EPT9 London Day 6: Olof Haglund's handy hotel hop
Run good is essential in poker, but it comes in many different forms. Olof Haglund saw it in the traditional sense when he won a huge flip against Steve O'Dwyer - his queens holding against O'Dwyer's ace-king, for the chip lead - but he has also enjoyed some accommodation run good over the past couple of days.
For the first few days of the tournament, Haglund and his two friends/travelling partners have been regular faces at the Radisson Blu breakfast buffet. They had a room booked for the opening stages of the EPT, but learned when they tried to extend their reservation that the hotel was fully booked for the weekend. They were forced to find a different place across the street.
That's a bummer, of course. Packing suitcases is a bind at the best of time, but it's even more of a hassle when you're only moving a few hundred yards before you unpack it again. But as it turned out, this enforced relocation was a stroke of luck. At 6am this morning, Portman Square outside the Radisson Blu was among the most miserable parts of London, hosting a bleary-eyed gathering of hotel guests, displaced owing to a fire alarm.
Several players have been staying in the Radisson, including Adolfo Vaeza, Barry Greenstein, Dimitar Danchev (now at the High Roller final table) and Alex Kravchenko. The latter handled the fire alarm with characteristic stoicism: he sat motionless and emotionless in the lobby looking at an iPad. As a veteran of the robbery in Berlin -- and who knows what else that steely glare has fallen upon -- it takes more than a shrieking siren to get Kravchenko to break into a sweat.
Haglund was better off than all of these player, though. He was tucked up in bed in his new hotel. "I don't think he slept very much anyway," said Haglund's friends, now in the front row of the rail. They explained that although the Swede has been the picture of calm at the tables, he has understandably been pretty excited about this deep run.
He had confessed earlier in the week that if he earned only a min-cash, he would probably just add it to his online bankroll and focus on that. But he also said that if he made it to the final table, he may well catch the live poker bug and we would see him more frequently.
The latter seems certainly to apply now. He is having a whale of a time. When he won the massive hand against O'Dwyer, he went over to his friends and allowed himself a high five in celebration, and he also peeked over with a big grin when he saw reporters talking to his buddies.
They were busy filling us in on the origins of his striped jersey, which he has worn over the past couple of days. He bought it in Ireland, home of the Black Stuff and, supposedly, the luck of the Irish. It has a four-leaf clover on it and has certainly seemed to rub off on him this week.
No word yet on whether he was wearing it last night in bed, but it would have certainly made the trip from the Radisson. So maybe.
On the subject of rails, word reaches us that Mr Jorgensen senior has now arrived to the Vic, as is customary for major final tables at which his son appears. Theo's sister has also come over from Denmark.
Meanwhile, talking about run good, Ruben Visser's girlfriend Miranda is also here. She has flown in from Amsterdam to watch him, and turned a few heads more than just that of her boyfriend as she took her seat on the rail.
It isn't the first time she has railed Visser at a final table - she says she has watched him play in their native Netherlands - but this would certainly be the largest title he has been so close to winning. She works in financial services, so will likely have a good idea how he might want to invest £700,000.
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