EPT12 Barcelona: Stalemate, but Liv Boeree among final three High Rollers
It was a day that started amid flashbulbs, and the arrival of one of football's most recognisable stars. Neymar Jr's entrance was certainly one of the most memorable, and his performance one unashamedly followed by fans, media, and fellow players alike.
Nearly 17 hours later though the atmosphere was entirely different. Three players, forced to stop not because of a lack of chips, but too many. Closing time at the casino meant a premature end to play.
And so this report of the Single Day High Roller will not wrap things up just yet, and the single day will instead become a second - at a date still to be decided. What we can tell you is that the three players will return and to play to a winner. Those players will line up like this:
Martin Finger - 7,640,000
Liv Boeree - 3,860,000
Mark Teltscher - 3,700,000
All three are former EPT Main Event winners, with five (with the addition of Mike McDonald and Kevin Stani) having reached the final table.
That, having started several hours earlier, quickly became a weird demonstration of how sometimes poker doesn't work as expected. Some ten all-ins were called, each going the way of the short stack. It made for some unexpected calculations, as the average stack dwindled to around 14 big blinds. Exasperated, and perhaps a little tired, they could only play on.
Sooner or later that run had to end, and it did. Iacapo Brandi, well supported by an Italian rail, departing in eighth. Jeff Rossiter followed in seventh, and Isaac Haxton in sixth. All three had spent time as the big stacks, such were the swings.
Mike McDonald would depart in fifth place, followed by Jani Sointula. To type this is to deny the full story a proper airing, but which is one you can read in full on the live coverage page. Tireless work from Remko Rinkema and Frank Op de Woerd ensured nothing was missed. It's well worth a read to see just how testing a night it was.
But when the clock struck 4.50am tournament staff, led by the able and ever courteous Thomas Gemie, had no choice but to call time. Casino rules say it must close the exhibition centre (which hosts the EPT) by 5am. Returning at a later date was quickly agreed.
It leaves a few things to look out for as those plans are made. For one thing Team Pro Liv Boeree, who played a blinder tonight having been one of the short stacks at the start of the final, plans on playing the main event (entering on Day 2) in a little over six hours from now. Then there's the matter of when they return. Will that change the dynamic of a table, one that tonight was powered by caffeine, adrenaline, and no small amount of grit.
Time will tell, and of course we'll be there to see it through to a conclusion.
It's been a great Single Day High Roller. Some 152 entries meaning there's €865,000 for the winner. It started well, and it promises to end well. Just not tonight.
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Stephen Bartley is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.