EPT San Remo: Day 1B, level 5 & 6 updates (blinds 200-400, ante 50)

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9.22pm: Payouts
We've just received the EPT San Remo payout structure and will get that online as soon as we can. The top line is that the winner pockets €930,000 and a total of 144 players will get paid. Now that seems a handy time to bring this level to a close. Combined break as all players leave the tables. Three levels left to play. -- RD

9.15pm: livb112 rakes one in
High stakes pro Olivier 'livb112' Busquet is picking up speed here in San Remo. He's up to 60,000 after a slow start on a table that looks to be chip-lite. On a board of K♦T♦2♦2♠ Busquet fired 3,600 and Leonardo Patacconi quickly passed. -- RD

9pm: ElkY and Lodden fall
Team PokerStars Pros Johnny Lodden and Bertrand 'ElkY' Grospellier are both busto, as is EPT Prague final table finisher Marco Leonzio. -- RD


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ElkY joins the rail


8.52pm: Tarnished Silver
Max Silver has just busted out and when I caught him just moments after he was at a loss as to whether he made a call or got coolered.

Diego Bolzoni had limped from middle position and Silver had limped behind with Q♣T♣. The big blind and Bolzoni checked the [8][7][4] rainbow flop (one club). Silver stabbed 900 and got a call from Bolzoni. The K♣ gave Silver a flush draw and he bet 2,700. Again Bolzoni called. The 3♣ gave Silver the second nuts and he bet 5,000. Bolzoni instantly check-raised all-in and Silver called for his remaining 30,000 or so. The Italian showed A♣6♣ for the nuts over the second nuts

"I'm pretty tilted at the moment," said Silver. "I don't know if I should have passed or not. If I thought about it longer maybe I would, that hand makes sense given the limp."

Second nuts is never going to be an easy fold... -- RD

8.40pm: Ramdin doubles
Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin has doubled to more than 60,000 after slowplaying pocket kings. Having been three-bet by ace-king pre-flop the American pro flat called and stacked off when his opponent made a move on a dry board. -- RD

8.27pm: Tumbling down
Players that are no longer shoving that boulder uphill (see below) include Elliot Smith, Gianni Mocchi and Team PokerStars Pro Jose 'Nacho' Barbero. They are among the 111 players to have fallen so far today, 438 remain. -- RD


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Jose Barbero, aka 'Nacho'


8.22pm: The ol' switcharoo
The dinner break swap over has taken place with the second half of the Day 1B field going to dinner while those returning start level 6. We, however, are left to repeat this level for the fourth time this tournament feeling much like Sisyphus who was forced to roll a boulder uphill somewhere deep into Tartarus for all eternity. Melodramatic? Perhaps. -- RD

8.13pm: Top five stacks
Rubin Visser -- 136,000
Felix Shulze -- 130,000
Jason James -- 122,000
Filippo Biscigia -- 116,000
Carrasco Blanco -- 97,000 -- MC

8.10pm: Coming up Roseborg
On a flop of 6♥K♠K♥ Martin Roseborg made it 1,200 from the cut-off. Alongside him was Nicoletta Panati, hiding beneath a big black hood, who had replaced Michael Tureniec who had busted a short while ago.

She called on the button for a 4♣ turn card. Roseborg made it another 3,300 to go before Panati moved all-in for around 30,000, easily covering Roseborg who grudgingly tossed in the last of his stack, about 12,000 more. He turned over K♦9♠ to Panati's A♣K♣. The A♦ on the river was the final blow to Roseborg. Panati up to 55,000. - SB

8.05pm: Max power
On a flop of Q♠J♥7♠ Max Pescatori was in action, tucked in on the far corner table. Facing him was David Huspeka in early position who was reading a magazine while playing the hand, betting 1,025. Pescatori called for a 8♠ turn. This time Huspeka checked to Pescatori who bet 2,700 to win the pot. He's up to 38,000. - SB

8pm: James gets the better of James
We wrote a while back that the two James' Keys and Sudworth were having fun sat next to each other. Keys is not having fun anymore as he busted to his namesake.

Keys min raised to 800 from under-the-gun and Sudworth was the only caller from the big blind to go to the [t][8][x] flop. Both players checked to the [a] turn where Sudworth check-raised Keys' 650 bet up to 1,800. Keys moved all-in for 8,500 with ace-queen and Sudworth called with ace-ten for two pairs. The river came a king and Keys left the building. -- MC

7.50pm: The hammer's down on both Thorson brothers
William and Jens Thorson were drawn at the same table today but neither of them are still in. David Vamplew informed us that Jens busted in the last level after running kings into aces and Vamplew himself just busted William.

He informed us the William opened with ace-four to see an opponent three-bet and Vamplew cold four-bet. The Swede five-bet all-in and Vamplew called after the other player folded. He had ace-king and his hand held to move his stack up to 52,000. "I look like I'm at it all the time", added the Scottish EPT London champion. -- MC

7.38pm: More for Chouity
Nicolas Chouity just nudged his stack up closer to the 90,000 mark in a hand against Peppino Finocchi. Fabio Vitale opened for 675 which Chouity raised to 2,775 from the cut off. While Vitale would go on to fold, Finocchi called for a flop of A♣K♥J♠. Finocchi checked to Chouity who bet another 4,150, enough to force out Finocchi. Chouity up to around 87,000. - SB

7.30pm: Ring of champions
Stephan Fajg and Michael Tureniec were both drawn at table 47 today and both have since been moved to table 24. If it wasn't bad enough for Fajg to have the EPT Copenhagen champion move with him, he now had to contend with three more EPT champions. Sebastian Ruthenberg, Christophe Benzimra and Roberto Romanello are all to his right now.

Fajg and Tureniec might've brought some history with them too as they just tangled over two consecutive hands that saw the elimination of Tureniec.

Firstly Tureniec raised to 600 from second position and the Frenchman defended from the big blind to see a A♠3♠7♠ flop. He check-raised Tureniec's c-bet and that was good enough to make him fold.

The next hand Tureniec raised to 600 from under-the-gun and was called in one spot before Fajg three-bet to 1,850 from the small blind. Tureniec thought for two minutes before four-betting all-in for around 7,000. The caller folded before Fajg took another two minutes to call.

Tureniec: 9♣9♠
Fajg: A♠J♥

The board ran T♣3♥K♣7♥A♥. The river was the killer blow to Tureniec's tournament life. -- MC

LEVEL UP: BLINDS 200-400, ANTE 50


7.20pm: Split dinner
Like yesterday there will be a split dinner break today. The first wave is now leaving the tournament room on their way tot he buffet. They will return in one hour when the remainder of the field, having played their level 6, will do the same. -- SB

7.12pm: Big stacks
A quick look at the top of the tree shows that Team PokerStars Pro Ruben Visser is leading with 131,000. Other big names include Ted Forrest (82,000), Team PokerStars Pro Vanessa Selbst (85,000) and last year's Grand Final winner Nicolas Chouity (85,000). -- RD


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NAPT Mohegan Sun double champion Vanessa Selbst


7.05pm: Looking like you know something
With a board reading 6♣2♥T♣2♦ and 11,000 in the pot, Nicholas Chouity was considering his options. Next to him was Claudio Cecchi of Italy, his only opponent in the hand who was about to spend the next seven minutes making some people feel uncomfortable. And by "some" I mean "me".

Chouity bet 7,000, all while Cecchi was staring at him. This was not subtle staring, trying to catch a flicker of something on his face without him noticing, this was like a staring contest, a kids game where the first to flinch loses. That he was sitting directly alongside Chouity made it all the more weird. Try it now, turn to the person next to you and lean over to look them directly in the face (better make this a loved one). See how long it takes them to lean back or slap you in the face. Go do it now, I'll wait here...

Cecchi kept up his invasion of personal space, pausing only to call, throwing in the correct number of chips before continuing his campaign of intimacy. Goodness knows what Cecchi was now expecting to see, being as close to Chouity as dentist, or a nit nurse. Others at the table looked to be feeling uncomfortable on Chouity's behalf.

As for Chouity he didn't notice that Cecchi was staring until the A♦ river card was dealt. I imagine the effect on the EPT Grand Final Champ was an unusual one, to suddenly turn around and notice an odd looking man staring at you from a few inches away - kind of like riding the top floor of a London bus, when you realise the drunk guy with the open bottle of Thunderbird has woken up and feels chatty.

Chouity did exactly what you would do in a situation such as that. He pretended he hadn't noticed. Then he bet 14,800.

Cecchi had about 20,000 behind and now tanked for several minutes. Sticking with the whole London bus routine, Cecchi began tapping Chouity's arm, talking to him. Chouity ignored this completely, perhaps reassured by the armed guards on the other side of the rail. When Chouity didn't respond Cecchi reverted to staring again, lowering his head until his ear almost touched the table. It was clear to everyone but Cecchi that the answer he was looking for was most definitely not on Chouity's face, nor up his nose. Chouity called the clock.

Cecchi took the full minute, folding with two seconds remaining. Chouity showed him 6♥, moving up to 70,000.

Chouity mentioned the staring; Cecchi replying with chilling frankness, that he would have kept it up for two hours had Chouity not called the clock. I would have called the clock in that case. -- SB

7pm: Giggling schoolboys
James' Keys and Sudworth are sitting next to each other guffawing like a pair of naughty schoolchildren at the back of class. Keys is down to 15,000 while Sudworth has crept up to 45,000. They both look happy enough with their table and given the limping going on maybe that shouldn't come as a surprise.

A middle position limp from Aleksey Churbanov was quickly raised by Sudworth to 1,100 from the cut-off. Sudworth bet 1,200 into the Q♦2♥A♠ flop and took the pot. Was that pre-flop raise for isolation, value or a bit of both? You decide.

Their current school report would read 'James Sudworth: underperforming, must focus on the job at hand' and 'James Key: must try harder.' -- RD

6.50pm: Carter building up
Former EPT Barcelona winner Carter Phillips is up to 55,000 after sniffing out a bluff from Sebastien Comel.

The turn had already been dealt and Phillips was in the big blind where he check-called a 1,400 bet from Sebastien Comel on the button. The final board read J♥4♦6♠A♣5♠ and Phillips faced a 5,000 bet when he checked again. He called once more and didn't have to show down as Comel mucked his hand. -- MC

6.40pm: Team Pro news in brief
A look around some of Team PokerStars Pro in the right hand half of the tournament room threw up some varying stories of success.

"On a rush", said Lex Veldhuis to Liv Boeree after she successfully three-bet two opponents off a hand to move up to 17,000.

Doing worse or little better that Boeree are Johannes Strassmann (18,000), Johnny Lodden (14,000) and EPT Berlin finalist Joep van den Bijgaart (12,000).

Ivan Demidov is struggling to get out of the blocks with 31,000 but Fatima Moreira de Melo (54,000), Angel Guillen (47,000) and Pierpaolo Fabretti (47,000) are all fairing much better. -- MC


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Fatima Moreira de Melo. In a hat. Fancy that.

6.25pm: Visser leading the way as play resumes
As we enter the fifth level of the day Team PokerStars Pro Ruben Visser seems to be leading the way with 107,000 chips. He just Tweeted the following:

"Running really well today, just won 85k flip to get to 107k. Made a flush with QQ vs AKo on Axxxx :D average stack is 33k" -- MC

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Ruben Visser is atop of the field

PokerStars Blog reporting team at EPT San Remo (in order of how likely their football team will get relegated): Stephen Bartley (Tranmere Rovers are just safe), Marc Convey (Crystal Palace are 99% safe) and Rick Dacey (Sunderland have stopped the slide but could still go down).

Marc Convey
@PokerStars in European Poker Tour