EPT11 Grand Final: Troyanovskiy bubbles €50,000 Super High Roller as Kanit leads final table
Another day and another Super High Roller. Today's one day special came at a 50% discount, that was the good news. The bad news, entry was still a meaty €50,000. That didn't deter 54 players from trying once and a further 12 from taken up their single re-entry option.
It all meant that nine players would make the money and for a long time it seemed as though everyone was playing for second as the indefatigable Dzmitry Urbanovich ran up yet another huge stack in a big buy-in event. He showed few scars from his epic five hour heads-up battle with Erik Seidel in yesterday's thrilling €100,000 Super High Roller and with 13 players left looked all set to take a massive chip lead into the all important bubble period.
He and Ivan Luca, who won the EPT11 Malta High Roller, got it all-in pre-flop in a pot worth more than double the average stack. It was a classic race with Urabanovich holding Q♠Q♥ and Luca A♣K♣. No one has put up more impressive results than these two in 2015 and something had to give - perhaps the Poker Gods would just put a straight out there and they'd chop it up? They had something more 'interesting' in store though. The Q♣T♥3♥ flop gave Urbanovich a great chance of eliminating Luca, but the J♠ turn gave Luca a straight and the Argentine held on the 9♠ river. Down to dust Urbanovich was eliminated by Mike Watson a short while later.
Another player who made a big splash in the €100,000 Super High Roller would follow Urbanovich out the door a short time later. Igor Kurganov's shove with K♣T♣ was picked off by Mustapha Kanit and the Italian's aces held to leave just a dozen doyens of poker remaining.
With a 30 minute clock and an average stack weighing in at 22 big blinds there was never likely to be prolonged periods between eliminations. Next to go was Anton Astapau he got it in with A♠3♦ for his final 15 big blinds but ran into Fedor Holz's dominating A♥Q♦.
Soon after Ronno Lo found himself in a similar situation, his K♣4♣ proved no match for Martin Finger's A♠4♥ and just like that we were on the bubble.
Most bubbles are fraught and tense affairs but even though some of the world's best were 'hugging' the bubble there was plenty of jokes and smiles. Fabian Quoss and Martin Finger were two of those at risk but Quoss was standing and laughing, whilst after Finger folded on the opening hand of hand for hand play he snapped a picture of his stack on his phone. Mark Teltscher and Vladimir Troyanovskiy were the other players most at risk of bubbling but both seemed nonplussed about it, Teltscher did a few stretches in between hands whilst Troyanovskiy showed little emotion.
A few hands passed with no major action, Holz was opening most pots on his table and suddenly Finger looked like he was going to shove over the top of another Holz raise. He let it go though and as the deck was being prepared for the next hand turned to Holz and said: "One higher," did he mean his kicker or his highest card? We'll never know.
Soon there was action on the other table. Mustapha Kanit had bet 650,000 into a pot of around 525,000 on the river of a 8♣7♦3♦7♠Q♠ board. That bet was more than three players stacks! It was Ivan Luca who was in the tank. He had about 910,000 total so was faced with a bet for a hefty chunk of that. Holz, Quoss, Finger, Teltscher and Mike Watson all got up from their table to asses the situation. Scott Seiver - who was one of the shorter stacks - glanced anxiously at the tournament clock a few times, this was a turbo clock after all. Eventually Kanit called the clock and Luca was given the standard instructions. As time ticked down he looked pained, his left hand was inside his shirt massaging his chest. Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one and then it was over and everyone went back to their seats.
Soon they were out of them again as it was time to redraw to the final table. On Friday night Troyanovskiy took a brutal beat with aces against kings to bubble the €100,000 Super High Roller final table. At least he was in the money by then, this time he would go home empty handed. After Kanit opened with pocket nines he shoved for around 6.5 big blinds with pocket sevens and that was that.
The final nine have just redrawn to the final table and this is how they line-up:
1. Mark Teltscher, 690,000
2. Mike Watson, 2,000,000
3. Andrei Streltsou, 1,400,000
4. Ivan Luca, 890,000
5. Fedor Holz, 2,625,000
6. Soctt Seiver, 525,000
7. Fabian Quoss, 710,000
8. Martin Finger, 475,000
9. Mustapha Kanit, 3,800,000
And this is what they're playing for: