Giuseppe Pantaleo leads into Barcelona final table

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If today were a golf shot it would be straight down the middle. In cricket it would be a nicely balanced strike, a boundary through the covers. While in baseball it would be akin to a straightforward single to left field.

The process of going from 24 players to a last eight went like clockwork today, a steady stream of eliminations from the start at 12 noon to the close bang on 8pm, and at the end of it Giuseppe Pantaleo was still in control, holding the chip lead he'd brought with him to Casino Barcelona this morning. It was all done with considerable aplomb.

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Chip leader Giuseppe Pantaleo

His lead going into tomorrow is a significant one. The German bagged-up 5,655,000 chips without breaking into a sweat, keeping the lead all day, while his nearest rival is Konstantin Puchkov, some way back on 4,160,000.

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Konstantin Puchkov (left)

Here's how they'll line up:

Seat 1 - Jesus Lizano - 3,800,000
Seat 2 - Kent Lundmark - 3,025,000
Seat 3 - Konstantin Puchkov - 4,160,000
Seat 4 - Shander De Vries - 3,120,000
Seat 5 - Giuseppe Pantaleo - 5,655,000
Seat 6 - Francesco Notaro - 745,000
Seat 7 - Thor Stang - 1,290,000
Seat 8 - Georgios Skotadis - 1,105,000

The day started with the departure of Kristoffer Thorsson of Sweden, and ended when Candido Goncalvez departed in ninth place. In between was an act of selfless decency.

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Candido Goncalves

A counting error during the transfer of chips between the feature and outer tables gave Jesus Lizano 400,000 more chips than he knew he had. He pointed it out immediately and insisted the chips were returned to their rightful owner, Shander De Vries. With the agreement of Thomas Kremser they were. Both players will return tomorrow.

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Thomas Kremser discussing the situation with Jesus Lizano (center) and Shander De Vries (left)

We also bade farewell to some heroes of the week; former LAPT winner Dominik Nitsche followed Thorsson to the door, Alessandro Longobardi left in 16th while Luis Rufas was sent home in tenth .

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Luis Rufas

It leaves the beneficiaries of their demise to return tomorrow, competing for an EPT title and trophy, not to mention what will be one of the biggest cash prizes of the season, €825,000. That's reason to be cheerful, just ask Francesco Notaro...

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Francesco Notaro

It should be a good one, and you can discover everything you might need to know about how the eight finalists reached this stage at the links below:

Level 23 & 24 updates
Level 25, 26 & 27 updates

To go with those links you'll find other details such as chip counts and the prize winners so far, at the appropriate links.

Where would we be without our foreign bloggers? In all likelihood still standing around at Barcelona airport asking for directions to the hotel. Their heroics from today are detailed in German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish and Greek, while all photography today was brought to you by Neil Stoddart.

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Just the final table to go from EPT Barcelona. Coverage on the PokerStars Blog starts tomorrow at 12 noon and you can also watch the action for yourself on EPTLive which begins shortly before they shuffle up and deal.

Until tomorrow then, it's goodbye from Barcelona.

Stephen Bartley
@StephenBartley in European Poker Tour