EPT12 Malta: O'Dwyer leads at late night again proves success of one-day format

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Steve O'Dwyer leads the final six

The one-day high roller is a recent addition to EPT festivals and it owes its appearance on the schedule to player power. In long discussions with many of the top players the one tournament they said they all wanted was a high buy-in event that gets done within the day. Hence the EPT accommodated their wishes.

Levels were set at 30 minutes each, and the buy in is usually equivalent to the "regular" high roller later in the week. We've been as high as €50,000 in Monaco for one of these things, but it's €10,000 here in Malta.

The players have duly responded to the organisers' plans and have made these events among the most popular of the week. The only problem is that they are so successful that the "one-day" element has frequently come into jeopardy. This post is being written at later than 2.30am, for instance, and still six players remain.


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The plan is to play to the bitter end--or at least that's the plan right now. In Barcelona, the plan was the same, but they ended up opting for a postponement when they were three-handed, before coming back to crown Martin Finger as the champion.

It is really too difficult to say what's going to happen in this one, but there are still six players remaining at time of writing, with about 112 big blinds between them. The average stack is about 19 big blinds, so quick eliminations are inevitable.

It remains the unfortunate truth, however, that it could still run long into the early hours.

The state of play at the moment is as follows: The familiar figure of Steve O'Dwyer is at the top of the chip counts, followed by Isaac Haxton. Haxton is arguably the most active player at the table, at least over the last level, but Jean-Noel Thorel is also keen to get his chips moving. He is unafraid of any confrontation.

Jason Wheeler, Ilari Samanies and Niko Soininen, who make up the last six, are also looking for spots to get their full stacks in the middle.

Approximate stacks heading to 60,000-120,000 level:

Steve O'Dwyer, Ireland, 3,575,000
Ike Haxton, United States, 2,415,000
Niko Soininen, Finland, 2,415,000
Jean-Noel Thorel, France, 2,265,000
Ilari Sahamies, Finland, 1,815,000
Jason Wheeler, United States, 915,000

Play-by-play of this is all on the main High Roller page.

Howard Swains
@howardswains in European Poker Tour