EPT9 London Day 4: The Case of the Final 32
Regular readers this week will have noticed our half-hearted attempts to sell our great capital London. If anyone was in any doubt that our guides to London were made up we can assure you that everything has been checked out personally. We have been to Regents and Hyde Park and only yesterday walked along Oxford Street. Howard Swains has even been to Wandsworth Prison*.
One of the highlights is the Sherlock Holmes museum at 221b Baker Street (actually located at 239 Baker Street), an old Edwardian town house that creaks with history and the footsteps of two dozen Japanese teenagers. There you can buy all sorts of Holmes paraphernalia, including pictures, books, even hypodermic syringe pens in dubious recognition of Holmes' drug habit. At least the gift shop was in keeping with the original text of the books.
Baker Street tube station (credit: Mike Knell/Creative Commons)
Holmes was apparently quite the card player himself, sublimating his income as a consultant detective with what was thought to be great panache at the card table. Had he been alive today, and indeed not been fictional, he may well have relished the contest of an EPT main event a short walk from his home.
But for all our talk of seeing the sights there's an unmistakable draw to the tournament room today, where just 32 of the original 647 players remain active in the main event. Today we cut then down by half, a merciless process that will be repeated tomorrow when we play down to eight. It doesn't seem like much to accomplish, but these coming days will prove the most compelling of the EPT week.
Leading coming into today is Pasi Sormunen, just the latest Finn to clock up a massive chip stack, his today 1,578,000 chips strong. Behind him is local challenger Niall Farrell with 1,510,000 and Nicolas Chouity, a former Grand Final winner, and one of three Lebanese players still in the field, with 1,143,000.
Most wanted: Pasi Sormunen
For your pleasure details of all chip counts, and pay outs, can be found on our live coverage link, which will also feature hand-for-hand details of all the action from the start through to the close of play. You can also find details of the seat draw here.
As well as reading about it you can also watch the action as well, courtesy of EPT Live, presented by James Hartigan and Joe Stapleton. They will be on air from the start of play.
It should be a great day of poker that could make for a long or short day. Either way the excitement will be a little more taught by the close as we edge close to the £700,000 first prize. As Holmes himself would have put it, "The game is afoot!"
* Howard Swains hasn't actually been to Wandsworth Prison. The charges were dropped.
Stephen Bartley is a PokerStars Blog reporter