PokerStars Festival Bucharest: Ozdemir leads final seven, with Grafton on his heels
Remember earlier when we told you this Day 3 had been fast and furious so far? Well that mood continued throughout the course of action across eight 60-minute levels, as player after player met their tournament demise. We almost couldn't keep up.
The 58 (of 736 total entries) who started the day are now down to only seven. They're all now sat around one table - the FINAL table - and the man who holds the lead heading into tomorrow's final day is Anil Ozdemir. Who's joining him? You'll have to read on to find out.
We've brought you a lot of coverage throughout today's play, so we won't bring up all of the day's action here again. Instead, if you need a reminder, click on the links below to refresh your memory:
But now let's go over how we got from 14 to seven.
Let the bust-outs continue
First off, Fahredin Mustafov eliminated Paul Ciacain in 14th with his pocket aces against A♠T♦, before Johann Eclapier busted Cristian Neicu in 13th with pocket queens against pocket deuces.
Then we had a bad beat, courtesy of Daniel Nietrzebka. After Marius Gicovanu opened to 90,000, Nietrzebka three-bet to 250,000 from the small blind. Gicovanu came back over the top to 455,000, and Nietrzebka jammed. A snap-call ensued, as Gicovanu flipped over his A♥A♣ and was up against the 7♦7♥.
But poker can be a cruel game; we all know that. The flop fell 7♣2♥9♠ giving Nietrzebka top set, and Gicovanu couldn't find an ace on the turn or river.
Samuel Goje then lost his spot when his pocket nines were outdrawn by the A♥Q♣ of chip leader Anil Ozdemir courtesy of a queen on the river; then Ionel Tanase busted to Yuriy Kudrynskyy when his pocket eights lost in a similar fashion to A♦9♥. An ace on the river - aka the Barry Greenstein - sealed his fate in 10th.
After that, it was the Patrick Bueno show. First he doubled up, then he lost most of his new chips back when his pocket aces were cracked by Razvan Cetanas' pocket sevens, and then he doubled up again when his ace-queen out ran Yuriy Kudrynskyy's ace-king!
As Cetanas was now short, it wasn't much of a surprise to see him as the next to fall. He did so when he checked a 5♣2♦4♠ flop to chip leader Anil Ozdemir, and Ozdemir led for 300,000. Cetanas then raised to 800,000, before calling an all in. Cetanas had the best of it with the A♦4♦ up against the 8♦3♠, until the A♣ landed on the turn to give Ozdemir a straight. Another cruel exit in the books.
We now had our official final table set with 45 minutes left to play for the day. Ozdemir held a dominant chip lead of 9.2 million, followed by Sam Grafton with 4.87 million. They were an international bunch, this final eight; only two come from Romania (Bueno and Traian Bostan). We've also got one Brit (Grafton), one Pole (Daniel Nietrzebka), one Turk (Ozdemir), one Bulgarian (Fahredin Mustafov), one Ukrainian (Yuriy Kudrynskyy), and one Frenchman (Johann Eclapier).
But then we lost another player: Yuriy Kudrynskyy. He jammed for his last 230,000 with the K♣J♣ and was called in two spots: Johann Eclapier with the 8♠8♦, and Daniel Nietrzebka with the A♥T♥. Nietrzebka had them both covered.
The board ran out Q♠5♠4♣9♦Q♣ to keep the pocket eights in front, eliminating Kudrynskyy in eighth for €12,790 and giving Eclapier a healthy stack.
When all was said and done, here's how the final table looks coming into tomorrow's final day:
Join us back here on the PokerStars Blog at 1pm tomorrow as we play down to a winner. Who will win the €133,400?
For live updates, check in with our friends at PokerNews here.
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