EPT San Remo: Day 1B, levels 3 & 4 live updates (150-300)
That's the end of a level blighted by internet issues. We're heading into level five hoping for better.
4.55pm: Naujoks fills up
Jens Thorson made it 750 under the gun and only Sandra Naujoks called from the big blind. The flop was Q♦7♥7♣ and Thorson called Naujok's 1,050 bet. On the 9♣ turn Naujoks made it 2,200, Thorson raised to 5,000 - call. Both then checked the 5♦ river.
Naujoks had 9♥9♦, the full house beating Thorson's Q♥[10c], and moved up to 42,000. -- SY
4.50pm: Return of Lodden
Team PokerStars Pro Johnny Lodden is enjoying his customary swings today. Down to 13,000 a level or so ago, he's now back up to 54,000 after busting Vitaly Lunkin.
Lunkin had raised under the gun to 800 and got four callers, one of them Lodden from the big blind. On the A-K-5 flop it was checked to Lodden, who also checked before Lunkin made it 2,000. It was folded back to Lodden who moved all in - call.
The set held up and the Russian departed, leaving Lodden to count his loot. -- SY
4.45pm: Becker heads to Monte Carlo
Boris Becker didn't last too long in San Remo; bounced before the end of level four. Daniele Mancini was his assassin in a hand that played like this: Mancini raised to 500 from the button and Becker called in the big blind. The two of them saw a flop of J♥7♠7♣ and Becker check-called Mancini's bet of 1,000. That took them to a flop of 5♥, at which Becker bet 7,000. Mancini moved all in, covering the PokerStars SportStar, but Becker made the call.
Becker flopped top pair with his J♠[10c] but Mancini had flopped the joint with J♣7♥. Becker was drawing to a one-out chop, but missed. See you in Monte Carlo, Boris. -- HS
4.44pm: Chino downed
Chino Rheem has been eliminated after a day where apparently nothing went right for him. Table mate James Keyes informed the blog that he played really well but failed to win a pot. Most of the damage was done in a pot where he check-called an opponent on the turn and river only to be shown a flush. That left him with 600 chips and they were soon in the middle. He found a caller with pocket kings and his jack-ten couldn't come behind.
Keyes himself is doing much better and is up to 65,000 chips. -MC
4.42pm: Hard to get chips over here
Michael Binger, famed for making the WSOP final table the year of Jamie Gold, is struggling today. He just got his last 5,675 in the middle after a raise. A player behind him re-raised to isolate and it worked as the initial raiser folded. Binger said he was happy to see they both had big-slick and added "It's hard to get chips over here". -MC
4.40pm: Value betting
Andrew Teng is up to 34,000 after getting a value bet on the river paid off. The board read 7♦Q♣K♣4♦9♣ and Teng bet 1,200. The small blind took so long to think that the clock was called on him. He called quickly after this but mucked upon seeing Teng's K♠T♣. --MC
Here's the video intro do the day, folks...
4.35pm: Nacho catches river, wins
Kevin Eyster started this one off with a raise to 800 from the hijack. Johnny Lodden, to his left, called but the Argentinian Team PokerStars Pro Nacho Barbero raised to 3,300 from the small blind. Alessandro Granvillano - with a name that I really hope means "Grand Villain" because it's excellent if that's the truth - called from the big blind. Eyster and Lodden folded.
The flop came 8♦6♣Q♦ and Barbero led for 3,900. Granvillano called and they saw a [10h] turn. Neither fancied that, checking, and the river came 2♥. Barbero bet 10,100 at that, which Granvillano tank-called.
Barbero showed A♠Q♣ and that was good - a rivered top pair. -- HS
4.30pm: Just a Secondo
Secondo Coccia opened for 750 from under-the-gun which Andrea Benelli called for a flop of 7♠3♠5♥. Coccia checked to Benelli who took the pot with a bet of 1,175.
There would be more action at the table, this time featuring Sandra Naujoks and Thomas Bichon. On a board of 3♦7♣3♥6♥ Bichon bet 3,000 which Naujoks called. The river then came A♠ which Naujoks checked, as did Bichon, sheepishly showing 5♥7♥. The sheep were good though, beating Naujoks's 5♦5♣. Bichon is up to 60,000 while Naujoks hovers around the 35,000 mark.
Elsewhere Pasquale Pellicano is out, sent to the rail by Jani Toiminen, aces and against jacks, who was responsible for giving Pellicano chips in a hand just after the start. -- SB.
4.20pm: Van den Berg vanquished
Thierry van den Berg was all in with a flush draw but his opponent had a higher version, which is never a good spot. The Dutch Team Pro joins his countryman Marcel Luske on the rail. -- HS
4.15pm: Bergeron's queens
Craig Bergeron raised to 1,000 from under-the-gun and Ilya Ermako, Giovanni Maresca and Joop Sjouwerman all called, taking us to a [10s]7♦2♦ flop. Bergeron bet 1,500 and only Maresca called that, with the 4♣ turning. Bergeron checked now and allowed Maresca to take over the betting. He stabbed 1,500 at it.
The K♥ rivered and neither player wanted to commit any more. They both checked and showed pocket pairs. Bergeron's Q♣Q♠ were better than Maresca's 9♥9♦. --HS
4.15pm: Govert shows his Metaal
Jen Kyllonen raised to 600 from mid-position and pretty much no one believed him. Lasse Aastrup (hijack), Jacob Rasmussen (cut off) and Juha Helppi (small blind) all called, but then Jan Metaal Govert raised to 3,400 from the big blind.
Kyllonen called that, as did Helppi, and Govert was now in a Finnish sandwich, looking at a flop of 6♠J♠4♥. Helppi checked and then Govert bet 13,000. Reluctantly Kyllonen and Helppi both let it go as Govert shows his mettle. -- HS
4.10pm: Joh ruins family fun
Julien Labussier raised under-the-gun to 500 and every other player at his table, with the exception of Felipe Montenegro, called. That meant there was 4,000 in the pot and eight players, going to a board of 6♦8♣2♦. Checked through the blinds, Labussier bet 1,850 at it and it went through to Carsten Joh. He immediately raised to 15,000 and everyone else got out the way.
4.05pm: Internet issues
We're experiencing some serious internet issues here in San Remo - perhaps the volcanic ash cloud has got in to the cables. We'll be up and running again soon. We hope. -- SY
LEVEL UP. BLINDS ARE NOW 150-300 IN LEVEL FOUR.
3.40pm: News from the interweb
Lex Veldhuis is up to 73,000. We know this not because we were standing diligently by his table, but because he just put this up on his Twitter page...
"Yayy. Won 40k flip with AK vs QQ. Good player 500, i call, guy 2250, call, i make it 8k he shoves 20. Playing 73k now"
Gotta love Twitter. -- SY
3.30pm: Another late arrival
Another player probably held up in a puff of volcanic ash is Sami 'LarsLuzak' Kelopuro. He's just sat down at the same table as Team PokerStars Pros Joe Cada and Ben Kang. Expect fireworks.
Cada just got back up to 24,000. On a 6♠3♦4♣Q♥3♠ board Gregore Adamescu had bet 1,000 and Cada re-raised to 6,400 to take the pot. -- SY
Planes, trains and automobiles
As well as our minibus which has driven from London with Barry Greenstein, Peter Eastgate and Jason Mercier on board, other players are still trickling in to San Remo after nightmare journeys.
The Icelandic volcanic ash cloud has messed up many a travel schedule as Brits Tony Cascarino, Marc Goodwin and Michael Greco found to their cost. Leaving from London, their trip lasted around 20 hours. First they got a car to take them across the channel to Paris. They got to the airport to find that closed down, so instead went to the station so they could catch a train to Nice.
The train was full, meaning they had to sit in the corridor (or in Marc Goodwin's case on the toilet - "it was the only free seat") for six hours.
Then the final leg to San Remo was completed by taxi. They got here at 3.10pm to find they had lost only 2,000 or so in blinds from their 30,000 starting stack.
"Mind you, first hand I got a flush and got paid off by a lower flush, so that's not bad," said Cascarino. "It was a real planes, trains and automobiles trip." -- SY
3.20pm: Timing timing timing
Some players have natural timing in this game we call poker. You can have a string of big hands but in the wrong scenario they become nearly worthless. One player with the gift of timing is Team PokerStars Pro Lex Veldhuis and it's helped his stack rise to over 70,000.
The most aggressive player at the table from what we've seen has been David Sonalein and once again he opened the pot with a raise to 500 from second position. Veldhuis just called from the button before Gianni Bonetto re-raised to 2,250. Sonalein flat called but Velhuis raised again to 8,000. Bonetto quickly moved all-in for 20,000 and Veldhuis made the call after Sonalein folded.
The board ran A♦9♥3♥8♣6♣ to pair Velduis' ace and eliminate his Italian opponent. --MC
3pm: Barbero betting
On a flop of 4♠Q♦T♦ Alessandro Gabriele made it 800 to go from middle position after Nacho Barbero had checked in the big blind. Johnny Lodden called from the button before Barbero then raised to 2,600 total. Gabriele passed but Lodden called and the 9♦ hit the turn. Barbero bet 3,400 this time which again Lodden called and then both checked the river card 5♦. Lodden showed K♠J♠ for the straight while Barbero mucked his hand. Both are now up and down to 23,000.
2.45pm: Level three
We're going into level three. Ordinarily, registration would now be closed but the extraordinary circumstances - volcano in Iceland, airports closed across Europe - means that we're extending opening hours until 5pm.
A text message has just arrived from Barry Greenstein saying: "We're not near water so we don't think we're that close." Greenstein, lest we forget, is one of three Team Pros currently trundling across France/Italy/Wherever in a mini-bus. They will be here sometime today.
Here's some flowers, a fishing net and a man on a bench to calm us all down.
PokerStars Blog reporting team in San Remo (in some order or another): Marc Convey, Stephen Bartley, Simon Young and Howard Swains.