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EPT Deauville Main Event

  • Jan 25, '11 - Jan 31, '11
  •  

 
 

Updates on Final Day (Jan 31, 11)

 
 

Lucien Cohen wins EPT Deauville and €880,000

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When it comes to big buy-in poker sometimes the script is torn up and simply thrown out of the window. Other times the script is just too weird to take seriously. Today we got both, one that involved an underdog winner, a giant plastic rat and a new French hero.

Tonight Lucien Cohen can call himself an EPT champion, the sixth from France, having driven home an unlikely two-to-one chip advantage against Sweden’s Martin Jacobson. Jacobson was forced to accept his second runner-up finish of the season to allow Cohen the limelight in what was a spirited home turf display.

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Lucien Cohen wins EPT Deauville


Cohen triumphed after an unpredictable final table in which the likely lads became unlikely losers and the underdogs barked and bit for all they were worth.

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Cohen celebrates one of several winning hands


Chief among them was Cohen. Using a toy plastic rat as a card protector, the mascot of the pest control company he owns in Paris, he would produce an even bigger version from a rucksack by his feet when involved in a big hand. It annoyed and amused in equal measure among the populous local rail, although his victorious hollering may not have gone down too well with the players paying him off with chips. Over-achievement perhaps, but Cohen finished having done what all champions must do – win every chip in play.

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Lucien Cohen


In terms of pests at least three players might have wished Cohen had been able to rid the table of Latvian Kaspars Renga. Ruslan Prydryk, Anthony Hnatow and Kenny Hallaert must all feel that they busted prematurely today. Renga, who runs a hunting magazine when not playing poker, arrived at the final table as the short stack yet nursed his handful of chips into an unlikely fifth place, eliminated about four hours after everyone expected him to be gone.

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Hanging on, Renga


Sometimes you just have to sit tight and wait for the nuts. Renga did, and got them three times, including a royal flush, for a hard-fought fifth place cheque worth €200,000.

Prydryk had gone first within minutes of the start, earning €66,800, while shortly after Jacobson had his first setback, a three-way pot with the indefatigable Renga and Wice which resulted in Jacobson reduced to 2,000,000 while Renga and Wice split the main pot, the Canadian taking the lead with more than 10,000,000 chips.

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The end finally comes for Kaspars Renga


Jacobson fought back while the likes of Anthony Hnatow and Kenny Hallaert departed in seventh (€110,000) and sixth place (€155,000) respectively, not before Cohen had doubled through Wice with a turned full house, a critical moment.

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Anthony Hnatow


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Kenny Hallaert


Following Renga in fifth place was Julien Claudepierre, whose solid performance was worthy of a hat tip and €260,000. Suddenly the field had been reduced from six to three in just 20 minutes, while Claudepierre’s elimination sent Wice back past the 10,000,000 mark and put him on a collision course with Jacobson and Cohen.

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Julien Claudepierre


The young Canadian had dominated all through the week, never being far from the leaders, and the pre-match predictions that he and Jacobson would meet heads-up almost came to fruition.

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Alex Wice


But there was Cohen again. The image of him screaming and that blasted giant rat on the table may haunt Wice for weeks. The pair clashed for what would be the last time when after receiving a walk with aces Wice found ace-queen and raised from the small blind, only for Cohen to find pocket queens and raise from the big blind. Soon enough the money was in the middle and the blank board sent Wice out in third for €330,000. A superb performance obliterated in a wall of noise.

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Wice in action


Cohen’s two-to-one heads-up lead soon became five-to-one. Jacobson had to act and shoved for 6Heart Suit7Heart Suit with 1,500,000 chips. Cohen called with ASpade SuitKDiamond Suit and he, his rat, and the bundle of vocal supporters standing a few feet away braced themselves for one last hand. The board missed everything the Swede was looking for and Cohen erupted.

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Martin Jacobson


For Jacobson it’s his second near miss this year following Vilamoura, to go with the third place finish he secured in Budapest back in season five. The €560,000 Jacobson takes away tonight will be some consolation, but somehow you sense this will not be the last we see of him.

Congratulations to Lucien Cohen, the newest champion on the European Poker Tour. Night time Deauville better brace itself.

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EPT Deauville champion Lucien Cohen


To find all the intimate details of today’s final table click through the links below. You can also find a complete list of all of those who finished in the money at EPT Deauville on the official payout page.

Final table profiles


Level 26 cont., 27 & 28 updates


Level 29 & 30 updates

That brings to a close our coverage from EPT Deauville. Thanks to our photographer Neil Stoddart for his work today, especially in dodging the security guards to get close to the action. Thanks also to our foreign blogging friends, working in Dutch, German and French, the latter of whom graciously endured our efforts at speaking French this week.

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Casino Barriere in Deauville


We now turn our back on Northern France and head for an even colder place. EPT Copenhagen is just three weeks away, starting on 21 February at the Casino Copenhagen, complete with a foot of snow, service station hot dogs and several hundred players; the sort of players who infuriate and fascinate in equal measure. It’s an event that never fails to provide a final table with a twist. Join us then for our live coverage from Denmark.

Until then thanks for reading and good night from Deauville.



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 Deauville: The final table



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

 

EPT Deauville: Final table, level 29 updates (blinds 50,000-100,000, 10,000 ante)

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4.52pm: Wice folds, Cohen dances


Alex Wice opened to 200,00 from the button and Lucien Cohen three-bet to 450,000 from the small blind. Wice made the call. The action checked to the 9Spade SuitKDiamond SuitASpade Suit4Club SuitJClub Suit river where Wice folded to a 300,000 lead from Cohen. The Frenchman started dancing, like an embarrassing uncle at a wedding, by way of celebration. – RD

4.45pm: Keep off my lawn!


After Lucien Cohen folded his button, Martin Jacobson put in a teasing 220,000 from the small blind. Alex Wice, who is on turbo-time decision making, fired back with 650,000 instantly.

Jacobson realised this could be dodgy, and got out of the way. – SY

4.40pm: Julien Claudepierre eliminated in 3rd place (€260,000)


Julien Claudepierre is out third place after falling to Alex Wice. Wice raised to 200,000 from the button before Claudepierre three-bet all-in for 2,150,000 from the big blind. Wice asked for a count and then seemed to figure out the math by pretending to write on the table. He stopped writing and made the call.

Claudepierre: AClub Suit5Club Suit


Wice: QClub SuitJClub Suit

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Julien Claudepierre, out


The board ran 6Club Suit8Heart SuitJDiamond Suit4Diamond Suit4Heart Suit to make two pair for the Canadian. Wice up to over 10,000,000 million chips again. — MC

4.35pm: Renga’s impressive laddering comes to an end, out in fifth (€200,000)


Kaspars Renga has earned himself at least €100,000 more than anyone expected at the beginning of the day. Renga started the day very short, just 470,000, but managed to find aces twice, a rivered Broadway straight once and a royal flush another time. The Latvian’s laddering ways have just come to an end though.

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Kaspars Renga on his way out


The action folded to Martin Jacobson in the small blind and he set Renga’s 800,000 stack all-in. Renga made a grudging call.

Jacobson: 8Spade Suit5Diamond Suit


Renga: ASpade Suit7Heart Suit

Jacobson hit a pair on the QSpade Suit3Club Suit5Heart Suit flop and Renga failed to catch up on the JHeart Suit turn or 9Spade Suit river. Down to four players. – RD

4.30pm: Wice keeps Claudepierre in check


Alex Wice made it 200,000 from the button and Julien Claudepierre called from the big blind. Both checked the 2Heart SuitADiamond Suit[10c] flop and also the 2Diamond Suit turn. But on the 6Club Suit river Claudepierre took a stab with a bet of 280,000, which Wice called.

The Frenchman showed JSpade Suit6Spade Suit but Wice had the ace – AHeart Suit9Heart Suit – and took the pot. — SY

4.25pm: Wice into his min raising


Alex Wice min-raised to 200,000 from second position and Martin Jacobson defended from the big blind to see the 7Diamond Suit4Diamond Suit2Club Suit flop. The action went check-check to reveal the QSpade Suit turn. The Swede led for 250,000 and Wice folded quickly.

The next hand Wice min raised from under-the-gun and took the blinds and antes as all folded including the short stacked Kaspars Renga in the big blind. — MC

4.23pm: Kenny Hallaert busted in sixth (€155,000)


Last hand, as covered by SY, had Kenny Hallaert tank-folding to Alex Wice’s small blind shove. He’s going to be thinking about that pass for some time.

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Kenny Hallaert out in 6th place


The very next hand Wice opened for 200,000 from the button and Hallaert moved all-in for around 1.5 million. Lucien Cohen quickly folded but Wice did not. Snap call.

Wice: 10Club Suit10Diamond Suit

Hallaert: 4Heart Suit4Club Suit

Hallaert failed to outdraw Wice on the 8Heart SuitJSpade SuitKHeart SuitKSpade Suit10Spade Suit board and leaves the tournament in a very credible sixth place. Wice now back over 8 million. — RD

4.21pm: Wice asks a question of Hallaert


Alex Wice opened with a big raise to two million from the small blind. It was on Kenny Hallaert in the big blind, and he thought for a good minute or two before mucking. — SY

4.19pm: Pressure on Renga


When it was folded around to Martin Jacobson in the small blind, he plopped in a pile of black 100,000 chips. Knowing Renga would need a premium hand to call, Jacobson watched as the Latvian mucked slowly. — SY

4.17pm: Getting a walk


Martin Jacobson just enjoyed a walk in the big blind. He’s enjoyed several of those in the past few days, perhaps testament to the regard the other players hold him in. — SY

4.15pm: Jacobson takes a small one from Cohen


Martin Jacobson opened for 210,000 from the hijack and was called by Lucien Cohen in the big blind. The board was checked down to the 10Heart Suit4Diamond SuitQSpade Suit9Club Suit7Spade Suit river which Jacobson bet for 300,000. Cohen passed.

Alex Wice took the next hand with a min raise to 200,000. — RD

4.12pm: Wice retakes lead by folding


Alex Wice is back into the chip lead after Lucien Cohen gave around 1,200,000 to Martin Jacobson.

Cohen raised to 260,000 from early position and Jacobson was the only caller to a 2Spade Suit9Heart Suit5Diamond Suit flop. Cohen gave up the initiative by checking to face a 300,000 bet. Call. The turn came 4Spade Suit and Cohen check-called a 750,000 bet. The river came ASpade Suit and Cohen checked for a third time.

Jacobson had no intention of slowing down and fired 2,020,000 chips into the pot. Cohen decided that he might actually be behind by now and folded to drop to around 5.9 million whereas Jacobson continued his recovery and is up into second spot with 6.8 million. — MC

4.10pm: A good time to re-steal?


It was folded around to Julien Claudepierre on the button and he made it 210,000. Martin Jacobson was in the small blind and re-raised to 550,000. Why was this a good time to re-steal (if indeed he was thieving)? Kaspars Renga, the tightest man at the table, was sitting patiently in the big blind. He folded, as did Claudepierre. — SY

4.06pm: Jacobson’s pair


Alex Wice, wearing the same purple woolly hat that he’s had on all week, made it 200,000 and Martin Jacobson called from the big blind. The flop was 5Heart SuitQSpade Suit6Club Suit and Jacobson check-called Wice’s 230,000 bet. That slowed them both down to a check on the 2Spade Suit turn and the 3Spade Suit river.

Wice had ADiamond Suit9Diamond Suit, but Jacobson held 6Diamond Suit7Diamond Suit and the pair sixes was good for the pot. —SY

4.03pm: Hallaert can’t stand the heat


Kenny Hallaert completed the big blind when the action was folded around to him in the small blind. Lucien Cohen checked his option to go to the 6Club SuitJDiamond SuitKHeart Suit flop. Hallaert led for 130,000 but folded when the Frenchman raised to 300,000. — MC

3.59pm: Hallaert still smiling


Kenny Hallaert seems to be an affable type. Despite this final table not exactly going as he intended – he’s sat on 2.2 million – he’s still smiling. The action folded to Alex Wice in the small blind and he set Hallaert all-in, not for the first time. Hallaert passed and was flashed an ace by Wice.

“Always an ace,” said Hallaert.

“What was that?” asked Wice, removing one ear of his headphones.

“You always have an ace,” repeated Hallaert still smiling. He’s got a good attitude, this Hallaert. — RD

3.55pm: Chips at the start of level 29

Lucien Cohen, France, 7,105,000


Alex Wice, Canada, PokerStars qualifier, 6,997,000


Martin Jacobson, Sweden, PokerStars qualifier, 5,500,000


Julien Claudepierre, France, 3,478,000


Kenny Hallaert, Belgium, 2,214,000


Kaspars Renga, Latvia, 1,460,000

3.50pm: Play restarts


Players are back and about to resume play. Blinds in level 29 will be 50,000-100,000 with a 10,000 ante. So long green chips.

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The final table in action


PokerStars Blog reporting team in Deauville (in order of no one really knows):Simon Young (12 kilograms), Stephen Bartley (about a foot and a half), Rick Dacey (three, sometimes two) and Marc Convey (hasn’t seen one for years).



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 Deauville: Final table, level 29 & 30 updates (blinds 60,000-120,000, 15,000 ante)

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6.50pm: Glorious summary on its way


Stephen Bartley is literally covered in blood, sweat and tears* due to his frantic finishing off of the Season 7 EPT Deauville wrap. That will be with you shortly. In the meantime you can check out the payout and prizes page to see who finished where and how much for. — RD

* He is not literally covered in blood, sweat or tears. That would be odd, and I wouldn’t still be sat next to him typing this. Well, there are a few tears now I come to think of it.

6.44pm: Lucien Cohen wins EPT Deauville for €880,000


PokerStars qualifier Martin Jacobson was down to around 1,500,000 when he open shoved from the button with 6Heart Suit7Heart Suit. The 6Diamond Suit had been exposed as the cards were dealt but that didn’t deter Jacobsen who was relying on fold equity more than showdown value. The Swede wasn’t expecting to be called but seeing as his opponent, Lucien Cohen, picked up ASpade SuitKDiamond Suit it was a very quick call.

The last and defining board ran out 10Spade Suit9Club Suit3Spade Suit3Heart SuitJHeart Suit to knock out Jacobson. Cohen erupted as we suspected he would. Jacobson looked understandably gutted but took the defeat with grace, shaking Cohen’s hand before walking away at a canter. Cohen ran to continue his celebration with his supporters (and rubber rat) on the rail. — MC




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Lucien Cohen, winner of EPT Deauville




6.42pm: Martin Jacobson out in second place (€560,000)


The screams and cheers that have just reached me tell the tale that Martin Jacobson has been knocked out. That also means that we have a homegrown hero in Lucien Cohen. Details to come. — RD

6.40pm: Slow death


Unless he can pull something out of the bag sharpish, Martin Jacobson is going to be in shove-fold territory. He’s down to just under two million – around 15 big blinds – leaving Lucien Cohen with more than 24 million.

As if to emphasise his perilous state, Jacobson has now began to open-limp from button rather than raise. — SY

6.35pm: Always the bridesmaid?


Will this be another nearly moment for Martin Jacobson? He finished as runner-up to Toby Lewis at EPT Vilamoura in 2010 and third place to Will Fry at EPT Budapest a few seasons back.





His chances of taking the title here in Deauville aren’t looking too good at the moment. He’s got a five to one chip deficit against Lucien Cohen, which will require a huge comeback. Is he capable of it? Certainly, but he’ll need to start winning some big pots soon. — RD

6.30pm: Cohen tries new tactic


A lot of the recent pots have been small ones with pre-flop limps and checks through the streets. On two occasions Cohen has put in big over bets to claim the pot.

In one pot the action had been checked to the river with 240,000 in the pot and Cohen bet 1,000,000 to force a fold from Jacobson. Two hands later he bet 500,000 into a 240,000 pot on a jack high flop to take it down. Value bets or bluffs? — MC

6.25pm: Cohen collects more


Jacobson is down to around 4 million after this one, leaving Lucien Cohen with a massive 22.5 million chip stack.

The Swede had made it 260,000, his usual pre-flop raise, and Cohen had called to see a 9Diamond Suit[10c]3Club Suit flop. Both checked, but on the 5Spade Suit turn Cohen made it 600,000, called by Jacobson. The river was 5Heart Suit and again Jacobson called a 600,000 bet. Cohen turned over ASpade Suit9Club Suit and that was good. — SY




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Martin Jacobson is in need of a double up




6.18pm: Cohen given a warning


Lucien Cohen has been given a warning by the floor staff for leaving the table during the all-in from Martin Jacobson. While the Swede’s stack was being counted down Cohen had left the table to mutter a few words to a supporter on the rail. He had returned to the table to fold his hand. He apologised for doing so and play continued as normal – with added warning. — MC

6.10pm: Jacobson all-in!


For the first time in heads-up play, Martin Jacobson put his tournament on the line. Lucien Cohen had raised to 260,000 and Jacobson called to see a 4Club Suit[10s]2Heart Suit flop. Jacobson checked and Cohen reached for one million chips, plonking them over the line.


Jacobson thought for a minute, stock still, then announced calmly he was all-in. Cohen asked for a count, but as it became clear it was near four million to call, he folded. — SY

6.05pm: Cohen the aggressor


Lucien Cohen has spent a lot of today playing on the passive side, but since the action turned heads up he’s been showing signs of increased aggression levels.

In one hand he three-bet a 260,000 raise from Martin Jacobson to 720,000, which forced a fold from the Swede. Just two hands later he called a 260,000 button raise from Jacobson to see a 2Heart Suit4Diamond SuitKClub Suit flopm which he check-raised the 250,000 c-bet bet up to 650,000. It was enough to take the pot down. — MC




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Lucien Cohen is building a large chip lead




5.55pm: Cohen wins big


Lucien Cohen took a meaty pot off Martin Jacobson in the first hand of heads-up play. He had limped in pre-flop and Jacobson checked in the big blind. The flop was QClub Suit[10d]2Spade Suit and Jacobson check-called Cohen’s 400,000. On the 4Spade Suit turn Jacobson check-called 1.4million, and finally on the 2Heart Suit river he check-called a chunky two million.

Cohen slapped down KDiamond SuitKSpade Suit on the table and the over pair was good for the pot. That moves Cohen up to more than 20 million while Jacobson slips to 6.5 million. It’s going to be a long climb for Jacobson. — SY

5.45pm: Alex Wice eliminated in third place (€330,000)


PokerStars qualifier Alex Wice thought his luck was bad when he got a walk in the big blind with pocket aces but a lot worse was to come the very next hand. He raised from the small blind and found himself facing a re-raise from Lucien Cohen in the big blind. Then in a flash of action both players were all-in. We’re not quite sure if Wice called or shoved first but the result was the same; showdown.

Wice: ADiamond SuitQDiamond Suit


Cohen: QClub SuitQSpade Suit

The board ran 7Spade Suit4Diamond Suit2Spade Suit7Club Suit4Spade Suit to give the huge pot to the Frenchman. We were slightly worried about the structural integrity of the room due to the volume of the partisan roars coming from Cohen’s supporters. — MC




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Alex Wice, out in third for €330,000




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Lucien Cohen celebrates knocking out Alex Wice




5.40pm: News in brief

1) Martin Jacobson picks up a pot after firing two streets into Alex Wice.

2) Cohen’s playing snug. It may be harsh to say but he seems to be a little outclassed by Jacobson and Alex Wice. He looks like he’s going to fold to the heads up or try to find a set-up. It’s not as disparaging as it sounds; Wice and Jacobson have been playing some excellent poker.

3) There have been a few little battles between Wice and Jacobson with the latter coming out ahead. No major hands yet. — RD

5.30pm: Play resumes


Cards are in the air with blinds at 60,000-120,000 with a 15,000 ante. — SB

5.15pm: Chips at the break


Martin Jacobson, Sweden, PokerStars qualifier, 9,150,000


Alex Wice, Canada, PokerStars qualifier, 8,940,000


Lucien Cohen, France, 8,635,000

5.10pm: Break time


That’s the end of the level. Players are now on a 15 minute break. — SB

5.08pm: Cohen clipped by Jacobson


Martin Jacobson opened to 210,000 from the button and Lucien Cohen defended his big blind. Jacobson fired a delayed c-bet of 250,000 into the 9Heart Suit4Heart SuitQHeart SuitJSpade Suit turn and Cohen called. The 1.03 million bet on the river was too much for Cohen to call. — RD

5.07pm: Cohen celebrates


More arm waiving and celebrating from Lucien Cohen. He had opened with a 300,000 bet from the button, called only by Martin Jacobson in the small blind. The flop was 8Heart Suit3Club Suit4Diamond Suit and both checked to see a 8Club Suit turn. Jacobson took a stab with a bet of 400,000, called by Cohen. Both then slowed again to check the 6Club Suit river.

CohenASpade Suit9Spade Suit


Jacobson: AClub Suit7Club Suit

Cohen had the Swede’s kicker out-pipped, and waived his arms in the air as he collected the pot. Both Jacobson and Wice have earphones clasped tight over their ears and are doing their best to ignore the Frenchman’s antics. – SY

5.04pm: Wice folds two pair


Alex Wice opened the pot to 200,000 from the button and called when Lucien Cohen three-bet to 450,000 from the small blind. The flop came 3Spade SuitKClub Suit5Diamond Suit and Cohen led for 400,000. Call. The turn came 6Spade Suit and Cohen fired 500,000 this time. Call. On the 4Spade Suit river Cohen was slow to a check before moving all-in when Wice bet 1,400,000.


Wice folded saying, “I have two pair.”

Cohen celebrated by standing up and waving his rubber rat around his head. —MC

4.58pm: Jacobson takes one from Wice


Jacobson opened to 250,000 from the small blind and Alex Wice made the call from the big. Jacobson c-bet 250,000 into a big AHeart SuitQSpade SuitQHeart Suit flop and Wice made the call. That didn’t slow Jacobson down on the 9Club Suit turn. He led for 650,000 and Wice mucked his hand. — RD

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Alex Wice


4.52pm: Wice folds, Cohen dances


Alex Wice opened to 200,00 from the button and Lucien Cohen three-bet to 450,000 from the small blind. Wice made the call. The action checked to the 9Spade SuitKDiamond SuitASpade Suit4Club SuitJClub Suit river where Wice folded to a 300,000 lead from Cohen. The Frenchman started dancing, like an embarrassing uncle at a wedding, by way of celebration. – RD

4.45pm: Keep off my lawn!


After Lucien Cohen folded his button, Martin Jacobson put in a teasing 220,000 from the small blind. Alex Wice, who is on turbo-time decision making, fired back with 650,000 instantly.

Jacobson realised this could be dodgy, and got out of the way. – SY

4.40pm: Julien Claudepierre eliminated in 3rd place (€260,000)


Julien Claudepierre is out third place after falling to Alex Wice. Wice raised to 200,000 from the button before Claudepierre three-bet all-in for 2,150,000 from the big blind. Wice asked for a count and then seemed to figure out the math by pretending to write on the table. He stopped writing and made the call.

Claudepierre: AClub Suit5Club Suit


Wice: QClub SuitJClub Suit

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Julien Claudepierre, out


The board ran 6Club Suit8Heart SuitJDiamond Suit4Diamond Suit4Heart Suit to make two pair for the Canadian. Wice up to over 10,000,000 million chips again. — MC

4.35pm: Renga’s impressive laddering comes to an end, out in fifth (€200,000)


Kaspars Renga has earned himself at least €100,000 more than anyone expected at the beginning of the day. Renga started the day very short, just 470,000, but managed to find aces twice, a rivered Broadway straight once and a royal flush another time. The Latvian’s laddering ways have just come to an end though.

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Kaspars Renga on his way out


The action folded to Martin Jacobson in the small blind and he set Renga’s 800,000 stack all-in. Renga made a grudging call.

Jacobson: 8Spade Suit5Diamond Suit


Renga: ASpade Suit7Heart Suit

Jacobson hit a pair on the QSpade Suit3Club Suit5Heart Suit flop and Renga failed to catch up on the JHeart Suit turn or 9Spade Suit river. Down to four players. – RD

4.30pm: Wice keeps Claudepierre in check


Alex Wice made it 200,000 from the button and Julien Claudepierre called from the big blind. Both checked the 2Heart SuitADiamond Suit[10c] flop and also the 2Diamond Suit turn. But on the 6Club Suit river Claudepierre took a stab with a bet of 280,000, which Wice called.

The Frenchman showed JSpade Suit6Spade Suit but Wice had the ace – AHeart Suit9Heart Suit – and took the pot. — SY

4.25pm: Wice into his min raising


Alex Wice min-raised to 200,000 from second position and Martin Jacobson defended from the big blind to see the 7Diamond Suit4Diamond Suit2Club Suit flop. The action went check-check to reveal the QSpade Suit turn. The Swede led for 250,000 and Wice folded quickly.

The next hand Wice min raised from under-the-gun and took the blinds and antes as all folded including the short stacked Kaspars Renga in the big blind. — MC

4.23pm: Kenny Hallaert busted in sixth (€155,000)


Last hand, as covered by SY, had Kenny Hallaert tank-folding to Alex Wice’s small blind shove. He’s going to be thinking about that pass for some time.

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Kenny Hallaert out in 6th place


The very next hand Wice opened for 200,000 from the button and Hallaert moved all-in for around 1.5 million. Lucien Cohen quickly folded but Wice did not. Snap call.

Wice: 10Club Suit10Diamond Suit

Hallaert: 4Heart Suit4Club Suit

Hallaert failed to outdraw Wice on the 8Heart SuitJSpade SuitKHeart SuitKSpade Suit10Spade Suit board and leaves the tournament in a very credible sixth place. Wice now back over 8 million. — RD

4.21pm: Wice asks a question of Hallaert


Alex Wice opened with a big raise to two million from the small blind. It was on Kenny Hallaert in the big blind, and he thought for a good minute or two before mucking. — SY

4.19pm: Pressure on Renga


When it was folded around to Martin Jacobson in the small blind, he plopped in a pile of black 100,000 chips. Knowing Renga would need a premium hand to call, Jacobson watched as the Latvian mucked slowly. — SY

4.17pm: Getting a walk


Martin Jacobson just enjoyed a walk in the big blind. He’s enjoyed several of those in the past few days, perhaps testament to the regard the other players hold him in. — SY

4.15pm: Jacobson takes a small one from Cohen


Martin Jacobson opened for 210,000 from the hijack and was called by Lucien Cohen in the big blind. The board was checked down to the 10Heart Suit4Diamond SuitQSpade Suit9Club Suit7Spade Suit river which Jacobson bet for 300,000. Cohen passed.

Alex Wice took the next hand with a min raise to 200,000. — RD

4.12pm: Wice retakes lead by folding


Alex Wice is back into the chip lead after Lucien Cohen gave around 1,200,000 to Martin Jacobson.

Cohen raised to 260,000 from early position and Jacobson was the only caller to a 2Spade Suit9Heart Suit5Diamond Suit flop. Cohen gave up the initiative by checking to face a 300,000 bet. Call. The turn came 4Spade Suit and Cohen check-called a 750,000 bet. The river came ASpade Suit and Cohen checked for a third time.

Jacobson had no intention of slowing down and fired 2,020,000 chips into the pot. Cohen decided that he might actually be behind by now and folded to drop to around 5.9 million whereas Jacobson continued his recovery and is up into second spot with 6.8 million. — MC

4.10pm: A good time to re-steal?


It was folded around to Julien Claudepierre on the button and he made it 210,000. Martin Jacobson was in the small blind and re-raised to 550,000. Why was this a good time to re-steal (if indeed he was thieving)? Kaspars Renga, the tightest man at the table, was sitting patiently in the big blind. He folded, as did Claudepierre. — SY

4.06pm: Jacobson’s pair


Alex Wice, wearing the same purple woolly hat that he’s had on all week, made it 200,000 and Martin Jacobson called from the big blind. The flop was 5Heart SuitQSpade Suit6Club Suit and Jacobson check-called Wice’s 230,000 bet. That slowed them both down to a check on the 2Spade Suit turn and the 3Spade Suit river.

Wice had ADiamond Suit9Diamond Suit, but Jacobson held 6Diamond Suit7Diamond Suit and the pair sixes was good for the pot. —SY

4.03pm: Hallaert can’t stand the heat


Kenny Hallaert completed the big blind when the action was folded around to him in the small blind. Lucien Cohen checked his option to go to the 6Club SuitJDiamond SuitKHeart Suit flop. Hallaert led for 130,000 but folded when the Frenchman raised to 300,000. — MC

3.59pm: Hallaert still smiling


Kenny Hallaert seems to be an affable type. Despite this final table not exactly going as he intended – he’s sat on 2.2 million – he’s still smiling. The action folded to Alex Wice in the small blind and he set Hallaert all-in, not for the first time. Hallaert passed and was flashed an ace by Wice.

“Always an ace,” said Hallaert.

“What was that?” asked Wice, removing one ear of his headphones.

“You always have an ace,” repeated Hallaert still smiling. He’s got a good attitude, this Hallaert. — RD

3.55pm: Chips at the start of level 29

Lucien Cohen, France, 7,105,000


Alex Wice, Canada, PokerStars qualifier, 6,997,000


Martin Jacobson, Sweden, PokerStars qualifier, 5,500,000


Julien Claudepierre, France, 3,478,000


Kenny Hallaert, Belgium, 2,214,000


Kaspars Renga, Latvia, 1,460,000

3.50pm: Play restarts


Players are back and about to resume play. Blinds in level 29 will be 50,000-100,000 with a 10,000 ante. So long green chips.

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The final table in action


PokerStars Blog reporting team in Deauville (in order of no one really knows):Simon Young (12 kilograms), Stephen Bartley (about a foot and a half), Rick Dacey (three, sometimes two) and Marc Convey (hasn’t seen one for years).



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 Deauville: Final table, level 26 cont. (blinds 25,000-50,000, ante 5,000)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg12.45pm: Double for rock-ish Renga


When Kaspars Renga raises the whole world should tremble. He’s been incredibly tight and combined with being short stacked you know he’s going to be packing something serious. Maybe Alex Wice thought he could abuse that tightness, he did make some significant folds yesterday when he was already heavily invested. This was not going to be the same though.

Renga opened to 166,000 from the cut-off, which was around a third of his stack. Wice three-bet to 330,000 from the button forcing Kenny Hallaert and Lucien Cohen out of the hand in the blinds. Renga moved all-in and Wice made the call.

Renga: AHeart SuitAClub Suit


Wice: QDiamond SuitJDiamond Suit

The 6Club Suit6Heart SuitKSpade Suit4Heart SuitQSpade Suit board held up for Renga to double up to 900,000. — RD

12.35pm: All Wice for now


Every pot has been won by Alex Wice so far. He got a walk in the big blind and the next hand he raised to 130,000 from the small blind. Kenny Hallaert made the call from the big blind to see the KClub Suit2Heart SuitQHeart Suit flop. Wice led for 130,000 and Hallaert called to go to the 7Spade Suit turn. Wice check-called a 230,000 bet before he checked to face a 320,000 bet on the 3Heart Suit river. He took longer this time but called again. “Ace-high”, said the Belgian. No good here, though, as Wice tabled QClub SuitJHeart Suit and took the pot. — MC

12.28pm: Side bet


For a small fee, members of Team PokerStars Blog have written down their predicted order of eliminations. Have you? Do it. Do it. Bacardi Cola. Do it.* — RD


* If you haven’t watched the remake of Starsky and Hutch that last part will make no sense to you

12.27pm: Housekeeping


We have eight minutes remaining in level 26 before the blinds move up. The next player to bust will win €66,680. You can check on all the payouts so far, and also on the latest chip counts.

12.26pm: Video


Settle back and enjoy the video introduction to the day. It’s got moving pictures and everything…

12.25pm: Final begins


After all the usual delays, we’re under way. Here is the pic of our intrepid players. — SY

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Final table players at EPT Deauville

12.15pm: Waiting


We’re still waiting for the formalities and photos to be completed. The final eight players will then be introduced and we’ll begin. Don’t count on that happening in the next ten minutes. — SY

11.55am: Final table day


A long month comes to a close in northern France for poker players today. After two weeks in the Bahamas for the highly successful PokerStars Caribbean Adventure across the ocean lay waiting the small town of Deauville, Normandy, a town usually asleep at this time of year, but one that opens its doors for the European Poker Tour each year at the ornate Casino Barriere Deauville.

This year a record field of 891 walked through that door, stopping to join several queues to collect various coloured wrist bands, joined another one to get into the tournament room, settled on a Crudite sandwich for breakfast and lunch, and then took a seat. Back on day one they were all competing for a first prize of €880,000. Now 891 has become eight and one of them will be crowned the latest EPT champion by the end of the day.

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Martin Jacobson’s chip stack yesterday


Leading the final table into Day 6 is Sweden’s Martin Jacobson. He snatched the lead as Day 5 closed yesterday, bagging up 7,280,000 to lead previous leader Alex Wice in second place with 6,248,000. The pair lead the remainder of the field by some way and will sit alongside each other today:

Seat 1 – Martin Jacobson, Sweden, PokerStars qualifier, 7,280,000


Seat 2 – Alex Wice, Canada, PokerStars qualifier, 6,248,000



Seat 3 – Kenny Hallaert, Belgium, 3,599,000


Seat 4 – Julien Claudepierre, France, 3,244,000


Seat 5 – Lucien Cohen, France, 3,085,000


Seat 6 – Anthony Hnatow, France, 1,644,000


Seat 7 – Ruslan Prydryk, Ukraine, 1,154,000


Seat 8 – Kaspars Renga, Latvia, 470,000

But let’s be cautious. Before you start putting money on Jacobson to go one better than his second place at Vilamoura earlier this season; or for Wice to nail down the form that this week has kept him around the top of the chip counts, there’s still the chance of an upset. Anthony Hnatow showed urgency in his play yesterday, combining effectively with perfect timing. He will pose a threat, as will the plucky Kenny Hallaert.

Then there’s always the underdog. Kaspars Renga will be in no hurry to leave, while the local heros Lucien Cohen and Julien Claudepierre will not go down without a fight.

Yep, we guarantee even more clichés like that as the day progresses. You can suggest your own in the comments box below.

The stage is set (a stage has actually been set up overnight) for a thrilling finale to EPT Deauville. The players are arriving, as are the spectators who will fill the bank of seating overlooking the final table. Play will be under way shortly. — SB

PokerStars Blog reporting team in Deauville (in order of money won on slot machines last night, with an initial stake of €5):Simon Young (€13.50 on the ‘Fruits and Jewels’ machine), Stephen Bartley (-€1 having decided to save the other €4 on the ‘something to do with pirates’ machine), honourary blogger Alan Rogers from the video team (-€5, ’I’ve no idea what I’m doing’), Rick Dacey (-€15 having reloaded twice on the ‘Guns n’ Vodka machine) and Marc Convey (-€40, elsewhere, playing online)



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 Deauville: Final table, level 26 cont., 27 & 28 (blinds 40,000-80,000, ante 5,000)

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3.40pm: Continued action


For continued action from the EPT Deauville final table, go to the level 29 updates.

3.36pm: Break


That’s the end of the level. We’re on a 15-minute break. Here are the chips right now…

Lucien Cohen, France, 7,105,000


Alex Wice, Canada, PokerStars qualifier, 6,997,000


Martin Jacobson, Sweden, PokerStars qualifier, 5,500,000


Julien Claudepierre, France, 3,478,000


Kenny Hallaert, Belgium, 2,214,000


Kaspars Renga, Latvia, 1,460,000

3.35pm: Big double for Jacobson, bad news for the rest


Martin Jacobson has just doubled up in spectacular fashion against Julien Claudepierre. The Frenchman had opened to 230,000 from the small blind and Jacobson had called on the big blind.

The flop was AClub Suit3Diamond SuitQSpade Suit and it was of enough interest for Claudepierre to c-bet 240,000 into and for Jacobson to peel another card.

Both players checked the 10Diamond Suit turn before Claudepierre led 420,000 into the ADiamond Suit river. Jacobson waited, then pushed. It was another 1.455m to call, which he did before mucking to Jacobson’s QDiamond Suit9Diamond Suit flush. Jacobson is up to 5.5 million, Claudepierre down to 3.5 million. — RD

3.30pm: Course Cohen clobbers Wice


When Vince Lombardi, the legendary US football coach, said: “When you get in the end zone act like you’ve been there before,” he probably didn’t expect Lucien Cohen to pay any attention. Cohen just doubled up through Alex Wice prior to performing vulgar histrionics. Good players tend not to need to perform any classless celebrations. Get it quietly is the order of the day.

Cohen opened for 190,000 from under-the-gun and was raised by Wice to 540,000 when the action was folded to him on the small blind. Cohen called. The flop came 4Club Suit2Club Suit4Spade Suit. Wice bet 510,000 which Cohen called before Wice had even finished putting his chips in. The turn came 9Heart Suit. Wice moved two towers of black chips into the middle, worth 4,000,000. Cohen moved in immediately and Wice called, showing AClub SuitQClub Suit. But Cohen could beat that, showing 9Spade Suit9Diamond Suit. The river came 7Heart Suit and the chips were on their way to the Frenchman.





“Pas trop,” he yelled. “Pas trop.” He then dropped his plastic rat in front of Wice, who said nothing. Cohen was still yelling well into the next hand. He’s up to more than 7,000,000. – SB

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Lucien Cohen… and rat

3.25pm: News in brief


1) Julien Claudepierre opens under-the-gun for 170,000 and Lucien Cohen defends his big blind. A simple 270,000 c-bet on the AHeart Suit10Diamond Suit7Heart Suit flop was enough to win the pot.

2) Kenny Hallaert opens the button to 170,000 and takes the pot.

3) Martin Jacobson gets a walk. He’s managed to chip up to around 3 million this level, recovering from the 2 million he had after that had against Alex Wice.

4) Julien Claudepierre opened the button and took the pot. — RD

3.20pm: Royal flush for Renga


Kaspars Renga likes safe bets. We’ve witnessed him blind away to ten big blinds and get it in with aces and now we’ve witnessed him wait until he’s hit a royal flush before betting at the pot. Lucien Cohen raised to 180,000 from the hijack and Renga called from the small blind. Both players checked the flop and turn and by the river the board read KHeart SuitAHeart SuitKClub SuitQHeart Suit9Spade Suit. Renga led for 220,000 and Cohen opened folded 8Club Suit8Spade Suit. Renga then stood up and placed his JHeart Suit10Heart Suit over the KClub Suit and 9Spade Suit to show that he had turned a royal flush. You can never be too safe. — MC

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Kaspars Renga celebrates his royal flush

3.10pm: Hallaert all-in


More raise and take, including for Alex Wice who moves around like Dervish, a constant graceful flow of movement, collecting and throwing out chips. Poker-yoga. Then Martin Jacobson opened a pot for 160,000 from under-the-gun. The action reached Kenny Hallaert on the button who moved all-in for 1,749.000. Back with Jacobson who removed his headphones and thought for a minute. Then he folded. — SB

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Kenny Hallaert

3.05pm: Who you calling a rat?


Lucien Cohen has his rat out again. It’s getting old really quickly.

Cohen had opened to 180,000 and Martin Jacobson had moved all-in for 2.555 million from the big blind. Okay, everyone needs a little time to think over a decision like this but how much brain grinding are you really doing by pulling out a plastic rat and moving it around the table?

“Parlez francais?” Cohen asked Jacobson. “What’s your name in English? Rat?”

I’m not sure if rat is slang for a bluffer on the French poker scene or not but Cohen, after having his moment showboating to the partisan crowd, folded his hand using the plastic rat’s nose to muck the cards. Jacobson is up to 2.805 million now.— RD

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Real heaven at the final table

3pm: Wice making his intentions clear


If Kenny Hallaert thought he had a great seat by being to the left of chip leader, Alex Wice, he can think again. Wice made his intentions perfectly clear by putting him all-in for around two million chips when the action folded to him in the small blind. Hallaert gave a “that’s the way it’s going to be, is it?” smile before folding.

Wice did do him the decency of showing him AClub SuitJClub Suit, though. — MC

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Kenny Hallaert

2.55pm: Call, check, bet, call, splat


Lucien Cohen just ran splat into Julien Claudepierre. Cohen completed from the small blind only for Claudepierre to raise from the big blind, making it 230,000 to play. Cohen called and saw a flop of 8Club Suit4Spade SuitADiamond Suit. Both players checked for a 3Heart Suit turn card. At this point Cohen fired out 300,000 which Claudepierre called for a 5Club Suit turn card. Another check from Cohen, who watched Caludepierre bet 550,000. Cohen called but didn’t show. Claudepierre had batted him away with ASpade SuitAClub Suit. Cohen down to 4,000,000. Claudepierre up to around 6,000,000. — SB

2.45pm: Renga’s reverse rollercoaster


Kaspars Renga is riding a reverse rollercoaster at the moment; swift ascents followed by slow, casual declines. He’s just doubled up through Julien Claudepierre with ASpade SuitADiamond Suit to the Frenchman’s AHeart Suit9Spade Suit. The JSpade SuitQSpade Suit3Club Suit10Diamond Suit turn brought some outs and a few chops for Claudepierre but the 2Club Suit river bricked. Regna is up to 1.5 million while Claudpierre drops to around 5 million. — RD

2.40pm: Turbo hand


Alex Wice and Lucien Cohen just played out a turbo hand. Wice raised to 160,000 from the button and Cohen peeled from the big blind to see the 4Heart SuitJDiamond Suit3Diamond Suit flop. Cohen checked and Wice quickly bet 200,000. Call. The turn came AClub Suit and the speed of decisions didn’t slow down as Cohen check-called a 350,000 bet. The river fell KClub Suit and Wice’s 600,000 bet was called. Wice slammed down JClub Suit10Diamond Suit like it was the nuts but Cohen tabled ADiamond Suit6Diamond Suit for the pot and went on to celebrate loudly with his railing supporters. — MC

2.30pm: Claudepierre takes pot from Cohen


A pot develops between Julien Claudepierre and Lucien Cohen. Claudepierre opened for 180,000 under-the-gun before the action was folded to Cohen in the big blind. He called for a flop of QClub Suit5Heart SuitKHeart Suit.

Cohen checked to Claudepierre who bet 240,000. Cohen then raised to 540,000, which Claudepierre called for a AClub Suit turn card. Both checked that for a 6Diamond Suit river which was also checked. Cohen turned over QHeart Suit10Spade Suit while Claudepierre took the pot showing KSpade Suit8Spade Suit. — SB

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Julian Claudepierre

2.25pm: Wice cracks aces to bust Anthony Hnatow in 7th place (€110,000)


Alex Wice is up to 12 million after a heart breaking, ace-cracking river. On the first hand back after the break Anthony Hnatow opened to 180,000 and Wice, more than happy to assume the big stack role, three-bet to 600,000. The action folded back around to Hnatow who waited a few heartbeats before moving all-in for 1.6 million total. Wice snap called, showing he’s not going to be a player to raise-fold in this spot.

Hnatow: ASpade SuitADiamond Suit


Wice: 8Heart Suit6Heart Suit

This was Hnatow’s chance to get back into this final table. The Frenchman had been playing a lot more snug than in the last few days, not a surprise given the big money pressure. The flop conspired against him; 6Spade SuitQHeart Suit2Diamond Suit. Wice had both backdoor and pair draws. The 4Heart Suit turn pushed Hnatow to his feet. It was not a good card for him. The 2Heart Suit was even worse. Wice held the flush, took the 3.2 million pot and stretched his consummate lead even further ahead. This is fast turning into a blood bath. They like their meat rare in France. — RD

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Anthony Hnatow: I’ll get me coat

2.23pm: Bust out!


There’s been an elimination on the first hand back. Details to come, but if you are a supporter of Anthony Hnatow, look away now. — SY

2.20pm: Players back, state of play


The players are returning to their seats to face new blinds of 40,000-80,000 and a 5,000 ante. Here are the current chip stacks. — SY

Alex Wice, Canada, PokerStars qualifier, 10,558,000


Julien Claudepierre, France, 5,048,000


Lucien Cohen, France, 4,390,000


Martin Jacobson, Sweden, PokerStars qualifier, 2,215,000


Kenny Hallaert, Belgium, 2,194,000


Anthony Hnatow, France, 1,354,000


Kaspars Renga, Latvia, 865,000

1.54pm: Level ends


That’s the end of level 27. We’re now on a 15-minute break. — SY

1.50pm: Renga survives as Wice storms into the chip lead


Ladies and gentlemen, we have just witnessed one of those tournament-changing pots. There was hush, tension and an annoying bloody Frenchman pushing me in the back who doesn’t realise how close he came to having my elbow smashed into his face.

The action started with an under-the-gun raise to 130,000 from Martin Jacobson which was quickly shoved on by Kaspars Renga for 600,000, also in early position. Alex Wice, just one seat along, made the call. The action folded around to Jacobson who slowly and methodically, as he always acts, made the call. The pot was already 1.8 million.





The 7Spade Suit10Heart SuitJHeart Suit flop was checked by both players but the 8Heart Suit turn was a huge card bringing serious straight and flush draws. Still, it was good enough for Jacobson to fire one million. Wice made the call. This was getting serious. The pot was now 3.8 million. Silence, bar some chattering in the cheap seats, had settled on the table and when the KDiamond Suit river card was dealt Jacobson pushed out a huge 2 million stack.





“How much more are you playing?” asked Wice. Tournament director Thomas Kremser intimated that it was a little over two million more. Wice set him in. At once, Jacobson tipped his head back in frustration and Renga – yes, we’d almost forgotten about him, too – put his head in hands assuming that he must be out. Jacobson passed pocket tens for a flopped set that he knew must now be behind.

Wice: AHeart SuitQClub Suit


Renga: ADiamond SuitQDiamond Suit

Renga, a very tight player as we may have mentioned, was thrilled to chop the pot. He’s now on 900,000. More importantly Jacobson has dropped to 2 million while Wice leaps to 9 million (full chip counts to come). — RD

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Kaspars Renga can’t look

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Martin Jacobson has to let it go

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Alex Wice gets all the gold

1.35pm: Cohen corners Jacobson


Martin Jacobson opened for 130,000 in early position which Lucien Cohen called in the small blind. The flop came KHeart Suit7Heart SuitAHeart Suit which Cohen checked. Jacobson made it another 130,000 which Cohen called. On the QHeart Suit turn Cohen was check-calling again, 250,000 from Jacobson this time. But then on the 6Diamond Suit river, when Cohen checked Jacobson did the same. The Swede was reluctant to show, saying he had pocket fours. For some reason Cohen wanted to see them before showing his own 5Heart Suit6Heart Suit for the flush. — SB

1.30pm: A turn of events


When the 7Club Suit appeared on the turn it seemed like a blank card, but not so to Lucien Cohen. The hand started with a Julien Claudepierre raise to 130,000 from second position and a quick call from Cohen in the big blind. The flop came 5Heart Suit10Spade SuitKDiamond Suit and Cohen checked quickly to face a 180,000 bet. Call. Cohen checked upon seeing the turn and faced a 460,000 bet this time. The increase in bet size stalled him for once and he began fiddling with his chips and rubbing his face. It was too much for him to call and he let his hand go. — MC

1.25pm: Claudepierre and Jacobson tangle


Julien Claudepierre has just taken 460,000 off Martin Jacobson in a battle of the blinds. Anthony Hnatow passed his button (another surprising example of Hantow’s change of pace today) allowing Claudepierre to open the pot with a small blind raise to 170,000. Jacobson came back over from the big blind with a three-bet to 460,000 putting Claudepierre to the test.

The Frenchman reached into his chips and – with a slight shake to his hand perhaps? – four-bet to 1,060,000. Jacobson sat studying the hand long enough for Lucien Cohen to get out of his chair to have a protracted Q&A session with the rail, and Alex Wice to wander away from the table and find himself a can of RedBull. — RD

1.20pm: Wice scoops the blinds


Alex Wice opened to 130,000 from the hijack and took the pot unopposed. Anthony Hantow folded in the big blind. The young Frenchman’s play has been uncharacteristically quiet. Maybe he’s had complete rags or maybe the big money has tightened up his play. — RD

1.15pm: Raise and take


Martin Jacobson raised and took on the button before Anthony Hnatow did the same in early position. Jacobson and Kenny Hallaert saw a flop of 8Diamond Suit9Heart SuitJDiamond Suit on the next hand, one that Jacobson won with a bet of 145,000. Wice took the next hand with a raise and take from the cut-off. — SB

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Martin Jacobson

1.10pm: Time to hear from Jacobson


Chip leader Martin Jacobson has played his first real hand of note and it didn’t go too well. Lucien Cohen opened the pot with a 140,000 raise from early position only for the Swede to three-bet him to 380,000 from the small blind. Cohen called quickly to the 5Spade Suit2Club Suit7Club Suit flop where he faced a 410,000 c-bet from Jacobson. Cohen, who’s not one to dwell, raised it up to 900,000 and took the pot as Jacobson folded. — MC

1.05pm: Jacobson and Hallaert


Martin Jacobson and Kenny Hallaert, who are two of the names that you expect to have a good chance to claim today’s title, have just tangled for the first time. Jacobson had opened from the hijack for 130,000, having done so the previous hand and successfully swiped the blinds, but was three-bet to 370,000 by Hallaert in the small blind. Jacobson leant forward to survey the chip castle in front of Hallaert. Either it was too big or too small for what he was thinking and he passed his hand. One up to Hallaert in this early skirmish.

Wice and Jacobson are still out in front. — RD

12.58pm: Ruslan Prydryk eliminated in 8th for €66,800


Ruslan Prydryk is the first player to be eliminated, busting in eighth place earning €66,800. Following a raise of 130,000 by Julien Claudepierre, Ruslan moved all-in for around a million. The action was folded through the blinds back to Claudepierre who announced “call”.

Claudepierre ASpade SuitQSpade Suit


Prydryk 6Spade Suit6Diamond Suit

The board ran ADiamond Suit4Diamond Suit2Heart Suit3Diamond Suit3Heart Suit to send the Ukrainian to the rail. — SB

12.55pm: First out


We have our first elimination. Ruslan Prydryk is out – details to come. — SY

12.50pm: Hallaert gives up to Cohen


Kenny Hallaert isn’t the kind of player to throw away chips unnecessarily. After firing a c-bet into Lucien Cohen, who has proved to be fairly trappy from what I’ve seen, he gave up on a 6Spade Suit9Spade Suit2Club Suit5Spade Suit board.

Hallaert had raised from the cut-off to 135,000 and had been called by Cohen. His 160,000 flop bet was called before he check-folded to a 260,000 bet on the turn. Cohen raked in the pot to cries of “Allez!”— RD

12.45pm: Double for rock-ish Renga


When Kaspars Renga raises the whole world should tremble. He’s been incredibly tight and combined with being short stacked you know he’s going to be packing something serious. Maybe Alex Wice thought he could abuse that tightness, he did make some significant folds yesterday when he was already heavily invested. This was not going to be the same though.

Renga opened to 166,000 from the cut-off, which was around a third of his stack. Wice three-bet to 330,000 from the button forcing Kenny Hallaert and Lucien Cohen out of the hand in the blinds. Renga moved all-in and Wice made the call.

Renga: AHeart SuitAClub Suit


Wice: QDiamond SuitJDiamond Suit

The 6Club Suit6Heart SuitKSpade Suit4Heart SuitQSpade Suit board held up for Renga to double up to 900,000. — RD

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Kaspars Renga likes what he sees

12.35pm: All Wice for now


Every pot has been won by Alex Wice so far. He got a walk in the big blind and the next hand he raised to 130,000 from the small blind. Kenny Hallaert made the call from the big blind to see the KClub Suit2Heart SuitQHeart Suit flop. Wice led for 130,000 and Hallaert called to go to the 7Spade Suit turn. Wice check-called a 230,000 bet before he checked to face a 320,000 bet on the 3Heart Suit river. He took longer this time but called again. “Ace-high”, said the Belgian. No good here, though, as Wice tabled QClub SuitJHeart Suit and took the pot. — MC

12.28pm: Side bet


For a small fee, members of Team PokerStars Blog have written down their predicted order of eliminations. Have you? Do it. Do it. Bacardi Cola. Do it.* — RD


* If you haven’t watched the remake of Starsky and Hutch that last part will make no sense to you

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The final table: where will they finish?

12.27pm: Housekeeping


We have eight minutes remaining in level 26 before the blinds move up. The next player to bust will win €66,680. You can check on all the payouts so far, and also on the latest chip counts.

12.26pm: Video


Settle back and enjoy the video introduction to the day. It’s got moving pictures and everything…

12.25pm: Final begins


After all the usual delays, we’re under way. Here is the pic of our intrepid players. — SY

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Final table players at EPT Deauville

12.15pm: Waiting


We’re still waiting for the formalities and photos to be completed. The final eight players will then be introduced and we’ll begin. Don’t count on that happening in the next ten minutes. — SY

11.55am: Final table day


A long month comes to a close in northern France for poker players today. After two weeks in the Bahamas for the highly successful PokerStars Caribbean Adventure across the ocean lay waiting the small town of Deauville, Normandy, a town usually asleep at this time of year, but one that opens its doors for the European Poker Tour each year at the ornate Casino Barriere Deauville.

This year a record field of 891 walked through that door, stopping to join several queues to collect various coloured wrist bands, joined another one to get into the tournament room, settled on a Crudite sandwich for breakfast and lunch, and then took a seat. Back on day one they were all competing for a first prize of €880,000. Now 891 has become eight and one of them will be crowned the latest EPT champion by the end of the day.

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Martin Jacobson’s chip stack yesterday


Leading the final table into Day 6 is Sweden’s Martin Jacobson. He snatched the lead as Day 5 closed yesterday, bagging up 7,280,000 to lead previous leader Alex Wice in second place with 6,248,000. The pair lead the remainder of the field by some way and will sit alongside each other today:

Martin Jacobson, Sweden, PokerStars qualifier, 7,280,000


Alex Wice, Canada, PokerStars qualifier, 6,248,000



Kenny Hallaert, Belgium, 3,599,000


Julien Claudepierre, France, 3,244,000


Lucien Cohen, France, 3,085,000


Anthony Hnatow, France, 1,644,000


Ruslan Prydryk, Ukraine, 1,154,000


Kaspars Renga, Latvia, 470,000

But let’s be cautious. Before you start putting money on Jacobson to go one better than his second place at Vilamoura earlier this season; or for Wice to nail down the form that this week has kept him around the top of the chip counts, there’s still the chance of an upset. Anthony Hnatow showed urgency in his play yesterday, combining effectively with perfect timing. He will pose a threat, as will the plucky Kenny Hallaert.

Then there’s always the underdog. Kaspars Renga will be in no hurry to leave, while the local heros Lucien Cohen and Julien Claudepierre will not go down without a fight.

Yep, we guarantee even more clichés like that as the day progresses. You can suggest your own in the comments box below.

The stage is set (a stage has actually been set up overnight) for a thrilling finale to EPT Deauville. The players are arriving, as are the spectators who will fill the bank of seating overlooking the final table. Play will be under way shortly. — SB

PokerStars Blog reporting team in Deauville (in order of money won on slot machines last night, with an initial stake of €5):Simon Young (€13.50 on the ‘Fruits and Jewels’ machine), Stephen Bartley (-€1 having decided to save the other €4 on the ‘something to do with pirates’ machine), honourary blogger Alan Rogers from the video team (-€5, ’I’ve no idea what I’m doing’), Rick Dacey (-€15 having reloaded twice on the ‘Guns n’ Vodka machine) and Marc Convey (-€40, elsewhere, playing online)



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 Deauville: Final table player profiles

ept-thumb-promo.jpgA field of 891 players arrived in Deauville last Monday and now, six days later, just eight of them remain. At stake today is a first prize of €880,000 and an EPT title that comes with a seat to the season 7 Grand Final. So who are the last eight? We’re glad you asked…

Seat 1: Anthony Hnatow, 22, Ozoir-La-Ferriere, France – 1,644,000 chips


Anthony is a student in Computer Engineering who’s been playing Texas hold’em poker for three years, preferring to perfect this variation before trying others. He prefers playing cash games, mainly online under the nickname “nartoof”, and he recently began playing in Paris cardrooms.

Since the French online gaming market was regulated in June 2010, Anthony has started playing more tournaments because, he explains, the fields on French websites are a bit easier to navigate. He played his first live tournament last December during the Forges-Les-Eaux stop of the PokerStars France Poker Series. That’s when he decided he would play EPT Deauville. If Hnatow wins today, he plans to buy a house and turn it into a night-club, complete with entry fee and all.

Seat 2: Julien Claudepierre, 24, France – 3,244 chips


Claudepierre discovered poker in 2006, watching the movie Rounders. He started by playing micro-stakes cash-games online and then moved up in stakes. He is now a regular at the €5/€10 tables under the username “Garrincho”. He mainly plays no-limit hold’em but recently began playing pot-limit Omaha.

After completing his engineering studies 18 months ago, Claudepierre decided to make the leap towards professional poker. His best results to date are victory in an online €100,000 guaranteed tournament, and an 11th place finish at the Spanish Poker Tour’s final stop in 2010.

During Day 5 of EPT Deauville, Claudepierre knocked out his good friend Fabrice Soulier. Apart from poker, Claudepierre loves football, especially Zinedine Zidane and the French team ‘AS Nancy’.

Seat 3: Martin Jacobson, 25, Sweden, PokerStars qualifier – 7,280,000 chips


PokerStars qualifier Jacobson goes into the final as chip leader today. He already has big results to his name, including his most recent and biggest cash when he finished runner-up at EPT Vilamoura in Portugal last September, earning €297,985.

Other deep runs include third place at EPT Budapest in Season 5 for €197,904, runner-up at WPT Venice last year for €238,840 and a fourth place finish in a World Series $1,500 event last summer for $183,345. His live tournament winnings now amount to more than $1.3 million.

Jacobson won his seat to Deauville via the EPT Steps satellites on New Year’s Day.

Seat 4: Ruslan Prydryk, 38, Lugansk , Ukraine – 1,154 chips


Prydryk has been playing EPTs for several years, first coming to people’s notice when he reached the final of EPT Warsaw in Season 6, where he finished fifth, earning $105,760 – his biggest career cash.

He has also enjoyed some good EPT finishes including a 48th place at EPT Prague just before Christmas, and 91st place at EPT Berlin last season. Prydryk has also won a local event in Yalta, Ukraine, last May, earning €67,000.

Prydryk, a former lawyer, has been playing poker for more than four years now and considers himself a pro. He is being supported in France by his wife Oksana while their 13-year-old daughter Irisa is at home. Prydryk’s biggest poker success was winning the 2009 Gary Bowman Cup, becoming the poker champion of Ukraine. Outside of poker, he enjoys watching and playing football.

Seat 5 : Kaspars Renga, 44, Riga, Latvia – 470,000 chips


Renga doesn’t describe himself as a professional player. He plays a lot but his day job is running a hunting magazine. This is Renga’s fourth EPT cash from only seven tries. The 44-year-old has already made the money twice in Barcelona (Season 6 and 7) and in Prague just a month ago.

In addition Renga has a string of final tables and deep runs in smaller tournaments in Lithuania, Estonia and his native Latvia. His most lucrative cash before now was runner-up in a €1,000 Pot-Limit Omaha side event (“my favorite game”, he says) during EPT Berlin, worth €29,700.

Renga is being supported by his wife and two children who are following his progress from home.

Seat 6: Alex Wice, 22, Toronto, Canada – PokerStars qualifier – 6,248 chips


Wice has been playing poker with friends since before he went to high school and carried on playing part-time while at Waterloo University studying Mathematics. Wice dropped out to play full-time in August 2008, after winning the PokerStars Sunday Warm-Up for $135,000.

Wice is a regular online high stakes tournament player and has also been playing live for the past two years. He cashed at EPT London in season six but his big breakthrough in live events came at last summer’s World Series where he came third for $102,314 in the $2,500 World Championship Mixed Events 8 game.

His focus, since he turned pro, has been on improving his game, spending a lot of time researching and analysing hands on his computer. He credits a lot of his success with deep stack tournament play friends who have been helping him over the past few months.

Seat 7: Kenny “SpaceyFCB” Hallaert, 29, Namur, Belgium – 3,599 chips


Hallaert is a semi-professional player who lives in Namur, and runs tournaments at the local casino. He also does marketing for the casino, catering for non-French speakers. Hallaert has played numerous European Poker tour events, qualifying for most of them.


His biggest live result came in Holland, where he finished sixth at the Master Classics in Amsterdam, in 2009, earning €86,184. Then last season he came 37th at the EPT Grand Final, earning €35,000. He also won the PokerStars Sunday Warm-Up in January 2009 and was top of the PokerStars TLB in the same month.

He is now wants to become the first ever Belgian EPT champion.

Seat 8: Lucien Cohen, 47, Paris, France – 3,085,000 chips


Lucien Cohen is an amateur player who predominantly enjoys playing Pot Limit Omaha cash games. Cohen has been playing poker for 20 years having started, like many in France, with five card draw.

Since this event began, Lucien has been repeatedly seen showing table mates and spectators a plastic rat which he was often “kissed” while all-in. This lucky charm is actually the official mascot of the pest control company Cohen owns in Paris.

Cohen is being supported in Deauville by his wife, younger sister and various friends. He’s very excited about playing an EPT final table and plans to play more live tournaments in the future.

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The finalists (left to right): Martin Jacobson, Anthony Hnatow, Ruslan Prydryk, Julien Claudepierre, Kaspars Renga, Kenny Hallaert, Lucien Cohen and Alex Wice




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.

 

Classy Jacobson seizes lead ahead of EPT Deauville final

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At the end of one of the European Poker Tour’s quickest days, just eight finalists remain in the EPT Deauville Main event, held in the regal Salles des Ambassadeurs at Casino Barriere. It took a little less than four levels to turn three tables into one today, and as players raced the sunset to a dusk finish, it’s Martin Jacobson who takes with him the chip lead into the final, bagging up 7,280,000 at the close.

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Chip leader Martin Jacobson


Day 5 was something of an operatic overture to accompany this entire week in northern France. Packed into a short burst of poker were tournament vignettes, snippets reminding us of earlier stages – the lethargy of day one, the tension of money jumps of Day 3 and the sudden rush of Day 4 that can take hold and wipe out half a table within minutes.

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The last three tables


Added to that was an intimate atmosphere; a small corner of the tournament room fenced off to provide an unlikely playing space. In scenes harking back to EPTs staged four seasons ago, the rail was only inches away from the players, while spectators and media alike looked for any nook or cranny from where it was safe to watch.

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The tournament room


What they would see was a quick-fire process of assassination, names we’d grown familiar with this last week, departing one after the other.

Emile Petit was the first to depart in 24th place although not until more than an hour of play. If anyone was forecasting a long day they would be mistaken, with four players, Riccardo Giacalone, Zimnan Ziyard, Fabrice Soulier and Andrzej Nowak-Rogozinski chasing each other to the rail within five minutes, followed shortly after by Sebastien Bidinger, taking play to two tables.

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Fabrice Soulier


At the heart of the destruction were the likes of Jacobson and Alex Wice, obvious talents who knew when to strike and did so with conviction when the opportunity arose. They will be most feared when play restarts tomorrow, although there were flashes of ability from others today.

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Alex Wice at work


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Alex Wice at rest


Frenchman Anthony Hnatow started today obsessed with increasing his stack, a tactic that if deployed tomorrow will likely take him into title contention. It was also a good day for Julien Claudepierre, whose solid play leaves him poised for his best ever tournament result. Then there is Kaspars Renga, the short stack in the closing stages, who used the age old technique of hanging on for dear life to reach the final table. Whatever works.

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Anthony Hnatow


Gradually two tables became one. Kevin Keosomphet departed in 16th, then Fabian Holling and the last American William Johnson. When Laurent Polito was sent to the rail in ninth by Jacobson the final table was in place. Here’s how it will look:

Seat 1. Anthony Hnatow – 1,644,000


Seat 2. Julien Claudepierre – 3,244,000


Seat 3. Martin Jacobson – 7,280,000


Seat 4. Ruslan Prydryk – 1,154,000


Seat 5. Kaspars Renga – 470,000


Seat 6. Alex Wice – 6,248,000


Seat 7. Kenny Hallaert – 3,599,000


Seat 8. Lucien Cohen – 3,085,000

To find the detail of every elimination today, as well as the double-ups, the bits in between, and details of the latest PokerStars Blog readership news from Fiji, click on the links below. You’ll also find the list of those eliminated on the official prizepool and payouts page.

Level 23 cont.,24 & 25 updates


Level 26 updates

Thanks to our photographer Neil Stoddart for his work today. French gaming law may be tough, but so too is his legal team that he pays to scours the planet for unauthorised use of his copyrighted shots. Thanks also to our foreign blogging friends, working in Dutch, German and French. We put Dutch first because he bought us a drink last night. The door is still open for Germany and France.

That was Day 5 then. We’ll be back with the Main Event final table tomorrow starting at 12 noon. Will Jacobson win this one wire-to-wire, beating his previous best of second place at EPT Vilamoura earlier this season? Or will the likes of the Latvian Renga overturn a serious chip deficit to pull off what would be the surprise of the century. Find out right here tomorrow.

See you then.



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 Deauville: Day 5, level 26 (blinds 25,000-50,000, 5,000 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg6.10pm: Jacobson scoops huge pot, Polito busts in 9th


Martin Jacobson will be the chip leader heading into tomorrow as he busted Laurent Polito in a pot worth around six million. He raised to 110,000 from the button and called when Polito three-bet to 310,000 from the big blind. The flop was 8Spade Suit7Heart SuitJSpade Suit and Polito checked to Jacobson who bet 300,000. Now Polito moved all-in for 2.7 million! Jacobson called in a flash and tabled 7Diamond Suit7Club Suit for bottom set. Polito cried out loud and tabled QSpade SuitQDiamond Suit. The AHeart Suit turn and JDiamond Suit river changed nothing and our final table of eight is set.

The happiest player in the room is Kaspars Renga who had been folding every hand in an attempt to make this prestigious final table. He cheered to his supporters on the rail and pumped his fist. — MC

6.05pm: All quiet


It’s all raise and takes pre-flop right now with most players taking it in turn to pinch the blinds and antes. Except Kaspars Renga, who appears to be sitting tight. — SY

5.50pm: Jacobson pressed in a Wice-like grip


Martin Jacobson opened from middle position to 120,000 and was called by Alex Wice in the small blind. Wice led for 200,000 into the 2Club Suit6Spade Suit10Club Suit flop and Jacobson slowly made the call.

The 2Heart Suit turn card was dealt. As Wice reached deep into his chip stack Jacobson was literally licking his chips, a sign of nervousness perhaps? Wice bet 610,000 and Jacobson made the call. The river completed the flush draw with the 5Club Suit and Wice led out again, this time for a huge 1.1 million.

Jacobson passed and the gap between first and second stretched out again with the Swede falling to around 360,000, Wice moving up over 6 million. — RD

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Alex Wice keeping himself in the zone during the last break

5.45pm: First all-in of nine handed play


Ruslan Prydryk was the first player to risk bubbling the final table after he three-bet all-in for over 900,000 after an opening raise from Julien Claudepierre. It was a good spot to shove as Claudepierre was raising into the big blind of the short stacked Kaspars Renga and so it proved as Claudepierre folded. — MC

5.38pm: Renga v the bubble


Kaspars Renga is the shortest stack at this table, his 600,000 is around two thirds of the next smallest stack. He’s been playing pretty tight and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. The knock-on effect is that the other players don’t really want to bust before he does. Not only is there the fact that he should be all-in before anyone else and that the next bust takes us to the final table, but that there’s a €16,800 pay jump. Ninth place pays €50,000, eighth place €66,800.

He might be able to squeak up another pay spot but if he doesn’t get his chips in soon his chances of going any further than that will be all but dead.

Laurent Polito has taken the blinds with a raise and Lucien Cohen has won a small pot as well. — RD




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Kaspars Renga




5.30pm: Tentative stuff


No-one wants to leave as the final table bubble boy, a fate that befell Team PokerStars Pro ElkY here last year. As a result things on this last table are a little slow. That said, it’s cracking poker but without the flops.

Ruslan Prydrk raised to 130,000 then folded when Laurent Polito made it 300,000. Next hand it was folded around to Alex Wice in the small blind who raised to 130,000, only to fold when Kenny Hallaert re-raised to 280,000 from the big blind. — SY

5.22pm: Hnatow loses a chunk


Anthony Hnatow has handed over around a third of his stack to Martin Jacobson after he barrelled all the way to the river. He raised from the cut-off and Hnatow defended from the big blind to see the 10Club Suit3Club Suit3Diamond Suit flop. Hnatow bet 90,000 here, 250,000 on the KSpade Suit turn and 580,000 on the 5Diamond Suit river. Jacobson check-called all the way. Hnatow cringed when his river bet was called as he only had 7Diamond Suit6Heart Suit, losing out to Jacobson’s KDiamond Suit9Diamond Suit. He dropped to just over two million whereas Jacobson is up to over four and-a-half million. — MC

5.15pm: The final nine


We have just one more player to bust before play stops for the day but the following draw will stay true for the final table tomorrow, obviously minus one player. Assuming he gets through this will be Martin Jacobson’s third EPT final table.

1. Anthony Hnatow – 3,000,000


2. Julien Claudepierre – 3,100,000


3. Martin Jacobson – 3,600,000


4. Ruslan Prydryk – 1,500,000


5. Laurent Polito – 3,000,000


6. Kaspars Renga – 650,000


7. Alex Wice – 5,290,000


8. Kenny Hallaert – 3,069,000


9. Lucien Cohen – 3,000,000

Looking at how most of the final nine have played over the last few days this could actually be a fantastic final table. Plenty of aggression, for sure. — RD

5.10pm: Down to one table!


Philip Jacobsen is out in tenth place for €50,000, meaning we are down to our last table. It will be the official final table once we lose one more player.

Julien Claudepierre had raised from the button and Jacobsen shoved for one million, getting an instant call. Not surprising, really…

Jabobsen: AClub Suit7Club Suit


Claudepierre: ASpade SuitAHeart Suit

Jacobsen was in all sorts of the trouble and the [10d]6Club Suit5Diamond Suit flop did nothing to help. But the KClub Suit turn opened up the flush draw. Claudepierre sat still as a rock, as if knowing the last card would not be a club. It wasn’t, coming KHeart Suit instead and that ended Jacobsen’s day.

Claudepierre is up to three million. — SY

5.05pm: Franck Pepe pushed out in 11th (€37,500)


Franck Pepe fell just moments after Kevin Lambert. Pepe opened to 120,000 and Polito moved all-in from the button. Pepe, who started the hand with less than 500,000, called all-in.

Pepe: KSpade SuitJClub Suit


Polito: ADiamond SuitKClub Suit

The board ran out 6Spade Suit10Diamond SuitQDiamond SuitQHeart Suit3Club Suit and Polito raked in Pepe’s chips to leave just nine players. — RD

5pm: Time runs out for Swiss man, Lambert out in 12th (€37,500)


Kevin Lambert was eliminated in the first hand back from break and earns €37,500 for his 12th place finish. Martin Jacobson raised and called when Lambert shoved for 665,000.

Lambert: ADiamond SuitJDiamond Suit


Jacobson: ASpade SuitKSpade Suit

The board ran 2Club Suit10Heart Suit3Spade Suit7Diamond Suit7Heart Suit. Jacobson moved up to around the 3.6million chip mark and is clear in second position. — MC

4.55pm: Helloooooo Fiji


Just how much excitement can you handle in one day? Well, prepare yourself for our daily Helloooooo slot, featuring today the Pacific nation of Fiji. Our analytics tell us we have a single reader logging on from his/her home on the beach overlooking the Pacific Ocean*.

Fiji is made up of 332 islands, of which 110 are permanently inhabited, and more than 500 islets, amounting to a total land area of circa 18,300 square kilometres. Our sole reader there comes from Suva and enjoyed four pages on PokerStars Blog lasting eight minutes and 14 seconds.

Helloooooo! – SY

*Pure guesswork about the ocean view.

4.51pm: Current chips by table

Kenny Hallaert – 3,069,000


Martin Jacobson – 2,900,000


Lucien Cohen – 3,000,000


Kevin Lambert – 670,000


Ruslan Prydryk – 1,500,000


Kaspars Renga – 650,000

Laurent Polito – 2,500,000


Julien Claude Pierre – 2,056,000


Philip Jacobsen – 1,188,000


Alex Wice – 5,290,000


Franck Pepe – 480,000


Anthony Hnatow – 3,000,000

4.50pm: Back from the break


Players are back in their seats and play resumes with blinds at 25,000-50,000, 5,000 ante. — SB

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Martin Jacobson


PokerStars Blog reporting team in Deauville (in order of ambivalance when asked “does anyone have any ideas for an ‘in order of’?”): Stephen Bartley (desperate, this will have to do), Simon Young (“you’ll think of something”), Rick Dacey (“I’m doing the chips”) and Marc Convey (“I’m hungry”)



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 Deauville: It's Day 5



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

 
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