EPT Vienna: Day 1B, level 5 & 6 updates (200-400, 50 ante)

ept-thumb-promo.jpg6.54pm: Dinner break
That's the end of level six, players are now on a 90 minute dinner break. -- NW

6.50pm: Falaschi finds bullets
I wandered over to Pascal Perrault's table to see how the defending champion and Team PokerStars Pro Salvatore Bonavena was doing (Perrault has 27,200, Bonavena, 20,000) when a big pot began to brew between three other players. Andreas Eugster raised to 1,300 from under-the-gun+2 and was flat called by Dimitar Danchev who was the small blind. From the big blind Luca Falaschi made it 3,800 total, both Eugster and Danchev called to create a large pot pre-flop. The flop fell [10s]K♣[10h], Danchev checked and Falaschi moved all-in for 12,900. Both Eugster (slowly) and Danchev (swiftly) folded and Falaschi showed A♥A♣ as he took the pot. -- NW

6.45pm: The Minieri show is back in town
Upon arrival at the Minieri/Collopy/Teng/Drescher table I found Team PokerStars Pro Dario Minieri pretty much all-in with top pair against second pair. He faded five outs to chip up to 24,000 and this confidence/stack booster has set him well and truly 'in the zone.' Shortly after he raised under-the-gun and fired two barrels at the K♣K♥8♣3♦ flop forcing his opponent to fold before showing 4♦9♦. "Just to let you guys know that my opening range is very wide," explained Minieri.

The next hand he three-bet a 900 button raise from Diogo Xavier Veiga to 3,125 from the big blind. Viega made the call but folded to a 3,450 bet on the 8♣J♠8♠ flop. Minieri showed T♣5♥ for no pair, no draw again; "Now you know what my reraising range is like. Information for the sharks," laughed Minieri as he looked across at Jim Collopy. Minieri is up to 33,000. -- RD

6.38pm: Taking advantage?
Team PokerStars Daniel Negreanu took a break from yawing to win a three-way pot against Javier Garcia and Laurence Houghton. The latter two had history and Negreanu may have sneaked in to take advantage of this.

The part of the recent history between Houghton and Garcia involved the former calling a raise from the latter and then calling bets on every street. The final board read Q♥4♣3♦A♠5♦ and when the Brit called the river bet he was shown J♠2♠ by Garcia for a rivered straight and wasn't best happy about it.

Not long after Garcia raised from early position to 1,300 and was called by Houghton in mid-position and Negreanu in the small blind. The flop came 3♣Q♥5♥ and Garcia's 2,500 c-bet was called by both players. The turn came 2♦ and Negreanu paused before leading for 7,200. It was good to take the pot down as both players passed. Houghton slammed his cards down, smiled at Negreanu and went outside to get some air. His stack has slipped to 39,000 whereas Negreanu is up to 46,000. -- MC

6.32pm: More for Moreira
Fatima Moreira de Melo may look tired, half her face smudged by the hand she's leaning on, but she's playing plain old merciless poker, as JP Kelly just found out.

On a flop of 8♠9♠K♥ Kelly, in the big blind, checked to Moreira de Melo in early position, who hardly moved from her position of slump to bet 1,600. Kelly called for a T♥ turn. Check, check before a 5♦ river. Kelly tossed out a yellow chip for a bet of 2,200. Moreira de Melo called and watched Kelly turn over K♣J♣.

But you can always tell at this stage how good a osition the caller is in. Any hesitation is always bad but, if like Moreira de Melo, they gaily flip over their cards, in this case showing 9♦8♦, they're usually a lock for the pot.

Kelly muttered something to himself while Moreira stacked up her chips, now weighing in at 71,000. Kelly down to just 10,500 now. - SB

6.28pm: Negreanu hit by jet lag
Daniel Negreanu is asleep at the table. Well, he's certainly resting his head on the rail for a prolonged period anyway. Laurence Houghton seems to be the main beneficiary of his slumber as his chip climb has reached the heady heights of 60,000. -- RD

6.25pm: Dwan dwindling
Tom Dwan's stack has been slowly dribbling away all day, it's the tightest we've ever seen him play and he's not raised once or defended from the blinds. However there's good reason for this as the seat he should be occupying has been empty since the get go. Dwan/his chair, is currently playing a stack of 25,450. Will Dwan show up? Will his empty chair make day two? -- NW

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Dwan's chair - VPIP 0%

6.17pm: "Please find a third bullet"....
This could have been the thought going through Jim Collopy's mind when he checked the river of a 6♣9♠2♦K♠9♦ board. Collopy was sat in the BB and had called a raise from Team PokerStars Pro Dario Minieri, as well as 2,150 and 4,450 bets on the flop and turn. Mineri found a check on the river though and was shown K♥9♥ by Collopy for a full-house which was good, unsurprisingly.

Mineri is down to 42,000 whereas Collopy is up to 34,000. -- MC

6.12pm: Jensen chipping up again
Frederick Jensen reminds me a little of Toni Ojala. Jensen, like Ojala, seems to be developing a talent of running up chip stacks from nowhere to go deep in EPT tournaments.

Jensen is sat on some 75,000 at the moment and is on the left of team PokerStars Pro Marcel Luske. Ojala on the other hand wasn't faring so well last time I saw him. He had around 14,000 before his table broke. I haven't spotted him since. No doubt he'll pop up on Day 3 with 250,000. -- RD

6.05pm: Toth going for Richard
It's not been the greatest start for Hungarian Team PokerStars Pro Richard Toth, he's now down to around half his starting stack. That still equates to a smidgen under 40 big blinds so although he's below the average stack, which is currently 37,956, he's not in panic mode just yet. -- NW

6.05pm: Pascal's wager
For those still wondering Pascal Perrault, the defending EPT Vienna champion, is still in the Day 1B field, armed with 23,000 after tangling in a pot against Salvatore Bonavena and Luca Falaschi.

Perrault opened for 500 in early position which Bonavena raised to 1,125. Falaschi was waiting in the big blind and called, as did Perrault for a flop of A♠3♥2♣. The hand would soon be over though when Falaschi and Perrault checked to Bonavena. HE bet 2,725, ending things there, recovering slightly and moving up to 21,000.

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Salvatore Bonavena

Bonavena was in action again on the next hand, calling an opening bet of 700 from Kyriakides Miltiadis. Carsten Joh in the big blind also called. The flop came 4♠T♠9♦. Joh checked to Miltiadis who bet 1,400. Bonavena got out of the way but Joh was ready with a raise, making it 6,000 total. Miltiadis blinked and asked Joh how much he had left. Joh said nothing. Admittedly it was not much to shout about, just less than 9,000.

All academic though as Miltiadis passed.

"Nothing," said Joh with some defiance, showing jack-eight. - SB

6pm: Men down
Benny Spindler failed to recover from his short-stacked state. He told us he got it in with aces on the turn but his opponent hit trips on that same turn card.

Another player also doing the walk of shame is Roberto Romanello. We don't have his exit details but his expression spoke a thousand words. -- MC

LEVEL UP: BLINDS 200-400, ante 50

5.50pm: Stadlbauer slays snowmen
Team PokerStars SportStar Fatima Moreira de Melo was left cursing Bernd Stadlbauer after he outdrew her to win a pot of around 25,000.

I joined the action with the board reading 5♣2♣8♣Q♥. There was around 8,900 in the pot and Stadlbauer had checked to Moreira de Melo. The ex-hockey star bet 1,800 and received a call. The river was the [10d], Stadlbauer checked once more and Moreira de Melo asked to look at his remaining stack, before betting 8,700.

After thinking for about 10 seconds Stadlbauer made the call. Moreira de Melo showed 8♦8♥ for the flopped set, but Stadlbauer had rivered a two-outer with [10s][10h].

Moreira de Melo is down now to around 67,000. -- NW

5.47pm: Teng taking the reins
I keep wandering over to the Dario Minieri and Jim Collopy table expecting to see some fireworks between the two, and each time it's Collopy's pal, Brit Andy Teng, who's grabbing the headlines and the chips.

Teng opened the pot for 625 and was called in two spots, one in late position and the other courtesy of Andreas Krause in the big blind. Krause and Teng checked and the late position caller bet 1,050. Krause then check-raised to 3,000 and Teng made a small raise to 6,000. Krause made the call but the German decided to let the hand go on the 3♠ turn when Teng fired a further 6,200 into the pot. Krause, who had around 14,000 behind, flicked his cards away as he went into chip preservation mode. -- RD

5.40pm: I'll have a large nachos with extra cheese please
Jose 'Nacho' Barbero is in a lot of pots, as per usual. He was raised off one flop but made a great call to win the next one to put him up to 68,000.

He raised from mid-position and was called by a player in the next seat, as well as David Jerney on the button. The flop came 3♣8♣6♠ and all three checked to the 8♥ turn. Nacho led for 1,500 and was called only by Jerney to see the 2♥ river. Nacho slowed to a check then grimaced when Jerney bet 2,000. He threw in the call anyway and it was good, his A♦K♦ bettering his opponent's A♠9♠. -- MC

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Nacho Barbero's crying call came good

5.35pm: Not Juan Maceiras, two Maceiras
Angel Guillen flew half way around the world to get here. He's not ready to fly half way round the world back just yet.

On a board already reading 2♦7♥K♣K♠5♠ Guillen was staring down a bet of 5,500 from Denes Kalo on the button. Guillen in the big blind, took some time over it, eventually calling. He showed an ace, but only after Kalo has folded his hand immediately. Guillen back to 30,000.

A few feet away on what will be the main stage when we get the business end of the event, is Boris Becker. He just won two pots in the row with some handy betting, enough to take him up to 44,500.

A hand later a four way limped pot developed on a flop of 4♦A♣K♦.

Maria Maceiras checked in the small blind, as did Alexia Portal in the big. Peter Hanusch, looking dapper with windswept hair and aviator glasses, made it 1,000 forcing out the button player. Maceiras was keen to stick around and called, going heads-up with Manusch after Portal also folded.

The turn came 9♣ which both players checked. Already the momentum was lost from this one, both players checking the 6♦ river card as well. J♥J♣ for Manusch, A♦2♠ for Maceiras.

"I knew you were better," said Manusch. This time she was. - SB

5.25pm: Benyamine busto
I didn't see his exit, but the Frenchman was down to around 6,000 a short time ago and there's another player now occupying the seat he was in. -- NW

5.22pm: Would you sleep with a stranger?
It seems a strange question to pose at the poker table but it's one that Fatima Moreira De Melo has been considering, albeit inadvertently (let's stress that bit again).

The Team PokerStars SportStar is reading a woman's magazine with an article titled 'Would you sleep with a stranger?' This may well be the reason that Yves Boschetti, a young looking Swiss on her right, appears to be quite bashful. In all likelihood it's because she has some 85,000 and he has less than 10,000. That's enough to make anyone feel uncomfortable. -- RD

ept vienna_day 1b_fatima moreira de melo.jpg

Fascinating reading material hasn't stopped Moreira De Melo from building a monster stack

5.15pm: Home win
Franz Markus Popetschnig, an Austrian, just doubled through Santeri Valikoski. On a flop of Q♣3♦8♦ Popetschnig checked, Szabolcs Sandor Mayer bet 1,300, Valikoski made it 3,000 to play only for Popetschnig to make it 7,000 total.

This increase in the price of poker was enough to force out Mayer, but Valikoski called. The turn was the A♣, Popetschnig led for 10,000 and Valikoski moved all-in. Popetschnig snap called, he was at risk, all-in for 25,925.

Valikoski: A♥Q♦
Popetschnig: 3♠3♥

The [10h] river changed nothing and Popetschnig now has a stack of over 65,000. -- NW

5.10pm: Her stack just gets Fatima
Team PokerStars SportStar Fatima Moreira de Melo continues to move on up and now sits at 85,000 in chips.

JP Kelly opened the pot to 750 from under-the-gun before the former Olympic athlete three-bet to 1,975 from two seats along. Balazs Botond was sat in the cut-off and he put in another raise to 4,200. Kelly folded quickly but De Melo called to see the 7♣A♦A♠ flop where she check-called a 5,400 bet. That was all the money that made it into the middle as the 3♦5♣ turn and river were checked down.

Botond tabled T♥T♠ but lost out to the Dutch lady's K♠K♦. "Why didn't you bluff me?" she asked as she raked in the pot. -- MC

5.05pm: Video time
Richard Toth fills us in on his day so far while the PokerStars Blog's very own Nick Wright, does well under interrogation to give the latest news from the tournament floor.




5.02pm: More from Houghton
Laurence Houghton has continued his chip comeback after holding steady against multiple streets of aggression from Javier Garcia.

Garcia limped into the pot from middle position and was raised by Houghton to 1,100. Garcia then limp-raised (always nice) to 2,800. Houghton made the call.

Garcia fired 2,800 at the J♣A♠T♦ flop and Houghton called. The Swiss tossed another 4,000 in on the 3♦ turn. Houghton's call didn't slow him down on the 6♠ river either which he bet for 7,000. Houghton called again to win the pot with A♣Q♦ to Garcia's A♥7♥.

Houghton is up to around 37,000 and wants to be involved in a lot of pots. -- RD

4.55pm: Back from the break
Players are back at their seats having allowed winter to come back into the room through the door they left open behind then. Two more levels to play before the dinner break.

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Can you tell what it is yet?

PokerStars Blog reporting team (in order of protective clothing): Nick Wright (duffel coat, thick jumper, hood), Marc Convey (branded sweater), Rick Dacey (branded sweater with thermals underneath) and Stephen Bartley (regimental tweed).

Photographs (c) Neil Stoddart.