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Buy-In: $14,842 + $593
Prize Pool: $10,181,818
Entrants: 683

Main Event

  • May 07, '11 - May 12, '11
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Updates on Final Day (May 12, 11)

 
 

Ivan Freitez triumphant to become EPT Grand Final champion

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Amid jubilant scenes in the Casino Gran Madrid, Ivan Freitez was crowned EPT Grand Final Champion tonight, an unstoppable force at a most unique EPT final table.

Broadcast on live television across Europe (albeit with a two-hour delay) and across the world, and those watching on EPT Live, watched Freitez put on a show of unorthodox, but effective high-stakes poker, surging past his seven opponents with ease to a first place prize of €1,500,000, a bracelet from Official Sponsor Shamballa Jewels, and a seat (should he choose to accept it) to the Champion of Champions event tomorrow. A few bottles of champagne may be the decider on that front.

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Ivan Freitez


“Overall he was the best player at the final table,” said David Williams, in the EPT Live commentary box. “He may have been unorthodox, but he deserved to win.”

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EPT Grand Final winner Ivan Freitez


Four players had been dispatched before the live broadcast began, to those watching it was obvious, it was simply Freitez’s event to win. The Venezuelan had the momentum in what was never going to be a long affair. Andrey Danilyuk was first to go from the final four, Freitez sending him home – or to the two hour sequestered debrief area – just half-an-hour after the restart, his pocket threes undone by Freitez’s ace-nine with a nine landing on the river.

Then went Tamas Lendvai; again Freitez sending him for an early consolatory drink, and again with ace-nine, this time overcoming Lendvai’s pocket nines when the ace hit the flop.

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Tamas Lendvai


By now Freitez had it sewn up, with only Torsten Brinkmann between him and an EPT Grand Final title.

In terms of opposition to Freitez, Brinkmann was perhaps most able. Watched by his girlfriend on the rail, the German put up what defence he could but was always behind, entering the heads-up phase behind 4,500,000 to 16,000,000, and never able to get a


foothold.

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Torsten Brinkmann


When Brinkmann looked down at pocket queens he moved in with his last few million. Freitez found ace-five and decided that was worth the call, turning over the hand that would win him the title. It was, an ace on the flop sending his railbirds into delirium, and Freitez himself into euphoric celebration.

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Handshakes all round heads-up


Freitez, the champion, the final four decided in less than two hours.

The Venezuelan was not the first choice, but he was the worthy one. Entering the final table this afternoon eyes were on Team PokerStars Pros Alex Gomes and Juan Maceiras; Gomes for being on the brink of a Triple Crown, Maceiras as potentially being the first Spanish EPT champion. Neither would come to good, each departing in the first part of the day.

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Alex Gomes


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Juan Maceiras


That all seems so long ago, when the cards were faced down and the sun still shone. As far as the latter stages went the poker was some of the most gripping in EPT history. There is no denying that hole cards faced up added a shot of pure adrenaline, giving the audience a welcome sense of dramatic irony that made each hand more delicious as the winning hand approached. There may have been a delay, but few would argue that it wasn’t worth it.

The tour now winds down, the players released from their enforced quarantine, the celebrations allowed to commence in public. It brings an end to another fantastic season on the European Poker Tour. They’ll be a gap now until August but the prospect of Season 8 makes the wait all the more easy to bear.

As always the extended version of today is available at the links below, with a full rundown of all of those who cashed, on the prize winner’s page.

Level 28 & 29 updates


Level 30 updates

The season may be over but there’s still one more day of action to look forward to. Tomorrow the Champion of Champions event kicks off at 2pm, a unique invitation only tournament with a cast comprised entirely of EPT winners. It will make for a perfect epilogue to the season.

Until then that’s all from the lobby bar of the Intercontinental Hotel. To be honest we expected a late night. Instead we got a high speed finale, which has at least pleased the barmen counting on tips from another round of gin and tonics.


Thanks to our foreign bloggers, writing in German, Dutch and Swedish. Also to our distinguished photographers Neil Stoddart and Kim Curtin, sequestered but never dispirited, who provided all the images from today.

For now, it’s goodnight from Madrid.



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 Madrid: Final table, level 30 updates (cont.) (blinds 60,000-120,000, 15,000 ante)

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11.25pm: Freitez pulling ahead


Ivan Freitez pushes Tamas Lendvai off of a pot. Lendvai opened with 260,000 from under-then-gun before Freitez raised to 560,000 from the small blind. Lendvai passed.

Then Freitez opened for 250,000 from the button with JClub Suit9Diamond Suit. Torsten Brinkmann then raised to 680,000 from the small blind. Freitez called for a flop of 5Club Suit3Club Suit10Club Suit. Brinkmann checked to Freitez who bet 1,500,000. It’s a big bet that Brinkmann called, making it a 4,500,000 pot.

Now the 9Heart Suit turn. Again Brinkmann checked before Freitez moved all-in. Brinkmann made the fold. – SB

11.15pm: Freitez off to a flying start


Freitez starts off on an aggressive footing having successfully c-bet one flop against Torsten Brinkmann and then taken the blinds with a JDiamond Suit10Diamond Suit button raise. It’s big money and no-one wants to put a foot wrong. — RD

11.10pm: Say what?


Don’t forget (as the first couple of hands go uncontested), you can talk to us directly via the comments box below. Points awarded for good grammar and punctuation. — SB

11.05pm: We’re off


And right on five minutes late Thomas Kremser gives the order to shuffle up and deal. – SB

10.45pm: Welcome back to Part II of the Grand Final


Welcome back to the final table of the European Poker Tour Grand Final main event. The story so far…

Play started this afternoon with eight players. Now there are four. First out was Andrew Li, the American, who impressed throughout the week. Li got his chips in with pocket threes but Eugene Yanayt’s ace-queen counterfeited Li when the board double paired.

Out in seventh place went Team PokerStars Pro Alex Gomes, and with him any thought of only a third ever Triple Crown winner. Then, 90 minutes later, it was Yanayt heading for the door, his pocket fives no match for the nines of Ivan Freitez.

Then, to bring the early session to a close on the strike of 6pm, Team PokerStars Pro Juan Maceiras’s dream of becoming the first Spanish EPT Champion came to an end when his last dance with jack-ten waltzed right into Torsten Brinkmann’s ace-king. Four down, four to go.

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The final table


Now, five hours later, you join us live from the lobby of the Intercontinental Hotel in downtown Madrid, for coverage for the closing stages of the EPT Grand Final. From these suitably lavish surroundings we’ll be bringing you parallel coverage of tonight’s play, which can be viewed with unique “hands face-up” technology, both across European television and on EPTLive.

Here’s how they’ll line up.

Ivan Freitez – 7,720,000


Torsten Brinkmann – 6,750,000


Tamas Lendvai – 3,790,000


Andrew Danilyuk – 2,460,000

You’ll find all the action right here, as well as comment from any of the late night revellers coming back from the EPT Awards that we can corner on their way to the bar, as we knock back fruit juice and coffee to see us through the night.

There’s a New Year’s Eve feel to this one, the final table already in full flow a few miles away in Casino Gran Madrid, in a sealed room of course, full of unionized TV people who know they have a two hour quarantine period to follow once the new champion is crowned. It could already be over, it might not yet have lost a single player, but you’ll find out either way right here.

Play “starts” at 11pm. — SB



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 Madrid: Final table, level 30 (cont.) & 31 updates (blinds 80,000-160,000, 20,000 ante)

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12.52am: Ivan Freitez wins EPT Madrid and €1,500,00


Ivan Freitez has won the EPT Madrid Grand Final beating German Torsten Brinkmann heads up to claim €1,500,000, as well as a place in the Champion of Champions tournament tomorrow. Freitez opened his button with 10Diamond Suit9Diamond Suit and Brinkmann shoved ADiamond SuitKClub Suit. Freitez made the call.

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A very happy Ivan Freitez and friends





The 5Heart Suit2Spade Suit9Spade Suit flop put Freitez way ahead but Brinkmann still had outs, six of them to be precise. The 6Diamond Suit turn and 8Club Suit river blanked out and the South American rail exploded as Freitez held his hand aloft in victory. — RD




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Torsten on the Brinkmann





12.42am: Brinkmann shoves again


That’s two shoves on the bounce from the button by Brinkmann. First he shoved QDiamond Suit10Diamond Suit and then pocket fives. Both times Ivan Freitaz passed. — RD

12.40am: Jacks, no action


Ivan Freitez has had a great run of cards – and to his credit he’ s played them well – but has the tide finally turned? Freitez opened the button with JHeart SuitJClub Suit and found no action. Heads up player Brinkmann is definitely in with a shout despite being largely outchipped. — RD

12.35am: Freitez takes another


Torsten Brinkmann opened for 320,000 on the button with JDiamond Suit4Club Suit which Freitez called in the big blind with JSpade Suit8Club Suit. The flop came 3Club Suit2Heart Suit10Diamond Suit. Freitez checked to Brinkmann who bet 320,000. Freitez called for an 8Diamond Suit turn card. Another 200,000 from Freitez was good enough to take the pot. — SB

12.25am: Disciplined fold


Ivan Freitez just opened the button with pocket fives and Torsten Brinkmann passed KSpade Suit3Heart Suit. The German looks really rattled at the moment. He’s got little over 10% of the chips and will need a big mental boost to recover.

Brinkmann picked up AClub Suit5Club Suit and shoved the button for 2,400,000 and Freitez peeled QHeart SuitQClub Suit. Quick call from the Venezuelan. It seems that nothing can go wrong for Freitez. Well, not until the 7Spade SuitADiamond Suit9Spade Suit flop. The turn and river bricked out and Brinkmann returns to his heads up starting point. Brinkmann looks a man resurrected. It’s on! — RD

12.22am: Chip counts


Ivan Freitez — 18,000,000


Torsten Brinkmann — 2,600,000

12.20am: Freitez unstoppable


It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas for Ivan Freitez, the momentum clearly with hi,. Brinkmann looked down at 9Heart Suit4Heart Suit and raised to 320,000 in the button/small blind. Freitez found 2Club Suit2Diamond Suit and called in the small blind for a flop of 8Club Suit10Diamond Suit6Spade Suit. Both checked for a KClub Suit turn card.

Brinkmann bet again, 370,000 which Freitez check-called. On the river Freitez checked the action to Brinkmann who bet again, 680,000. But Freitez has the Big Mo, and called, watching Brinkmann admit to “nine-high.” He slammed his pocket deuces down and the crowd erupted. Freitez unstoppable. – SB

12.08am: Heads up counts


Ivan Freitez is up to 16,000,000 and Torsten Brinkmann is on 4,500,000. It’s quite a lead but Brinkmann is a regular heads up cash game player so Freitez is not going to be able to walk over the German. Brinkmann has won the last couple of heads up pots pre-flop. — RD

12am: Tamas Lendvai eliminated in third place, earning €550,000


More amazing scenes with an all-in, a call and a bit of luck, and it’s Ivan Freitez the beneficiary.

It all centred around Tamas Lendvai, the short stack, who in a break from folding, moved all-in when he found 9Diamond Suit9Spade Suit on the big blind for 2,200,000, after Brinkmann opened for 350,000 with JClub Suit8Spade Suit on the button.

Freitez thought about things, then thought some more before announcing a call with AHeart Suit9Heart Suit. It was, what David Williams dubbed, an “amateur mistake” but one that would be profitable, with a flop of 3Diamond SuitASpade Suit10Heart Suit.

Freitez, on seeing the ace, performed a kind of dance on stage. The turn came QDiamond Suit and left with one out Lendvai was on the brink. The river came JDiamond Suit and Lendvai’s adventure was over. We’re heads-up. — SB




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Tamas Lendvai busts to take the action heads up




11.50pm: Brinkmann pushes ahead of Lendvai


Torsten Brinkmann has moved past 5,000,000 after taking a two million pot from Ivan Freitez. Brinkmann opened for 350,000 from the button with QHeart Suit8Club Suit and Freitez called the big blind with AHeart Suit4Spade Suit.

Freitez check-called 325,000 on the QDiamond SuitJClub Suit4Heart Suit flop before Brinkmann checked back the 5Heart Suit turn. Freitez led 325,000 into the JDiamond Suit river and Brinkmann made the call. The German has 5,100,000, Freitez drops to 11,400,000. — RD

11.48pm: Scores on the door

Ivan Freitez – 14,000,000 (88 big blinds)


Torsten Brinkmann – 4,000,0000 (25 big blinds)


Tamas Lendvai – 2,500,000 (16 big blinds)

It’s a huge lead for the Venezuelan. — RD

11.45pm: Brinkmann all-in


Ivan Freitez wakes up with 5Club Suit6Club Suit and opened for 375,000 on the button. Torsten Brinkmann found KClub SuitQClub Suit and raised all-in for 3,500,000. Tamas Lendvai joked that he hoped he would find aces, but found 10Spade Suit8Spade Suit instead and folded.

Freitez stood, shook hands with Brinkmann and… folded. – SB

11.42pm: Bully poker


If you have a decent chip lead three-handed it’s a good idea to use it to keep up the pressure on your opponents. Ivan Freitez seems to understand that concept and this last hand showed just that.

He raised to 320,000 from the button with 5Diamond Suit3Heart Suit. Torsten Brinkmann was in the big blind and defended with the dominating KSpade Suit5Heart Suit. The flop came down 2Club Suit8Club SuitAHeart Suit and the Venezualan c-bet for 320,000 and that was good at Brinkmann folded. — MC

11.40pm: Brinkmann refusing to blind out


Torsten Brinkmann is in second spot here to mega stack Ivan Freitez and is refusing to sit back and let Tamas Lendvai get knocked out first. Brinkmann opened the button with 7Club Suit4Heart Suit and got it through past Freitez’s big blind. Lendvai is waiting for a top end hand or for Brinkmann to bust. — RD

LEVEL UP: BLINDS 80,000-6,000, ANTE 160,000


11.35pm: Andrey Danilyuk eliminated in fourth place, earning €400,000


Amid amazing scenes in Madrid, (not including Casey Kastle, who just strolled past to say he can’t bear to watch an EPT after he’s been eliminated), Ivan Freitez has just eliminated Andrey Danilyuk.

The Russian shoved from the button before Freitex re-shoved to isolate from the small blind. The cards? ADiamond Suit9Club Suit fro Freitez, 3Spade Suit3Diamond Suit for Danilyuk.

The board was clear to the river, coming JClub Suit7Heart Suit10Diamond SuitKHeart SuitAHeart Suit.

The river sent Danilyuk, the last PokerStars qualifier in the event, to the rail. Meanwhile Freitez and his railbirds danced in celebration. We’re down to three, Danilyuk collected €400,000 for fourth place. – SB




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The final eight players at EPT Madrid




11.30pm: Freitez looking great, flopping better


It’s easy to look like a poker God when you’re hitting hard so it will be interesting what happens when Ivan Freitez stops connecting. After catching the turn in that large pot against Torsten Brinkmann, Freitez raised the button with ADiamond Suit8Spade Suit and was called by Brinkmann with 10Spade Suit9Spade Suit. The flop came down AHeart Suit6Heart Suit8Heart Suit giving Freitez top two.

With a stack this big it’s going to be impossible for the others to catch up if he keeps hitting like this. Great time to go on a heater! — RD

11.25pm: Freitez pulling ahead


Ivan Freitez pushes Tamas Lendvai off of a pot. Lendvai opened with 260,000 from under-then-gun before Freitez raised to 560,000 from the small blind. Lendvai passed.

Then Freitez opened for 250,000 from the button with JClub Suit9Diamond Suit. Torsten Brinkmann then raised to 680,000 from the small blind. Freitez called for a flop of 5Club Suit3Club Suit10Club Suit. Brinkmann checked to Freitez who bet 1,500,000. It’s a big bet that Brinkmann called, making it a 4,500,000 pot.

Now the 9Heart Suit turn. Again Brinkmann checked before Freitez moved all-in. Brinkmann made the fold. – SB

11.15pm: Freitez off to a flying start


Freitez starts off on an aggressive footing having successfully c-bet one flop against Torsten Brinkmann and then taken the blinds with a JDiamond Suit10Diamond Suit button raise. It’s big money and no-one wants to put a foot wrong. — RD

11.10pm: Say what?


Don’t forget (as the first couple of hands go uncontested), you can talk to us directly via the comments box below. Points awarded for good grammar and punctuation. — SB

11.05pm: We’re off


And right on five minutes late Thomas Kremser gives the order to shuffle up and deal. – SB

10.45pm: Welcome back to Part II of the Grand Final


Welcome back to the final table of the European Poker Tour Grand Final main event. The story so far…

Play started this afternoon with eight players. Now there are four. First out was Andrew Li, the American, who impressed throughout the week. Li got his chips in with pocket threes but Eugene Yanayt’s ace-queen counterfeited Li when the board double paired.

Out in seventh place went Team PokerStars Pro Alex Gomes, and with him any thought of only a third ever Triple Crown winner. Then, 90 minutes later, it was Yanayt heading for the door, his pocket fives no match for the nines of Ivan Freitez.

Then, to bring the early session to a close on the strike of 6pm, Team PokerStars Pro Juan Maceiras’s dream of becoming the first Spanish EPT Champion came to an end when his last dance with jack-ten waltzed right into Torsten Brinkmann’s ace-king. Four down, four to go.

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The final table


Now, five hours later, you join us live from the lobby of the Intercontinental Hotel in downtown Madrid, for coverage for the closing stages of the EPT Grand Final. From these suitably lavish surroundings we’ll be bringing you parallel coverage of tonight’s play, which can be viewed with unique “hands face-up” technology, both across European television and on EPTLive.

Here’s how they’ll line up.

Ivan Freitez – 7,720,000


Torsten Brinkmann – 6,750,000


Tamas Lendvai – 3,790,000


Andrew Danilyuk – 2,460,000

You’ll find all the action right here, as well as comment from any of the late night revellers coming back from the EPT Awards that we can corner on their way to the bar, as we knock back fruit juice and coffee to see us through the night.

There’s a New Year’s Eve feel to this one, the final table already in full flow a few miles away in Casino Gran Madrid, in a sealed room of course, full of unionized TV people who know they have a two hour quarantine period to follow once the new champion is crowned. It could already be over, it might not yet have lost a single player, but you’ll find out either way right here.

Play “starts” at 11pm. — SB



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.

 

Sara Mariani reigns in Spain, winning PokerStars EPT Women Live

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The PokerStars Women Live EPT Grand Final, in Madrid on Wednesday, was an international affair with countries from across Europe represented, as well as the United States. But when it was all over, it was a local, from Madrid, who won it, doing so with the support of lots of friends standing by on the rail. They were there to cheer her through every hand she won at the final table, her boyfriend too, offering vocal support and encouragement. When it was over she was embraced and cheered like a local soccer hero.

Sara Mariani is a slight but attractive young woman with dark hair. Her smiles and easy laughter telegraph the fact that she is friendly and approachable, but her calculated approach at the final table was as innocuous as it was deadly, managing to come back from being the table short stack in the early stages.

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Heads-up


Mariani maintained a low profile throughout the tournament, but managed to hold onto her seat by winning the occasional all-in. She rarely got callers, so managed well, gathering blinds to hang on. As players were eliminated, including PokerStars Team Pro Vicky Coren (third), and Friend of PokerStars player Charlotte Van Brabander (fifth), Mariani chipped-up gradually but was still way behind when she came to heads-up against second place finisher India Storrar.

Storrar had built a huge chip stack, winning several key hands, and being the big favorite early on at the final table. India qualified for the tournament by winning a PokerStars Women Live satellite, but she is an experienced player from the United Kingdom, with some very solid results under her belt. Her chip stack and confidence at the table lead most observers to predict her victory.

However, a few hands near the end made dents in her stack, and then two key all-ins sealed the deal. The first was Storrar’s ace-ten against Mariani’s jacks to double Mariani. Then the final hand—ace-three for Mariani against Storrar’s pocket fours. It was all over when Sara hit the ace on the flop. Storrar made a quick exit while Mariani was left to have her photo taken for the blog and be interviewed by PokerStars Women about her big win.

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Sara Mariani


After cashing out her prize of €11,600 for first place, Sara sat down with me to answer a few questions. She was elated and all smiles as she responded to my questions with the help of her boyfriend as translator.

Q. First of all, congratulations! Do you have big plans for the cash you just won in the tournament?

A. Yes, thank you so much! I plan to use part of it to help finance a visit to the United States where I want to study eventually. I would like to pursue a Master’s degree and work on my English.

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PokerStars EPT Women Live winner Sara Mariani


Q. What is the biggest challenge for you when you play against women?

A. The biggest challenge is women’s intuition. I think women are good at determining what cards you have and figuring out who has the best hand. Even as a woman myself, it can be hard to play against women for that reason.

Q. What is your experience level in tournaments?

A. I have won four live tournaments at casinos here in Spain, but this is my biggest win. The largest before this was €5,000.

Q. How often do you play on PokerStars?

A. I play every day. I play satellites to win a seat to big events.

Q. What kind of advice can you give to women playing in tournaments?

A. Lose the fear. Many women are afraid to sit down at a live tournament and instead hide behind their computers. They need experience playing live and online, experience in all different areas of poker. That will give them more confidence. I feel very comfortable playing live and I think that helps me.

Six places were paid in the tournament, with three of them qualifiers from PokerStars Women Live satellites. Here are the payouts for the tournament and the prize winners:

1st – Sara Mariani, Spain, €11,600


2nd – India Storrar, PokerStars qualifier, United Kingdom, €7,000


3rd – Vicky Coren, Team PokerStars Pro, United Kingdom, €4,100


4th – Evangelia Triantafyllaki, PokerStars qualifier, Greece, €3,000


5th – Charlotte Van Brabander, Belgium, €2,000


6th – Anna Maria Lafavia, PokerStars qualifier, Italy, €1,400

Other notables who finished in the top 18 included Melanie Weisner, Birgitta Johansen, Jennifer Shahade, Ann Marie Woodard and Margaux Ponnelle.

For other tournament reports see http://www.pokerstars.com/poker/promotions/women/news/ or our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/PSWomen.



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.

 

Watch EPT Grand Final live on TV... with hole cards

ept-thumb-promo.jpgToday’s EPT Grand Final in Madrid will be the most watched live poker show ever, with numerous countries airing the coverage to an estimated 500,000 people across Europe, Russia and Canada.

Spectators from around the world will be able to see all the action of the most crucial stages of Europe’s most prestigious poker tournament – and all from their own homes, with hole cards shown!

The final table starts at 14.00 CET, broadcast live on PokerStars.tv (no hole cards shown) until play gets down to the final four players. At this point there will be a break in play, the players will be sequestered, and play will recommence at 21.00 CET with live hole cards recorded and played out on a two-hour delay. The broadcast will begin airing across Europe from 23.00 CET until a winner is crowned.

The live broadcast will take place on these networks in the following countries:

• Germany: Sport 1 – 23.30-03.30 CET (German commentary)


• Netherlands: RTL7 – 01.30-End of play CET (Dutch commentary)


• Spain: Antenna3 – 01.45-04.45 CET (Spanish commentary)


• Russia: TV3 – 23.00-03.00 CET (Russian commentary)


• Romania: Sport.ro – 23.00-03.00 CET (Romanian commentary)


• Slovenia: Sport TV – 23.00-03.00 CET (Slovenian commentary)


• Belgium (North): Jim – 23.30-End of Play (Dutch commentary)


• Belgium (South): Plug RTL – 23.30-End of Play (French commentary)


• Canada: The Score – 17.00-22.00 ET (English commentary)


• PokerStars.tv: 23.00-End of play (English, Spanish, German, Russian, Dutch, Italian)

We hope you enjoy the EPT Madrid experience!

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Will Team PokerStars Pro Juan Maceiras triumph?



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 Madrid: Final table, level 28 updates (cont.) (blinds 40,000-80,000, 5,000 ante)

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3.23pm: Lendvai firing


We’re playing again and it’s Tamas Lendvai getting busy. First he moves all-in from the small blind, getting no takers, then opened for 170,000 from the button. Juan Maceiras raised to 600,000 in the small blind, which was good enough to take the pot. – SB

3.20pm: Cards in the air…


… again. — SB

3.15pm: Technical issues and teething problems


Torsten Brinkmann opened the hijack with 8Spade Suit8Club Suit and… hold on, Brinkmann did what? How do I know what he opened with? Because I saw it onscreen as a graphic. That’s not meant to have happened, right? No. Not at all.

Whether that was his genuine hand or not, this live webcast is not meant to be showing hands until the later televised broadcast. Play has been paused as the production crew scurry to sort out the problems. — RD

3pm: All-ins two hands in-a-row


Two players just put their tournament at risk just now.

First off it was Alex Gomes. The Team PokerStars Pro three-bet all-in for 1,640,000 after Andrey Danilyuk opened to 175,000 from the cut-off. The Russian folded.

Next up was Andrew Li. He opened the pot by moving his whole 1,400,000 stack over the line and got no callers. — MC

2.50pm: Early action


A slow start to the final with little to report on the first six hands. Torsten Brinkmann opened to 160,000 from under the gun which Ivan Freitez raised to 380,000 in the big blind, taking the pot. Andrew Li raised pre-flop and took a pot. That’s your lot. – SB

2.40pm: We’re off


Play has begun. — RD

2.20pm: Play set to start shortlly


We can see the players moving around on the set, play is due to start (late) shortly. — RD

1.50pm: Before you send Grandad onto the roof with the TV aerial…


As mentioned earlier you’ll be able to watch the final stages of this event “live” on television across Europe and the world tonight. Here’s a list of those networks.

Germany: Sport 1 – 23.30-03.30 CET (German commentary)


Netherlands: RTL7 – 01.30-End of play CET (Dutch commentary)


Spain: Antenna3 – 01.45-04.45 CET (Spanish commentary)


Russia: TV3 – 23.00-03.00 CET (Russian commentary)


Romania: Sport.ro – 23.00-03.00 CET (Romanian commentary)


Slovenia: Sport TV – 23.00-03.00 CET (Slovenian commentary)


Belgium (North): Jim – 23.30-End of Play (Dutch commentary)


Belgium (South): Plug RTL – 23.30-End of Play (French commentary)


Canada: The Score – 17.00-22.00 ET (English commentary)


PokerStars.tv: 23.00-End of play (English, Spanish, German, Russian, Dutch, Italian)

12pm: Welcome to Grand Final day


Welcome back to the final day of the EPT Season 7 Grand Final, at the Casino Gran Madrid, a day that, when complete, should become one of the tour’s most memorable.

There will be ample opportunity for hyperbole and bluster today, so why use it up right away. Only to say that I already have that Christmas feeling, one you also get on FA Cup final day or Super Bowl day. I imagine inmates get the same sensation on the day before release.

Here’s what will happen during the course of today.

Play starts at 2pm, when the final eight players, profiles of which can be found here, will stride forwards (they did actually stride forward last year), to take their seats on the feature table. You’ll be able to watch every hand on EPT Live, as play continues until either 6.30pm local time, or when four players remain.

At this point you’re free to get dinner, go to the gym; even go to work. This is the pause before the real show begins. At 9pm the remaining players will return; only they will be sequestered in a sealed room, with armed guards posted on the doors.

That’s because at 11pm, allowing for a two hour delay, events from Casino Gran Madrid will be televised across Europe, as well as continuing on EPT Live, until there is a new champion. Why the seclusion and security? Because you, the viewer at home will be able to see the hole cards.

tv_prep_eptgf_ft.jpg


Finishing touches being made to the TV table


It promises to be a long day but a great one, which is why the Blog team have been in isolation chambers (also known as hotel rooms) for the last 12 hours in preparation. Rick Dacey for example, turned up for work looking like Martin Sheen on his way to bash Kurtz, while Marc Convey jumped out of his room like Cato in the Pink Panther films. That’s the level of seriousness.

That’s all to come in a few hours from now. You won’t want to miss it, and thanks to the PokerStars Blog, and EPT Live, you won’t.

See you at 2pm. — SB



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 Madrid: Final table, level 28 updates (cont.) & 29 (blinds 50,000-100,000, 10,000 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg

4.53pm: Break time


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

4.50pm: Raising and folding


Torsten Brinkmann opened for 200,000 from early position and Ivan Freitez raised to 450,000 from the big blind. Brinkmann passed.

Eugene Yanayt opened for 200,000 from under-the-gun which Tamas Landvai raised to 550,000. You know how this works by now. Yanayt passed. — SB

4.47pm: Another double-up for Lendvai


Tamas Lendvai is on a real rush right now and is back in the hunt after doubling up yet again. This time it was chip leader Ivan Freitez who donated to his cause when he raised to 120,000 from early position before tank calling Lendvai’s 1,350,000 shove from the small blind.

Lendvai: AClub SuitKSpade Suit


Freitez: ADiamond SuitJSpade Suit

The board ran 7Spade Suit7Diamond Suit5Diamond Suit8Heart SuitAHeart Suit making both players two-pair but Lenvai’s kicker played to hand him the pot and a shiny new 2,860,000 stack. Freitez meanwhile is looking down at a battered yet still very valuable 5,200,000 stack. — MC

4.39pm: Lendvai doubles with quad aces


Short stack Tamas Lendvai shoved from the hijack for 695,000 and it was left to Torsten Brinkmann to decide whether Lendvai should be take the blinds unopposed. The German decided that was unacceptable and made the call.

Lendvai: ADiamond Suit7Club Suit


Brinkmann: 10Spade Suit4Spade Suit

It was a big call from Brinkmann but given how wide Lendvai could be shoving you can understand why he put he moved his chips across the line. Lendvai flopped huge with 4Heart SuitAClub SuitASpade Suit before catching the AHeart Suit on the river. Lendvai up to 1,480,000, Brinkmann is down to 3,500,000. — RD

4.32pm: Maceiras has to let another one go


Juan Maceiras opened from the button to 215,000 and Ivan Freitez three-bet to 675,000. The Spanish Team Pro let it go. — RD

4.25pm: Skirmishes


Juan Maceiras opened for 230,000 under-the-gun which Tortsten Brinkmann raised to 510,000 from the cut-off. Maceiras was happy to fold. In the next hand Ivan freitez rasied in early position, with no takers, which is exactly what happened when Brinkmann raised int eh next. – SB

4.20pm: Triple-crown dream over for Gomes as he departs in 7th (€185,000)


Alex Gomes’ dream of adding an EPT title to his WSOP and WPT titles is over after he was eliminated by Eugene Yanayt.

It was a case of bad timing for the Brazilian as he shoved from the small blind and was snap called by Yanayt in the big blind.

Gomes: 8Spade Suit7Spade Suit


Yanayt: 10Diamond Suit10Club Suit

The board ran KClub Suit5Club Suit3Club Suit8Heart Suit5Spade Suit to hand the pot to the American who is up to nearly 5,000,000 chips. — MC

4.10pm: Raise, raise, shove


We still have seven players left here in Madrid and thanks to the stack dynamics it’s generally raise-and-take or all-in. Ivan Freitez scored the first blind sweep with a raise to 300,000. He was followed by Torsten Brinkmann who min-raised to 200,000 and took the pre-flop pot down.

The next raise was courtesy of Eugene Yanayt who opened the cut-off to 200,000, but he did not enjoy the same levels of success. Team PokerStars Pro Juan Maceiras jammed for 2,700,000 from the small blind, which was more than enough to win the pot. Maceiras up to 3,120,000. — RD

3.55pm: Brinkmann doubles


Eugene Yanayt opened for 200,000 from early position which Juan Maceiras called. Torsten Brinkmann was waiting and shoved all-in for a total of 1,500,000. Yanayt thought for a while, then called. Maceiras folded, but admitted that had Yanayt passed he would have called with ace-queen.

Brinkmann JClub SuitJDiamond Suit


Yanayt 8Club Suit8Heart Suit

The board ran 7Spade Suit7Heart SuitKSpade SuitQHeart SuitQSpade Suit to double up Brinkmann to 3,300,000. – SB

3.45pm: Yanayt chips up some more


Eugene Yanayt is up to 5,270,000 after picking up on and picking off a move from Juan Maceiras.

He raised to 200,000 and the Team PokerStars Pro called from the small blind to go to a 4Diamond Suit10Diamond Suit2Spade Suit flop. Yanayt c-bet for 225,000 and the Spaniard check-called before leading out for 480,000 on the 9Club Suit turn. Yanayt sat and one could tell he was deep in thought, trying to figure out what his opponent was up to. He came in with a raise to 1,100,000 and it did the trick as Maceiras quickly folded. — MC

3.40pm: Yanayt chipping-up


Ivan Freitez opened for 175,000 which Eugene Yanayt raised to 500,000 form the big blind. Freitez called for a flop of ASpade Suit3Heart Suit9Heart Suit. Yanayt bet another 625,000 to win the pot. — SB

LEVEL UP: BLINDS 50,000-100,000, ANTE 10,000


3.38pm: No action for Freitez


Chip leader, Ivan Freitez, just took a long time to raise to 180,000 from the button. Alex Gomez was in the big blind and didn’t have a hand to defend. Bad luck for Freitez as he flashed QClub SuitQSpade Suit. — MC

3.32pm: Li counterfeited, out in 8th (€130,000)


Online prodigy Andrew Li is out first from this final table. He made a brave shove with 3Diamond Suit3Spade Suit for 1,500,000 from the small blind over the top of a Eugene Yananyt open raise. Yananyt didn’t insta-muck, but he didn’t look thrilled by the prospect of taking a flip or worse with his hand. He finally called and showed AClub SuitQClub Suit.

The 3,300,000 pot was dragged into the middle, Yanayt the player with chips back, some 450,000. The 9Heart Suit9Diamond Suit4Spade Suit flop was picture free, but the paired board did create some issues for Li’s small pair. The 7Heart Suit kept Li ahead as a three to one favourite but a paired four on the river sent the Supernova Elite to the rail. Some great poker was played by Mr Li these last few days. I guarantee we’ll see him again. — RD




ept madrid_final table_final table shot.jpg

Andrew Li (third from left) is our first faller




3.23pm: Lendvai firing


We’re playing again and it’s Tamas Lendvai getting busy. First he moves all-in from the small blind, getting no takers, then opened for 170,000 from the button. Juan Maceiras raised to 600,000 in the small blind, which was good enough to take the pot. – SB

3.20pm: Cards in the air…


… again. — SB

3.15pm: Technical issues and teething problems


Torsten Brinkmann opened the hijack with 8Spade Suit8Club Suit and… hold on, Brinkmann did what? How do I know what he opened with? Because I saw it onscreen as a graphic. That’s not meant to have happened, right? No. Not at all.

Whether that was his genuine hand or not, this live webcast is not meant to be showing hands until the later televised broadcast. Play has been paused as the production crew scurry to sort out the problems. — RD

3pm: All-ins two hands in-a-row


Two players just put their tournament at risk just now.

First off it was Alex Gomes. The Team PokerStars Pro three-bet all-in for 1,640,000 after Andrey Danilyuk opened to 175,000 from the cut-off. The Russian folded.

Next up was Andrew Li. He opened the pot by moving his whole 1,400,000 stack over the line and got no callers. — MC

2.50pm: Early action


A slow start to the final with little to report on the first six hands. Torsten Brinkmann opened to 160,000 from under the gun which Ivan Freitez raised to 380,000 in the big blind, taking the pot. Andrew Li raised pre-flop and took a pot. That’s your lot. – SB

2.40pm: We’re off


Play has begun. — RD

2.20pm: Play set to start shortly


We can see the players moving around on the set, play is due to start (late) shortly. — RD

1.50pm: Before you send Grandad onto the roof with the TV aerial…


As mentioned earlier you’ll be able to watch the final stages of this event “live” on television across Europe and the world tonight. Here’s a list of those networks.

Germany: Sport 1 – 23.30-03.30 CET (German commentary)


Netherlands: RTL7 – 01.30-End of play CET (Dutch commentary)


Spain: Antenna3 – 01.45-04.45 CET (Spanish commentary)


Russia: TV3 – 23.00-03.00 CET (Russian commentary)


Romania: Sport.ro – 23.00-03.00 CET (Romanian commentary)


Slovenia: Sport TV – 23.00-03.00 CET (Slovenian commentary)


Belgium (North): Jim – 23.30-End of Play (Dutch commentary)


Belgium (South): Plug RTL – 23.30-End of Play (French commentary)


Canada: The Score – 17.00-22.00 ET (English commentary)


PokerStars.tv: 23.00-End of play (English, Spanish, German, Russian, Dutch, Italian)

12pm: Welcome to Grand Final day


Welcome back to the final day of the EPT Season 7 Grand Final, at the Casino Gran Madrid, a day that, when complete, should become one of the tour’s most memorable.

There will be ample opportunity for hyperbole and bluster today, so why use it up right away. Only to say that I already have that Christmas feeling, one you also get on FA Cup final day or Super Bowl day. I imagine inmates get the same sensation on the day before release.

Here’s what will happen during the course of today.

Play starts at 2pm, when the final eight players, profiles of which can be found here, will stride forwards (they did actually stride forward last year), to take their seats on the feature table. You’ll be able to watch every hand on EPT Live, as play continues until either 6.30pm local time, or when four players remain.

At this point you’re free to get dinner, go to the gym; even go to work. This is the pause before the real show begins. At 9pm the remaining players will return; only they will be sequestered in a sealed room, with armed guards posted on the doors.

That’s because at 11pm, allowing for a two hour delay, events from Casino Gran Madrid will be televised across Europe, as well as continuing on EPT Live, until there is a new champion. Why the seclusion and security? Because you, the viewer at home will be able to see the hole cards.

tv_prep_eptgf_ft.jpg


Finishing touches being made to the TV table


It promises to be a long day but a great one, which is why the Blog team have been in isolation chambers (also known as hotel rooms) for the last 12 hours in preparation. Rick Dacey for example, turned up for work looking like Martin Sheen on his way to bash Kurtz, while Marc Convey jumped out of his room like Cato in the Pink Panther films. That’s the level of seriousness.

That’s all to come in a few hours from now. You won’t want to miss it, and thanks to the PokerStars Blog, and EPT Live, you won’t.

See you at 2pm. — SB



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 Madrid: Final table, level 28 (cont.), 29 & 30 updates (blinds 60,000-120,000, 15,000 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg

6.15pm: End of Part I


Well that’s the afternoon session complete. The remaining four players now depart for what is being described as an “extended dinner break,” until they return to the TV table to play down to a champion at 9pm tonight.

As you’ll now be aware, that will involve their hole cards shown face-up, for the first time on the EPT. So with that comes a two-hour delay to ensure the integrity of the game. That means our coverage will continue on the blog at 11pm local time.

If you’re based in Europe or Canada there’s a good chance you’ll be able to watch proceedings on television, with the full list of networks showing the final available here. If not, simply tune back in to EPTLive later tonight to follow all the action, uninterrupted.

We’re now going to twiddle our thumbs for five hours. We’ll meet you back here at 11pm. — SB

6.10pm: Adios, Maceiras departs in 5th (€315,000)


Juan Maceiras, the final remaining Spaniard and Team PokerStars Pro, has been knocked out by Torsten Brinkmann in a button to big blind battle.

Brinkmann raised to 250,000 from the button and Maceiras, down to 1,900,000 moved all-in. Brinkmann made the most definitive of snap calls.

Maceiras: 10Heart SuitJHeart Suit


Brinkmann: ASpade SuitKHeart Suit

Maceiras was far from out with 41% of the pre-flop equity but quickly dashed away from the table to his rail, nervously waiting the dealer to decide if this was the end of his tournament life or whether he would double up to second in chips. This moments of high variance are the most nerve juddering. The flop brought 2Club SuitQSpade Suit4Spade Suit, not a flash of red for the Spanish Team Pro. He needed help.

The 4Club Suit failed to supply any supplementary outs to Maceiras’ jacks and queens. Just six outs and Brinkmann, who was out of his chair and on his feet, watched on nervously, knowing how far ahead he was, yet how tenuous that lead really was. The river card blanked with the 6Heart Suit and Maceiras left the table taking with him the chance of the EPT crowning its first ever Spanish EPT champion. — RD

5.55pm: More for Brinkmann


Torsten Brinkmann extends his lead a little. After Andrey Danilyuk opened for 255,000 on the button, Brinkmann called on the big blind for a flop of 9Heart Suit9Club Suit6Heart Suit.

Brinkmann then bet another 235,000 which was also called for a 5Heart Suit turn card. Brinkmann bet another 425,000 to take the pot. — SB

5.53pm: Yanayt departs in 6th for €250,000


The last American left in the tournament, Eugene Yanayt, has been eliminated after running into an over-pair in the hands of Ivan Freitez.

Freitez raised to 245,000 from under-the-gun before Yanayt thought hard before three-betting all-in for 2,600,000. The raise was worth more than half the Venezuelan’s stack and he called after dwelling for two minutes.

Yanayt: 5Spade Suit5Diamond Suit


Freitez: 9Diamond Suit9Heart Suit

The Triple-draw specialist was in deep trouble and failed to get out of it through the 10Spade SuitQClub Suit6Diamond SuitAClub Suit6Heart Suit board. Fretez has around 7,500,000 and 40% of the chips in play now. — MC

5.40pm: Brinkmann creeps into the lead


Torsten Brinkmann takes a narrow lead and didn’t even have to show a card.

After Andrey Danilyuk opened for 260,000 on the button which Ivan Freitez raised to 650,000 in the small blind. Brinkmann didn’t fold immediately and instead asked how much was involved. Then he announced that he was all-in for 3,600,000.

Danilyuk passed but Freitez waited, asking for a count before eventually folding. He slips to 4,400,000 while Brinkmann jumps into the lead, with 4,630,000. – SB

5.36pm: Blogging issues


I’d love to be in the position of having to admit that a lack of updates over the last half-an-hour had been because we had stripped down to our smalls and ran out the casino to bathe in the Madrid sun, unfortunately that isn’t the reason for the radio silence. We’ve had trouble accessing the PokerStars Blog but we’re back now. Stay with us, people. — RD

5.35pm: Lendvai keeping his momentum


Tamas Lendvai started as a short stack today but has played his stack well to get back into this final table and has since become of the more active players. Lendvai opened under-the-gun and was looked up by Eugene Yanayt in the big blind. The Hungarian c-bet 345,000 into the JDiamond Suit2Diamond Suit6Spade Suit flop to take the pot down. He’s now up to 3,200,000. — RD

5.15pm: Danilyuk Up


Andrey Danilyuk doubled up through Eugene Yanayt, moving up to 4,00,000.

The Russian opened for 255,000 from under-the-gun before Yanayt raised to 675,000 on the button. Danilyuk then moved all-in for 1,190,000 more and Yanayt called, showing 9Club Suit9Spade Suit to Danilyuk’s 10Heart Suit10Diamond Suit.

The board ran AClub SuitKSpade SuitQHeart Suit6Spade Suit8Heart Suit. Danilyuk doubles, Yanayt slips to 2,800,000. – SB

5.10pm: Play resumes


We’re off and running again.

LEVEL UP: BLINDS 60,000-120,000, ANTE 15,000


4.53pm: Break time


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

4.50pm: Raising and folding


Torsten Brinkmann opened for 200,000 from early position and Ivan Freitez raised to 450,000 from the big blind. Brinkmann passed.

Eugene Yanayt opened for 200,000 from under-the-gun which Tamas Landvai raised to 550,000. You know how this works by now. Yanayt passed. — SB

4.47pm: Another double-up for Lendvai


Tamas Lendvai is on a real rush right now and is back in the hunt after doubling up yet again. This time it was chip leader Ivan Freitez who donated to his cause when he raised to 120,000 from early position before tank calling Lendvai’s 1,350,000 shove from the small blind.

Lendvai: AClub SuitKSpade Suit


Freitez: ADiamond SuitJSpade Suit

The board ran 7Spade Suit7Diamond Suit5Diamond Suit8Heart SuitAHeart Suit making both players two-pair but Lenvai’s kicker played to hand him the pot and a shiny new 2,860,000 stack. Freitez meanwhile is looking down at a battered yet still very valuable 5,200,000 stack. — MC

4.39pm: Lendvai doubles with quad aces


Short stack Tamas Lendvai shoved from the hijack for 695,000 and it was left to Torsten Brinkmann to decide whether Lendvai should be take the blinds unopposed. The German decided that was unacceptable and made the call.

Lendvai: ADiamond Suit7Club Suit


Brinkmann: 10Spade Suit4Spade Suit

It was a big call from Brinkmann but given how wide Lendvai could be shoving you can understand why he put he moved his chips across the line. Lendvai flopped huge with 4Heart SuitAClub SuitASpade Suit before catching the AHeart Suit on the river. Lendvai up to 1,480,000, Brinkmann is down to 3,500,000. — RD

4.32pm: Maceiras has to let another one go


Juan Maceiras opened from the button to 215,000 and Ivan Freitez three-bet to 675,000. The Spanish Team Pro let it go. — RD

4.25pm: Skirmishes


Juan Maceiras opened for 230,000 under-the-gun which Tortsten Brinkmann raised to 510,000 from the cut-off. Maceiras was happy to fold. In the next hand Ivan freitez rasied in early position, with no takers, which is exactly what happened when Brinkmann raised int eh next. – SB

4.20pm: Triple-crown dream over for Gomes as he departs in 7th (€185,000)


Alex Gomes’ dream of adding an EPT title to his WSOP and WPT titles is over after he was eliminated by Eugene Yanayt.

It was a case of bad timing for the Brazilian as he shoved from the small blind and was snap called by Yanayt in the big blind.

Gomes: 8Spade Suit7Spade Suit


Yanayt: 10Diamond Suit10Club Suit

The board ran KClub Suit5Club Suit3Club Suit8Heart Suit5Spade Suit to hand the pot to the American who is up to nearly 5,000,000 chips. — MC

4.10pm: Raise, raise, shove


We still have seven players left here in Madrid and thanks to the stack dynamics it’s generally raise-and-take or all-in. Ivan Freitez scored the first blind sweep with a raise to 300,000. He was followed by Torsten Brinkmann who min-raised to 200,000 and took the pre-flop pot down.

The next raise was courtesy of Eugene Yanayt who opened the cut-off to 200,000, but he did not enjoy the same levels of success. Team PokerStars Pro Juan Maceiras jammed for 2,700,000 from the small blind, which was more than enough to win the pot. Maceiras up to 3,120,000. — RD

3.55pm: Brinkmann doubles


Eugene Yanayt opened for 200,000 from early position which Juan Maceiras called. Torsten Brinkmann was waiting and shoved all-in for a total of 1,500,000. Yanayt thought for a while, then called. Maceiras folded, but admitted that had Yanayt passed he would have called with ace-queen.

Brinkmann JClub SuitJDiamond Suit


Yanayt 8Club Suit8Heart Suit

The board ran 7Spade Suit7Heart SuitKSpade SuitQHeart SuitQSpade Suit to double up Brinkmann to 3,300,000. – SB

3.45pm: Yanayt chips up some more


Eugene Yanayt is up to 5,270,000 after picking up on and picking off a move from Juan Maceiras.

He raised to 200,000 and the Team PokerStars Pro called from the small blind to go to a 4Diamond Suit10Diamond Suit2Spade Suit flop. Yanayt c-bet for 225,000 and the Spaniard check-called before leading out for 480,000 on the 9Club Suit turn. Yanayt sat and one could tell he was deep in thought, trying to figure out what his opponent was up to. He came in with a raise to 1,100,000 and it did the trick as Maceiras quickly folded. — MC

3.40pm: Yanayt chipping-up


Ivan Freitez opened for 175,000 which Eugene Yanayt raised to 500,000 form the big blind. Freitez called for a flop of ASpade Suit3Heart Suit9Heart Suit. Yanayt bet another 625,000 to win the pot. — SB

LEVEL UP: BLINDS 50,000-100,000, ANTE 10,000


3.38pm: No action for Freitez


Chip leader, Ivan Freitez, just took a long time to raise to 180,000 from the button. Alex Gomez was in the big blind and didn’t have a hand to defend. Bad luck for Freitez as he flashed QClub SuitQSpade Suit. — MC

3.32pm: Li counterfeited, out in 8th (€130,000)


Online prodigy Andrew Li is out first from this final table. He made a brave shove with 3Diamond Suit3Spade Suit for 1,500,000 from the small blind over the top of a Eugene Yananyt open raise. Yananyt didn’t insta-muck, but he didn’t look thrilled by the prospect of taking a flip or worse with his hand. He finally called and showed AClub SuitQClub Suit.

The 3,300,000 pot was dragged into the middle, Yanayt the player with chips back, some 450,000. The 9Heart Suit9Diamond Suit4Spade Suit flop was picture free, but the paired board did create some issues for Li’s small pair. The 7Heart Suit kept Li ahead as a three to one favourite but a paired four on the river sent the Supernova Elite to the rail. Some great poker was played by Mr Li these last few days. I guarantee we’ll see him again. — RD




ept madrid_final table_final table shot.jpg

Andrew Li (third from left) is our first faller




3.23pm: Lendvai firing


We’re playing again and it’s Tamas Lendvai getting busy. First he moves all-in from the small blind, getting no takers, then opened for 170,000 from the button. Juan Maceiras raised to 600,000 in the small blind, which was good enough to take the pot. – SB

3.20pm: Cards in the air…


… again. — SB

3.15pm: Technical issues and teething problems


Torsten Brinkmann opened the hijack with 8Spade Suit8Club Suit and… hold on, Brinkmann did what? How do I know what he opened with? Because I saw it onscreen as a graphic. That’s not meant to have happened, right? No. Not at all.

Whether that was his genuine hand or not, this live webcast is not meant to be showing hands until the later televised broadcast. Play has been paused as the production crew scurry to sort out the problems. — RD

3pm: All-ins two hands in-a-row


Two players just put their tournament at risk just now.

First off it was Alex Gomes. The Team PokerStars Pro three-bet all-in for 1,640,000 after Andrey Danilyuk opened to 175,000 from the cut-off. The Russian folded.

Next up was Andrew Li. He opened the pot by moving his whole 1,400,000 stack over the line and got no callers. — MC

2.50pm: Early action


A slow start to the final with little to report on the first six hands. Torsten Brinkmann opened to 160,000 from under the gun which Ivan Freitez raised to 380,000 in the big blind, taking the pot. Andrew Li raised pre-flop and took a pot. That’s your lot. – SB

2.40pm: We’re off


Play has begun. — RD

2.20pm: Play set to start shortly


We can see the players moving around on the set, play is due to start (late) shortly. — RD

1.50pm: Before you send Grandad onto the roof with the TV aerial…


As mentioned earlier you’ll be able to watch the final stages of this event “live” on television across Europe and the world tonight. Here’s a list of those networks.

Germany: Sport 1 – 23.30-03.30 CET (German commentary)


Netherlands: RTL7 – 01.30-End of play CET (Dutch commentary)


Spain: Antenna3 – 01.45-04.45 CET (Spanish commentary)


Russia: TV3 – 23.00-03.00 CET (Russian commentary)


Romania: Sport.ro – 23.00-03.00 CET (Romanian commentary)


Slovenia: Sport TV – 23.00-03.00 CET (Slovenian commentary)


Belgium (North): Jim – 23.30-End of Play (Dutch commentary)


Belgium (South): Plug RTL – 23.30-End of Play (French commentary)


Canada: The Score – 17.00-22.00 ET (English commentary)


PokerStars.tv: 23.00-End of play (English, Spanish, German, Russian, Dutch, Italian)

12pm: Welcome to Grand Final day


Welcome back to the final day of the EPT Season 7 Grand Final, at the Casino Gran Madrid, a day that, when complete, should become one of the tour’s most memorable.

There will be ample opportunity for hyperbole and bluster today, so why use it up right away. Only to say that I already have that Christmas feeling, one you also get on FA Cup final day or Super Bowl day. I imagine inmates get the same sensation on the day before release.

Here’s what will happen during the course of today.

Play starts at 2pm, when the final eight players, profiles of which can be found here, will stride forwards (they did actually stride forward last year), to take their seats on the feature table. You’ll be able to watch every hand on EPT Live, as play continues until either 6.30pm local time, or when four players remain.

At this point you’re free to get dinner, go to the gym; even go to work. This is the pause before the real show begins. At 9pm the remaining players will return; only they will be sequestered in a sealed room, with armed guards posted on the doors.

That’s because at 11pm, allowing for a two hour delay, events from Casino Gran Madrid will be televised across Europe, as well as continuing on EPT Live, until there is a new champion. Why the seclusion and security? Because you, the viewer at home will be able to see the hole cards.

tv_prep_eptgf_ft.jpg


Finishing touches being made to the TV table


It promises to be a long day but a great one, which is why the Blog team have been in isolation chambers (also known as hotel rooms) for the last 12 hours in preparation. Rick Dacey for example, turned up for work looking like Martin Sheen on his way to bash Kurtz, while Marc Convey jumped out of his room like Cato in the Pink Panther films. That’s the level of seriousness.

That’s all to come in a few hours from now. You won’t want to miss it, and thanks to the PokerStars Blog, and EPT Live, you won’t.

See you at 2pm. — SB



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 Madrid: Final table player profiles

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A field of 686 arrived in Madrid to contest the European Poker Tour Grand Final in Madrid. Now just eight remain.

We’ve watched them since Day 1, and now one of them will win a first prize of €1,500,000, having paid €10,000 to enter.

So who are these last eight players? Well I’m glad you asked.

Seat 1: Eugene “oogee” Yanayt, 27, Santa Monica, California, USA – PokerStars SuperNova Elite – 2,420,000 chips

Yanayt is one of the top Triple Draw cash games players in the world, regularly competing against high-stakes players such as Gus Hansen, Phil Ivey and Matt “hoss_tbf” Hawrilenko. Yanayt’s family hail from Russia and he grew up in Moscow until he was nine when he moved to Boston with his mother.

Yanayt majored in Computer Science at University in Los Angeles (where he now lives) but has been playing poker for around nine years. As a SuperNova Elite, Yanayt was given a package to this year’s PCA and bought his way in to the 2010 PCA with FPPs, but he doesn’t play many tournaments and still has virtually no live tournament results apart from a 414th place cash in the WSOP Main Event in 2006 for £30,000.

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On Day 3, Yanayt, who is a FIDE ranked chess master, went from 64,000 to a 2,374,000 chip lead, thanks to three big hands against Allen Bari, EPT Berlin champion Ben Wilinofsky and Ole-Kristian Nergard.




Seat 2: Tamas Lendvai, 39, Budapest, Hungary – 1,655,000 chips


Last July Tamas Lendvai beat a 505-player field at IPT Venice to win €235,000, propelling him well on his way to topping the Italian Poker Tour tournament leader board. That victory was one of five cashes the Hungarian has made on the IPT. His achievements last year, live and online, also convinced Lendvai to become “three-quarters pro,” as he puts it, spending much of his other time running his own security company.

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Lendvai started playing five years ago, dabbling in small live tournaments in Hungary after becoming enthralled with the game on TV. It’s become a profitable passion as he’s since racked up $566,464 in live winnings and another quarter-million at PokerStars under the screen name ‘tomicars’.

On the chance of winning the EPT Grand Final title and €1,500,000, Lendvai said: “It’s the most prestigious event in the world, more so than the World Series now, it’s packed with the best players. My first goal was to make the final table, we’ll see what happens after that.”

The Hungarian, a regular feature at PokerStars tournaments around the world, has achieved his first goal. Live TV will reveal how much further he can go – he’s a very real threat at this final table.




Seat 3: Juan Maceiras, 26, La Coru̱a, Galicia, Spain- Team PokerStars Pro Р3,150,000 chips


Former law student Maceiras took up poker while studying international business in St Louis, Missouri. After building his bankroll in local tournaments in Spain, he started to compete in bigger buy-in events and in 2007 got his first break when he came ninth at EPT Barcelona, earning €64,800. Just a few months later, he bettered that finish with a sixth place at EPT Warsaw, worth 344,641 Polish zloty (approx $148,000).

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In addition to those big scores, Macerias has also cashed at EPT San Remo and EPT Prague; came third in the €2,000 event at last season’s EPT Grand Final, and was runner-up in the Estrellas Poker Tour inaugural event in Alicante, for €44,000.

He has also clocked up impressive results online, including PokerStars’ Wednesday Quarter Million in January 2009, and the Main Event of the first-ever Iberian Championship of Online Poker in February 2011.

When Maceiras turned pro, he was following in the footsteps of his sister Maria – a former Spanish poker champion – and his father Juan Antonio “Vietcong01” Barros, who has won both the PokerStars Sunday Million and the PokerStars Warm-up.




Seat 4: Andrey Danilyuk, 25, Moscow, Russia – PokerStars qualifier – 2,645,000 chips


Danilyuk has played numerous EPTs (he thinks around 20) but making the final table of this season’s Grand Final is his best result to date. Last year Danilyuk played in Team PokerStars Pro Alex Kravchenko’s World Cup of Poker team and he is being railed in Madrid by a large group of Russian players.

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Danilyuk, who also runs an online food-and-drink retail business, has been playing poker around six years, both live and online. Online his biggest cash has been for around €20,000.

He says he steers clear of big buy-in events. He came 51st at last season’s EPT Grand Final, for €31,000, but his biggest live cash to date was 201st at last summer’s World Series Main Event, where he earned $48,847.




Seat 5: Andrew Li, 25, Arlington, Virginia, USA – PokerStars SuperNova Elite – 1,210,000


Li has been playing poker since 2004 and professionally since 2008, after he graduated from the University of Virginia where he studied Biology and Psychology.

Li primarily plays sit and goes on PokerStars under the handle “azntracker” and plays between 30 and 40 tables at once. This year he broke the record for reaching SuperNova Elite in the quickest time. It took him just two months, breaking the previous speed record by nearly three weeks. He only decided to come and play Madrid the day before the tournament started as his room mate (Pariesh “Dana Gordon” Jain) was making the trip.

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He’s now banking his biggest win by far – wherever he finishes in the final. After this year’s WSOP he is planning to relocate to Sydney, Australia so he can carry on his online career. Away from the tables Li likes to travel and participate in many outdoor action-adventure pursuits.




Seat 6: Ivan Freitez, 46, Caracas, Venezuela – 5,995,000 chips


Freitez has played numerous EPTs and already cashed twice this season – 16th at EPT Copenhagen in February, for DKr 105,000 (nearly $20,000) and 55th at EPT Snowfest, for €6,400.

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His best result to date was winning a $1,000 no-limit tournament at the Venetian last July, for $108,170.




Seat 7: Torsten Brinkmann, 27, Osnabrück, Germany – 1,875,000 chips


Economics student Brinkmann has been playing poker since 2006 and is a regular in heads-up cash games, as well as the Sunday tournaments on PokerStars. He also plays live in his home casino in Osnabrück.

His best online result was runner-up in a $215 WCOOP event, for $193.620, in 2009, losing heads-up to Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand ElkY Grospellier. His best live finish was first place at the €1,000 Twente Classics Enschede, for €33,480.

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This is his third EPT. He cashed last season at EPT Berlin in 88th place for €12,000. Brinkmann is being railed in Madrid by his girlfriend Natalie Hof, one of the last six contestants left in the German poker talent show “Das PokerStars.de Ass” which is airing now in Germany.




Seat 8: Alex Gomes, 28, Curitiba, Brazil – Team PokerStars Pro – 1,670,000 chips


Team PokerStars Pro Alex Gomes is in a unique position to become only the third ever winner of poker’s “Triple Crown.” The 28-year-old Brazilian already has a WPT victory under his belt (Bellagio Cup, 2009, $1,187,670) and a WSOP bracelet ($2,000 No Limit, 2008, $ 770,540); now he needs an EPT title to become only the third member of poker’s most exclusive club.

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Only four years ago Alex was fully set on a career as a lawyer. He played poker at home with friends but was committed to his career and was already a partner in a corporate law firm. However, once he started playing online poker he was soon winning big money, including first place in the Wednesday Hundred Fifty Grand for $65,333.

Eventually he turned pro – a decision which brought rapid rewards. First he took down the $2k NLHE event at the 2008 WSOP, for $770,540; then he joined Team PokerStars Pro and only weeks later came fourth at the first LAPT event in Punta del Este, in Uruguay.

Gomes, who came 33rd at last season’s EPT Grand Final, earning €35,000, is a keen sportsman and plays soccer regularly, as well as supporting his local team, Curitiba FC. He plays online as ‘Allingomes’.



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 Madrid: Day 4, level 27 & 28 updates (blinds 40,000-80,000, 5,000 ante)

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12.12pm: Maceiras busts Pettersson in 9th (€95,000) to end play


Thomas Pettersson was all smiles despite the fact he had just been eliminated from the main event on the ‘true’ final table bubble.

The pot opened with a raise from Juan Maceiras before the Swede moved all-in. Alex Gomes in the big blind agonised over his hand but he eventually opted to fold, allowing his fellow Team PokerStars Pro to make a quick call.

Maceiras: QDiamond SuitQClub Suit


Pettersson: AHeart SuitKClub Suit

The board ran 5Heart SuitQHeart Suit2Spade Suit10Diamond SuitKHeart Suit to make the Spaniard a set and knockout Pettersson in eighth for a €95,000 pay day.

The final eight players will return for a 2pm start tomorrow afternoon. A wrap of how we reached the final table mark will be up soon, as will the overnight official chip counts. — MC




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Thomas Pettersson, a plaudible ninth place finish




12am: Performance art


Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the installation art entitled ‘Nine men riffling chips and folding hands.’ There’s something slightly surreal about the contrast of the final nine compared to the frenzied shoving and terrified tank-folding of the short-handed action that took place across the previous two tables.

It’s very cagey, suffocating so at times. Andrew Li finally broke the tension by shoving all-in from the small blind for somewhere over 1,000,000 into Ivan Freitez’s big blind. The Venezuelan postured, but never looked like calling. He passed and Li raked in the pot.

“I know that you’re hoping I got called there,” Li said with a smile. — RD

11.40pm: Play resumes


The stacks have evened out somewhat since nine handed play began. Here’s the current state of play:

Eugene Yanayt, 2,530,000


Tamas Lendvai, 1,520,000


Juan Maceiras, 1,640,000


Andrey Danilyuk, 2,565,000


Thomas Pettersson, 1,365,000


Andrew Li, 1,520,000


Ivan Freitez, 5,885,000


Torsten Brinkmann, 1,845,000


Alex Gomes, 1,590,000

11.23pm: Big flip


This was a one huge flip. On one side there was Thomas Pettersson whose biggest live cash was $43,000 in a WSOP event a couple of years ago, on the other was Team PokerStars Pro Alex Gomes who is still in the hunt to seal that elusive triple crown. Pettersson had shoved under-the-gun for half-a-million with AClub SuitQClub Suit, Gomes had made the call with 10Diamond Suit10Spade Suit.

Pettersson flopped top two and then went on to river a boat. Drama over, for the moment. Break time, join us for a drink in 15 minutes. — RD




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Triple crown prospect Alex Gomes




11.12pm: Two streets of value enough for Danilyuk


Ivan Freitez was involved in the very next hand as he defended his big blind after Andrey Danilyuk raised from the button.

Frietez went into check-call mode as he faced 150,000 and 365,000 bets on the flop and turn. The final board read 2Heart Suit3Spade Suit9Diamond Suit3Club Suit8Heart Suit and Danilyuk decided to check behind on the river when Frietez checked the action for a third time. He tabled pocket queens and that was good as Frietez folded. — MC

11.05pm: Maceiras takes on Freitaz


Juan Maceiras is up to 2,280,000 after shoving into chip leader Ivan Freitez. The Venezuelan opened the pot under-the-gun for 130,000 and Team PokerStars Pro Juan Maceiras made the call in the cut-off. Freitez c-bet 240,000 into the 2Spade SuitQDiamond Suit4Spade Suit flop and Maceiras quickly moved in for 1,680,000.

“Let’s go,” said Maceiras, now on his feet. The only thing going was Freitez’s hand into the muck. Maceiras up as Freitez finds himself 400,000 lighter. — RD

10.55pm: Four-bet gets through for Lendvai


It’s very rare that a player four-bets on the final table bubble of a prestigious final table and doesn’t have it. That’s probably what Torsten Brinkmann and Alex Gomes thought after Tamas Lendvai did just that.

Brinkmann raised from the cut-off and Gomes three-bet from the button before the Hungarian put in the powerful looking four-bet from the big blind. Brinkmann looked like he had a very difficult decision but Gomes made up his mind quickly. Both folded. — MC

10.45pm: Pettersson shoves, Brinkmann tanks


Thomas Pettersson shoved from late position for around 600,000 into Torsten Brinkmann who asked for a count. He didn’t looked convinced by the strength of his hand, but neither did he insta-muck. He finally passed but looked slightly ashamed of himself for doing so. Who can blame him for passing amarginal hand at this point? He’s one bust out away from the EPT Grand Final televised final table. — RD

10.35pm: Swap shop for Yanayt and Danilyuk


Andrey Danilyuk and Eugene Yanayt’s stacks have swapped places after a big pre-flop all-in encounter.

Yanayt raised to 110,000 only to face a three-bet to 285,000 from his Russian opponent. Yanayt stared his opponent down before moving in for less than 1,500,000. Danilyuk didn’t take too long in calling.

Yanayt: KClub SuitQClub Suit


Danilyuk: 9Heart Suit9Diamond Suit

The board ran QDiamond SuitKDiamond Suit10Heart SuitAClub SuitASpade Suit making two-pair for the chip leader coming in to today. Danilyuk dropped down to 1,500,000 after the loss. — MC

LEVEL UP: BLINDS 30,000-60,000, ANTE 5,000


10.20pm: Here we go


The platers have taken to their seats and we have one more player to bust before we reach the Official Eight-Handed PokerStars European Poker Tour Final Table TM. — RD

10pm: The final nine


Here are the final nine players and it’s quite a line up with established team pros mixing with online talent and a couple of have-a-go heroes. Get stuck in.

Final table


1 Eugene Yanayt, USA, PokerStars player, 1,440,000


2 Tamas Lendvai, Hungary, 1,130,000


3 Juan Maceiras, Spain, Team PokerStars Pro, 1,540,000


4 Andrey Danilyuk, Russia, PokerStars qualifier, 2,986,000



5 Thomas Pettersson, Sweden, 688,000


6 Andrew Li, USA, 1,560,000


7 Ivan Freitez, Venezuela, 6,875,000


8 Torsten Brinkmann, Germany, 2,940,000


9 Alex Gomes, Brazil, Team PokerStars Pro, 1,645,000

One more player to bust until the eight-handed final table is set. Thomas Pettersson the obvious player at risk with 13 big blinds remaining. — RD

9.40pm: Limblici buts in 10th (€95,000)


Alessandro Limblici has been eliminated in 10th place meaning we are down to one table full of nine players.

He had blinded his way down to 350,000 chips when he pushed all-in from the small blind. Torsten Brinkmann was in the big blind and looked down at his cards and made an instant call.

Limblici: KHeart Suit5Club Suit


Brinkmann: ADiamond Suit5Diamond Suit

The board ran AClub Suit8Spade Suit8Heart Suit2Spade SuitJClub Suit to make two-pair for the German.

The remaining nine players will now reconvene on the TV table and play will continue until we lose one more. There is a break in play while all that is sorted out. The new seat draw and chip counts will be coming right up. — MC

9.30pm: Outer table a Siberian short stack winter wonderland


Does that title make even sense? Just about. Of the five players on the outer table three of them are the shortest stacks in play; Tamas Lendvai, Thomas Pettersson and Alessandro Limblici. Only Andrey Danilyuk and Torsten Brinkmann are well stacked which is making this table one of those where there are more walks than you’d normally imagine at this stage of a tournament combined with the occasional shove. Pettersson scored one winning shove after defending his big blind and jamming into a 3Spade Suit5Spade SuitJDiamond Suit flop, Brinkmann passed.

If we’re looking for one more player to go before we break to one table, it should come from the wintry tundra of this outer table. That said, neither of the three short stacks look likely to get it in light. — RD

9.12pm: Three million to bust for Pellicer, out in 11th


Pedro Pellicer, just like Simon Higgins earlier, has gone from a commanding position to being out within two hands. Such is the nature on No-Limit Holdem.

He got the last of his chips (less than one million) in with ADiamond Suit10Diamond Suit and he was up against Team PokerStars Pro Alex Gomes with a dominating AClub SuitJHeart Suit.

There was a sweat for the Brazilian as the flop came 3Heart Suit2Diamond Suit9Diamond Suit to give his opponent a flush draw. He was soon breathing easily though as the board ran out 2Heart Suit2Club Suit. Gomes is up to around 3,000,000 chips. — MC




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Pedro Pellicer




8.57pm: Freitez sucks out to take the chip lead


South American screams have just rocked the tournament floor following the doubling up of Ivan Freitez through the previous chip leader Pedro Pellicer.

I don’t have the breakdown of the bets as the action took place on the TV tables (damn those fast camera cuts) but what I could determine was that Freitez four-bet all-in with AHeart Suit4Heart Suit for 2,300,000 and was called by 10Club Suit10Diamond Suit. Should Pellicer’s hand have held up he would be on over a quarter of the chips in play with ten players left. The ADiamond SuitAClub Suit7Spade Suit flop meant that was going to be difficult. Pellicer needed to catch a ten to take the lead back. He couldn’t hit and Freitez moves up to 4,500,000 after that miracle flop. Pellicer must regain his composure. — RD

8.48pm: Pot to Yanayt


Torsten Brinkmann opened for 100,000 in the cut off which Eugene Yanayt called in the small blind for a flop of 8Diamond Suit10Spade Suit9Spade Suit. Not much is getting past the flop on the outer table and this hand was no different. Brinkmann bet when Yanayt checked to him, taking the loot. – SB

8.37pm: What did Limblici have for dinner?


Did Alessandro Limblici sit down for a heavy three-course dinner at the dinner break? Not likely. In fact, it’s a far greater possibility that he eschewed food for a stiff drink because he’s come back a different animal. Limblici got his chips all-in on the first two hands back from the break. He received no calls and is now up to 800,000. The halftime team talk obviously worked out well. — RD

8.25pm: Play restarts


90 minutes after the start of the 75 minute dinner break play resumes in level 26, with blinds of 25,000-50,000 with a 5,000 ante. — SB

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Again, we assume this is in Madrid


PokerStars Blog reporting team in Madrid (in order of substances allergic to): Rick Dacey (2, red wine and lemongrass), Marc Convey (1, penicillen) and Stephen Bartley (1, bus drivers).



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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