EPT12 Malta: Antonio Chemi alive and kicking
Three things make Antonio Chemi stand out. Firstly, he's been wearing the same Simple Minds sweater since day one. Secondly, he has his name stencilled on it. And third, he stands up and walks around a lot.
Actually there's a fourth thing. He's the short stack. But we'll get to that in a second.
The logo on his chest has become something of a lucky charm. It's worked for each of the five days so far. To take it off now would be a stupid mistake. Same goes for each of the daily wristbands, issued by security to grant you access to the tournament room, still wrapped around his wrist.
But you might also suspect hat living on the edge like this is starting to wear him down. Maybe that's behind his need to walk. Although to be honest, he's been doing this since day one as well.
But the facts tell a different story. All he's done so far is play out of his skin to reach the last ten, albeit as the shortest stack, which admittedly keeps getting shorter and shorter.
He too seems acutely aware of this last point. Without a promised miracle each hand takes him one step closer to an inevitable exit.
And so he paces back and forth with his headphones in, his leg tapping when he attempts to stand still, his hand running through his hair. He waits for the next hand and jumps back into his seat. When it comes, he taps some chips around and folds, waiting a little longer for the hand that might save him. Meanwhile he looks permanently exasperated.
Still, we thought his time might be up in the last level. Low and behold he's alive and kicking as a new level gets underway. Will he make it to the end of this one? He's still the short stack. But that's yet to do him any harm.
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Stephen Bartley is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.