EPT8 San Remo: Day 1B, level 3 & 4 updates (blinds 100-200, 25)


6.26pm: Level up, break, join us in a new post
There will be a short break before play resumes for level five. Join us in a new post by clicking the next button just above.

6.25pm: Houghton takes a strong line, it fails
Laurence Houghton has just bust out after making a big play into Nicolas Yunis. Houghton had three-bet from the small blind to 1,425 (the original raiser had passed by the time I arrived) and Younis had cold four-bet out of the big blind to 3,500.

Houghton wasn't prepared to let the hand go quite yet and came back over the top for 7,425. Yunis made the call.

Houghton made a curiously small 4,100 lead into the J♦2♥4♣ flop and Yunis made the call. Houughton continued his aggression with a 8,200 bet into the 8♣ turn. Yunis called again. Houghton was left with 28,750 and he shoved that into the middle after the 6♦ river had been dealt. Yunis made the call and tabled K♥K♦. Houghton, looking distinctly unhappy, mucked face down and left the table. Yunis up to 100,000. -- RD

6.15pm: Boeree battles Bonavena
Liv Boeree's day continues to go well, the Team PokerStars Pro up to 47,000 after a hand against Salvatore Bonavena.

Bonavena opened for 450 which Boeree raised to 1,250. The trick, to do this with four-deuce off-suit.

Bonavena called for a flop of [a]4♥3♥. Both checked that for a T♥ on the turn. Again that went checked. On the A♥ river Bonavena bet 2,450. Boeree called.

"It was good," she said with a grin. - SB

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Former EPT San Remo winner Liv Boeree

6.12pm: Antonius's stop start
Patrik Antonius' good start has been clipped backed by Koen De Visscher. We caught up with the action on the turn where the Finn bet 3,500 with the board showing 2♠7♥6♥9♥. The Belgian called to see the 7♦ river and Antonius led for 6,600.

De Visscher responded by raising up to 17,200 and that sent Antonius into the tank. The already warm conditions were being made worse by the crowd of railers who had gathered to watch the mind of one of their idols tick over. He called and mucked as he was shown 9♣9♠ by his opponent to drop to 10,025. De Visscher is up to more than 40,000. -- MC

6pm: Classy value betting from Weisner
Melanie Weisner just picked up a whole lot of value betting three streets into Stefano Demontis.

Niccolo Domeniconi opened from early position to 525 and was called by Demontis in middle position before Weisner squeezed to 1,725 from the cut-off. Domeniconi moved out the way, Demontis did not. Call.

Weisner c-bet 1,925 into the J♥9♦5♥ and Demontis which check-called.

The Italian checked the 6♠ over to Weisner. The American, who gives good stare, glared at Demontis for some time before picking up chips in front of her, turning to the dealer and announcing a raise to 3,300. Demontis made the call again.

The 2♣ river was a major blank and Demontis, now fully engaged into check-call mode, tapped the table once again. Weisner tossed out a hearty 8,110 and Demontis made the call. Weisner showed A♣A♦ and scooped the 37,000 pot to move up to 54,000.

Weisner is currently sandwiched between Sandra Naujoks (52,000), Shaun Deeb (25,000) and Sorel Mizzi (36,000). Tough company. -- RD

ept san remo_day 1b_melanie weisner.jpg

Melanie Weisner

5.47pm: Forrest growing
Ted Forrest is up to 68,000 chips after eliminating Berthold Winz with pocket queens to ace-queen. The flop came queen high and that was good enough for the German to commit the last of his chips.

After Winz left, Forrest was talking through the hand with his neighbour, Bjorn Nordberg. "I actually put him on ace-queen and was hoping the flop would come queen high."

Nordberg responded with, "Of course you wanted it to be queen high, you had pocket queens!" -- MC

5.40pm: Antonius gets started
Talking to Team PokerStars Pro Arnaud Mattern a few nights ago, the Frenchman admitted to having something of a slight man crush on one player who has just arrived and taken his seat. Having just watched Patrick Antonius reduce another man to nothing, I can kind of see what he means.

This is not envy at the man's obvious physical prowess, the fact that he looks like he just ran, and won, an iron man challenge, or some such super human adventure. It's more his approach to the game, one of determination and sheer hard work.

It was almost easy to feel sorry for Christian Fabri has the hand unfolded, Fabri opening for 525, which Antonius called.

The flop came Q♦8♣5♠. Fabri checked to Antonius who bet 600 and waited. In reply Fabri raised to 2,000, the gothic letters tattooed on his left arm visible as he moved chips forward. Antonius called.

ept san remo_day 1b_patrik antonius.jpg

Why is Anton Ionel weeping onto Patrik's shoulder? We have no idea

On the 3♠ turn Fabri again checked to Antonius, who bet 6,100, the vaguest of smiles on his face. Fabri called for a K♣ river card, checking one last time to the Finn who waited and waited, before moving all-in for 10,300.

At this point a camera crew arrived, as did several others curious to see what was going on. Fabri crossed his arms and leant forward, perhaps thinking that there was all to play for in this, a hand that he could still win. But no, this was not a hand he could win. The A♣8♦ he was sitting on being no match for Antonius's K♦Q♥. Fabri didn't know this, not until he called and found himself on the end of a clinical finish.

Confusion followed. Was Fabri out or merely crippled? At first the dealer gave him 1,200, which Antonius, not intending to rub salt into the wound, pointed out should have been 200, taking into consideration Fabri's call on the river. The dealer agreed. 200 chips left for Fabri. I'd imagine he'd prefer it to be none. -- SB

5.32pm: Toth taking no prisoners
There's no a grim looking procession of players at one tables in the far room. There's a short stacked Sam Macdonald who is nursing 7,500 then a couple of seats along from him is Team PokerStars Pro Richard Toth, tournament champ Cornel Cimpan and respected UK online pro Luke 'LFMagic' Fields.

Macdonald opened the action from the hijack with a raise to 525, which both Toth (button) and Fields (big blind) called. Fields opted to lead the A♦2♣T♥ flop for 1,050 forcing Macdonald out of the pot. Toth raised to 2,775 and Fields made the call.

Fields checked the 7♠ turn and Toth fired 6,100. Fields passed asToth chipped up to 40,000. -- RD

LEVEL UP: BLINDS 100-200, 25 ante

5.26pm: Big guns arrived from Cannes
The WSOPE took place down the Riviera in Cannes for the two weeks previous to this tournament. Many of the players who did well there have rolled up play Day 1B after taking a well earned rest.

Michael Mizrachi won a bracelet and he's just late registered with his brother, Robert. Chris Moorman (runner-up in the Main Event), Dermot Blain (5th in the main event), Patrik Antonius (final table bubble) and Elio Fox (Main event champion) are all in seats and looking for continued success. -- MC

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Chris Moorman

5.18pm: Romanello falls
Roberto Romanello has taken an early bath after running kings into the aces of Tauras Narmontas. Out. -- RD

5.15pm: McClung chipping up, Teng waiting in the wings
Canadian Chris McClung is up to 90,000 and contesting for the early chip leader position. He's currently sitting low in his chair, comfortable in front of a solid wedge of yellow 5,000 chips. Three seats to his right sits Andrew Teng, - cap on, earphones in, dark glasses shielding his eyes. The young Brit is himself up to 45,000 and holds San Remo credentials having finished just off the final table last year in 12th place for €40,000.

McClung is no pushover himself having recorded two solid cashes at EPT London; 31st in the main event for £16,800 and 3rd place in the £10,000 six-max high roller turbo for £84,100. -- RD

5.10pm: Nothing to see here
There's a long discussion going on at Sandra Naukok's table regarding either something she's done or been accused of. There's much discussion, in more than one language, although Naujoks listens to none of it and instead reads something on her phone. Finally the discussion comes to an end when the tournament official reassuringly said: "Everything okay," and promptly left.

On the table next to this one Victoria Coren limped under the gun. Francesco Magri was on the button and when the action reached him he raised to 825. The blinds folded and Coren called for a flop of J♣K♣A♠. Coren put her glasses on, the took them off to check, which is what Magri did as well. On the 8♠ turn Coren bet 1,500 to take the pot.

Back on the Naujoks table Stefano Demontis just doubled up with pocket queens against the ace-king of Danilo Colomba. There had been an ace on the flop but crucially every card up to the turn had been a spade, which went nicely with the Q♠ in Demontis's hand. Either way he couldn't really believe it and seemed happy. Not so Colomba. - SB

5pm: Lodden puts Ascani through the ringer
Team PokerStars Pro Johnny Lodden is up to more than 60,000 chips after causing Luca Ascani all sorts of pain in a hand.

Ascani raised to 525 from early position and Lodden was the only caller from the big blind. The flop was 4♠K♣7♠ and the Norwegian check-raised his opponent's 1,150 c-bet up to 2,550. Call.

The turn came 5♠ and Lodden checked again. Ascani took the invitation to bet and slid out 3,425. Lodden was up to his old tricks and check-raised to 7,050. Ascani had a quick look at his cards and called. The river came A♠ and there was
no more checking from Lodden as he bet 10,675.

ept san remo_day 1b_lodden.jpg

What does Lodden think?

Apparently Lodden had bet big into Ascani on the river on three occasions before. The Italian looked like a man in pain and put his head in his hands and then his hands all over his head. He took five more minutes before saying, "F##cking river", and folded whilst showing the 8♠.

Lodden sat stoically the whole time and quietly raked in the chips. -- MC

4.50pm: Wrong direction
While some players are chipping up merrily others are moving in the wrong direction. Players that are seeing their stack diminish rather than grow include Anton Wigg (19,000), Sam Macdonald (9,500), Torsten Brinkmann (7,600) and Jude Ainsworth (18,000). -- RD

4.40pm: Won't get fooled again
There's a strange noise in the tournament room right now, the idle hum of an amplifier, or something. The kind of noise you might here at the end of a The Who concert.

Sandra Naujoks plays on regardless. After an earlier bet she made it 1,450 from the cut off which Sorel Mizzi then raised to 3,600 from the big blind. After pausing a few moments Naujoks raised 8,000 more on top, sending the action back to Mizzi. He passed.

One player then stood up and told Naujoks that he'd just folded two nines. She looked at him like you might look at a child who just announced they'd tied their own shoelaces. - SB

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"Two nines? Oh well done."

4.35pm: Pizza cravings
Pizza was the original fast food or so I've been told. It's great stuff, like giant cheese on toast. How could you not like it? And if you put anchovies on your pizza please close your web browser and never darken our doorstep again.

Find out what the pros like to put on theirs. Odds of Daniel Negreanu picking peperoni? Slim to zero.

4.30pm: Level three begins
The antes are just one level away as we start the 100-200 blinds. The board is provisionally reading 460 players so it looks like we'll be breaking 800 runners for this EPT main event. It's another big one. -- RD

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Team PokerStars Pro Martin Hruby

PokerStars Blog reporting team in San Remo (in order of sweets in front of them): , Marc Convey (three; Fruit-tella, Mentos and some odd Italian confectionery, going through a sugar rush), Stephen Bartley (two; mints and an atomic fireball, well balanced) and Rick Dacey (just tic tacs, trying to be good after eating three puddings last night). Photos by Neil Stoddart.

Rick Dacey
@PokerStars in European Poker Tour