EPT12 Malta: Stammen heads monster IPT High Roller into final day

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Keven Stammen, pictured in Sanremo, leads IPT High Roller in Malta,

As Day 1A of the Main Event commences, there is fervent activity elsewhere as two of the festival's most popular events will play to their conclusions.

The €2,000 IPT High Roller resumed at 1pm with Keven Stammen in a commanding chip lead. Stammen, who has a WPT title and a WSOP bracelet to his name, bagged 674,500 chips last night, which was nearly double the total of anyone else in the room.

However, neither Stammen nor the 67 players remaining from the 403 who entered are guaranteed any return on investment just yet. The bubble bursts when 55 players remain, which should be one or two levels into the day. (First prize is €151,670; a min-case is €3,835.)

Stammen faces stiff competition from a field of similar quality to any in the week's festivities. Jorryt van Hoof (269,000), Steve O'Dwyer (205,500), Michael Tureniec (180,000), Ondrej Vinklarek (162,500), Ari Engel (159,500)D, Dermot Blain (135,000), Ismael Bojang (110,500), Martin Finger (81,500), Ariel Celestino (63,500), Connor Drinan (53,000) and Yann Dion (51,500) are also still involved. Leo Margets flies the Red Spade alone after the late-night elimination of Theo Jorgensen. Margets has 112,500.


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The Malta Cup resumes at 3pm, with 11 players remaining. That one wrapped up pretty late last night, but Neil Ryder heads the field. The British player is a regular around England's casinos, where he has a string of cashes in smaller buy-in events.

But he is on course to smash his highest tournament cash. There's nearly €50,000 on offer for the winner of the Malta Cup and, having outlasted a field of 894 to get there, it will be richly deserved.

Here are the survivors:

Neil Ryder, UK, 3,240,000
Ludovic Heinry, France, 1,800,000
Andras Stumpf, Hungary, 1,375,000
Guillaume Diaz, France, 1,365,000
Michael Michaelides, Cyprus, 1,335,000
Grzegorz Wyraz, Poland, 915,000
David Breitfuss, Austria, 850,000
Roman Skudar, Ukraine, 755,000
Benny Taieb, Israel, 735,000
Boris Kolev, Bulgaria, 535,000
Antonio Wehbe, Spain, 520,000

A quick recap of what went on late last night:

Benjamin Chiss, of France, achieved the best result of his live poker career when he beat Yury Gulyy to win the €500 NL Hyper Turbo event. The two remaining players cut a deal heads up, with Chiss taking €16,670 and Gulyy €15,000 for second place. There were 176 entries creating a €85,360 prize pool.

In the women's event, Caroline Pillet picked up the trophy, beating Jen Shahade into second place and earning €3,360 for her troubles. Pillet finished 12th in the Women's event in Barcelona and continued her fine run of form. Shahade, the PokerStars Mind Sports Ambassador, won €2,430 while Sabina Hiatullah, who was chip-leader for much of the final, finished fourth for €1,170. There were 55 entrants.

Nearly 100 players competed in yesterday's three €100 "Flipout" tournaments with two Italians and a Japanese player taking the top honours. Raffaele Gaetano and Alessio Peciarolo both defeated 32-strong fields to win €1,055, while Japan's Tsugunari Toma scored his first ever cash in Europe when he outlasted 34 players in the first Flipout of the day to win €1,120.

Toma has a string of results in Asia - including sixth in the APPT 2012 Asia Championship of Poker - but is new to EPT competition.

Everything about EPT Malta is on the main EPT Malta page. More specifically, the action from the Main Event is on the Main Event page. All the hand-by-hand coverage of the €25,000 High Roller is on the €25,000 High Roller page and everything from the IPT Main Event is on the IPT Main Event page.

No really, begin plotting your own bid for EPT glory by downloading the PokerStars client and having a crack. Follow this EPT event via the EPT app. There you will get all the latest news, chip counts and payouts. You can download it on Android or IOS

Howard Swains
@howardswains in European Poker Tour