EPT Snowfest: Day 3, level 15 & 16 updates (blinds 2,500-5,000, 500 ante)

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5pm: Break
That's the end of the second level of the day. Join us in a fresh by clicking the 'next' button above in 15 minutes. -- RD

4.58pm: Fatima Moreira de busto
Team PokerStars SportStar Fatima Moreira de Melo was eliminated as everyone else was leaving for break. I caught up with her at the payout desk to find out how she was knocked out. She told me that she had raised and called off her stack with ace-queen against the pocket deuces of big stack Philip Meulyzer. The pair held and Moreira de Melo recorded her first EPT main event cash; 56th place for €6,000. -- MC


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Poker gods, why have you forsaken me?


4.57pm: Martins gets a good move
Martins Adeniya is on 450,000 and has just been given a good seat move to put him in position on Giacomo Maisto who has a little over half-a-million. Level 17 could be a good one for Adeniya. -- RD

4.55pm: Pernicious aces
Berhard Perner has just doubled through Kevin Vandersmissen with aces to ace-queen. He's still fairly short stacked though. -- RD

4.52pm: Minutes to go
Cristian Tardea is up to around 600,000 chips after his [k][j] found another king on the board to beat Wim Bos. Bos, a former chip leader, slips a little to 480,000.

Elsewhere Pim Van Der Aa just doubled up through Hans Erlandsson when his aces held up against Erlandsson's pocket sixes on a board of K♣9♥Q♣T♦2♦.
Just 56 left with minutes to go in the level. - SB

4.50pm; Who's won what so far?
Just a gentle reminder that we'll be updating the prize pool and payouts page during the day. Click here or on the link at the right of the page to see who finished where. -- MC

4.42pm: Geshkenbein clips the kepi
Vladimir Geshkenbein is creeping back up towards the chip lead after sucking out on a short stacked Darius Venckus. The Lithuanian has been notable since Day 1 thanks to a kaki kepi* and chin strap of a beard. He just got it in with A♥Q♥ against the [a]7♠ only to see the unpleasant flop of 7♣6♦7♦. No miracle runner-runner saved him.

Geshkenbein is up to around 750,000. -- RD

*A hat with a flat circular top, like those worn by the French Foreign Legion.

4.35pm: Mortensen claims Tureniec's scalp
Michael Tureniec will not be winning back to back titles, meaning they'll also be no double EPT winner. Following that big clash with Vladimir Geshkenbein, he's four-bet shoved into ace-king for the second time.

Mortensen had three-bet Tureniec from the small blind and the Swede had moved all-in over the top with J♠Q♠. Mortensen, a virulent three-bettor, had it this time and called with [a][k]. Tureniec, the last former champion in the field, failed to catch up and was sent to the rail. -- RD


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Morten Mortensen knocked out the last standing EPT champ


4.30pm: Use Guidetti as a guide
You can tell a lot about a man by his reaction to sudden defeat. Take Daniele Guidetti for example. He just lost a hand that kept Irishman Denis Murphy alive, and left him, reduced to 140,000.

Murphy opened before Guidetti raised to 24,000 in the small blind. Murphy then raised again, 57,000 total. Guidetti seemed irritated and asked the dealer to count the difference - 33,000 more - then to count Murphy's remaining chips - 105,000. That done he moved all-in.

Murphy tanked for a minute then called, turning over A♣T♣ to Guidetti's meagre looking Q♣9♦. Nothing sudden about that perhaps, but when the board came 2♦7♠J♥Q♥K♠ it took half a beat for Guidetti to spot the straight. He let out a muffled grunt and sat back. This means a lot to Guidetti, who doesn't strike me as the type to be happy with a min-cash. - SB

4.20pm: Yet more for Meulyzer
Chip leader Philip Meulyzer is up to around 900,000 chips now after he eliminated Constantin Georgescu of Romania.

Georgescu raised to 11,500 from early position and Meulyzer defended from the big blind to see a 7♠6♥Q♣ flop. The action was checked to the 8♣ turn where the Belgian led for 16,500. Georgescu had around 80,000 in front of him and he moved it all-in after a quick count.

Meulyzer paused, looked at his opponent and his cards one more time before calling with Q♥J♦. It was good too as his opponent tabled A♦8♠ and he fell further behind on the J♥ river.

As Georgescu got up from his seat there was a cry of, "seat open," from table three. Eckhard Siefer was the man who lost all his chips and followed Georgescu to the payout desk. -- MC

4.10pm: Geshkenbein knocks out Bojang
Ismael Bojang shoved a large stack of yellow 5,000 chips in from the button and Vladimir Geskenbein had a decision on his hands with his A♥T♠.

"You want a call? I know you're a player," he said, and decided that a call would be the correct thing to do. It was. Bojang turned over A♦8♣ and he failed to catch.

"Errrrrr, good hand," Bojang exhaled and headed to the pay-out desk for his min-cash. -- RD

4pm: What do points mean>
That makes 18 EPT cashes for Luca Pagano. The Italian is just 132 points from returning to the top of the All-time EPT Leader board, ahead of fellow Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier.

It'a an approximate interpretation of a very complicated calculation, but we estimate Pagano will need to finish in the top 50 to overtake ElkY.

Elsewhere it's another cash for everyone's favourite Old-Aged Pensioner Pierre Neuville, who scores his 11th EPT cash at Snowfest and (believe it or not) overtakes Jason Mercier on the All-time list.

It's also a first main event cash for PokerStars SportStar Fatima Moreira de Melo, who overtakes all seven PokerStars Bloggers, plus our photographer, on the All-Time Leaderboard. -- SB


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Pierre Neuville looking thrilled about his free bus pass


3.55pm: There goes the bubble
Just as we were all looking the other way Pontus Nima Khosravi moved in with A♥J♣ and was called by Kevin Vandersmissen, prospecting with 5♥4♠. The board came 5♠9♥7♠6♣K♠ to topple Khosravi who leaves in 73rd place, empty handed.

Although not quite.

Hotel co-owner Florian Wolf stepped forward to present Khosravi with a consolation prize from the hotel, a helicopter flight around the Austrian Alps, piloted by Mr Wolf Senior, a well-known local pilot.

It's a terrific gesture, perhaps lost a little on Khosravi in the moments after his bust out, but likely one he'll remember. - SB

3.52pm: One orbit penalty for Perner
Berhard Perner has been given a one orbit penalty after a bizarre incident. He moved all-in for around 100,000 chips from early position and then flipped over his hand K♥K♦.

His neighbours tried to get him to turn his hand back over, as there were still several players to act, but he was confused and was trying to explain that he was all-in and wanted to show his hand.

Thomas Kremser came over and explained the situation to him and then gave him the penalty. His table mates were in hysterics, especially Claudiu Secara who was in the small blind holding pocket nines. -- MC

3.45pm: Action resumes
The bubble action resumes. One to go. -- RD

3.30pm: Into the bubble break
Bubble play continued up to the break after the elimination of Sander Benjamins, who moved in with pocket queens only for Martins Adeniya to catch an ace on the flop and send Benjamins out.

Hand-for-hand went on after the special announcement by Florian Wolf, (offering what we now know to be a free helicopter ride) which may or may not help a player with their decision whether or not to throw caution to the wind and move all in.

The level ended with Martins Adeniya taking another pot, this time against Zsolt Vasvenszki who opened from under-the-gun to 8,000, with play six-handed at the table, before Adeniya raised to 18,500 from the button.

Vasvenszki called for a flop of 6♥3♦J♠. Vasvenszki checked and Adeniya bet another 20,700. Now Vasvenszki raised himself, making it 59,700 to play. Adeniya pulled back his original raise and replaced it with a tower of yellow chips worth 100,000. Both players now had around 240,000 back and Vasvenszki went into the tank. Both players sat still, both players wear the same Beats By Dre headphones, both players capable of going very deep in this event.

The clock was called, prompting Vasvenszki to fold. Adeniya showed him A♥5♥ which Vasvenszki laughed at. It's still friendly as we head into the break with 73 players remaining. -- SB

3.25pm: Wiese's stalled run at the money
Andreas Wiese finished 5th at EPT Vienna for €105,000 and, although he's made the money here in Austria again, he's just damaged his chances of a big pay day after a re-raise went wrong against Simon Ravnsbaek.

Wiese bet 12,500 and Ravnsbaek raised to 30,500 on the K♠2♠Q♦ flop. Wiese waited no little amount of time before dipping back into his stash and putting out a three-bet to 87,500. Ravnsbaek made the call. The A♠ fell on the turn, which Wiese didn't seem to like and check-folded to Ravnsbaek's 64,500. -- RD

3.20pm: Sweetening the bubble
Tournament Director Thomas Kremser just handed the microphone over to the Alpine Palace's co-owner Florian Wolf for a special announcement. Wolf said how he understood the pain of being eliminated on the bubble and that whoever that may be today he'd like to sweeten the experience by giving them a voucher for a special surprise. A nice gesture from the hosts. -- MC

3.11pm: Mortensen stuck in fifth gear
We followed Morten Mortensen a fair bit yesterday due to his aggressive-play-every-pot mentality. A good night's sleep doesn't seem to have changed his temperament in the slightest. A middle position raise to 8,000 from Gabriele Lepore found Mortensen in the big blind and he three-bet to 22,500 to win the pot. He must have a ferociously high three-bet percentage. -- RD

3.06pm: Only one EPT champion left in after Ruthenberg falls
Michael Tureniec is now the only former EPT champion left in after the elimination of Sebastian Ruthenberg. The Team PokerStars Pro three-bet all-in with pocket jacks for his last 30,000 and ran into the ace-king of Morten Mortensen in the blinds. The Dane moved in to isolate and won the race to eliminate Ruthenberg in 75th. -- MC

3pm: Easy now, easy...
Is there some caginess entering some people's play right now, just three places off the money?

While Russell Carson doubled up again with pocket jacks few others were looking to get their chips in unnecessarily. Michael Tureniec, unbowed after that big pot against Geshkenbein, has continued to produce a text-book example of near-bubble play, raising pre-flop at every opportunity and either taking the blinds and antes or a slightly larger pot with a bet on the flop.

Elsewhere Marc Ladouceur managed to raise two players out of a pot. First Andrey Gulyy had raised to 8,300 which Yorane Kerignard called in the hijack before Ladouceur made it 25,500, enough to force folds from the others. - SB


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Last year's runner-up Russell Carson


2.55pm: Tureniec nearly back to Sweden
When we saw that Vladimir Geshkenbein and Michael Tureniec had been drawn next to each other we knew there would be fireworks at some point. We didn't have to wait long.

Geshkenbein raised to 9,000 to face a 24,000 three-bet from the Swede. His response was to four-bet to 102,000. Tureniec sat stoically before moving all-in. Snap call all-in from Geshkenbein for 290,100.

Geshkenbein: A♠K♦
Tureniec: J♦[8]

The board came T♥4♦3♠A♣Q♥ to double-up Geshkenbein who vented: "YEAH. There you go buddy, back to Sweden!"

"Is this your first time playing live?" asked Tureniec, down to 120,000,

"Don't take it personally, now back to Sweden," the Russian needled back. -- MC


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The monkey and the organ grinder: Vladimir Geshkenbein


2.45pm: Finneshed
Tim Finne was down to 45,600 when he moved it in from early position and he almost got it through.

The action passed through to the small blind, Vladimir Geshkenbein, who asked: "Do you want to flip?" Finne - head down, glasses on, headphones blocking the world out - didn't react. Geshkenbein passed and Tureniec instantly called.

It turns out Finne was after action after all. He had Kings. Tureniec held A♣K♠. Finne didn't look happy, as if he could sense the inevitable ace coming on the flop and Finne failed to catch his one-outer. Tureniec up close to 400,000 (again). -- RD

2.40pm: Eliminations, raises and folds
As Rolands Norietis departed in 80th, Alex Kravchenko, at the same table, moved into action, raising an initial bet of 8,500 from Domantas Klimciauskas, to 22,000 in total from the small blind. Klimciauskas, wearing a collarless shirt with his sleeves rolled up, like a character in a Dutch field in an early Van Gogh painting. He was still for a minute before re-raising to 50,000.

The action was back on Kravchenko who looked over at Klimciauskas through his Mig-pilot glasses. He folded.

Elsewhere Andreas Wiese opened from the cut off for 9,500 which was immediately raised by Rudolf Koster on the button for 23,600. Waiting in the small blind was Simon Ravnsbaek, who made it 52,500, ultimately taking the pot. - SB

2.33pm: Keys locked out of the tournament
Perhaps Zsolt Vasvenszki of Hungary likes to knock out Brits. He knocked out John Eames earlier in the tournament and just knocked out another in James Keys. It's fair to say he has a loose reputation, so when he raised to 10,000 and Keys found 2♣2♥ it was a good spot to get his last 72,000 in. Vasvenszki shrugged and made the call with K♦9♦.

The board came 8♥5♠4♥3♠K♥. The dagger to Keys' heart came on the river. Keys took his defeat like a sportsman but did slightly question his opponent's call when away from the table. -- MC

2.21pm: Some draws better than others
A good or bad seat draw at this stage in the tournament can make a huge difference to your tournament fortunes. Chip leader Philip Meulyzer, for instance, has a great one with the three seats next to him all less than 80,000, to his gargantuan 623,500.

At the other end of the spectrum we have Vladimir Geshkenbein. The Day 1 chip leader is sitting directly on the right of Michael Tureniec, with the Swede covering the Russian. He's already been stung for a few thousand after shooting a couple of times at a 6♠6♦4♦3♦7♣ board before giving up to a 28,500 bet on the river. From what I've seen Geshkenbein certainly has the weapons in his armoury to battle Tureniec, but it really is a grim draw for him. -- RD

2.15pm: Fatima's stack a little thinner
A battle straight out of Holland just occurred that saw an unlucky Team PokerStars SportStar Fatima Moreira de Melo double-up Sander Benjamins. All the chips went in pre-flop and it was Benjamins in need of help.

Benjamins: A♥T♦
Moreira de Melo: A♠Q♥

The board ran 5♣6♦T♣T♦7♦ to make Benjamins trips. He had 44,000 at the beginning of the hand. -- MC

2.10pm: More introductions...
Gloria Balding introduces Day 3 of EPT Snowfest, and talks to Team PokerStars Pro Luca Pagano...


2.05pm: Cards are in the air
We're off and running. A full list of the players returning today, and their seat draw, can be found on the Seat Draw link. You can also find chip counts of the remaining players on the official chip count page as the day goes on. -- SB

1.50pm: Welcome to Day 3
A trip to EPT Snowfest is wasted if you don't engage in the world beyond the four walls of the poker room. Up a mountain, down a slope, along a forest trail. So it was with this in mind that two members of the blog team headed out beyond the borders of the Alpine Palace hotel for the first time this morning.

Dressed in old-fashioned Shakleton-burberry, and risking sunburn, we bought ski passes and cable-cared it up to Wieseralm to start. And what better place to start for this dose of local exploration, than by walking the Children's Adventure Trail?

Those preferring not to ski will find ample to keep them occupied 'up top'. Get past the self-esteem issues caused by the odd looks from skiers wondering where your equipment is, and the walk past the wooden huts, avoiding the kids playground, is most pleasant, and the views of the Galisstein and Hohe Penhab peaks can be enjoyed without having to keep a 60mph-look-out for slalom gates and sheer cliff drops to the right or left.

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Hinterglemm, with cable car

With only a minor error on our part, that led us across a busy piste, the skiing version of the M6 motorway or the West Side Highway, it was all highly enjoyable, and for a brief moment (only brief mind) we realised that standing in a crowded room full of poker players all day might not be what nature intended for these parts.

That said what we have in store today should keep such progressive evolutionists outside in the cold.

Just 81 players remain from the starting field of 482, and nine of those will depart today with little more to show for their Snowfest than the odd blister and an empty wallet. We hit the money at 72, then it's thick and fast for the rest of the day until the field is recued to just three tables, 24 players.

Players are here, the dealers are ready and so are we. Play begins at 2pm. -- SB

PokerStars Blog reporting team in Snowfest (in order of excursion role): Stephen "Shakleton" Bartley (Expedition leader), Rick "Captain Oates" Dacey (Sherpa) and Marc Convey (Base camp).