EPT Prague: In the thick and thin of it

Luca Pagano’s day has been the rollercoaster type. More than that, a rollercoaster without safety belts and dodgy welding on the loops. But, he’s still here. The thing is it doesn’t seem to be any easier.

After re-raising a bet for over a quarter of his stack his opponent then put him all-in. There followed a period of sustained thinking on Luca’s part.

“Do you want me to call?” asked Luca.

The man went a shade of pink and shifted the weight of his head onto his other hand. It was no clearer to Luca. Could he pass? He took another look, furrowed his brow and flicked his cards away in disgust.

But like I said, he’s still here.


At the last break of the day separating the end of level six to the last two hours of the day, I caught up with some of the PokerStars qualifiers who are playing today, either thanks to a modest satellite fee or some well earned frequent player points.

Sondre Mikalsen from Oslo in Norway is of the FPP kind. The 27-year-old is playing his first EPT which happens also to be his first live event, one he’s intending to enjoy. He sure looks the part with gold rimmed aviator glasses across his face and a stack measuring around the average mark.

Team PokerStars qualifier Sondre Mikalsen

“It’s pretty cool. It’s very nice here and I love travelling.” He said. “I’ve only made a couple of mistakes so far. Otherwise I’m happy!”

David Nigioni of Monaco is also experiencing the thrills of a first live event, hiding his pride at having reached this stage in his poker career after just eight months. How was it going?

“I have the same 10k I started with.” He said. “I was up to 22k and played steady for a while but then, well, someone had a flush!”

PokerStars qualifier David Nigioni

Still, not bad for just eight months...

“Yeah, I’m pretty happy about it! And I’m defending my chips!”

Tournament update:

Latest chip counts into level seven...

Anthony Lellouche – France – 41,000
Peter Roche – Ireland – 11,000
Mark Friedman – United States – 21,000
Reijo Manninen – PokerStars qualifier -- Finland -- 9,600
Michael Ellis – England – 4,000
Luca Pagano – Team PokerStars pro – Italy – 6,500
Florian Langman – Germany -- 28,000
Leo Kam – England – 39,000
Praz Bansi – England – 43,000
Pryan De Mel – England – 15,000
Casper Hansen – Denmark – 12,000
Bertrand ‘ElkY Grospellier – Team PokerStars pro -- France -- 23,000
Juha Helppi – Finland – 7,000
Thomas Brolin – Sweden – 6,500
Jani Sointula – Finland – 10,000
Karl Mahrenholz – England – 4,000
David Nigioni – PokerStars qualifier – Monaco -- 11,000
Tommy Pavlicek – PokerStars player – Canada -- 44,000
Sondre Mikalsen – PokerStars qualifier – Norway -- 18,000

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in