EPT Deauville: Day 1B, level 3 & 4 updates (blinds 150-300)
4.35pm: End of level
That's the end of the level and it's a 15-minute break for the players. Join us in a new post shortly (just click the 'Next' button above). -- RD
4.34pm: Pagano power
Luca Pagano opened for 750 from under the gun which was called by Sam Grafton and Kewin Lambert in the big blind. The flop came 6♥5♣2♣ which Lambert checked. Pagano then bet 1,625 which Grafton called before Lambert folded. On the T♦ turn Pagano bet again, another 3,000 called before the Q♠ river. Both checked that, Pagano announcing "six," and turning over 6♣.
It was good enough. Grafton folded. Pagano back up to 25,000. - SB
4.32pm: Fashion is temporary, class is permanent
Fashion icon Salvatore Bonavena has just taken a small chunk of chips away from Liv Boeree on a 5♠9♦J♣7♠ board. Bonavena had entered from the cut-off and Boeree from the small blind. The English Team Pro had check-called the flop for 1,450 but 4,000 on the turn was just too much. She sat and gave her nose a scratch, riffled her chips, stared at Bonavena and stared at the board. None of it helped convince her that a call with the right move. She mucked and remains just over 20,000, while SalBon continues his climb. -- RD
4.20pm: Over and out
Arnaud Mattern is out. "I had sevens, he had ace-queen," said Mattern. "You know the rest of the story." We do. -- SB
Before we close the book on Mattern the video team spoke to him after his heads-up confrontation with Viktor Blom, earlier this week...
4.19pm: Lucky old man
Team PokerStars Pro Juan Manuel Pastor is up to 50,000 chips after eliminating Calvin Anderson with aces versus kings. Pastor was on the phone to a friend shortly after the hand and handed the phone over to table mate Daniel Negreanu for a chat.
Negreanu joked into the phone: "The thing is he's just a luck box. He plays like an old man; sitting there not playing a hand and then he picks up aces versus kings. If he had lost with the aces he would have cried like a baby." -- MC
4.18pm: Ainsworth grinding on up
Jude Ainsworth hasn't really been able to recreate his online success as j.thaddeus in the live environment but he is at least grinding back some chips today.
Patrice Boudet limped under-the-gun and was called by in middle position before Ainsworth called on the button. A 1,600 lead into the 2♠8♥9♣J♠ turn was raised to 4,000 by Ainsworth, which was called. The Irishman bet another 4,000 on the river and took the pot without being looked up.
Ainsworth is above the 33,000 chip average, just not by that much. -- RD
4.10pm: Raising the Rufas
Luis Rufas, who finished tenth at EPT Barcelona in November for €50,000, is showing the same sort of form in the early running here. Jude Ainsworth made it 750 from mid position and Rufas called from the button. The flop was 9♣4♥J♣ and Rufas called Ainsworth's 1,350. On the A♦ turn Rufas called again, 2,350 this time. Finally, on the 2♥ river he called 5,000.
"King high," Ainsworth said sheepishly as he showed K♠5♠. Rufas had J♦5♦ and that was good for the pot. He's up to more than 55,000 now. "Those chips are only on loan," Ainsworth said. "I'll want them back." -- SY
4.05pm: Sal Bon fashion extra (see 3.45pm)
The grey Trilby hat has appeared. -- SY
4pm: Ah no, Arnaud
Arnaud Mattern's Day 1B might not be a long one. He stepped away to explain his current plight, victim of Irishman Rory Brennan on his left. Mattern had opened for 550 in middle position before Brennan raised to 1,500 leaving himself 20,000 behind. Mattern had 5♦6♦ and called for a flop of 9♦4♦.
Mattern checked and Brennan bet 1,800 which Mattern raised to 6,600 figuring Brennan was either flipping or dead. Brennan shoved, the Frenchman called and even got a  on the turn for even more options. But Brennan's pocket queens were good. Mattern down to less than 5,000. - SB
3.47pm: Bullet proof vest for Scripcenco
Almira Scripcenco is up to 70,000 chips after absorbing a barrage of bullets from Team PokerStars Pro Viktor Blom. The Swede raised from the button to 500 and then bet 800 on the flop, 1,200 on the turn and 3,200 on the river. Scripcenco was sat in the big blind and called all bets on the 5♦9♠7♠J♣A♥ board. Blom mucked when his river bet was called to drop to 22,000 chips. Scripcenco smiled and tabled K♥9♣ for a pair on nines and Blom let out a wry smile as well. -- MC
3.45pm: The Sal Bon Fashion report
Today's Sal Bon fashion report is brought to you by PokerStars Blog Fashion Editor Simone Young...
Salvatore Bonavena is today moving away from his traditional look, making way for a warmer outfit that complements the chilly winter of northern France perfectly. Gone is the pink jumper, pastel scarf and trilby hat. Instead Sal Bon sports a Pringle jumper (grey), blue jeans, and brown suede shoes. His glasses are tucked neatly in the v-neck of his jumper; a perfect accessory for this winter wear collection.
LEVEL UP: BLINDS 150-300
3.35pm: Mattern in bad shape
Arnaud Mattern is not looking good. The Team PokerStars Pro is down to a smidgen over 3,000 chips and is already on his phone texting his post bust out arrangements. Not only is he in super short but he's seated at the most inconvenient table to reach of the entire tournament floor, partially thanks to a large gentleman who is using two chairs to support his bulk. We'll try to catch his imminent bust out/double up if we can but physical logistics are against us. -- RD
3.28pm: So Fallara so good
Almira Scripcenco opened for 550 from the button and found a caller in big blind Daniele Fallara. They saw a flop of 2♦J♥8♠ which both players checked for a T♥ turn. Fallara checked to Scripcenco who bet 2,000 which was called before a 4♣ river card. Now Fallara bet 5,000 sending Scripcenco in to the tank, where she stayed for a minute or two before folding. Her day is still going well though, up to 46,000. -- SB
3.20pm: Ahmed with quads
Ahmed Debabeche is up to 90,000 chips after flopping quads against PokerStars qualifier Michel Pullen. There was an early position raise to 700 that Debabeche three-bet to 1,700 from late position. Pullen was sat in the big blind and four-bet to 3,400. The original aggressor folded but Debabeche called to see a flop containing three tens.
Pullen led for 5,000 and Debabeche called to see a nine appear on the turn. Pullen check-called a 5,000 bet from Debabeche to see a king fall on the river. Pullen checked once more and called when Debabeche shoved, creating a 90,000 pot. Pullen tabled pocket kings but lost out to Debabeche's ten-five. -- MC
3.14pm: ElkY passes pre-flop shocker
An under-the-gun raise to 525 from Patric Martensson was called in two spots before it reached Bertrand 'ElkY' Grospellier in the big blind. Despite the value on offer the Team PokerStars Pro passed his hand. It must have been awful.
Martensson bet 1,025 into the Q♦A♠2♦ flop and was called by Pedro Filho in the small blind. Both players checked the A♦ turn before Filho led into the 3♦ river. Martensson quickly folded. -- RD
3.12pm: Some clown
If you scroll down to the very bottom of this post you'll see that our 'in order of' (a very popular feature on PokerStars Blog) is about our famous school alumni. Blog snapper Neil Stoddart reports that his most famous pupil was Billy Smart of circus fame. -- SY
3.10pm: Nanny MacPhee
Kevin MacPhee, the EPT Berlin winner, seems to be doing a good job babysitting his table, chatting away and making sure everyone is comfortable (while picking up as much info as he can, of course). On his right is what appears to be Anton Ionel, the player from Romania who ended up third in the PCA Main event for $1.35million only a few days ago. -- SY
3.05pm: The perfect spot
Bloggers are used to trudging up and down looking for action, wearing out our shoe leather at an alarming and costly rate. However, there's one spot we've found that requires no more than standing still in order to see some poker goodness.
From here you can watch Liv Boeree, Viktor 'Isildur1' Blom, Luca Pagano and Jude Ainsworth. A stretch of the neck would get you the action on Daniel Negreanu's table as well. Tip all the back and you can see Pieter de Korver too.
On this moment of standing still I watched Pagano lose some chips. The board was 8♦9♦4♥A♠ and Pagano called Christophe Guitton's 3,500 bet. On the 8♠ river, Pagano checked and Guitton bet a teasing 2,300 before reaching down to pop on his earphones. Pagano seemed a little confused by that and made the call, mucking when shown A♣8♣ for two pair. -- SY
3pm: Second home for Rousso
Team PokerStars Pro Vanessa Rousso is the only Team Pro affiliated to two countries; the USA where she was born and France, the land of her ancestors. She is sat along side fellow Team Pro Arnaud Mattern (at his first home) and just tangled in hand with him but it was Jakob Karlsson, also involved in the hand, who caused her problems.
Mattern raised from early position and was called by Karlsson on the button and both players in the blinds. The flop came J♥9♠9♦ and all four players checked. The turn came T♥ and Rousso led for 1,100 from the big blind. Mattern folded but her other two opponents called to see the 6♣ river. Rousso bet 1,600 before Karlsson raised to 6,500 which forced the small blind and Rousso to fold.
Chips counts after the hand: Mattern (27,000), Rousso (25,700) and Karlsson (33,000). -- MC
2.50pm: Four way to the flop
Christophe Monnin opened for 600 from under the gun. Next to him Jean Yves Labbe called as did Nicolas Chappuis and Vikash Dharasoo in the big blind. The flop came K♦8♠Q♦. The action was checked to Chappuis who bet 1,150. Dharasoo passed while Monnin called. Labbe, whose rubber face has all sorts of expressions, shook his head and passed ahead of the T♦ turn.
Monnin bet 1,500 this time which Chappuis called for a 9♣ river card. Another 2,500 from Monnin. Chappuis thought for a while but couldn't call, folding and showing K♥ instead. - SB
2.42pm: Sudworth washed out, Thorsson the axe man?
Kristoffer Thorsson has more than doubled his stack to 80,000 and I can guess that was courtesy of James Sudworth in seat nine. Sudworth's chair is conspicuously empty and Thorsson, who has raked in $1,253,239 in live tournament winnings over the last two years is certainly a threat when given chips. I know it's early but I remember him chipping up early on when he finished 24th at EPT Barcelona in November. -- RD
2.30pm: Play re-starts
We're back in action in level 3, with blinds at 100-200.
PokerStars Blog reporting team in Deauville (in order of most impressive alumni from High School): Stephen Bartley (Keith Harris, and presumably Orville, of Queens Park High School, Chester), Rick Dacey (Dario Gradi, longest serving Crewe Alexandria Football Club manager 1983-2007, of Glyn Technology School, Ewell), Marc Convey (Commander Jim Southers, WW2 naval flier involved in capture of Enigma materials, of The John Fisher School, Purley, Surrey) and Simon Young (Cardinal Wolsey, Henry the Eighth's side kick, of Ipswich School, Ipswich.)