EPT Monte Carlo: Final table, level 28 contd., 40,000-80,000 (5,000 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg2pm: Break time
That's the end of the level and players are on a 15 minute break.

1.55pm: Mesbah Guerfi eliminated in eight place
Mesbah Guerfi began today second in chips but has just become the first to depart. On a flop of 8♣3♠4♠ both he and Nicolas Chouity checked for a 4♦ turn. Guerfi then bet 310,000 which Chouity called for a K♦ river card. Guerfi then bet big, 785,000. Chouity then announced all-in and he had good reason.

Mesbah Guerfi

His pocket eights had made him a full house on the river. Guerfi didn't know this and called with ace-king. It was a hand to send him crashing out, while it leaves Chouity with 14.8 million, more than 12 million ahead of Andrew Chen in second place. - SB

1.45pm: Guerfi fights back against Klinger
I guess this is how to deal with Josef Klinger. The Austrian raised again pre-flop and Mesbah Guerfi moved all in from the button, for 2,330,000, which covered even the increased Klinger stack.

Klinger didn't fold instantly - and he hasn't been the kind of player who would stall unnecessarily. But eventually he let it go, temporarily halting his upward surge. -- HS

1.38pm: Three-bet
Andrew Chen tests the water by opening for 185,000. Dominykas Karmazinas announces "raise", making it 420,000 to go. Chen waited for the action to get back to him and passed his cards. -- SB

Andrew Chen

1.30pm: Klinger continues climb
Again Josef Klinger opened, making it the standard 180,000 from early position. Aleh Plauski asked him for a count of his chips - "About one point nine" - and the two of them went to a flop of 8♣9♣J♣. Plauski checked, Klinger bet 200,000, Plauski called, and that took them to a 5♣ turn. Plauski checked, Klinger checked, and the A♥ rivered. Plauski checked for a third time and Klinger now moved in 300,000. Plauski folded.

Klinger has been rewarded for his active approach this afternoon and has all but doubled his starting stack. He now has 2,345,000. -- HS

1.24pm: Chouity all-in
Aleh Plauski opened for 220,000 which Mesbah Guerfi raised to 640,000. Nicolas Chouity then used his chip might to move all-in for more than 9.5 million. Plauski passed and Guerfi looked uncomfortable for a bit. It didn't want to call for his stack though and folded. - SB

Nicolas Chouity

1.20pm: Chouity all-in
Aleh Plauski opened for 220,000 which Mesbah Guerfi raised to 640,000. Nicolas Chouity then used his chip might to move all-in for more than 9.5 million. Plauski passed and Guerfi looked uncomfortable for a bit. It didn't want to call for his stack though and folded. - SB

1.15pm: It's not a thriller
Josef Klinger limped from the small blind and Mesbah Guerfi checked his big blind. The flop was a full 24 hours in Dolly Parton's world: 9♦5♥9♣. Klinger checked, Guerfi bet, Klinger folded. Yes, that made the cut, which gives you an idea of the style of play so far. -- HS.

Josef Klinger

1.05pm: Klinger klings to active line
On the outer table yesterday, Josef Klinger was one of the more active players, not afraid to raise pre-flop, nor to call three bets and go to a flop. The same has been true this afternoon and he has raised three pots in succession - winning all of them without contest. -- HS

1pm: Guerfi folds
Josef Klinger opens for 185,000 and is called by Mesbah Guerfi for a flop of 8♥8♦9♦. Klinger then made it 250,000 which Guerfi called for a 9♠ turn. Now Klinger moved all-in. Despite earlier interest Guerfi folded. -- SB

12.55pm: First flop
Our first flop of the afternoon appeared after Aleh Plauski raised and Nicolas Chouity called from the big blind. This was the second shortest stack versus chip leader. The flop came 5♠7♠[10h] and after Chouity checked, Plauski bet 325,000 - and Chouity let it go. That's a nice little pot for Plauski. -- HS

From l-r: Aleh Plauski, Andrew Chen, Roger Hairabedian, Nicolas Chouity, Mesbah Guerfi, Herve Costa, Dominykas Karmazinas, Josef Klinger.

12.47pm: Second pot
Chen raises and takes the second and third hands of the day. -- SB

12.46pm: First pot
Chouity opens the first pot with a bet of 140,000 which is folded all round. - SB

12.45pm: Off we go
You might not believe it, but it's true. We're playing. Apologies to my online Scrabble opponent - that game is over. It's poker now. -- HS

12.30pm: A start is imminent
Yeah, we'll be off in a few minutes. -- HS

12.20pm: Waiting, waiting, waiting
The final table has not yet started. We're still waiting for microphones to be attached. Here's a money-making suggestion for anyone with enough knowledge: how to attach a television microphone to eight people in less than an hour. You'd make millions if you could nail that. -- HS

11.30am: Grand final day
Welcome back to Monte Carlo for the final table of the European Poker Tour Grand Final.

This is almost the last day of the last event of the sixth EPT season (were it not for the small matter of the high roller final table tomorrow). This is the last mouthful of a slap up meal served up in 13 courses. From the hors d'oeurves served up in Kyiv to the fish course at the PCA. We're now on Monte Carlo dessert where we're guaranteed sparkles on top.

Only eight players are here to enjoy it, led by Nicolas Chouity from Lebanon, who brings 10,280,000 to the final, a full six million ahead of the next guys. Those next guys are the newcomer Mesbah Guerfi alongside Andrew Chen, who is taking part in his second EPT final table.


The featured table yesterday, the final table today

We have everything you need for the armchair poker experience, including player profiles, which provide you with background to the cast. Click through for the starting chip counts, which will become updated chip counts once we start, and the results so far, all the way back to 128th place.

As for here we'll have detailed action from start to finish while you can watch for yourself on EPTLive.

Players are undergoing the pre-flight checks and we should be under way shortly. By the end of today we'll have a new EPT Grand Final Champion.

PokerStars Blog reporting team in Monte Carlo (in order of previous Grand Finals witnessed): Stephen Bartley (4), Howard Swains (3), Simon Young (2).