EPT10 Vienna: An orbit with Ainsworth, O'Rourke and Godot

At the very start of play yesterday -- ie, the first hand of the day -- Jude Ainsworth found kings to Jozsef Olah's queens when both players had a big stack.

Fortunately for Olah, and unfortunately for Ainsworth, the two didn't have any history. Olah hadn't had the chance to learn enough about Ainsworth's game to realise the Irish player could really have had any two cards when he four bet pre-flop.

That gleeful ignorance, combined with an ace-high flop, meant the two exchanged about the minimum they might have done with two such sizeable pre-flop holdings. Ainsworth rued the missed chance, Olah breathed a sigh of relief at having dodged a bullet, and both survived the whole day.


Jude Ainsworth: Waiting for action

Wouldn't you know, those two players ended up drawn on the same starting table again this afternoon. And with Gavin O'Rourke and Jan Bendik also on that table after players took their first break of Day 4, it seemed like a good time to dust down our "A Round With..." formula and take a look at the first orbit of the second session of the day.

A quick reminder: this series watches every detail of an entire orbit of EPT poker and its excitement (or otherwise) is, as a result, entirely dependent on what happens during those eight hands. This orbit, it's far to say, will not go down as a classic.

Here's the line-up and the approximate stacks as play commenced:

Seat 1 - Jan Bendik, Slovakia, 310,000
Seat 2 - Anthony Ghamrawi, Austria, 675,000
Seat 3 - Gavin O'Rourke, Ireland, 810,000
Seat 4 - Marko Neumann, Germany, 470,000
Seat 5 - Jude Ainsworth, Ireland, 1.1m
Seat 6 - Andreas Samuelsson, Sweden, 180,000
Seat 7 - Miltiadis Kyriakides, Greece, 1m
Seat 8 - Jozsef Olah, Hungary, 120,000

Blinds were at 6,000-12,000 (2,000 ante)


Jude Ainsworth: Nothing to be done

Hand 1 - Button with Jude Ainsworth
The orbit described was the first after the day's first 20-minute break. The two Irish players, Jude Ainsworth and Gavin O'Rourke were first to return to their seats and exchanged some quiet chit-chat. All eight players were seated in good time, though, as the dealer pitched the first card of the session.

Anthony Ghamrawi got things started and raised to 25,000 from mid-position. Marko Neumann called from the cut off and it was only those two to a flop of A♦5♦J♥. Check, check.

Neumann gave Ghamrawi a big old Mike McDonald stare. Sitting between them, O'Rourke stared intently at his phone/MP3 player and chose some new music. The 4♥ came on the turn.

Ghamrawi bet 22,000. Neumann called. Then they both checked the A♣ river. Ghamrawi turned over 2♣2♦ and Neumann mucked. Nobody said a word.

Hand 2 - Button with Andreas Samuelsson
Already the silence surrounding this table was notable. No one was saying a single word. From a neighbouring table, Marcel Luske got up and walked to the rail to talk to Kirill Gerasimov. But nobody was saying anything on table three.

Jude Ainsworth opened the pot with a raise to 25,000 and suddenly Miltiadis Kyriakides thought he would mix it up and opened his mouth. "Why 25 not 24?" he said. Ainsworth smiled but said nothing as everyone folded. Ainsworth took the blinds and antes and silence descended again.

Hand 3 - Button with Miltiadis Kyriakides
Gavin O'Rourke turned to his phone/MP3 player again and this time selected the camera setting. He angled the lens towards Jozsef Olah in the eight seat and took a picture of the Hungarian player. He then went to Twitter.

It seemed as if the 336 followers of @gavonater were going to get the chance to feast their eyes on the picture of Olah, but it never appeared. Perhaps it was a DM. Either way, the action was folded to Olah in the small blind, he limped, Jan Bendik moved in from the big blind and Olah folded.

Hand 4 - Button with Jozsef Olah
Marko Neumann opened from mid-position to 26,000. Anthony Ghamrawi called from the big blind and the two of them were alone to renew their acquaintance.

The flop came J♠[10h]A♠ and they both checked. The turn was Q♥, which they both checked again. And the river was 5♠ which they both checked for a third time. Ghamrawi showed J♦5♦ and won.

No one said a word.

Hand 5 - Button with Jan Bendik
Silence. Silence again. It was beginning to feel a little like a Samuel Beckett play.

It was folded to the small blind from where Anthony Ghamrawi raised to 28,000. Gavin O'Rourke folded his big blind.

That passed the time. It would have passed in any case. Only not so rapidly.

Hand 6 - Button with Anthony Ghamrawi
Jude Ainsworth opened to 25,000 under the gun and it was folded all the way around to Marko Neumann in the big blind. He called. The pair took a flop of [10h][10c]6♦, which they both checked, and the Q♠ came on the turn.

Neumann checked, Ainsworth bet 25,000 and Neumann folded.

A dealer named June arrived, tapped the incumbent on the shoulder, and took over. It was by far the most exhilarating thing to happen over the preceding 15 or so minutes. June seemed to be about to say something, but the wall of stony faces persuaded her out of it.

Hand 7 - Button with Gavin O'Rourke
It was folded to Anthony Ghamrawi in the cut off and he raised to 25,000. Jude Ainsworth defended his big blind with a call and they saw a flop of K♦[10s]2♥. Check, check.

They both also checked the A♦ turn and then after Ainsworth also checked the 4♦ river, Ghamrawi bet 27,000. We always find something to give us the impression we exist.

Ainsworth folded instantly.


An Ainsworth-eye view of the table

Hand 8 - Button with Marko Neumann
Gavin O'Rourke changed his music again, then checked replies to the message he had sent with the photo. He turned off the phone again. The action was folded all the way to Jude Ainsworth in the small blind and he asked to see Andreas Samuelsson's stack.

Samuelsson lifted his arms, Ainsworth saw all he needed to see and then moved all in. Samuelsson folded.

The orbit ground to a halt, an orbit in which nothing happens. Nobody comes, nobody goes. It's awful.

Day 4 of the Main Event page. The €10,000 High Roller has also started. Follow that on the High Roller page. Alternatively, watch on EPT Live.

Howard Swains
@howardswains in European Poker Tour