EPT London: Day 1B, level 7 & 8 updates (blinds 300-600, 75 ante)
8.55pm: Play ends
The last four hands passed without incident. There were many tables remaining but as far as we could see Benny Spindler ended on top with 160,800. The wrap will be up for viewing shortly and so will the chips as soon as they are collated. -- MC
8.36pm: Four more hands
Radio silence to start now. There are four more hands to play. You'll hear from us again when play has ended. -- RD
8.32pm: Levi's thrown out
Benny Spindler is up to 110,000 chips after receiving a miss-timed gift from Nic Levi.
There was a raise to 1,350 before Levi three-bet to 3,400 and Spindler cold four-bet to 10,000. The original raiser folded but Levi pushed for around 40,000. SNAP call.
The board ran 2♦T♦4♥2♣J♣.
Levi's equity increased dramatically on the flop but the German's bullets held strong. -- MC
8.28pm: Who's that?
Covering Day 1 of a poker tournament is generally about following well known players first and tracking big stacks at the end of the day. So which players have dragged themselves out of the sludge and into the limelight? Steven Warburton is on 125,000, Steven Kelly has 110,000 and Basile Yaiche 140,000. That's some good chips there. -- RD
8.20pm: Islidur1 out (and other action)
Online Poker superhero Viktor "Isldur1" is out. Truly unbelievable, I know. All he told a Swedish blogger colleague of ours was that he had second pair versus top pair. The money went in on the turn and there were two flush draws on board. The river blanked.
Fellow Team PokerStars Pro Liv Boeree is also out. -- MC
8.10pm: ElkY out (and other action)
Poker superhero Bertrand 'ElkY' Grospellier has bust out. Unbelievable, I know. Here are some other bits and pieces for you:
Kevin Williams is up through the six figure mark and is on 105,000. A couple of seats to his right is Andrew Feldman who is a little above average after hammering in a re-raise to 9,825 pre-flop against Michael Ruane.
Reigning world champ Jonathan Duhamel is down to his last 10,000 after failing to get there with T♠8♠ on a Q♠6♠ flop against ace-queen. -- RD
8.05pm: Nick Abou Risk's elimination
A rather large three-way pot developed that left Nick Abou Risk heading for the door and Rajesh Vohra tidying up a 150,000-ish stack.
We picked up the action on the J♠8♥T♥ flop. Abou Risk was the pre-flop under-the-gun aggressor and continued the same line with a 2,626 bet. Vohra was two seats along and called before Anders Hansen raised to 9,000. Risk thought about his next move and put in a three-bet to 16,000. He was right not to worry about Hansen as he snap folded after Vohra snap four-bet to 48,125. Risk had more to ponder now and made up his mind to call of the 34,000 or so he had behind.
Risk: A♥4♥ for the nut flush draw.
Vohra: 9♥7♥ for a smaller flush draw with a made straight.
The turn and river ran out K♠4♣. Risk congratulated his opponent and shook his hand before he left. -- MC
7.54pm: Mercier meets the One
Jason Mercier is up to 110,000. He was six-bet by Anrei One who was all-in with 7♠9♠. Mercier called with ace-king and caught an ace on the flop.
Elsewhere Joe Cada is down to around 15,000 after coming out badly in a hand against Steven Kelly who had 7♠8♠ to Cada's J♦K♦. The board ran 5♦6♦4♥J♠8♠. Kelly up to more than 100,000. - SB
LEVEL UP: BLINDS 300-600, ANTE 75
7.48pm: Coren doubles through Gale
Vicky Coren jammed pre-flop into a raise from John Gale for around 20,000. Gale made the call.
The board ran out ten-high and Coren moved up over 40,000. This would probably be a suitable time to use that glib comment 'easy game.' And thus it was written. -- RD
7.45pm: Burland rebuilding
Jamie Burland had a deep run here last year when he finished 24th for £21,000. His stack seems to have been floating between the 20 and 40,000 mark all day. He just won a pot that saw him creep towards the upper end of that band with 38,000.
He raised to 1,050 from mid position and was called by Percy Ward in the big blind on the way to a Q♦9♦5♣ flop. Both players checked to the 5♦ turn where Ward led for 2,100 and was called to the 8♦ river where both players checked.
Ward revealed Q♥9♥ but lost out to Burland's trips with A♠5♠. -- MC
7.35pm: Sarwer soaring
Jeff Sarwer is up to 75,000 and enjoying his trip to London, complemented by the Indian Summer. Does he still consider himself an amateur player? He's not sure, although the dictionary definition has him down as such. Either way Sarwer nailed it with a teaser...
"Amateur doesn't mean bad..." he said. "it just means unprofessional."
A table along sits Elio Fox. So relaxed is he with his progress that he has removed his shoes and has propped his naked feet up on the drinks table, alongside his iPad. And to think the Queen lives not far from here.
Elsewhere Anders Hansen was opening a pot for 1,250, called by Oleg Poluzhnikov, Leo Fernandez on the button and Eugene Katchalov in the big blind for a flop of T♥8♥5♠. That was it as far as excitement went, at least as far as the river with all players checking the flop and the 8♠ turn for a J♦ on the river. Katchalov checked to Hansen who bet 2,700, good to take this one down.
Katchalov hovers around the 30,000 mark while Fernandez is down to 15,000. - SB
7.30pm: Brammer's Cardyn marked
Chris Brammer's last chance to secure a cash from his UKIPT passport for winning the Season 1 TLB has passed with his elimination.
He raised to 1,050 from mid-position before Nicolas Cardyn three-bet to 2,750 from the small blind. Brammer responded by moving all-in for 15,000. Call.
The board ran 5♥2♠7♥3♠8♣. Brammer will be back next season, for sure. -- MC
7.25pm: Like Liv Boeree's face?
Then look at it talking here! She's talking about life, poker and life in poker. Fill your boots, ears and eyes.
7.18pm: Razavi out
Sam Razavi has just busted out after rivering two pair with [k][t] against [a][j] on a T♠Q♥7♣8♣K♥ board. No more UKIPT Leaderboard points for him. -- RD
7.10pm: That's the spirit
American Andrew Badecker is out and not happy, picking up his things. It's all done in the best British way, however, the rage bottled up without a word, to be taken away for an inevitable breakdown somewhere else and with no one around later on. - SB
7pm: Good call by the camel
Keith 'The Camel' Hawkins is a bit of a legend in this town. He's a childhood friend of Neil Channing, successful poker pro and well respected sports bettor. He's also not afraid to make a call if he thinks he's ahead, no doubt a talent that helped him to become a feared heads up sit-and-gos online. This certainly won't count as the toughest call he's ever made but it still shows some of his quality.
Victor Ramdin had opened from early position for 1,075 and Hawkins had called in the next seat along before picking up three other callers, which included Omar Karib on the button and Benny Spindler in the small blind. Hawkins was the first to attack the 2♦9♥7♠ flop with a 2,500 bet. Only Karib called. Hawkins levelled another 4,000 on the 4♥ turn. Karib called again. Hawkins checked the Q♦ river and Karib instantly fired 10,000.
"Confident?" asked Hawkins.
I've got to say, Karib did not look overly thrilled with life.
"You got the best hand?" needled Hawkins further before asking, "Or do you think you've got the best hand?"
Hawkins didn't look like folding with around 55,000 behind. He made the call and was shown a curious A♠2♠ by Karib. Hawkins' T♥T♣ took the pot leaving Karib with 13,000. Hawkins up to around 83,000. -- RD
6.50pm: The home stretch
The day is three-quarters over and we're into the home stretch. This is the night time period of the day as the sun has set over the London skies outside.
Hachem is vying for the lead near the top of the counts but he's still 30,000 or so behind Mattias De Meulder who has built up a 105,000 stack. -- MC
PokerStars Blog reporting team in London (and their preferred choice of lunch) Stephen Bartley (Cheese sandwich on brown bread), Rick Dacey (anything with mustard) and Marc Convey (Feta salad). Photos by Neil Stoddart.