EPT London: Day 1A, level 7 & 8 updates (blinds 300-600, ante 75)


8.55pm: Play ends for the day
The last three hands passed and all the players are bagging up their chips. The overnight chip leader seems to be Lukasz Golzyt on 211,600 and around 170 players made it through to Day 2.

A wrap of the day's play will be up shortly and so will the official counts, when we have them. -- MC

8.43pm: Three more hands
Just three more hands until the end of play at which point Marc Convey and I will tear around the tournament floor like lunatics looking to confirm who the overnight chip leader is. Bagging and tagging to ensue. -- RD

8.41pm: Disguised Neuville coolered down to starting stack
Pierre Neuville must have thought it was Christmas come early. He'd raised under-the-gun with 6♠5♣ and been called by four players only to hit a 5♥5♠T♣ flop. The Belgian c-bet 3,500 and was called just once, by Australian Jonathan Karamalikis, before he checked the A♠ on the turn. Karamalikis took the bait and bet 3,000, which Neuville called. The 3♦ on the river didn't seem to change much and Neuville checked again and quickly called off to a 7,000 bet on the river. Karamalikis showed A♣A♦ for a turned boat. Neuville down to starting stack. -- RD

8.40pm: J-Lo too low
Johnny Lodden has fallen in the last 20 minutes of the day. He had around 22,000 when he went to war with Jamie Rosen, had a few thousand more. All the chips went in pre-flop with the Team PokerStars Pro holding big-slick to Rosen's pocket queens. It was crucial to the two of them and the board ran out blank, handing a pot to the American. -- MC

8.20pm: Chouity begs for value on the river
Nicolas Chouity shot to fame in the poker industry when he demolished the end stages of the EPT Grand Final a couple of years back to claim the title. They always say that you need to win more than one title to stake a claim as a great player. The man from Lebanon showed such class when he took down event #54 (PLO 6-max) in the recent WCOOP.

He's on 45,000 chips as we near the end of the day after winning a pot off Ramey Shaio. Chouity raised to 1,200 from the hijack and tank-called when Shaio three-bet to 3,400 from the button.

The flop came 4♣A♦J♠ and Shaio continued for 3,300, with Chouity check-calling. Both players checked the 5♣ turn before Chouity led for a relatively small 2,550 on the 8♠ river. The Brit thought for two minutes before conceding defeat. -- MC

8.02pm: British talent
There's been a lot of British success in the poker world over the last couple of years and four of the players partly responsible for it are crammed onto the same table; Team PokerStars Pro JP Kelly, Laurence Houghton, JP Kelly and Sam Holden.

At the moment it's Houghton ruling the roost with around 70,000. He has Akenhead on his right, Kelly on his left and, just a few seats around, Holden who is the short stack of the WSOP November Nine. Holden is also the shortest here and is nursing a dwindling 11,000 stack. -- RD

ept london_day 1a_laurence houghton.jpg

Laurence Houghton (left) and JP Kelly

7.52pm: Milking it
Randy Dorfman has just chipped up to 37,000 after milking Yaron Malki with a flopped set of aces. Dorfman had squeezed pre-flop from the button making it 3,375 over an initial 1,250 open-raise and double call. Malki, the second caller of the initial raise, was the only one to hang on in there.

American Dorfman, who has $1,405,984 in live winnings, checked behind on the A♠7♦4♣ flop opting instead to make a small 2,100 value bet into the 8♥ turn. Malki made the call.

Dorfman made another small value bet, possibly hoping to induce a shove, with a 3,000 bet into the 5♥ river. Malki eventually made the call and was shown A♥A♣. -- RD

7.45pm: All the kids are wearing them
Doyle Brunson plays on in the main event, with a Skrill hoodie tied around his shoulders (the Skrill Stetson will be coming to you soon).

On a flop of 9♠A♦3♠ Mustapha Kanit bet 2,100 from the hijack, his chips arranged line astern with 85,000 worth of yellow chips out front. Brunson check-called from the small blind for a K♠ on the turn, which both players checked.

The river card came T♣ and Brunson bet out 8,000. Kanit took his time over it but eventually called. Brunson showed 6♠5♠ to take the pot after Kanit mucked his cards. He's down to 120,000 while Brunson moves up to 50,000. -- SB

7.40pm: More for Romanello
We normally catch a lot of Roberto Romanello action, mostly because he's winning lots of pots but also because we hear him talking so much that we remember he's still in. The man from Wales has been very quiet today; he's still winning those pots though.


Eerily quite but still loudly effective

He's on more than 80,000 chips now after playing aces a little trickily. Martin Jacobson opened to 1,200 and Romanello called from two seats along. There were a few short stacks behind to act and one of them (Andrew Luetchford) took the bait and moved all-in for 15,000. Jacobson folded but Romanello snap called and his hand held up. -- MC

7.34pm: Defending his title
Laird David Vamplew is the title holder here at EPT London having beaten John Juanda heads up to claim the £900,000 winner's purse last September. It's been an eventful twelve months for the young Scot which have seen him make two other major final tables for close to another $350,000 as well as winning a €1,000 side event at EPT Tallinn for €19,600. It's fair to say that it's been a profitable year and it's quite easy to see why, he just doesn't seem to get rattled.

Vamplew is down to 24,000 after opening 1,100 under-the-gun, c-betting 1,900 into a 4♥K♥2♦ flop and getting called by Phillippe Ktorza. Vamplew check-folded to a 3,100 bet from the Frenchman on the 8♥ turn. -- RD

ept london_day 1a_david vamplew.jpg

Reigning champ David Vamplew

7.30pm: Making her Marquez
Ana Marquez is up to more than 90,000 chips after doubling-up through Kunimaro Kojo from Japan.

She raised from the hijack and was called by both blinds on the way to 9♦Q♣T♠ flop. Marquez continued for 3,500 and was check-raised to 9,500 by Kojo after the small blind had folded. Marquez wasn't going to be pushed off her hand though and three-bet to 16,500 and called all-in for 47,450 after she was set in with a four-bet.

Marquez: K♥K♠ for an over-pair
Kojo: Q♣T♦ for two-pair

She needed help and she got it as the board ran out J♦A♦ to make her a straight. Kojo was left with around 6,000 chips. -- MC

7.20pm: The Binger boom
More tension on a board of J♠9♥4♣5♥ as Sebastian Ruthenberg and Nick Binger fought over a pot already worth 25,000.

Ruthenberg checked from the hijack before Binger bet 21,025 from the button. Ruthenberg tanked for a while. Both players had ample behind, between 60-65,000. Eventually Ruthenberg folded as the likes of Xuan Liu and Nicholas Chouity looked on.
Binger up to nearly 100,000. - SB

7.11pm: Give up on the river, man
Laurence "rivermanl" Houghton is up 52,000 chips after opening his net wide to catch his opponent bluffing.

PokerStars qualifier Bernd Gleissner raised from the button and then wasted little time in betting 2,100, 5,600 and 12,700. The final board read 2♦Q♠2♥K♠4♠. The Londoner called quickly on the flop and turn but stopped to think a little bit more deeply on the river.

He called and Gleissner hovered his cards over the muck but Houghton refused to show first. The German gave in and mucked his cards, allowing Houghton to do the same and claim the pot. -- MC

7.05pm: First to blink
A tense stand off between Nacho Barbero and Martin Jacobson on a board of 4♥A♦7♠K♦. Both checked that for a river card A♥. Barbero, in early position, checked to Jacobson who, breathing through his nose rather than his mouth, bet 3,600. Barbero - underpants still showing - called. Jobson showed Q♦J♠ but Barbero topped that, showing T♥7♥.

Both players are on around 46,000. - SB

6.50pm: Play resumes
Two levels left to play tonight before everyone breaks away to go for dinner, hit the town or, perhaps more likely, jump into cash games at the Vic.Both Barry Greenstein and Sebastian Ruthenberg are doing well on over 80,000 apiece while last year's champions David Vamplew (19,000, Main Event winner) and Nacho Barbero (43,000, High Roller winner) still have a battle on their hands. -- RD

ept london_day 1a_jose barbero.jpg

Team PokerStars Pro Nacho Barbero

PokerStars Blog reporting team in London (in order of times mistaken with a member of the floor today): Stephen Bartley (once, is wearing a jacket and smart slacks), Rick Dacey (zero, but could be mistaken for a member of the TV crew given his check shirt) and Marc Convey (zero, could be mistaken for a vagrant given the state of his t-shirt). Photos by Neil Stoddart.

Rick Dacey
@PokerStars in European Poker Tour