behind the Russian’s [8s][8d], but the [5h][6h][8d] flop ended his tournament life there and then. Ojala leaves with €18,000, while Bilyaver soars to 3,350,000 chips. — SY

4.30pm: Jaatinen slow plays Teran out the tourney

Oscar Teran limped in the small blind and Mikko Jaatinen checked behind. The Venezuelan led the [8s][9c][3h] flop for 55,000 and was raised to 155,000 by the Finn. Teran called for a large chunk of his stack and put the remainder, some 130,000, in on the [th] turn. Jaatinen slowly called.

Teran: [jc][td]

Jaatinen: [as][ac]

Teran had plenty of outs, 13 if you want to count them, but none of them arrived and Teran is out in 13th for €14,000. That’s also a fifteen minute break and another jump in the blinds. — RD

ept tallinn_day 4_mikko jaatinen.jpg

Jaatinen slow played aces but almost got burnt on the turn



4.20pm: Bukara busted by Bilyauer

Massive pot alert, a pot of 3,200,000 to be exact. It all started innocently enough, Perica Bukara opened to 58,000 from the cut off and was called by Konstantin Bilyauer in the big blind. On the flop of [7h][10h][3s], Bilyauer check-called a bet of 80,000. The [7c] turn was where it all went off though. Bilyauer checked again, this time Bukara fired a bet of 180,000. Bilyauer then check-raised to 410,000 total. Bukara began to tank, their stacks were pretty close, both had almost 1,500,000 before the turn action. After a few minutes Bukara quietly announced all-in. You could see Bilyauer was not that happy but after less than 10 seconds he called.

Bukara: [9s][6c]

Bilyauer: [9h][7d]

The river [10d] paired the board and gave Bilyauer a full house. Tournament staff counted down the stacks and Bilyauer with 1,472,000 had Bukara covered by less than 20,000. He now has just over 3,200,000 and is a monster chip leader. —NW

ept tallinn day 4 perica bukara.jpg

Perica Bukara busted in 14th place

4.15pm: Storakers knocked out by Stani

Johan Storakers raised from the button to 57,000 and Kevin Stani three-bet from the small blind to 115,000. Storakers thought for a short time before moving in with [6s][6h]. Stani did not slow roll his [as][ac] and Storakers did not catch up. Storakers is out in 15th. Toni Ojala is teh unlucky short stack to move from the chip-lite table to the big dog table. Good luck! — RD



ept tallinn_day 4_johan storakers.jpg

“So that wasn’t a light three-bet then?”



4pm: A showdown!

They’ve been rare have showdowns in the first 45 minutes of level 23 but one happened recently at table two. From under the gun 2 Mikko Jaatinen raised to 55,000 and got a solitary caller in the shape of big blind Dmitry Vitkind. It checked all the way down on the [4s][Qd][Jh][5s][2s] board, Jaatinen showing [10s][10c] to win the pot. Vitkind wasted little time in getting his chips back, moving all-in the next two hands and getting no callers. —NW

3.55pm: Runner-runner-runner-runner

Mikko Jaatinen is up to 740,000 after doubling-up through neighbour Igor Ivashkiv. The former opened shoved from the cut-off and was called by Ivashkiv on the button. Jaatinen had one over with his [ah][9h] to Ivashkiv’s [jh][jd] but it was his undercard that saved him on the [2s][td][8h][qs][js] board. Four cards to a straight and he virtually swaps stack sizes with Ivashkiv who is down to 485,000. —MC

3.50pm: Javed Abrahams mashed by Mattern

Arnaud Mattern has added another scalp to his tournament by knocking out Javed Abrahams in 16th. Jon Weekes had opened for 60,000 and Abrahams had moved all-in for 355,000. Before the action could get back round to Weekes Arnaud Mattern got involved forcing Weekes out of the pot.

Abrahams: [tc][th]

Mattern: [kd][kc]

The [5h][4c][7d][7h][qd] board didn’t bring a ten and that was that for Abrahams. We’re down to 15 players. — RD



ept tallinn_day 4_javad abrahams.jpg

Javed Abrahams: ko’d by Arnaud Mattern



3.45pm: Bukara bests Van Zadelhoff

From under the gun 1 Perica Bukara made his standard raise to 52,000 and was flat called by Steven van Zadelhoff. On the [4d][7d][3s] Bukara bet 80,000 and van Zafelhoff called. Both players checked the [3d][4c] turn and river, Bukara showing [8c][8d] to win the pot. —NW

3.40pm: Russia helps Italy out

Nicolo Calia has doubled up to 750,000 through Russian Dmitry Vitkind. Calia opened the pot with a raise to 52,000 from the cut-off and was called by Bassam Elnajjar in the SB before Vitkind three-bet to 145,000 from the BB. Calia quickly moved all-in for 347,000 and was committed to the pot so called when Elnajjar folded. Showdown:

Calia: [ks][js]

Vitkind: [5h][5c]

The board came [6d][9h][2c][kc][3c]. “Nice play” said the laughing Russian as he handed over some stacks of chips. He’s down to 360,000 now. —MC

3.35pm: An orbit at table one

One flop, one all-in, one three-bet and no showdowns, that’s an accurate summation of what happened at table one during the first orbit of level 23. Johan Storakers moved all-in for 390,000 over the top of a Javed Abrahams small blind raise of 70,000. Kevin Stani three-bet Jonathan Weekes 60,000 open to 155,000 and Arnaud Mattern bet the flop and turn of a [Qs][2s][7d][7h] board in a hand against Konstantin Bilyauer, the Russian folding on the turn. Cagey stuff right now. -NW

3.25pm: Steady as she goes

With two tables remaining, we’ve split our reporting duties so we have each tabled covered at the same time. I just had a shift at the ‘short-stack table’, and can report nothing has happened since the break. Nick Wright has been watching the ‘big-stack table’, and by the looks of it not a great deal is going on there either.

For the record, I had a few raise-and-takes from Oscar Teran, and one from Dmitry Vitkind. Meanwhile another hand was folded around to Nicolo Calia in the big blind, and he showed his [ah][js] with disappointment. — SY

3.15pm: Check out the chip stacks



The players are on their way back from the break so we thought we’d take a quick look at how the chip stacks balance out. Table one is heaving with around 8.24m chips while table two has just 3.827m. It’s a massive difference and could lead to one huge chip leader going into the final table should there be mjaor smash ups on table one.

Table One

Seat one: Johan Storakers— 482,000

Seat two: Kevin Stani— 825,000

Seat three: Perica Bukara— 1,438,000

Seat four: Steven van Zadelhoff— 1,055,000

Seat five: Arnaud Mattern — 1,877,000

Seat six: Konstantin Bilyauer — 1,548, 000

Seat seven: Jonathan Weekes — 1,119,000

Seat eight: Javed Abrahams — 475,000

Table two

Seat one: Oscar Teran — 443,000

Seat two: Mikko Jaatinen — 278,000

Seat three: Igor Ivashkiv -751,000

Seat four: Nicolo Calia -
293,000

Seat five: Vallo Maidla — 463,000

Seat six: Bassam Elnajjar — 499,000

Seat seven: Dmitry Vitkind — 680,000

Seat eight: Toni Ojala — 420,000

Cards are in the air as we play down to the final eight. — RD

ept tallinn_day 4_aranud mattern 2.jpg

Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern holds the chip lead

PokerStars Blog reporting team: Simon Young, Rick Dacey, Marc Convey and Nick Wright.

All photos © Neil Stoddart



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EPT Tallinn Day 4: Level 21 & 22 updates (10,000-20,000, 2,000 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg3pm: Break

That’s another 15-minute break. We’ll get some fresh chip counts over to you shortly. — RD

2.58pm: Big hand for Bilyauer

Arnaud Mattern opened the pot for 45,000 and Konstantin Bilyauer made a small three-bet to 70,000. Mattern called. Both players checked the [6s][ad][8s] flop but when the [2d] was turned Mattern led for 78,000. Bilyauer called. The [7d] slowed Mattern down who check-called 95,000 on the river. Bilyauer showed [as][kc] to take the pot and Mattern flipped the [ah]. It’s a 500,000 chip swing between the two players. — RD

2.55pm: Van Zadelhoff makes most of position part two

It’s been a good level for Steven van Zadelhoff, he doubled through Arnaud Mattern, won a nice pot from Konstantin Bilyauer and had now taken some chips from Perica Bukara in a blind on blind battle. Bukara made it 55,000 to play from the small blind and van Zadelhoff called. Both players checked the [6d][7h][5d] flop. On the [Jd] turn Bukara bet 65,000 and van Zadelhoff called. On the [7c] river Bukara fired again this time 85,000, again van Zadelhoff smooth called. Bukara showed [Kh][3c], Van Zadelhoff showed the winner [Kd][Jh]. — NW

2.50pm: Weekes revving up

Jon Weekes started yesterday as chip leader and has been up and down ever since. His current direction is certainly the former though. He raised to 50,000 from the small blind and fellow Brit Javad Abrahams three-bet from the big blind to 125,000. Weekes moved all-in and Abrahams picked up a nice chunk of chips. Next hand the action folded to Weekes who raised the button and scooped the blinds. — RD

2.47pm: Action but still no showdown

The action just picked a little on table two when Bassam Elnajjar raised to 48,000 to face a 321,000 all-in push from Toni Ojala in the small blind. The raise was too much for Elnajjar to contend with and he folded pocket sevens face-up. —MC

2.45pm: Slow down

After the whirlwind start to today it’s all tightened up. It’s been at least 45 minutes since the last bust out (okay, there was a re-draw in that time). Eight still left to go. — SY

2.40pm: Van Zadelhoff makes most of position

Steven van Zadelhoff has three big stacks to his direct left, he just played a pot with one of them, namely Konstantin Bilyauer. Van Zadelhoff opened to 42,000 from the button and Bilyauer called from the big blind. On the [8d][Qs][4h] flop Bilyauer check-called a bet of 60,000. Both players checked the [4s] turn. On the [10h] river, Bilyauer checked once more, van Zadelhoff bet 140,000. Bilyauer went deep into the tank for a good three minutes before eventually calling, van Zadelhoff showed [Qc][10c] and dragged the pot. —NW

2.35pm: Big stacks being cautious

On table one the big stacks have been respecting each other, three recent examples:

Hand One: Arnaud Mattern opened from middle position to 45,000 and was flat called by Kevin Stani from the big blind. Both players checked to the river of a [7d][2c][6d][7h][3d] board, once Stani checked the river, Mattern fired 68,000 and Stani folded.

Hand Two: Kevin Stani completed from the small blind and Perica Bukara checked from the big blind. Neither player put anymore money in the pot as the board ran out [10c][7s][Jc][9c][Qc] Bukara’s [7c] good enough for the pot.

Hand three: Kevin Stani raised from mid-position to 48,000 and was only called by Jonathan Weekes in the BB to go to a [9h][qd][as] flop. Both players checked as they did with the [5h] turn and [2d] river. Stani tabled [jd][jh] and it was good as Weekes mucked. —NW/MC

2.20pm: Bassam bashes up Ivashkiv

Igor Ivashkiv opened the pot for 46,000 from the hijack and Bassam Elnajjar called in the small blind. Both players checked the [js][2h][3h] flop but upon the turn of the [9c] Bassam Elnajjar moved all-in. Ivashkiv was not interested and passed. — RD

2.15pm: Storakers back in the club(s)

Johan Storakers got a key double up through Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern. The Swede pushed for 216,000 with [ac][qc] and was called from the button by Mattern holding [ah][qd]. Storakers needed a little luck and got it when the board ran [ad][3c][4c][8c][kd]. — SY

ept tallinn_day 4_chip stack.jpg

Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern’s monster chip stack

2.10: Mattern runs brave bluff

Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern is back up to 2.15 million chip after bluff his neighbour Konstantin Bilyauer in the blinds. The flop came [kd][jc][ac] and Mattern saw his 65,000 c-bet raised to 146,00 by the Russian. His response was to re-raise to 365,000. Bilyauer thought for a while but let it go only to be shown [qs][4s] by the Frenchman. —MC

2.05pm: Table re-draw

With the elimination of Simone Falorni in 17th place we’re down to two tables. Here’s how they stack up:

Table One:

Seat one: Johan Storakers

Seat two: Kevin Stani

Seat three: Perica Bukara

Seat four: Steven van Zadelhoff

Seat five: Arnaud Mattern

Seat six: Konstantin Bilyauer

Seat seven: Jonathan Weekes

Seat eight: Javed Abrahams

Table two:

Seat one: Oscar Teran

Seat two: Mikko Jaatinen

Seat three: Igor Ivashkiv

Seat four: Nicolo Calia

Seat five: Vallo Maidla

Seat six: Bassam Elnajjar

Seat seven: Dmitry Vitkind

Seat eight: Toni Ojala

By our reckoning seven of the eight biggest stacks are on table one, check out our chip count page for the latest chip counts. —NW

2pm: Simone Falorni is out in 17th (€10,000)

Vallo Maidla, the final Estonian left in the field, has just busted Simone Falorni in 17th place. Vallo Maidla had moved in from the hijack with [js][kc] and Falorni insta-called with [8h][8d]. The flop was safe for the Italian with [5s][ac][6h] but the turn put Maidla ahead with the [jd] and a blank on the river, the [2c], saw the field drop to two tables. — RD

Simone_Falorni_ept_tallin2.jpg.jpg

Simone Falorni getting eliminated

1.55pm: Steven van Zadelhoff doubles through Arnaud Mattern

The Team PokerStars Pro opened to 44,000 and van Zadelhoff moved all-in for 322,000. After requesting a count Mattern called.

Van Zadelhoff: [Ah][Ad]

Mattern: [As][Qh]

The flop of [Jd][10c][8s] gave Mattern some outs and he started chuckling. The turn and river of [6h][6c] bought no help. —NW

1.50pm: Jevtejev flushed out by Mattern

Team PokerStars Pro Aranud Mattern is up to a whopping 2.3million after eliminating Anatoli Jevtejev. Mattern raised to 45,000 from under-the-gun and then moved all-in when the Lithuanian three-bet from the BB. Jevtejev snap-called with [as][js] and was racing Mattern’s [8c][8d]. The board ran [kd][jd][3h][7d][5d] to see Jevtejev hit his jack but Mattern continued his run good with a running four-flush, —MC

1.45pm: Stani doubles up

Carlo Bordogna was the victim. From the button Kevin Stani made it 48,000 to go and Bordogna moved all-in from the big blind, Stani called.

Stani: [9h][9s]

Bordogna: [Ah][Js]

The board a suck and re-suck of [7c][6h][Ad][9c][3h], the stacks of the two players were really close after Thomas Kremser had counted them down Stani had 463,000 and Bordogna had him covered but only by 80,000. Those chips went in the very next hand with [9s][6c] but couldn’t overtake Konstantin Bilyauer’s [Ad][Kc] Bordogna exited in 19th place. —NW

1.45pm: Ojala makes a great call

Toni Ojala has navigated this field very quietly but efficiently – in much the same way he did on his way to the final table of EPT Barcelona last year – but he has just had a major dent in his ambitions here. Ojala opened the action on the button and was shoved on by Oscar Teran in the small blind. Ojala tanked and then made the call.

Teran: [jh][qh]

Ojala: [as][9s]

The flop killed Ojala in the hand with [2h][th][8h] leaving the Finn with 190,000. Teran has over 500,000 now. — RD

1.40pm: PLAY RESUMES

1.27pm: Break

That’s the end of today’s first level, a level in which we lost six players. We’ll have a full round of chips up shortly. — SY

1.26pm: Luck runs out for Linov

Matvey Linov has become our 20th place finisher taking home €10,000. He raised to 90,000 (12,000 back) and then called off the extra when Toni Ojala moved all-in from the SB. Linov soon found his [ah][8s] was dominated by Ojala’s [ac][ks] and he failed to come from behind on the [qd][jc][ts][kh][tc] board. —MC

1.25pm: Aggression wins

Bassam Elnajjar from Lebanon raised under the gun to 38,000, only for Anatoli Jevtejev to re-raise to 80,000. Elnajjar was having none of that – firing it up again to 178,000. But that still wasn’t enough – Jevtejev, from Lithuania announced he was all-in for 385 total. Elnajjar looked aghast, and folded. — SY

1.22pm: Scandi vs Scandi: Storakers vs Stani

Scandinavia has more than its fair share of good poker players and two of them just clashed in a pot. Kevin Stani made it 35,000 to play from under the gun, everyone folded apart from big blind Johan Storakers who put in the 19,000 required to see a flop. Both players checked the [Ah][5d][2c] flop. On the [2h] turn Storakers bet 65,000 and was called. The river was the [7s] and both players checked. Storakers showed [10h][9h], Stani [8d][8h], Storakers is down to 320,000, Stani is on 480,000. —NW

1.20pm: Who open folds A-K?

Matvey Linov has just folded ace-king face up in the big blind with just nine big blinds to a single raise. Who does that? Someone that didn’t realise that a raise had been made. Linov had enjoyed a treble up since his huge loss (see below). It turns out he would have been racing against pocket sixes. If he doubles in another spot it could turn out to have been a very fortunate mistake. — RD

1.15pm: Mattern takes care of another one

Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern is up to 1.9 million chips after busting Antti Karkkainen. Mattern raised to 36,000 from the cut-ff before the Finn moved all-in for just over 200,000. Mattern got a count and made the call with [ac][6d] to Karkkainen’s [2c][2d] and the board came [4d][6s][td][5h][9c] to pair Mattern’s six. “Nice call” said another tablemate to Mattern.

“I don’t like to fold” responded the Frenchman making sure all his opponents know he’s to play and not to hang around and ladder up the pay scale. —MC



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Arnaud Mattern is hoovering up chips



1.05pm: Joy for Ivashkiv, dismay for Linov

To say that Matvey Linov could be considered an active player would be more than fair so it’s understandable why Igor Ivashkiv four-bet shoved on the Russian with [9c][tc] for 338,000. Ivashkiv had opened the action with a middle position raise to 34,000 and Linov three-bet to 91,000 which caused Ivashkiv to move all-in. Linov considered his chips – he would be left with a little under 40,000 if he called and lost – before he announced that he would call. Linov tabled [ac][qd].

The wet flop hit both players with [ah][9s][jc] and Linov went further ahead with the [qs] turn before the [9h] rivered. Ivashkiv stood up and pushed the air as he shouted jubilantly in Russian as he moved up to 790,000. — RD

1pm: Demidov busts

This one involved so much aggression pre-flop that we were expecting to see two monster hands. We did not. Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov raised from the button to 35,000 before Konstantin Bilyauer re-raised to 90,000 from the small blind. Back to Demidov, who thought for a moment or two before raising it up again to 200,000. Bilyauer moved all-in, covering his fellow Russian. Demidov looked a little shocked at that, but was committed to the hand, making the call. The cards?

Demidov: [5h][5s]

Bilyauer: [ks][qd]

That was a surprise to many. While Demidov was ahead, the board came [4c][7h][8s][qs][4d] to shoot Bilyauer to victory. Demidov leaves in 22nd for €10,000, while Bilyauer shoots up to 1.7million chips. — SY



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Demidov was knocked out by Bilyauer (foreground)

12.55pm: Home win

Vallo Maidla is the only remaining Estonian in the field and he just doubled through Toni Ojala to stay alive. Ojala opened to 36,000 from early position and Maidla moved all-in from the button for 163,000. Ojala made the call.

Maidla: [As][Ac]

Ojala: [Ad][Kc]

The board was a safe one for the Estonian running out [Jh][7h][6c][2s][10s]. There’s an Estonian film crew here today, as there has been every day, understandably today they’re mostly hanging around Maidla’s table. —NW

12.50pm: Shove happy Calia

Nicolo Calia is getting very shove happy at the moment but we’ve got no reason to believe that he’s doing it light. His first shove was under the gun for around 260,000. He got no action and flashed [jc][jh]. A few hands later Team PokerStars Pro Aranuad Mattern opened under the gun for 36,000 and Calia moved all-in over the top for 265,000. Mattern gave it some thought before tapping the table and folding his hand. — RD

12.45pm: Abrahams doubles again

Javed Abrahams has doubled through Johan Storakers for the second time today. The Brit opened with a raised to 35,000 and Storakers moved all-in quickly. Abrahams called even quicker with pocket aces, which were nicely ahead of Storakers’ pair of tens. The board bricked for the Swede, sending him down to 260,000. Abrahams, however, now finds himself up to the relatively dizzy heights of 530,000. — SY

12.40pm: Read all about it!

Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov is a clever chap. He’s making sure he keeps up with the best updates from Tallinn by reading the PokerStars Blog between hands. Here he is… — SY

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Good news: Ivan Demidov

12.35pm: Mattern straightens out Donato

Cooler alert. Attilio Donato raised to 32,000 from under the gun and Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern gave him a spin from the big blind. The flop fell [8h][10s][2s] and Mattern check called a c-bet of 42,000. The turn was the [7c], once more Mattern checked. Donato fired a second barrel this time 120,000, Mattern moved all-in, he had Donato well covered, Donato snap called.

Mattern: [Jh][9h]

Donato: [7h][7d]

Donato needed the board to pair, or the case seven, but the river was the [5h]. ‘Oh my god,’ said a visibly shaken Donato as he left the table. Mattern now has 1,600,000 and is the chip leader. —NW



12.30pm: All-in is the move from the BB

The last three hands from table 28 have al been button versus BB battles with the BB coming out on top every time. Antti Karkkainen, Konstantin Bilyauer and Javed Abrahams all raised from the button only to face all-in moves from Jonathan Weekes, Javed Abrahams and Kevin Stani in the respective BB. The re-raises were big enough on every occasion to force the fold from the button. —MC

12.20pm: Filskov kickered out

Nathanael Filskov, a Danish PokerStars qualifier is out in 24th place. The hand started off quietly enough, with Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern opening with a raise to 36,000, but then it all kicked off.

Filskov moved all-in for 155,000, and quick as a flash Attilio Donato moved all in as well for 285,000. It was folded to Steven Van Zadelhoff, who looked mightily upset to fold, later saying he had A-Q. Mattern got out of the way and we had a showdown:

Donato: [ad][kd]

Filskov: [kc][jc]

The board ran [ks][qs][9c][8s][7c], and the man from Denmark was off to collect his €10,000. — SY

12.15pm: First elimination

Vitalijs Zavorotnis is our first casualty of the day. Bassam Elnajjar raised to 38,000 from the hijack and Zavorotnis three-bet to 110,000. Elnajjar wasted no time in announcing all-in and the Lithuanian made the call.

Elnajjar: [ah][as]

Zavorotnis : [jh][jc]

The flop brought Zavorotnis a lot of hope with [qs][9c][ts] but the turn and river blanked out with [3s] and [2c]. Zavorotnis was left with just 4,000 and got it all-in the next hand with [4s][4c] against Mikko Jaatinen’s [jh][jc]. — RD

12.10pm: Javed Abrahams doubles up

It folded to Javed Abrahams in the small blind and he moved all-in for his last 143,000. From the big blind Johan Storakers asked the Brit how much he had started the day with, did the maths and announced ‘Ok I’ll gamble with you’ and turned over pocket threes. Abrahams opened [Ah][3h] and was in trouble. The board ran out [Js][7d][Kd][As][10d], Storakers started the day with 656,000. —NW

12PM: PLAY UNDERWAY

11.55am: Welcome back to EPT Tallinn Day 4

We didn’t quite make it down to the 24 players yesterday as we hoped. 25 stubborn players return for the penultimate day of poker action and we will play as long as it takes to get down to our final table of 8 players.

Perica Bukara is our chips leader at the start of play with 1,326,000 but he is closely followed by Konstantin Bilyauer with 1,240,000 and Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern with 1,155,000. Bukara starts with Bilyauer to his right but this interesting dynamic won’t last too long as their table is breaking once we lose more one player. Table 28 has definitely thrown up the most interesting draw with Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov sat with Johan Storakers, Jonathan Weekes and Javed Abrahams.

Join us back here in five minutes when play is due to start.



PokerStars Blog reporting team: In order of flights taken this year. Simon Young (27), Marc Convey (23), Rick Dacey (17) and Nick Wright (7)

All photos © Neil Stoddart



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.

 

A bad day for monkeys as Arnaud Mattern shines at EPT Tallinn

ept-thumb-promo.jpgIt’s traditional to tell a performer to ‘break a leg’ before he takes to the stage, but it’s something we can’t say to Arnaud Mattern because he already has broken his leg in an ill-advised tennis match in Las Vegas during the recent WSOP. Instead, I suppose a more conservative bon chance will have to do for the French Team PokerStars Pro, who returns for Day 4 of EPT Tallinn tomorrow as one of the chip leaders.

The reason for all this bonhomie from us grumps here on the PokerStars Blog is not just because Mattern is one of our prized performers, but more so because he has a real chance of becoming the first ever double EPT champion.

There’s been a monkey on the back of every former EPT winner (57, count them), with none able to repeat their achievement, despite several close calls. Mattern, with 1,155,000 chips at play’s end tonight, has a very good shout. Come on, Monsieur Mattern, we don’t care about animal rights; kill that cheeky chimp once and for all. We never want to see it again.

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Going ape: Arnaud Mattern

Mattern, who won EPT Prague back in Season 4 for just over $1million, came from nowhere in the last few levels of play to be the first to break through the million-chip barrier. Having built up a stack with some power plays that included busting fellow Team PokerStars Pro Vadim Markushevski, Mattern moved to a table that was already graced by Luca Pagano (more on him in a little bit) and Jonathan Weekes, who began the day as chip leader.

It wasn’t long before Mattern won a succession of big pots, including one against Weekes and another against Eddie Tasbas, the Swede whose impressive beard belies his age. He was only 21 last week.

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Eddie Tasbas

While Mattern gives his large caliber, monkey-hunting blunderbuss a polish tonight, there are those determined that it should be unnecessary for him to use it. As well as Weekes (872,000), the Serbian Perica Bukara, who was Day 1B chip leader, has his own eyes on the title and €400,000 first prize here in Tallinn. He sits with 1,326,000 and the overnight chip lead.

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Perica Bukara

The other main challenger is Konstantin Bilyaver, who soared to 1,240,000 by the end of play after an extraordinary hand on Mattern’s table. On a [9s][ah][10c] flop, Bilyaver, Steven van Zadelhoff and Chady Merhej were all in. The reason for this apparent madness?

Merhej: [9c][9h]

Van Zadelhoff: [ad][9d]

Bilyaver: [10d][10s]

So set over set, over two pair. The turn and river blanked, more or less tripling up the man from Russia.

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Konstantin Bilyaver

Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov, our new best friend because he reads our updates on his iPad between hands, is another who will sleep well tonight. He was a real force in the early skirmishes today, then lost half his stack in a massive hand against Day 1A chip leader Ali Tekintamgac. The German’s kings overtook Demidov’s aces when a king hit the flop. But while Tekintamgac went out in 36th for €7,200, Demidov got back in it to end the day with 729,000. Johan Storakers from Sweden was another strong finisher with 656,000.

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Ivan Demidov

But for all those happy faces, there were others who were left looking distinctly grumpy – or at least a little unhappy. Luca Pagano had made it to his record-lengthening 15th EPT cash, a quite brilliant achievement, after easing through the bubble with more than 300,000 chips. But a horrible hand against Mikko Jaatinen, who cracked the Italian Team PokerStars Pro’s aces with pocket jacks, left him perilously short with little more than 100,000. He busted soon after in 26th place (€8,000) when his A-6 was overtaken by Van Zadelhoff’s K-10.

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Luca Pagano

Leaving with nothing today were the likes of Team PokerStars Pros Katja Thater, Michael Keiner and Vadim Markushevski. Thater was floored by Friend of PokerStars Pierre Neuville when her pocket queens were overtaken by his A-K, an ace falling on the river. “I’m very sorry,” said Neuville. Probably not as sorry as Thater. Keiner had been short-stacked all day and never got going, while Markushevski showed early promise before falling to that man Mattern.

Neuville, the so-called Serial PokerStars Qualifier (he won a mere six packages to Tallinn on PokerStars) did leave with some cash a little later. He started the day splendidly, securing two double ups, but that was as good as it got. He finished in 41st place for €6,700 when he ran his A-K into Seppo Parkkinen’s pocket sixes and failed to get there.

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Pierre Neuville

So, having started the day with 84 players, we’re now down to 25. Somewhere in there is our EPT Tallinn champion. He (and since there are no ladies left we can be sure of that) could be any one of them, but we have nailed our flag to the mast of that man Mattern. Come Monday night, we hope to be rid of the monkey forever.

To see how things stand right now, you’ll find the full chip counts over on the, er, chip count page, and you can see who has made the money so far by clicking on the – you guessed it – payouts page. Catch up with all of our coverage today by clicking on some or all (that makes us happy) of the links below:

Levels 19 & 20

Levels 17 & 18

Levels 15 & 16

Once you’ve done that, you can further your linguistic skills by trying to make sense of it all in confusing Swedish and also in perplexing German.

Our thanks as ever goes to our EPT snapper Neil Stoddart, who continues to set the standard for people who walk around with expensive-looking camera equipment.

See you tomorrow. No primate lovers allowed, however.

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All photos © Neil Stoddart



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.

 

EPT Tallinn Day 3: Level 19 & 20 updates (6,000-12,000, 1,000 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg9.10pm: That’s it, folks

All four tables have now played out their final six hands but it wasn’t an entirely uneventful process. Perica Bukara managed to pick up an additional 300,000 chips to take back the chip lead. Full report of the day’s action coming up. Play will begin again at 12 noon tomorrow where we’ll play down to the final eight. — RD

9pm: Last six hands coming to an end

A short while ago Thomas Kremser announced that we’d play six final hands and we’re coming to the end of that now. One table with tagging and bagging this very second. The other three tables are still at it. — RD

8.55pm: Pagano pummeled

Team PokerStars Pro Luca Pagano has been eliminated by Steven van Zadelhoff in a battle of the blinds. All the chips went in pre-flop with Pagano holding [ac][6s] to the Dutchman’s [kc][th]. The board ran [kh][4h][3d][td][qc] to end the Italian’s dream of claiming a maiden EPT title. Van Zadelhoff back up to 300,000. —MC

8.50pm: Monster cooler boosts Konstantin Bilyaver into chip lead

Set over set over two pair? Really? It’s a huge cooler for Steven van Zadelhoff and Chady Merhej. On a flop of [9s][ah][tc] van Zadelhoff bet 52,000 after both Konstantin Bilyaver and Merhej had checked. Bilyaver then check-raised to 135,000 and Merhej moved all-in.

Van Zadelhoff then moved all-in over the top and Bilyaver called all-in. It was a huge 1.2m pot giving the winner a golden ticket to the final table (probably).

Van Zadelhoff: [ad][9d] for two-pair

Merhej: [9c][9h] for bottom set

Bilyaver: [td][ts] for middle set

The turn and river blanked out pushing Bilyaver into the chip lead and Merhej out of the tournament. — RD



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Our new chip ledaer Konstanin Bilyaver



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This flop: the definition of a cooler

8.45pm: Heinz Kamutzki eliminated

Sadly for our German blogger Robin, the last remaining German player has been eliminated from the tournament Kamutzki was taken out by Jean-Daniel Pessina. The latter raised to around 80,000 from the small blind and Kamutzki moved all-in for 152,000 from the big blnd. Pessina now tanked for a long time, he had perhaps 180,000 in total so had invested a large porting of his stack. Eventually he called.

Pessina: [As][7s]

Kamutzki: [Kd][10h}

The board: [Ks][Js][7d][5s][Jd], Kamutzki was drawing dead on the river. —NW

8.30pm: Jorstedt out for Weekes

When Mattias Jorstedt four-bet all-in for 320,000 from the big blind he must have thought he was ahead when three-bettor Jonathan Weekes took so long to call. But as it happens his jacks were one pip behind in the pair stakes to Weekes’ pocket queens. The flop all but killed Jorstedt when the board ran out [8d][qh][5d][6h][8h]. Weekes is up to 750,000. — RD

8.25pm: Zavorotnijs takes a big pot from Bukara

I missed the pre-flop action but it was two way to a flop of [2h][Ac][10c] between Vitalijs Zavorotnijs and Perica Bukara, the amount in the pot suggested it had been three-bet pre-flop. Bukara led out for 90,000 and was flat called by Zavorotnijs. The turn bought the [4c] forcing Bukara to slow down and he checked it to Zavorotnijs who bet 110,000 and Bukara gave it up. After that hand Zavorotnijs is up to around 775,000, Bukara has just over 1,000,000. —NW



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Lovely, lovely chips



8.20pm: Lucky sevens for Karkkainen

Antti Karkkainen has just tripled-up to his obvious delight. He open shoved for 157,000 from early position and was called by Seppo Parkkinen before Attilio Donato moved all-in for around 400,000. Parkkinen quickly called to create a three-way show down:

Karkkainen: [7s][7c]

Parkkinen: [ah][kh]

Donato: [ac][kd]

The board ran out [jd][5s][9h][8c][7d]. Karkkainen clapped his hands in delight at winning nearly half a million chips. —MC

8.15pm: Coin flip (literally)

Seppo Parkkinen just came incredibly close to getting it in on a [5h][qh][js] flop against Attilio Donato of Italy. Parkkinen in the small blind had called a 62,000 three-bet squeeze from Donato in the big blind. Donato followed up on the flop by slamming in a very large stack of yellow 5,000 chips, effectively asking Parkkinen to play for his entire stack, causing the Finn to delve into his jacket pocket and toss a coin. It obviously landed on the fold side because he quickly mucked his hand. — RD

8.10pm: Two in a row for Demidov

I just saw Ivan Demidov pad his stack nicely without going to showdown. Two hands he a row he three-bet over the top of Matvey Linov’s 28,000 open. Demidov has about 640,000.—NW

8pm: Mixed fortunes with queens

Just before the break Perica Bukara lost a 230,000 pot with pocket queens when he doubled-up Vitalijs Zavorotnijs who held ace-eight. We’re not long back and he’s just won that back and more after eliminating Michal Polchlopek in a pot worth around 380,000.

The flop was out as [5h][ts][jd] before all the chips went in. Polchlopek tabled [ac][jc] but was in a world of trouble as, yet again, Bukara had [qh][qd]. The board ran out [9s][3s] to eliminate the Pole and catapult Bukara back into the chip lead with 1.2 million. —MC



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Perica Bukara has seized the chip lead with 1.2m stack



7.50pm: Stat time

We know poker fans like stats, here’s a bit of information on the last 33 players. It’s a cosmopolitan bunch with 20 nationalities represented. Players from as far a field as Venezuela and Lebanon are still alive. Italy leads the way with five players still in the hunt, Finland and Russia have four left apiece. —NW

7.35pm: Break time

That’s the end of level 19, players are on a 15 minute break, 33 of them will come back to blinds of 6000-12000, ante 1000, staff are therefore racing off the purple 500 denomination chips. Play will continue until there are 24 players left or we reach the end of level 20.—NW

7.30pm: Arnaud too strong for Weekes

Just before the break Arnaud Mattern and Jonathan Weekes clashed in a blind on blind battle. Mattern made it 28,00 from the small blind and Weekes made it 60,000 from the big blind. Mattern put in another raise to 142,000 total and Weekes gave it up. The Team PokerStars Pro now has over a million chips, 1,057,000 to be exact, and is likely the chip leader. -NW

7.25pm: Pah to being passive says Pagano

Boy, the Italian has got some game and some stones. Shortly after losing that huge pot he was right back in the action. Fellow Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern raised pre-flop to 24,000 from the hi-jack and was flat called by Johnathan Weekes from the cut-off, Pagano decided to see a flop from the big blind. They all checked the [Qh][10h][5d] flop. On the [4c] turn, Pagano moved all-in for 111,500. Mattern quickly folded but Weekes took some time before taking the same course of action. Pagano tabled [2d][3h], he doesn’t hold the EPT cashes record for nothing. The Italian is back up to 180,000. —NW

7.22pm: Devastation for Pagano

The Italian Team PokerStars Pro isn’t out but he is most certainly down, both in terms of chips (120,000) and temperament. The reason for both is that he just had aces cracked in the grimmest of ways for a 340,000 pot. Pagano raised from late position and was shoved on by Mikko Jaatinen.

Jaatinen: [jh][js]

Pagano: [as][ac]

The flop put Pagano even further ahead with a set on the [7h][qh][as] flop meaning that Mikko Jaatinen would have to hit a runner-runner to avoid elimination. I think you can imagine what’s coming next; the [2h] on the turn and the [3h] on the river. Pagano let out an anguished “No” as the final heart fell and removed himself from the action. He stood just a few feet away, leaning against the empty table behind him, jaw visibly clenching in frustation. Although he’s made a record-extending 15th EPT cash he desperately wants to win a title. — RD



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Luca Pagano: not a happy bunny



7.20pm: Million chip barrier broken

Perica Bukara is the first player to one million chips after taking a 300,000 pot off Johan Storakers. Storakers raised to 25,000 and then called Bukara’s three-bet of 65,000 to see a [kc][ks][8s] flop. The Swede check-called 85,000 bet to go to the [3d] turn where he checked to face a 185,000 bet. It was too much for him and he folded leaving himself with 800,000. Bukara flashed the [ac] to give Storakers something else to ponder. —MC

7.15pm: Javed gets some back

The UK pro had been on a bit of a slide of late but just regained some chips at the expense of Oscar Teran. Abrahams made it 20,000 to play pre-flop and Teran called from the big blind. Both players checked the [Qc][6s][7d] flop. On the [4s] turn Teran bet 30,000 and Abrahams called. This pattern repeated itself on the [2d] river, with Abrahams showing [Qd][3s] and Teran [4h][8c]. Abrahams now has around 270,000. —NW

7.12pm: Tasbas crashes out

Eddie Tasbas has played some great poker but it just wasn’t to be. Jonathan Weekes raised from middle position and Tasbas shoved from the small blind.

Weekes: [ad][td]

Tasbas: [ac][4h]

Tasbas failed to catch his three-outer and Weekes moves up to 540,000. — RD

7.10pm: Quick way to make 150 grand

Steven van Zadelhoff took 150,000 chips off two players with a five-bet jam that got through. He opened to 23,000 before a player in the next seat three-bet to 48,500 and Mattias Jorstedt four-bet to 113,000 from the SB. Van Zadelhoff’s response was to quickly jam for 460,000 for the pot as both players folded, Jorestedt face-up with two red jacks. —MC

7.05pm: Mattern on a roll

Arnaud Mattern is on a ridiculous tear at the moment and has just won another large pot. This time it was against Oleg Makovenko who got it all-in for 200,000 with [ac][tc] against Mattern’s [ad][qc]. The board faded out with [8d][qh][6h][5h][7d] and Mattern moves up to 950,000. — RD

7pm: The ace-face, check off

Seppo Parkkinen put in a raise to 23,000 from early position, next to act Attilio Donato put in a three-bet to 59,000, which was a bet Parkkinen decided to call. However that was the end of the betting as both players checked it down on a board of [5d][5h][2h][4h][7c], Parkkinen took the pot with [Ad][Kh], just pipping Donato’s [As][Qs]. —NW

6.55pm: EPT winner Arnaud Mattern to do the double?

Will Season 7 be the one that finally sees someone win their second EPT title? Well, it’s still on here because Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern is in and has chips. Mattern won the EPT Prague back in 2007 for €708,400. He just won another small pot three-betting from the big blind and another one c-betting a [2c][kc][8c] board. The Frenchman is up to 730,000. — RD



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Arnaud Mattern has been going on a chip charge



6.50pm: Double-up king

If you need a double-up just ask Javed Abrahams as he’ll be more than happy to oblige. Dmitry Vitkind is the third player he’s doubled up in the last couple of hours. He called a raise from the Russian to see a [k][t]2 flop and then moved all-in when the action checked to him. Vitkind took two minutes before calling with king-ten and it was good against Abraham’s ace-jack. The board ran out with two sixes before Vitkind scooped the 205,000 pot. Abrahams down to 230,000 now. —MC

6.40pm: Mattern tames Tasbas

Young Swede Eddis Tasbas has been moved to the Pagano/Mattern table and he was straight into the action. Mattern raised from early position to 23,000 and Tasbas three-bet to 80,000 total from the small blind. After about 20 seconds thought Mattern announced he was all-in. Tasbas had about 190,000 back and clearly didn’t like the turn of events and he did indeed elect to fold, Mattern now has around 650,000. —NW

6.35pm: Demidov and Linov go at it

Ivan Demidov and Matvey Linov are both aggressive players and so it comes as no surprise that there is three- and four-betting taking place between them. Linov opened for 23,500 in the cut-off and Demidov three-bet the button to 64,500 returning the pressure. Linov simply four-bet to 143,500 and took the pot down when Demidov eventually passed. — RD

6.30pm: Teran and Tekintamgac tangle

I joined the action on the flop of [3h][Kc][2h] there was 110,000 in the pot and Oscar Teran was deep in thought and for good reason. His neighbour Ali Tekintamgac had set him in for his last 191,500. Teran was really being put through the emotional wringer, but eventually he went for it.

Tekintamgac: [Ac][Js]

Teran: [Kd][10d]

Turn: [6h]

River: [6d]

Tekintamgac tapped the table, he’s down to around 150,000, whilst Teran vaults to over 500,000. —NW

6.20pm: Jeff Sarwer: coach and railer

Eddie Tasbas was sat with Jeff Sarwer and Annettte Obrestad on Day 1 and appears to have become friends with Sarwer, who was giving him some coaching/encouragement at the break. He’s now railing the Swede from behind the cordon. — RD

6.15pm: Back they come

Players are returning from the break. Blinds are now 5,000-10,000 with a 1,000 ante. Remember to keep an eye on the chip counts, and also the payout page where you can follow who has made the money so far. — SY

6.10pm: Katja Thater’s award

Team PokerStars Pro Katja Thater was presented with her EPT Award for Mixed Game Player of the Year during one of the breaks earlier today.

She won the EPT Season 6 Mixed Games Player of the Year title after an eight-way tie at the end of the season was played out in an online final on PokerStars. It included EPT Berlin runner-up Ilari Tahkokallio, who came second, and fellow Team PokerStars Pro Joe Hachem, the 2005 World Champion, who came third.

As well as the trophy, Thater also won her trip here to play the EPT Tallinn Main Event. She bust earlier today, just short of the money. — SY

katja_thater_mixed_game_award.JPG

Katja Thater

PokerStars Blog reporting team: Simon Young, Rick Dacey, Marc Convey and Nick Wright



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.

 

EPT Tallinn Day 3: Level 17 & 18 updates (4,000-8,000, 500 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg6.02pm: Break!

That’s level 18 out of the way. Players are now on a 15-minute break. 39 remain, and we’ll be playing down to 24 tonight. — SY

6pm: Storakers rakes it in

Michal Polchlopek raised from the cut-off to 19,000 and was three-bet to 54,000 by Johan Storakers. Polchlopek made the call. Storakers led the [9d][ts][5s] flop for 85,000 and again the Polish called. Both checked down the [qc] turn and [7s] river before Storakers showed [ah][td] to win the pot. The 140,000 he’d gained from Polchlopek has put him up to 935,000. It’s turning into quite some stack. — RD

5.58pm: Neuville no more

Friend of PokerStars Pierre Neuville is out, running A-K into the pocket sixes of Seppo Parkkinen from Finland. The Serial PokerStars qualifier was unable to win the race, and must now wait until EPT Vilamoura to try his luck again. — SY

5.56pm: Abrahams doubles another player

Javed Abrahams has doubled another player at his table. Attilio Donato raised to 20,000 to see Abrahams three-bet to 50,000 from the next seat. His response was to move all-in for 84,000. Call.

Abrahams: [th][ts]

Donato: [kh][kd]

The board ran [ks][4s][9c][4h][qc]. It’s been a bad level for the young Brit as he slips to a below average 280,000. —MC

5.55pm Poland 1 Norway 1

Kevin Stani and Michal Polchlopek seem to be having a running battle against each other. Just now Stani evened the score by taking a pot off the Pole. I missed the pre-flop action but with 48,000 in the pot, it suggested that Stani had raised from under the gun 1 and been called by Polchlopek on the button. Both players praticed avoidance on the [As][5s][7c] flop, but come the [3s] turn, the spirited Stani bet out for 32,000 forcing a fold from Polchopek. —NW

5.52pm: Big pass

Igor Ivashkiv opened the button for 18,500 and was three-bet by Eddie Tasbas in the big blind to 58,000. Ivaskiv moved all-in and Tasbas went into the tank. He looked genuinely pained as he tugged at his beard before eventually passing [jh][js] face up. — RD

5.50pm: Top pair good enough

Steven van Zadelhoff raised to 16,500 from the button and got a call from Konstantin Bilyaver in the small blind and Carlo Federico Bordogna in the big. On the [ks][7c][4s] flop it was checked to Van Zadelhoff who made it 31,000. Only Bilyaver called.

The turn was [3d] and Bilyaver checked again, allowing the Dutchman to bet 82,000. With that, Bilyaver moved all in for around 200,000, forcing a swift fold. He showed [kc][jh] for a winning top pair. — SY

5.40pm: Another loss for Weekes

It’s another tough spot for Jonathan Weekes. Following his loss of chips in the hand decribed just a few minutes ago(scroll down), the young Brit has lost another 150,000 to Antti Kärkkäinen of Finland.

Luca Pagano had kicked it off with an opening raise to 25,000. Weekes re-raised by another 27,000 – then Kärkkäinen moved all in for around 150,000. Pagano got out of the way and Weekes made the call with [9s][9c].

He was up against the Finn’s [ah][kd], and all looked good on the [3s][5h][2h] flop – and on the [2s] turn. But the [ac] on the river was enough to keep Kärkkäinen alive and send Weekes down to 300,000. — SY

ept tallinn_day 3_jonathan weekes 2.jpg

Jonathan Weekes was the chip leader – not so anymore

5.30pm: Bevand busted

Eddie Tasbas was the assassin, he raised under the gun to 20,100 and called Bevand’s shove of 103,000.

Tasbas: [Ah][Ks]

Bevand: [Kh][Qh]

The board ran out [8d][6h][9s][2s][Jc], throughout Tasbas was shouting for a queen! The Swede couldn’t have played in this event had it started ten days earlier as, despite possessing a fine beard, he’s amazingly only just turned 21. Tallinn is an over 21 event. We personally checked his I.D to verify this. —NW

5.25pm: Weekes falling back

Overnight chip leader Jonathan Weekes is being pegged back, bit by bit. Just now he lost another chunk of his stack, taking him down to 500,000. He and Oleg Makovenko saw a board of [7c][6h][7h][2d] and Weekes called Makovenko’s 8,000 bet (there was around 60,000 in the pot already). On the [ks] river, Makevenko checked, then called Weekes’ 70,000 bet – finding [8h][8d] were ahead of Weekes’ [ah][jd]. — SY

5.20pm: Cohen’s nine lives

Ouri Cohen is hanging around stubbornly and is up to around 100,000 after doubling-up through Javed Abrahams. Abrahams made it 16,000 to go and then called the 48,500 push from Cohen. Showdown:

Cohen: [9c][9s]

Abrahams: [ac][4c]

The board ran [jh][4d][kd][3h][qd]. Abrahams still okay on 380,000. —MC

5.10pm: Swede on Swede action

The Swedes seem to love getting involved with each other. First Mattias Jorstedt opened to 17,500 and was shoved on by Eddie Tasbas for 81,000 from the big blind. Jorstedt passed and said: “That’s an interesting game,” when he was shown [kc][9c] by Tasbas.

The bearded swede shoved again the very next hand when the action was folded to him in the small blind. Frederik Boberg instantly called eliciting a “Oh wow” from Tasbas who knew he was in trouble with his [ad][3s]. And he was right, Boberg held [ac][kd]. Tasbas needed a miracle river when he board ran out [6h][th][9c][as] and that’s exactly what he got with the [3d] dropping. Tasbas is up to 220,000 and Boberg down to 100,000. — RD



ept tallinn_day 3_eddie tasbas.jpg

Eddie Tasbas is stacking up



5pm: Linov loving it

Matvey Linov just eliminated Kestutis Slankauskas, the latter moved all-n for 76,500 with [Ad][10d], Linov called with pocket nines, which held. With that elimination another table has been broken leaving six tables still going. —NW

4.45pm: Hilarious mix up

“Time,” called Matvey Linov after being forced to wait through a large chunk of the break by Heinz Kamutzki on the river of a [2d][8c][7d][qc][kc] board. “But I checked a long time ago. I was about to call the clock on you!” said Kamutzki. Linov grinned and bet. Kamutzki passed with five minutes left of the break. — RD

4.32: BREAK TIME

The end of level 17 has come. 15 minute break for the players

4.30pm: Blind battle

Mattias Jorstedt is up to 460,000 after winning a blind battle versus Jussi Jaatinen. The board read [9s][ad][7s][ah] at the turn and Jaatinen led for 20,500 only to be raised to 46,000. He called to go to the [4c] river where they both checked. Jaatinen had missed a flush draw with [qs][js] so the Swede scooped with [qh][7c]. Jaatinen down to 222,000. —MC

4.25pm: Poland 1 Norway 0

A very long winded hand just played out between Poland’s Michal Polchlopek (cut off) and Norway’s Kevin Stani (big blind). With around 37,000 in the pot, Stani led for 16,000 on the [9h][Ks][7h] [7d] board. Polchlopek was a non believer and made it 55,000 total. Stani now tanked for a couple of minutes before smooth calling. The river fell the [Jd], Stani dwelled for a minute before checking to Polchopek. The Pole fired another barrel, this time 80,000. Stani now tanked again, for a long time, he cut out the 80,000 to call from his stack of around 360,000 and several times looked as if he was on the verge of calling. After a solid five minutes thinking time, he asked Polchopek: "Will you show if I fold,’ Polchopek had been starring at a spot on the felt the entire time and didn’t flinch. Eventually Stani made what seemed like a reluctant fold. —NW

4.10pm: Calling his exit card

Sasa Stancic called for king on the river and it duly came but the only problem was that this card made his opponent a straight to eliminate him.

Michal Polchlopek opened to 14,000 from under-the-gun and was called by Stancic in the BB to see a [tc][6h][2d] flop. Stancic checked and Polchlopek put him all-in as he only has 11,500 left. Stanic shrugged and called with [ad][jh] but he was ahead of Polchlopek’s [qh][jh] and it got better with the [ac] on the turn. Then for some reason Stancic called for a king and the dealer dealt the [ks] on the river to eliminate him. —MC

4.05pm: Berda busts but is smiling

Earlier we mentioned how Tomer Berda scraped into the money with two big blinds. He must’ve doubled up since then but he’s now out. He opened to 15,000 under the gun 1, leaving himself one solitary 5,000 chip behind the betting line. From the small blind Chady Merhej isolated to 30,000 total. Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern then made it 100,000 to go from the big blind. Berda put his single chip in the pot, but Merhej did not put anymore in, electing to fold.

Mattern: [Qc][Qd]

Berda: [Kd][9d]

The board a decisive [Ac][Qs][4d][Js][9c], Mattern – who has been getting a rather pleasant massage – now has around 500,000. —NW

arnaud_mattern_ept_tallinn_massage.JPG

Rub down: Arnaud Mattern

4pm: The traditional Luca Pagano cash post

Well, this one does what it says on the tin. Team PokerStars Pro Luca Pagano has now extended his record-breaking run of EPT cashes to 15. The Italian has a terrific ability to go deep in tournaments, and with the bubble now burst in Tallinn he’ll be adding to his $1.1million in EPT winnings.

Right now he has over 310,000 chips and is looking for another deep run, hoping to reach his seventh final table.

It seems appropriate to use a picture of the great man, wouldn’t you think? — SY

luca_pagano_ept_tallinn_day3.JPG

Cash machine: Luca Pagano

3.55pm: Dalimore done and dusted

Brit Mark Dalimore moved all-in for his last 40,000 and was called by Jussi Jaatinen.

Dalimore: [Kc][10c]

Jaatinen: [7c][7s]

The board a sweat inducing yet ultimately fruitless [2d][As][Qh][Qc][7h]. With that pot Jaatinen is up to 270,000. —NW

3.45pm: The bubble has burst

From the small blind Chady Merhej raised to 15,000, next to act Yotam Bar-Yosef moved all-in for 96,500 and was snap called, Bar-Yosef was at risk.

Merhej: [Qd][Qc]

Bar-Yosef: [2h][2s]

Flop: [Ah][4h][3d]

Bar-Yosef had a draw

Turn: [Jh]

Bar Yosef picked up some more outs

River: [8c]

Perhaps the most relieved man in the room was Tomer Berda, he was at the same table with a stack of just 12,000 (two big blinds) and the big blind was due to hit him next. Berda among with 55 others is now guaranteed €6,350. —NW

yotam_bar_yosef_ept_tallinn.JPG

Happy: Yotam Bar-Yosef

yotam_bar_yosef_ept_tallinn_out.JPG

Sad: Yotam Bar-Yosef

tomer_berda_ept_tallinn.JPG

Happy: Tomer Berda

3.25pm: Bubble time

Matvey Linov has eliminated Robert Peltecci to take us to the bubble. Peltecci open shoved for 36,500 from early position with [ah][qd] but ran into Linov’s [ac][ad] from the SB. The board ran [jh][4d][9s][7c][6c]. The multiple short stacks around the room can breathe a little easier now—MC

3.15pm: Hand for hand

Tournament director Thomas Kremser has just announced that play is now hand for hand. There are 58 remaining, 56 make the money. —NW

3.10pm: Bevand takes one down

Manuel Bevand moved all-in from middle position, and in turn no less than three players tanked and considered calling. The last of these was Mark Dalimore who folded [Ks][Qs] from the big blind. Bevand showed pocket fives. One of the other players who folded claimed to have sixes. Bevand let out a big smile at this news. —NW

3.07pm: Here we go again

Players are filing back for what will be a crucial level of tournament poker. We’re just two spots of the money, so expect a small slow-down before the chips start flying again.

Jonathan Weekes is still the likely chip leader with 757,000. The Londoner, who often plays at the Vic Casino, is mates with EPT Berlin winner Kevin MacPhee – so maybe some of his championship luck has rubbed off.

jonathan_weekes_ept_tallinn_day3.JPG

Jonathan Weekes

PokerStars Blog reporting team (in order of time they left the PokerStars party): Simon Young (1am), Marc Convey and Rick Dacey (4am), and Nick Wright (the big girl’s blouse never even went there)



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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