Guichard lead in Deauville as Pagano reaches seventh final table
With just eight players remaining in the European Poker Tour Deauville main event, it's a Frenchman who holds the narrow lead as Paul Guichard bags up 5,955,000 after a speedy six-hour day at the tables. Luca Pagano meanwhile reaches a record-extending seventh EPT final table.
Guichard, who began the day with 1.7 million, excelled in what proved a frenetic day. No lead is insurmountable, but the Frenchman, known as one of the best players on PokerStars.fr, can only be filled with confidence heading into the last eight, poised for his career best live result.
Also reaching a second EPT final is Vadzim Kursevich, from Belarus, whose notable performance came in Berlin last season where he finished third. He will return as the main challenger to the lead, just behind Guichard with 5,670,000
As Deauville woke to the sight of six inches of snow on the ground it was Luca Pagano, an old hand when it comes to reaching EPT final tables, who led with more than three and a half million chips.
Pagano knew it would be a tough day, and it was, the Team PokerStars Pro putting his tournament life on the line more than once on his way to the last eight and his stack reflects that, resting overnight on 2,010,000. Regardless of what happens for the Italian tomorrow his achievement is already phenomenal, this being his 20th cash and his seventh EPT final table.
Olivier Rogez was another player whose advantage at the start was gradually cut down by the time players bagged up chips. The rookie Frenchman lost several key hands today, showing the inexperience he's entitled to, dropping down severely until he managed to rally, restoring his stack to a respectable 4,415,000.
Yorane Kerignard, who we have raved about all week and ever since witnessing his performance in San Remo earlier this season, returns as one of the short stacks with 1,680,000. The Frenchman is still on course to beat his previous best of sixth place, reaching his second EPT final table of the season. He may not have the chips but he has the desire and the experience.
Here's how the final table will line up:
Seat 1. Bruno Jais, France, PokerStars.fr qualifier, 3,450,000
Seat 2. Mick Graydon, Ireland, PokerStars qualifier, 960,000
Seat 3. Olivier Rogez, France, 4,415,000
Seat 4. Vuong Than Trong, France, 2,570,000
Seat 5. Vadzim Kursevich, Belarus, 5,670,000
Seat 6. Paul Guichard, France, PokerStars.fr qualifier, 5,955,000
Seat 7. Luca Pagano, Italy, Team PokerStars Pro, 2,010,000
Seat 8. Yorane Kerignard, France, 1,680,000
At EPT Prague Ignat Liviu reached tenth place. Here he was looking to put those demons to bed and reach an EPT final at the second time of asking. He nearly made it, but as the short stack with two tables remaining, the Romanian struggled to regain any traction, and departed in 12th place.
Artem Litvinov at the final table would have proved irresistible for hacks looking for a good sub-plot. The Russian refrained from previous antics today, despite at one point tripling-up. But he did reach a career best 16th place finish, good for €26,000.
The English duo of Chris Brammer and Rob Stain departed shortly after Litvinov, Brammer in 14th and Stain in 13th. When Sergey Baburin got the last of his stack in against Bruno Jais, drawing dead, it brought the day to a close.
A last word about Bruno Jais who claims to be here by accident. Intending to play a €10 tournament online his mis-clicked and entered a €500 EPT Deauville satellite. At the time he only had €501 in his account.
Read all about the day at the links below as well as live coverage from the tournament floor here.
That's all for today from Casino Deauville; time now to face the snow again as we wait for tomorrow's final day. Coverage will be here on the PokerStars Blog and on EPT Live Lite at PokerStars.tv.
Casino Deauville today
Until then it's good evening from Deauville.