EPT Madrid: Day 2, level 14, 15 & 16 updates (blinds 2,500-5,000, 500 ante)


12am: Damien Rony bubbles the main event
After all the "nearly" hands on the bubble, play for the night finally came to an end with the elimination of PokerStars qualifier Damien Rony.

The hand involved Ivan Freitez again, who raised to 10,500 from mid position and called when Rony shoved for around 45,000 from the small blind.

Rony: A♠K♥
Freitez: J♠J♣

The crowd that had gathered around the table were shouting for a jack but they didn't need the jack as the board ran out 7♥9♠4♥6♦7♠.


Bubble boy Damien Rony (centre)

There were cheers all around the room as every player remaining was now guaranteed a minimum payday of €15,000. That ends play for today. A full wrap and official chip counts will be up shortly. -- MC

11.55pm: Pop
The bubble has burst. Details are on the way back from the tournament room.

11.50pm: Sunar folds kings on the bubble?
Three years ago at the Grand Final in Monte Carlo the bubble took a long time to burst (offers of between two and three-and-a-half hours have been offered in the press room), and the man who left with nothing was Surindar Sunar.

He just raised to 11,500 from under-the-gun to face a three-bet to 30,000 from Daniel Weinman in the next seat. The action folded back around to Sunar and he put in a four-bet to 95,000 before the American quickly moved all-in for 584,500.

Sunar went deep into the tank, probably thinking about many things including three years ago. He turned to Weinman and said, "I got two kings."

"I know you got two kings", came the American's response. This seemed to make up Sunar's mind and he threw his cards into the muck. The table goaded Weinman into showing his hand and he obliged by showing Q♥Q♦. -- MC

11.45pm: Situation critical
Sam Chartier has just three and a half big blinds. Fatima Moreira de Melo has only four. -- SB

11.45pm: Fernandez wins a flip to survive
Before the Xuan Liu hand was allowed to run-out a situation at the next table had to play out. Leo Fernandez moved all-in for 96,500 and Ivan Freitez was in the next seat and thought hard about calling. Eventually he kissed his media tracking card, made the sign of the cross and went to call. Before he could though, the Team PokerStars Pro threw him a two euro coin and it caused him to stop just short the line.

He looked at Fernandez and shrugged, picked up the coin and said, "Two" before tossing it in the air. The coin fell down with the other side showing, meaning Freitez slid his cards into the muck. The table erupted into laughter and Fernandnez put the now lucky coin back into his pocket. -- MC


Fernandez has a lucky coin in his pocket

11.40pm: News from the front
Xuan Liu doubled up to 180,000 through Ted Forrest, her kings against Forrest's ace-king. -- SB

11.30pm: Blub, blub, blub...
You may have noticed the absence of any news. This is solely down to our reporting team being tied up watching hand for hand play. We'll have the latest from the tournament floor just as soon as the bubble bursts. -- SB

11.20pm: Cards in the air
We play on.

11.03pm: Break?
We're taking a 15-minute break to colour up and prolong the bubble pain. Great. Jean Noel Thorel doubled up on the last hand with kings to [a][8]. -- RD

10.55pm: Hand for hand continues
We're still hand for hand. Details to follow as soon as the 105th placed player is eliminated. -- SB

10.45pm: Hand for hand
The bubble continues, with play continuing until it pops. Ted Forrest took a largish pot from Victor Ramdin who was forced to fold to Forrest's bet of 85,000 on the board of Q♠9♠A♠Q♣K♠. Ramdin tanked for six or seven minutes before passing. -- SB

10.30pm: Hong soft bubbles
Cathy Hong has been eliminated in 106th place meaning play is now hand-for-hand on our remaining 12 tables.

She was in the small blind and three-bet all-in for her last 70,000 after a button raise. The button called with A♥Q♣, dominating her A♦5♠. The board ran Q♠6♠4♥9♠A♣ to send her to the rail. Her only consolation id that her boyfriend (ElkY) won the High Roller this week for €525,000. -- MC

10.22pm: Heartbreak for Chufarin
You have to feel for Denys Chufarin. Just a few places off the money and he bust after shoving from the big blind with K♥9♥. Hugo Lemaire had opened the small blind and Chufarin tipped in his last 90,000. Lemaire made the call with A♦9♣. Chufarin looked gutted, even more so when the board ran out Q♣J♦Q♠5♦6♣.

Credit to Will Reynolds who seemed to spot that Chufarin was close to a public meltdown. The American EPT Live contributor quickly extended his hand to the Ukrainian and told him: "Good playing with you, man." It seemed to break the trance and Chufarin departed the tournament room. We're close to the bubble now, 109 players left. -- RD

10.10pm: Another scalp for Ramdin
Victor Ramdin is up to 350,000 now after he eliminated Maria Maceiras. The action folded around to the Spaniard in the small blind and she pushed for her last 47,000 chips. Ramdin was in the big blind and called after a moments thought.

Maceiras: K♣4♣
Ramdin: A♠6♥

The board ran Q♥6♠4♠9♠T♥ in front of the cameras and the local lass made her exit. -- MC

10pm: Through the bubble we shall go
The tournament directors have announced that we shall play until we reach the money tonight, even if it goes beyond this level. At the moment 113 players remain and 104 players will be paid. Full details of the amounts on offer can be seen on our prize pool and payouts page here. -- MC

9.55pm: Nice hand before TV time
Shander de Vries was moved to the TV table during the break and he'll be there in fine fettle after a hand just before the last break. He managed to double-up to 360,000 after flopping quad nines. The last of the money didn't go in until the river where the Dutchman moved all-in for a very large over-bet. His range was so polarized that his opponent took his time to call with top full-house. -- MC

9.45pm: Strassmann out
German Team PokerStars Pro Johannes Strassmann has been knocked out after three-bet shoving kings and getting cold called by Victor Ramdin with ace-queen. Ramdin caught an ace and said: "Everything worked out so I end up looking like a genius." Ramdin up to 300,000, Strassmann at the bar recounting his bad beat to Marcel Luske. -- RD

ept madrid_day 2_johannes strassmann.jpg

Johannes Strassmann out

9.35pm: Cards in the air
Play restarts for the last level of the day.

9.22pm: Break time
The penultimate level of the day is over. See you all back here soon. -- MC

9.21pm: Thorsson slams into the lead
Bless the Swedish. Not only do most of the Swedish players attack the game like their ancestors did foreign shores screaming 'ODIN!' at the top of the voices, but their domestic press also festoon us with updates as to their leaders' exploits. Thanks to Johan Jager who told us the following:

Kristoffer Thorsson opened the cut-off for 6,500 and the button called. Thorsson c-bet 11,000 into the 9♣8♠5♦ flop and was called again. Thorsson struck with a 25,000 thrust on the A♣ turn and his opponent moved all-in for 125,000. Thorsson snap called with 8♥8♦. His opponent? K♥J♦. Unfortunately I can't tell who that player was because the Jagerbomb was so excited to see Thorsson chip up to 670,000 that he exploded away from the tournament floor and back to the press room without finding out! -- RD

9.20pm: Losef bashed up
Bashar Losef is another player who will have to wait until Season 8 to record another EPT cash. He three-bet all-in from the button after an opening raise from Ivan Freitez. Call.

Freitez: T♥9♦
Losef: 3♥3♠

The board ran 6♣J♦A♦A♠J♥

After the turn came out, Losef pleaded, "No ten, no nine, no ace, no jack."

When the jack came, Freitez shouted, "Yes, a jack" and pulled in all the chips. -- MC

9.10pm: Weisner working it
Melanie Weisner is building a large stack of chips here in Madrid. She just took a bite out of WSOPE main event champ James Bord to take her above 400,000 and the Brit below 200,000.

Bord had opened under-the-gun and Weisner flatted from the button. Bord c-bet 10,500 into the 9♣7♥5♣ flop and Weisner, after staring intently as she is wont to, raised to 23,800. Bord made the call before checking the 8♥ turn card over to the American. Weisner constructed a multi-coloured stack of 38,800 and dropped it across the line. Bord didn't waste much time before folding. Weisner looked back at her cards and then shot a Bord a 'What are you going to do about it?' glare, before raking in the pot. - RD

9.05pm: Demidov in action again
Demidov was in action again in the next hand, raising on the button to 6,500, taking on the other big stack at the table Surinder Sunar in the big blind.

Sunar, who has just ordered a bottle of wine, called for a flop of K♥3♠6♦. Sunar then bet 8,400 which Demidov called for a T♠ turn card. Another 21,000 from Sunar took the pot right there and then, showing a cheeky 8♣5♠. -- SB

9pm: Demidov steals from the Von Til
On a flop of J♦7♥K♥ Ivan Demidov made it 18,000 from the small blind. Johan von Til was next to him on the button and called for a A♣ turn card. Demidov then bet 40,000. Von Til paused, then called for a 6♣ river card. At which point Demidov shoved all-in for around 90,000. Von Til had a little more than that left but was in no rush to call, and after several minutes mucked his cards.

Demidov moves up to 280,000 chips, while Von Til drops to 120,000. - SB

8.50pm: Thorsson takes the lead
A hand happened just before the dinner break that we have to inform you of as it rocketed Swedish player Kristoffer Thorsson into the lead with 470,000 chips.

There was a button raise before Sami Kelopuro three-bet from the small blind. Thorsson was in the big blind and put in four-bet to 32,000. The button folded but Kelopuro moved all-in for 230,000 and Thorsson all but called all-in.

Kelopuro: A♠Q♠
Thorsson: T♥T♠

The board ran out 8♥6♥7♠2♠K♣ to send Kelopuro back to Finland. This Nordic flip could be pivotal in helping the talented young Swede towards a deep run. -- MC

8.40pm: American airlines collide
Team PokerStars Pro Raymond Wu must've thought he was in with a great shout of a double-up when his 50,000 shove with A♥A♦ was called but not so. His opponent opened A♠A♣ and although two hearts appeared on the flop the board ran out safe. Back to the drawing board for the pro from Taiwan. -- MC

8.30pm: Hong takes chips from Hollink
Cathy Hong just inched up to 120,000 chips, winning a pot against Rob Hollink. On a flop of 3♣A♥4♣7♣ Hollink checked to Hong on the button, who bet 16,000. Hollink tanked for a minute, then passed. The former EPT Grand Final winner (Season 1), drops down to 78,000. - SB

8.20pm: The Strassmann stare down
A tense pot developed between Johannes Strassmann and Victor Ramdin. On a flop of A♠T♥Q♠ Strassmann bet 16,000 from the cut off which Ramdin raised to 100,000 on the button. For the German to call it would mean putting all of his chips into the middle, a move he was not convinced was correct to make. This process took him ten minutes, a process that ended with him folding. - SB

8.15pm: Double elimination
Santiago Terrazas and William Thorson have both been eliminated in the same hand by Markus Lehman.

Terrazas and Thorson were all-in the hand before with ace-king and ace-queen respectively. Terrazas' hand held but seeing as he only had 3,100, this wasn't going to be enough for him.

The very next hand the same two moved all-in and Lehman, who had them both covered, moved all-in too from the small blind.

Terrazas: A♥7♦
Thorson: Q♣8♣
Lehman: A♦K♦

The board ran an uneventful J♠2♦J♥4♥T♦ to hand the pot and double scalp to the German. -- MC

8pm: Play continues
A trip to the buffet for some; a trip to the shops to buy underwear for others; we're back for two more levels of play today. Blinds are now 1,500-3,000 with a 300 ante.

Marcel Luske in action on the feature table

PokerStars Blog reporting team in Madrid (in order of money spent on underwear during the dinner break): Marc Convey (€30), Rick dacey (€18.45) and Stephen Bartley (€0, packed enough).