EPT Vilamoura: Minieri masterful but Coimbra leads


Players from around Europe were treated to 30 degree temperatures today, bright sunshine and a cooling breeze coming off the Atlantic - perfect conditions then to head indoors to Casino Vilamoura and play eight hours of poker.

You get so used to the European Poker Tour taking place predominantly over the winter months that you forget that in some places the sun actually shines. Vilamoura is one of them. As opposed to places like Prague and Deauville here you can roll up the sleeves, toss away the thermals and enjoy yourself. Just ask one of today's chip leaders, Dario Minieri.

Dario Minieri

The Team PokerStars Pro bags up 131,400 chips tonight, the product of a busy day at a table that was no pushover. EPT Snowfest winner Allan Baekke was across from the Italian, the pair clashing regularly throughout the day. Baekke is also among those who'll be returning for day two on Monday, having avoided any major scrapes and closing on 57,300.

But it was a member of Team PokerStars Online who looks the likely chip leader tonight, Andre Coimbra bagging up 157,600 to lead and flying the flag of the home nation.

Chip leader Andre Coimbra

Day 1a was not a one man show, and there were good days also for Paul Foltyn (145,900), Toby Lewis (141,900), Antonio Esfandiari (127,800) and Antony Lellouche (114,100), all of whom finished with sizeable stacks.

Antonio Esfandiari

Elsewhere the ranks of Team PokerStars Pro marched into the tournament room this morning and all will march back on day two, all except for Juan Maceiras who ran into aces on the penultimate hand of the day. He leaves behind Arnaud Mattern (119,800), John Duthie (57,100), Vicky Coren (29,000), Henrique Pinho (71,400), Pieter de Korver (80,800), Marcin Horecki (40,800), Alex Kravchenko (27,100) and JP Kelly (50,300).

Vicky Coren

Arnaud Mattern

But where there is success there is failure and someone has to pay. Today's donors included Annette Obrestad and Barny Boatman, who are now free to hit the fairway, beach or bar for temporary comfort. Of the 181 players here today 102 remain.

For the complete list of who got their chips check out the chip count page which will be updated once the counts are officially released. In the meantime you'll find a full recap of today's events at the links below, complete with Microsoft Paint interpretations of the day's action that, despite appearances, were not drawn by six-year-olds.

Levels 1 & 2
Levels 3 & 4
Levels 5 & 6
Levels 7 & 8

Join us again tomorrow for the second of the day ones, featuring the likes of Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu and various others who were no doubt playing golf today.

Casino Vilamoura

If you've had to Google Translate up to here you might find it easier going on one of our foreign language blogs at the following links, written in German, Italian, Dutch and Portuguese. Our thanks to them and to Neil Stoddart for today's photography.

Until tomorrow then.