EPT San Remo: Day 1B levels 7, 8 & 9 updates (500-1,000, 100 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg11.40pm: All over
That's it, play has finished for the night. One man not bagging up is Team PokerStars Pro Barry Greenstein, who busted shortly before the end when his K-Q failed to overtake A-9. He hit his queen - but his opponent hit his ace.

It looks at this stage as if Michael Eerhart, a PokerStars qualifier from Holland, will be our overnight chip leader with 247,800. But not far behind is a certain Team PokerStars Pro going by the name of ElkY. He has 232,200.

A full wrap of today's events will be with you shortly, and the chip count page will be updated with a full list faster than you can order a pizza. Well, it may take a little longer than that but we'll do our best. -- SY

11.20pm: Clock stopped
With 13 minutes still remaining, the clock has been stopped. We'll be playing five more hands only, then it's time to color up and bag up. -- SY

11.15pm: New chip leader
A big hand catapults Dutchman Michael Eerhart into the chip lead, an advantage that provided there are no late surprises will make him overall chip leader going into day two.

Sebastien Bauer opened from the cut off for 7,150. Eerhart was in the small blind and raised to 21,000 which Bauer called for a flop of 7♣4♣9♥. Eerhart wasted no time betting, making it 12,000. In reply Bauer lumped in a tower of chips that hadn't even been counted to be 18,000 before Eerhart moved all-in for around 65,000 more. Bauer called, showing K♦K♣ to Eerhart's inevitable A♠A♦.

The turn came 4♠ and the river 9♦. Nothing to help Bauer who's day was no over while Eerhart, stacking chips for another three hands, was up to more than 250,000. - SB.

11.10pm: Do v Dempsey
Quinn Do and James Dempsey are sat next to each other but there's no love lost between these to when it comes to playing their cards. They just played towo hands in a row against each other with a score draw the final result.

First of all Do raised from the button and was called by the Brit to go to a 4♣9♥7♦ flop where they both checked. The turn came J♥ and Dempsey led for 3,700. Call. The river came T♦ and Dempsey check-called a 4,500 bet. Do tabled A♠5♠ but Demsey took the pot with K♦J♣.

The second hand saw Do raise again, this time from the cut-off and to 2,400. Dempsey three-bet to 6,400 but folded when Do made it 16,300. Dempsey on 90,000 now. --MC

11pm: Thater out
A disheartened Katja Thater has just made her way to the press room to tell us of a last-level bust. She had queens and was against one opponent on a J-9-2 board. Her opponent bet 7,000 and Thater moved all in for 42,000. The foe took a while to call but eventually did emerge from the tank and put his chips in. He had nine-deuce but didn't immediately notice that he had flopped two pair; Thater had to help the dealer to explain that her queens had been out-flopped. Better luck in Monte Carlo. -- HS

10.50pm: JP Kelly rollercoaster
Level eight was a full-on rollercoaster ride for Team PokerStars Pro JP Kelly. The first hand of the level saw him double-up through Dario Alioto when his pocket aces matched-up very well against the Italian's ace-queen.

That put him up to 65,000 but the very next hand he lost a chuck after flopping top pair and nut-flush draw, but still lost the hand. He admitted to losing focus slightly after this hand and slipped further to 34,000. The rest of the level was a lot calmer and he got his game back on the right track and at the end of the level he had a stack worth 44,000. -MC

10.46pm: LEVEL UP
We're into the last level of the day, level nine, with blinds at 500-1,000 with a 100 ante.

10.45pm: Between the two of them
A battle of the blinds between ready for anything Danny Ryan and ready for bed Jason Mercier. The board already showed Q♠4♦A♠2♥ and Ryan checked to Mercier who made it 3,000. Ryan called for an 8♠ river. Again Ryan checked and Mercier made it 5,525.

Then followed a minute or two for quite reflection for Ryan who, after glancing Mercier's way once or twice, called. Mercier turned over A♦T♠. Ryan tapped the table and mucked his hand. Mercier up to 75,000 while Ryan slips back to 45,000. - SB.

10.40pm: Banzi busto
Praz Bansi is out. There was a raise to 2,000 in front of him before he pushed for 12,000 with ace-ten. His opponent called but apparently took a little longer than necessary to reveal his pocket rockets. Apart from the PCA this year Bansi has failed to cash in any EPT. It's a surprising statistic for one of Europe's most feared players who has a bracelet and a number of titles and final table appearances all over the world. --MC

10.35pm: Chips move across table to new chip leader
A short while ago Rasmus Nielsen was likely chip leader with 136,000. But when we checked just now he had only 44,000. A glance across the table to seat one shows where most of chips seem to have gone. Italian Stefano Brega is the proud new owner - sitting now on 170,000 and the chip lead. -- SY

10.30pm: Pieter de Twitter
From the ever-reliable source that is Twitter: "Hup hup! 58k i open a9hh 1400 1caller 1guy shoves 15k i put him my feeling said call he had 66. Flop 6xx but all hhh weeeee bingo no boat!" That's Pieter de Korver folks, flopping a flush against bottom set. He's running into good form again ahead of the Monte Carlo Grand Final. -- HS

10.25pm: Toth eliminated in another bad beat
Two weeks ago Team PokerStars Pro Richard Toth was eliminated from EPT Snowfest in unfortunate circumstances and the same thing has happened again here. Fabio Scaglione opened the pot with a raise to 2,025 before Toth shipped it in for 12,350 total. Scaglione tank-called with 8♦8♣ only to see he was dominated by Toth's T♦T♣. That all changed though as the board ran 3♣8♥7♦J♠2♥ to make a full-house for the Italian's under pair. --MC

10.20pm: Big boys
It's getting towards the end of day 1B - we have one level and about ten minutes to go - and the hunt for the dominant chip stacks begins. As ever, such a search should begin (and sometimes ends) with ElkY and sure enough he has about 130,000 still and is definitely in the top handful.


ElkY's back: all that most others can see

There's some quality in his wake however, notably Jeff Sarwer, Kevin MacPhee and Sebastian Ruthenberg.


Jeff Sarwer


Kevin MacPhee


Sebastian Ruthenberg

10.05pm: Two men down
In very short order, Team PokerStars Pro's contingent in San Remo has been trimmed by two. Both Johnny Lodden and Noah Boeken have departed in pretty standard circumstances. Lodden first: he shoved for his last 7,975 from early position and Joe Serock called. Viacheslav Goryachev raised to 25,000 and Serock got out the way.

Lodden, with life on the line, had Q♣J♣.
Goryachev had a dominant K♣K♥.

The board came J♦3♠5♣9♥2♦ and Lodden leaves.


Noah Boeken

He can now chat to Boeken. The Team Pro from Holland got all his money in with pocket sevens but ran into Craig McCorkell's jacks. A jack on the flop ended that one too. -- HS


Johnny Lodden: mugging for the camera no more

10.10pm: Nico Nacho
Team Pokerstars Argentina's Nacho Barbero has managed to double-up his short stack through Joe Serok. Action folded around to Barbero on the button who shoved for 8,575 and was called by Serok in the small blind. Showdown:

Barbero: A♥8♣
Serok: 4♥4♣

The board ran T♥2♠T♠6♣A♦. Barbero was halfway out of his chair before the river saved his tournament. -MC

10.05pm: Easier online
PokerStars Team Online member Luca Moschitta has been eliminated after making a 'hero' call all-in on the river that was wrong. The board read 6♣2♥Q♠J♠Q♦ and his opponent in the hand, Joe Ebanks, put him all-in. He took so long that the clock was called and he used almost every second before making the call. Ebanks tabled K♦K♠ and it was good enough as Moschitta cards went into the muck. --MC

10pm: Waiting Weekes
Jonathan Weekes moved all-in for 15,800 pre-flop on Jeff Sarwer's table, which was called by Cristian Tardea. The drama was short lived though, the showdown revealing A♦K♥ for Weekes to Tardea's A♣K♣. A board of T♦5♣8♠2♦2♥ split the pot. - SB.

9.45pm: Man on tilt!
Some excitement over on table 45, where Ferit Gabriellson had bet 2,000 and faced a re-raise to 6,000 from Frederico Cipolloni. It seems there is a bit of history on this table as the clock was called on the Swede.

"Who called the clock?" he demanded to know.
"Me," said the gentleman in seat three. "You've been ten minutes."
"Are you effing kidding me?" snarled Gabriellson.

Tournament staff then began the ten second countdown as Gabriellson had spent much of his minute already arguing.

He folded, at which point Cipolloni turned over 8♠2♣ triumphantly, bringing guffaws of laughter from most of the table. But not from Gabriellson.

"Ooooooooh," he said to Cipolloni sarcastically.
"Hahahahaha," he said to the rest of the table, also sarcastically.

Then he turned back to Cipollini, who he now called "Macaroni", in reference to his Italian heritage. "I had king jack, what did you expect me to do? Maybe I re-re-raise and then we see your b*lls - and how much they weigh." You've got to love San Remo. --SY

9.35pm: Wake up, Ivan
As we've seen many times before, Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov is feeling a little sleepy. He's adopted his arms crossed on table pose, with head resting on them. He looked up briefly to see the progress of a hand, got bored of that, and went back to sleep again. -- SY

9.30pm: For the dead
Johannes Steindl, Antonio Matias and Jens Kyllonen are out, the latter couple surely paying the price for my insistence that we'll have our first-ever double EPT winner here this week. If so, it won't be the Copenhagen season five, nor Vilamoura season six winners. -- HS

9.21pm: Level up
That's it for level seven. There'll be a ten minute break and then the whole field, which had been on a split dinner break, comes back for level eight. -- SY

9.20pm: Nedellec copes with Spindler
There's really no fun to be had dealing with Benny Spindler and that task now falls to Marion Nedellec, the PokerStars sponsored player from France, who has recently been moved to Spindler's table. So far so good for Nedellec, who may consider herself unlucky for not earning more from the German tyro.


Marion Nedellec

Matt Perris opened for 1,400 from early position and Spindler called in the cut off. Nedellec also called in the big blind and they went to a flop of K♠T♣A♣. All three checked. The turn was 4♦ and Nedellec led for 3,750, which only Spindler called. The river was 4♠ and after Nedellec checked, Spindler bet 3,000, which Nedellec called.

Spindler showed his A♠J♣ and he had rivered a chop against Nedellec's A♥Q♠. -- HS

9.25pm: ElkY does it again
Another moment of perfect timing for the Team PokerStars Pro. On a T♠9♠6♠ flop he bet 2,700 and got called by Alexander Kuzmin. Both then checked the J♦ turn, but then it kicked off on the 8♣ river. ElkY checked, Kuzmin made it 7,000 and, after a dwell long enough to confuse the Russian, ElkY put in a tower of yellow 5,000 chips - more than enough to cover Kuzmin's remaining 42,000.

Kuzmin thought for a moment or two before calling - only to be shown K♠Q♦ by ElkY for the nuts. Kuzmin showed the Q♠.

Next hand Phillip Gruissem made it 1,300 pre-flop and ElkY, this time on the button, raised it up to 3,300 to take the pot. ElkY is up to a menacing 145,000. -- SY

9.15pm: Moreira De Melo gets out of the way
Team PokerStars SportStar Fatima Moreira de Melo had raised up to 7,100 only for Sven Lucha to move all in for 9,000. But it was not finished yet as Andres Johansson also moved in for 29,000. Moreira de Melo covered them both, but scarpered pretty quick.

Lucha: A♠K♠
Johansson: K♣K♦

Things were settled soon enough when the flop came A♥3♥3♠ followed by a Q♥ turn and 5♥ river. More or less a triple up for Lucha. -- SY


Fatima Moreira de Melo: Not in the pot (doesn't mean we won't use a picture)

9.12pm: Boeree bets for pot
Martin Jacobson opened the pot with a 1,625 raise from early position and was called by three players including Liv Boeree in the hijack. Jacobson continued his aggression with a 4,400 bet on the 8♠7♣7♠ flop and Boeree and the small blind called. All three checked the K♥ turn to go to the 2♦ river. It was checked to Boeree who bet 10,500 and that was enough to get both opponent's to fold. She's up to 44,000. -MC


Liv Boeree

9.10pm: Never the fastest player
Tony Cascarino's stack has shrunk a little to 55,000 after he lost a race against Jakob Eberger. Eberger only has 7,150 left and that all went in after a Cascarino raise to 1,600. A player called in between the two but he folded after Cascarino re-raised to isolate. Showdown:

Cascarino: 7♠7♣
Ederger: J♦T♣

The board ran A♣4♥J♠2♣K♠ to pair the jack of Ederger. --MC

9.05pm: All uphill for Cahill
Seamus Cahill opened from 2,000 from the cut off and found Ilya Gorodetskiy skulking in the big blind read to call. The flop came Q♦J♦5♠ and Gorodetskiy checked to Cahill who bet 2,675. It was here that Gorodetskiy out Cahill on the back foot, a foot he'd be on for at least another hand after this one. The Russian raised to 8,900 sending Cahill into the tank. When he eventually folded he showed A♠J♥. Gorodetskiy showed nothing and re-arranged his colour coded stack of 65,000.

It was a tactic employed again when he messed around with Cahill on the next hand. Cahill opened again for 2,000 which Gorodetskiy ruined with a 5,700 raise form the button. Cahill stared at Gorodetskiy who began typing something into his PDA until Cahill folded A♥ face up. Again, Gorodetskiy didn't show. -- SB.

9pm: Set over set again
Is it just me or are there a lot of set-over-set encounters today? Who knows, but Szymon Jan Pieszczoch has just lost about 80 percent of his stack after flopping a set of fours on a 4♦6♠3♦ board. Too bad Tobias Hausen had 6♣6♦ in the hole. Hausen doubled up and Pieszczoch was pegged back to about 5,000. -- HS

8.40pm: Double champion time
At the beginning of this tournament I made a reckless bold prediction that we would crown our first ever double EPT champion in San Remo this week. This was partly owing to a desire for that hoodoo to be lifted, and for me to be the one to predict it. Equally, however, it was owing to the sheer number of former champions floating around these days.

Even with half the field out on their break, there's still no shortage of those winning types around. And what's more they mostly have chips. In short order, Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier has just despatched two players to the rail. The first, Attila Urban, took a stab with A♣5♣ and ran into ElkY's A♠K♠ - he was knocked out. The second, Costantino Russo, had pocket jacks but couldn't win the flip against ElkY's second big slick in the same orbit.

That puts the Team PokerStars Pro into six figures, with about 110,000, roughly the same total as Kevin MacPhee. MacPhee took down the biggest purse in European poker so far this year when he won in Berlin, and he has started excellently in his quest for a second million euro payday. MacPhee has been in six figures for a while now.

Sebastian Ruthenberg has about 68,000; Jason Mercier, despite late arrival, has about 70,000 already. Antonio Mattias and Pieter de Korver are also still in today's field, short-stacked but fighting. There it's said: this time next week, we will have a double champion. Mark my words.*

*But don't bet on it. -- HS

8.45pm: A bad thing for Visser
Ruben Visser is out. No one saw the hand but the PokerStars qualifier Mario Ripepi was seen scooping Visser's chips. -- HS


Ruben Visser

8.22pm: Ebanks grabs chips from Grabowski
On a board of 4♦5♣T♣6♣ Lukasz Grabowski checked in the big blind to Joe Ebanks who bet 6,700 from the cut off. Grabowski called for a 6♣ on the river with more than 20,000 in the pot. Grabowski bet 12,500 now and, after a moment of suspense, Ebanks announced all-in, for around 60,000.

Grabowski didn't seem to have been prepared for this scenario and shifted in his seat. Ivan Demidov was sleeping through this, the sight of Grabowski shaking his head at what would be a call for almost everything he had. He passed, not happy, but still in the tournament with 65,000. Ebanks is up to 95,000. - SB.

8.10pm: This is how they roll
I'm not certain how any of the money got in during this hand, but passing by table 36 moments ago it seemed that Voitto Rintala was in the middle of doubling up. In front of him was his entire stack and A♥A♣. Roberto Masullo was busy counting out the 25,000 he would need, placing his own chips behind his exposed Q♦9♦. The flop, which was also out all the way to the river, was 6♥4♦8♣8♠3♠. Like I said, I have no idea how any of the money got in there, except possibly as a shoved flush draw on the flop.

On a neighbouring table almost simultaneously Pierpaolo Fabretti was also all in. He was one of two players at a flop of 2♥6♦7♠. Maurizio Baisi checked, Fabretti bet 5,450 and Baisi raised to 14,000. Fabretti wasn't done, however. He re-raised all in for a total of 32,100 and Baisi folded. Under encouragement from the rest of the table, Fabretti showed [10h]8♥. -- HS


Pierpaolo Fabretti

8pm: Slow-rolled twice
Michael Binger is out after being slow-rolled twice he claimed. The worst and then biggest of the two saw Binger three-bet all-in and received a call all-in from an opponent. Binger revealed his kings and his opponent huffed and puffed before revealing pocket aces that held up. Binger wasn't too displeased with the slow-rolling as he thinks it's just a cultural difference thing. --MC

7.55pm: Demidov down but not out
Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov's stack is down to 25,000 after he doubled-up Lukasz Slawomir Grabowski. The flop was out as [a][8][6] and Demidov led for 6,100 before facing a raise to 16,200. He moved all-in with his eight-five and was called by Slawomir with ace-king. Another ace and a king fell to seal the double-up. --MC

7.45pm: World champ busts
Team PokerStars Pro and world champion Joe Cada is out. He had been grinding for a while, and with just 8,600 left was looking for the double up. When Bernard Boutboul raised to 3,000, Cada looked down at 8♦8♥ and pushed all in.

Boutboul thought for a few seconds before making the call with A♥Q♠. Cada's life was on the line, and the executioner's axe fell quickly enough when the flop came 5♣Q♣K♦. Cada needed an eight, but the 9♣ turn and A♣ river didn't help.-- SY

A little earlier Cada had spoken to the video team...

7.40pm: Lodden down again
The Johnny Lodden swing-o-meter continues to go to and fro. Down to 14,000, up to 54,000 and now down to 15,000. -- SY

7.35pm: Tales of woes from the Team Pros
Three PokerStars Team Pros; three stacks on the slide.

The first to suffer was Noah Boeken. He raised to 1,800 from the button before Craig McCorkell re-raised to 4,700 from the button. Boeken mulled over his options then announced "Eleven thousand, six hundred".

McCorkell then nodded at the dealer and said "All-in". The amount was enough to cover the Dutchman's remaining stack of 28,000. Boeken sat there for a while but ultimately mucked his hand.

The next to make a lay-down was Lex Veldhuis. The turn was out and the board was double paired with two queens and two threes. Veldhuis led at the pot but snap-folded to a raise from fellow countryman Fokke Beukers. Beukers chuckled and showed A♥J♥. Velduis still going strong on 83,000 though.

The third pro to feel the strain was JP Kelly after losing two pots in a row to his neighbor Slimane Mameche. The first pot saw Kelly try to punish two limpers with a raise from the small blind only to fold to a big re-raise from Mameche. The next hand Kelly raised from the button and was called by both blinds to see a 6♠A♠9♣ flop. Kelly's c-bet was only called by Mameche to go to the 8♦ turn where both checked. Mameche then over-bet the pot on the 7♣ river and it did the trick as Kelly folded to leave himself with 45,000. --MC

7.20pm: Back again
With one half of the field on their dinner break, the remainder are now starting out on level seven. Once they've played that it'll be their turn for dinner.

A few big stacks are emerging, including that of Danish pro Rasmus Nielsen, who has around 140,000.

While we wait for the action to kick off again, here's a picture of the church next to the casino. The bells were rung at 7am this morning, waking up most of the blog team. Thanks for that.


That rings a bell

PokerStars Blog reporting team (in order of hunger): Marc Convey, Simon Young, Howard Swains and Stephen Bartley

Simon Young
@MrSimonYoung in European Poker Tour