EPT Snowfest: Day 4, level 21 and 22 updates (10,000-20,000, 2,000 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg5.15pm: Break time
That's the end of level 22. We're on a 15-minute break.

5.05pm: Strassmann takes out Haigh
Johannes Strassmann open-raised then faced an all-in bet from Robert Haigh, 331,000 total. The German Team PokerStars Pro wasted no time calling.

Haigh: J♠J♥
Strassmann: A♦K♥

Strassmann needed to catch up - and he did that rather quickly and effectively on the K♦Q♠K♣ flop. A jack would still save Haigh but the turn was 3♠ and river 7♥.

Haigh leaves in 15th place for €13,0000. -- SY


Johannes Strassmann

5pm: Baekke takes bit pot, extends lead
Alexander Debus raised, Allan Baekke re-raised to 110,000, Debus re-re-raised to 245,000 and Baekke Called. Got that? OK. Both checked the K♦K♠[10s] flop, but on the K♣ turn Debus checked then folded when Baekke made it 180,000. A pot of 716,000 that took Baekke up to 3.3million. -- SY

4.55pm: Introducing Jonathan Schroer and his mighty stack
Three things have characterised Jonathan Schroer's tournament so far: impeccable manners, a big stack, and an onomatopoeic table posture, if such a thing is possible.

To explain: Schroer has been one of the most polite poker players I've ever seen, always chatting to his neighbour, always shaking hands, and always wishing his opponents all the best in every pot they play. It is all perfectly genuine too and he's made a lot of friends.

That big stack has been with him throughout too. I remember asking him his name on day one when he was among the early leaders, and he's never been far off all the way to the last 16.

The onomatopoeic table posture is harder to define, but if his name, Schroer, sounds like something supple and frequently moving, that's exactly what Schroer is like. He stoops down impossibly low to peek at his cards and often slouches almost horizontally in his chair between hands. He looks wonderfully comfortable.


Jonathan Schroer peeks at his cards

Anyhow, all this is introduction to the news that his big stack is now twice as big as Shroer has just doubled up through Johannes Holstege. Schroer raised to 51,000 from early position, Holstege made it 68,000 more, and Schroer dwelled a while before shoving all in for about 750,000. -- HS

4.50pm: Koller's pot
Marcel Koller opened with a 46,000 bet, Luca Cainelli called as did Robert Haigh in the big blind. All three checked the 3♦[10d]J♥ flop but on the 6♣ turn Haigh bet 60,000 and only Koller called. Koller himelf then bet out on the J♣ river to take the pot. -- SY

4.45pm: Florian Döhnert out in 16th
Florian Döhnert open shoves for around 300,000 but runs into a hand courtesy of Brent Wheeler who moves all-in from the button. When the cards are flipped Döhnert's happy to see a flip.

Döhnert: J♣Q♣
Wheeler: T♦ T♣

The flop gives a juicy T♠J♥K♦ giving Wheeler a set and Döhnert a big draw... which never arrives. 8♥ on the turn and J♠ on the river. Döhnert collects €13,000 for his 16th place finish. -- RD

4.40pm: Giving way
Luca Cainelli opened with a raise of 61,000, leaving just a few hundred thousand behind, but folded when Robert Haigh re-raised to 312,000. -- SY

4.26: Redraw
With 16 players left there has been a redraw for the last two tables:

Outer table
1: Max Lykov - 980,000
2: Russell Carson - 2,010,000
3: Brent Wheeler - 1,254,000
4: Alain Medesan - 774,000
5: Lukas Baumann - 622,000
6: Jonathan Schroer - 805,000
7: Florian Döhnert - 270,000
8: Johannes Holstege - 1,987,000

Featured table
1: Marcel Koller - 730,000
2: Alexander Debus - 1,159,000
3: Johannes Strassmann - 1,112,000
4: Daniel Van Kalkeren - 568,000
5: Luca Cainelli - 397,000
6: Allan Baekke - 2,696,000
7: Huub Verdonschot - 938,000
8: Robert Haigh - 334,000.

4.25pm: Sore Toth
Team PokerStars Pro Richard Toth raises to 48,000 and Huub Verdonschot moves all-in for 449,000. Toth quickly makes the call for the vast majority of his stack.

Toth: A♣Q♦
Verdonschot: J♥Q♥

The flop is a heartbreaking 9♥8♣T♣ creating a huge suck out for Verdonschot. A 8♦ on the turn and a T♠ on the river all but destroys Toth. The Hungarian is out a couple of hands later in 17th for €10,200. -- RD


Richard Toth: in happier times

4.15pm: Baumann down's Wheeler's queens
Here's a hand full of trickiness and deception that ended up in a double up for Lukas Baumann. Baumann, a PokerStars qualifier from Austria, was in the big blind on the
five handed table, but Max Lykov, in the cut off, asked him how many chipshe had before any bet had been made.

Baumann counted it out and told Lykov he had 320,000. Lykov frowned and folded. When it got to Brent Wheeler in the small blind, he limped and Baumann checked his option. That took them to a 7♠6♥4♦ flop. Wheeler put out a speculative 28,000 bet and Baumann snapped into gear, raising all in. Wheeler insta-called, and here's what they had:

Baumann: 7♦5♦
Wheeler: Q♥Q♠ - at least the third time today he has had pocket queens.

That was top pair and an up and down straight draw against an overpair. The turn was blank: K♠ but the river was one of those outs: 3♥. Baumann doubled up, and Wheeler's queens were finally cracked. -- HS

4.10pm: Medesan mounting his offensive
Alain Medesan has quietly moved through his tournament into the late stages but is now moving through the gears.

Hand 1: Richard Toth raises to 45,000 and Medesan 3-bets (not all-in) and shows A♣K♣ after getting a fold.

Hand 2: Medesan raises to 42,000 from the hijack of the six-handed table and is raised by Johannes Holstege on the button to 104,000. Medesan thinks for just a few seconds before moving the remainder of his 290,000 stack over the line. The move boosts his stack to over 430,000. -- RD:

4pm: Collopy crushed
It's the end of the road for Jim Collopy, who was in shove mode after running A-K into aces in the last level. He moved all in from the hijack and Max Lykov, on the button, asked for a count. Collopy had 358,000 and Lykov folded, but Brent Wheeler, in the big blind, snapped him off.

Wheeler showed Q♦Q♣ and Collopy showed K♣J♣. "You're unpatriotic, you know that," said Collopy to his countryman Wheeler, all in good spirits. Collopy then requested that the dealer lay out a board of four aces and a deuce, but that wasn't to be. She did, however, give Collopy a king on the flop - the K♥ - but there was also the Q♠. The 7♥5♣9♣ completed it and Collopy was out in 19th. -- HS


Jim Collopy

3.55pm: Playing again
Players are back and level 22 is up and running.

3.50pm: Chips
The full official counts from the end of the level are currently being input on the chip count page by a band of trained chimps. -- HS

3.40pm: Level up
That's it for level 21. We're on a 15-minute break. Players will come back to blinds of 10,000-20,000 with a 2,000 ante. -- SY

3.39pm: Bernhard Perner out in 19th for €10,200
Bernhard Perner has just had a horrible KO in the last hand before the break. Russell Carson raises to 42,000 from the hijack and is called by Bernhard Perner in the big blind. Perner checked the T♦J♠2♥ flop allowing Carson to bet 67,000 into the Austrian. Perner Hollywoods for a while before moving in for little over a minimum raise and Carson calls.

Perner: T♥T♠ for middle set

Carson: Q♥9♠

Turn: Q♥

River: 8♠

Carson hits his open-ended straight to complete a heater that has seen him double with Aces versus Collopy's ace-king and queens versus Wheelers ace-king. -- RD

3.37pm: Collopy drums his way out of trouble
The action folds to short stack Lukas Baumann in the small blind and before he gets a chance to think about shoving Jim Collopy starts drumming the table in the big blind. Baumann folds with a smile. New fold-inducing technique from Collopy? -- RD

3.36pm: Richard Toth
Team PokerStars Pro Richard Toth talk about his event so far...

3.35pm: Strassmann stuck in raise-folding cycle
Team PokerStars Pro Johannes Strassmann's attempts to boss the table are running into difficulties. Almost every time he raises someone shoves on him. He's bound to snap someone off soon. Just not yet. -- RD

3.30pm: Double up #2
This time it was Russell Carson who got the magical double up. Max Lykov had kicked it off by opening with a 38,000 raise. Carson made it 112,000 and then Brent Wheeler joined the fun by raising again, to 254,000! Lykov had seen enough and got out of the way. But after a short dwell Carson announced he was all-in and got an instant call from Wheeler.

Carson: A♦K♦
Wheeler: Q♣Q♦

It was a close match up, but Carson took an instant lead when the board ran [10d]A♥7♣9♣3♥. He was all in for 809,000 and now has a sizeable stack. Wheeler is down to 600,000. -- SY

3.20pm: Double up #1
A lucky one for Daniel Van Kalkeren of Holland. He open shoved for 198,000 with Q♦Q♥ and was called by Florian Dohnert with K♦K♠. Kalkaren was at risk but the 9♣[10d]J♦ flop added a straight draw to his outs. The 8♦ on the turn duly filled that straight and the river was A♠. Kalkeren on more than 400,000 now - and Dohnert falls to 250,000. -- SY

3.10pm: Video time
Here's how the video team set out the start of today...

3.05pm: Wintersberger chilled; Gaines gone
Two players were eliminated in short order, one from each of the outer tables. The first player to go was David Wintersberger who was all in with A♥9♠ against the K♠K♥ of Brent Wheeler.

The board ran K♦Q♦3♣7♠8♥ and the day one leader Wintersberger was frozen out in 21st.

A couple of hands later, over on table one, the newly chipped Johannes Holstege raised to 32,000 from early position. Lee Gaines, a couple of seats to his left, re-popped, making it 86,000, and the decision made its way back round to Holstege.

He moved all in, comfortably covering Gaines' last 500,000, but the American called for that, showing A♣Q♦. That was in trouble against Holstege's A♦K♦ and the board ran K♠6♥2♣[10s]2♥. Only a jack on the river would have saved Gaines, but its absence meant he was out in 20th. -- HS

3.15pm: Carson-Collopy car crash
Jim Collopy raised from early position to 39,000 and Russell Carson moved all-in for 411,000. It was a horrible set up for Collopy who made the call with A♦K♦. Carson showed the bullets with A♥A♣ and the flop wasn't great for Collopy; Q♠9♥4♠. The turn killed it with 7♦ before the irrelevant 9♣ dropped on the river. Carson doubled to 830,000. -- RD

3.10pm: Other action
Richard Toth moves from table 2 to table 1 and Alexander Debus calls a 121,000 bluff from Florian Döhnert on the river of a 4♥7♣Q♠6♣9♣ board to win a 400,000 pot.

3.05pm: Major sweat for Koller
While it's great to get it all-in with top-top and not to be shown two-pair or a set it's not so hot to have your opponent free rolling. Koller and Alexander Debus got it all-in on the J♦T♠2♥ flop.

Koller: A♣J♥
Debus: A♠J♠

Turn: 3♦
River: T♥

Koller walks away from the table to pace out some nervous energy. -- RD

3pm: Cyril killer
We've lost another player, and at this rate we'll be skiing down the mountains in the bar in no time at all. Cyril Naim was the man to go, and my reading skills on this one were spot on (for a change). Naim open shoved for 248,000 and it was folded around to Jonathan Schroer in seat eight.

He clearly fancied a call and thought for about a minute, when suddenly Alain Medesan in seat nine called time on him. The floor said Schroer should be able to think a little longer before the clock was called - at which point Medesan began breathing very heavily.

"Medesan has aces," I whispered to a media colleague.

Schroer then folded, and Medesan moved all in. Once everyone else folded they were on their backs, and wouldn't you know it?

Naim: A♦6♦
Medesan: A♠A♣

The board ran 9♥2♦Q♠3♠A♥ to make a set for Medesan, who took all of Naim's chips and moved up to 530,000. -- SY


Alain Medesan gets the good news


Cyril Naim gets the bad news

2.55pm: Holstege beats the unbeatable
Is this the first chink in the armour of Allan Baekke? Well, he's not exactly going to think he played it badly - the contrary, in fact, he played it perfectly - but he has just been massively outdrawn for certainly the first time I remember seeing in this tournament.

Baekke raised to 34,000 from the cut off and Johannes Holstege three-bet from the button, making it 79,000. It was folded back to Baekke, who four-bet, making it 157,000 and Holstege shoved.

This is clearly what Baekke was wanting as he insta-called, tabling A♦A♣. Holstege was furious as he showed 4♣4♠ and he was in dire straits for his tournament life.

But how about this flop, turn and river? It ran 7♠6♦6♥8♠5♠ to fill a straight. He doubles up to about a million; Baekke takes a small hit. -- HS

2.45pm: Husiaux hussled out in 23rd
Bertrand Husiaux is out, the latest victim of Johannes Strassmann. Husiaux was an overnight short stack and he'd shoved a couple of times already and got it through. But when he found A♠K♣ that was plenty good enough to move in from early position again. But this time Strassmann re-raised all in from the small blind and showed [10h][10d].

That was a flip, but there was another ten on the flop, and Strassmann faded runner-runner straight outs. Husiaux leaves in 23rd - and can now attend the birth of his child, due this week. Good luck, Bertrand. -- HS

2.40pm: Lykov bossing the early action on table 2
Max Lykov is the player showing the most preflop aggression, in terms of opening pots anyway. Lykov must be winning close to half the pots with a simple raise and with the blinds at 8,000/16,000/2,000 ante that's a nice pick up each time. Bernhard Perner has probably opened the second largest amount but things haven't worked quite as well. Why? Well, he's got less chips for one. Perner raises into Wheeler's big blind for 37,000 and the American responds by moving all-in. Perner folds. His stack is definitely going the wrong direction. -- RD

2.35pm: A spoonful of luck helps the Medesan go up
Alain Medesan had 138,000 sitting in front of him, looked down at his cards, saw A♥7♦ and announced: "I am all in." It was folded around to Cyril Naim in the big blind who wasted no time in calling with Q♠Q♣. Naim had Medesan covered, and it looked like we were heading for our second bust out of the day.

But wait, the flop worked a treat for the Romanian, coming 3♣4♠A♠. "Yes!" Medesan said. Then he turned to the dealer: "No spade! Keep it low!" And that's exactly what happened, with the 2♥ turn and J♦ river. Medesan up to 280,000; Naim down to 240,000. -- SY

2.30pm: Wintersberger pushes Perner
Bernhard Perner raises from the small blind into David Wintersberger who makes the call. Perner check-calls 22,000 on a 2♦Q♠9♦ flop before folding to Wintersberger's second barrel of 44,000. -- RD

2.25pm: Donhert builds
Florian Donhert made it 37,000 and was called by Marcel Koller on the button and Team PokerStars Pro Johannes Strassmann on the big blind. On the 4♥4♣2♣ flop Strassmann checked, Donhert made it 50,000 and only Koller called. The turn was A♣ and now Donhert checked. Koller made his move with a 100,000 bet - but Donhert check-raised all in. That forced Koller to lay it down. -- SY

2.20pm: Wintersberger all-in
Jim Collopy raises to 27,000 and Day 1 chip leader David Wintersberger moves all-in from the big blind. Collopy wastes no time in passing his hand. -- RD

2.17pm: The rich get richer; Nasr El Nasr out first hand
Allan Baekke and Nasr El Nasr have been jousting for the best part of two days but their fight has come to an end on the opening hand of day four.

El Nasr opened from early position, making it 26,000. Baekke three-bet to 71,000 and when it was folded around to El Nasr, he announced that he was all in - for his overnight total of 546,000. Baekke had a quick double check of his cards and called.

Baekke: A♦K♦
El Nasr: A♣7♣

The board ran out: [10c][10h]2♠[10s]4♦ and El Nasr, one of the most hotly tipped prospects in any event is out in 24th. Baekke gets massively richer, and removes one of his toughest opponents. -- HS

1.30pm: Preparing for day four
There was something of a "last day of school" atmosphere this morning at the bottom of the ski slope nearest to the Alpine Palace hotel. Apparently the snow is rapidly becoming slushy and a band of skiers had given up their downhill ambitions and had taken to pelting cable car bubbles with snowballs instead. Come on, it's fun.

A similar atmosphere has descended inside the EPT tournament room, where the deadly seriousness of a major tournament's closing stages are complemented by a real sense excitement and anticipation. We have an absolutely top notch last 24 here at the inaugural Snowfest, and although today we will lose 16 of them, it is going to be a thriller.


Cartoon character at Snowfest

The seat draw was published last night, but it's also worth reprinting here in full. Just take a look at this line up:

Table one
1 - Nasr El Nasr Germany 546,000
2 - Allan Baekke Denmark 2,687,000
3 - Johannes Holstege Germany 683,000
4 - Cyril Naim France 380,000
5 - Lee Gaines USA 594,000
6 - Huub Verdonschot Netherlands 769,000
7 - Jonathan Schroer USA 685,000
8 - Alain Medesan Romania 166,000

Table two
1 - Max Lykov Russia 1,205,000
2 - Russell Carson Canada 495,000
3 - Brent Wheeler USA 1,361,000
4 - Richard Toth Hungary 414,000
5 - Lukas Baumann Austria 615,000
6 - Jim Collopy USA 758,000
7 - Bernhard Perner Austria 279,000
8 - David Wintersberger Germany 229,000

Table three
1 - Marcel Koller Switzerland 752,000
2 - Alexander Debus Germany 908,000
3 - Johannes Strassmann Germany 1,001,000
4 - Daniel Van Kalkeren Netherlands 281,000
5 - Luca Cainelli Italy 542,000
6 - Florian Döhnert Germany 602,000
7 - Bertrand Husiaux France 235,000
8 - Robert Haigh Germany 435,000

Johannes Strassmann, the Team PokerStars Pro, will take centre stage on the television table, under the gaze of EPT Live. There will be a lot of moving around though, and we'll probably see pretty much everyone at some point. Stay tuned.


Johannes Strassmann

You can check them out in order of chips on the chip count page. And you can see how they all got there with yesterday's wrap. All these other fellows have also made some money here this week.

Yesterday's play ended right at the end of level 20, meaning we're starting in level 21 today, give or take a couple of hands. Play is due to start at 2pm local time. That's not long.

PokerStars Blog reporting team in Austria: Rick Dacey, Howard Swains and Simon Young.

Howard Swains
@howardswains in European Poker Tour