EPT12 Prague: Rocco Palumbo leads as High Roller field nears 250

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Rocco Palumbo has climbed highest so far

The €10,000 High Roller got going today with ten levels, each lasting 60 minutes, to be played on Day 1. With six of them in the books the High Rollers have taken a 75 minute dinner break. Here's a look at who's had a good start to the day and who needs fuel in their belly to fire them up the leader board.

Mid-day update

The big news is that this event is well on the way to matching last year's total of runners. With 228 entries and 20 re-entries the 2015 edition is getting close to the 233 unique entries and 76 re-entries from last season. With late registration open until the start of Day 2 this number will have swelled considerably before then.

Among those who'll look like they'll have no need to take up the optional re-entry are the current tournament chip leaders. Top of the pile is Rocco Palumbo. The Italian has increased his starting stack of 50,000 to 180,000 over the opening six levels. That gives him a narrow lead over Jean Paul Zaffran (175,000), Igor Kurganov (165,000) Luc Greenwood (140,000) and Chris Hunchen (135,000).

It's been another strong start for Kurganov then. The Russian finished third in the €50,000 Super High Roller earlier in the festival and looks primed for another deep run. The biggest pot he won was in a hand against Thomas Muehloecker. In a three-bet pot the Austrian bet every street of a A♠7♣4♥Q♦4♣ board, Kurganov called every step of the way with pocket sevens which bested Muehloecker's J♠T♦.

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Dream start for Igor

There are five members of Team PokerStars Pro in the field with Andre Akkari, Liv Boeree, Jason Mercier, Vanessa Selbst and Eugene Katchalov all representing the Red Spade.

It's the Brazilian who's off to the best start as he's up to 83,000. Boeree has added 50% to her stack as she's up to 75,000. Mericer, who late registered during level four has dropped down to 45,000 which is 2,000 ahead of Selbst. With just 13,000 Katchalov has work to do.

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Boeree has 75,000 reasons to smile

Chip counts

The blinds are about to go up to 400/800 ante 100 and the average stack is 54,600.

NameCountryChips
Rocco PalumboItaly180,000
Jean Paul ZaffranIsrael175,000
Igor KurganovRussia165,000
Luc GreenwoodCanada140,000
Chris HunichenUnited States135,000
Alen BilicBosnia and Herzegovina130,000
Tamer KamelUK128,000
Sergio AidoSpain125,000
Carlos ChadhaCanada115,000
Jeffrey RossiterAustralia100,000
John JuandaIndonesia94,000
Thomas MuehloeckerAustria90,000
Andre AkkariBrazil83,000
Mike McDonaldCanada80,000
Benny SpindlerGermany75,000
Liv BoereeUnited Kingdom75,000
Max SilverUK75,000
Juha HelppiFinland68,000
Paul NeweyUK65,000
Sylvain LoosliFrance65,000
Davidi KitaiBelgium60,000
Charlie CarrelUK60,000
Tobias ReinkemeierGermany60,000
Anton WiggSweden57,500
Stephen ChidwickUK55,000
Vladimir TroyanovskiyRussia55,000
Dominik NitscheGermany53,000
Mustapha KanitItaly49,200
Jason MercierUSA45,000
Vanessa SelbstUSA43,000
Dimitar DanchevBulgaria42,400
Ivan LucaArgentina35,000
Ivan SoshnikovRussia35,000
Dario SammartinoItaly34,800
Daniel DvoressCanada31,000
Mike WatsonCanada30,000
Roberto RomanelloUK28,000
Martin FingerGermany26,000
Adrian MateosSpain20,000
Steve O'DwyerIreland17,000
Sam GreenwoodCanada14,000
Eugene KatchalovUkraine13,000

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Reinkemeier is up to 60,000

Notable eliminations

With players having the option of one re-entry into this event and late registration being open until the start of play tomorrow, detail on who's out for now and who's out for good is still a little fuzzy.

There are plenty of players who've busted once and may well be back for more. One of those is Chris Brammer. In level six the Brit found himself in a tough spot against Jean Paul Zaffran. On a 4♣5♠A♠2♣ board he bet the turn only for Zaffran to raise enough to put him all-in.

After a long think Brammer called off with [5][4] but saw the bad news when Zaffran showed 4♠3♠ for the turned straight. The 2♥ river was a brick and Brammer departed.

Another is Pablo Gordillo, he was in a great spot when he got his stack of around 50,000 in pre-flop with aces against Alen Bilic's pocket kings. So far, so standard. The 8♣Q♦8♠ flop was safe for Gordillo but the K♠ fell on the turn, meaning it was now Gordillo who had just two outs. He didn't hit on the 3♣ river and is out, for now.

Others in a similar boat to Gordillo include: Vitaly Lunkin, Ollie Price, Rasmus Agerskov, Kent Roed, Shaan Siddiqui, Igor Pihela and Alexandru Papazian.

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Alexandru Papazian

Key coverage links

You can follow all the Main Event action on this page.

You can follow hand by hand coverage of the High Roller in the panel at the top of this page.

If you like moving pictures then you'll be happy to hear that #EPTLive coverage of the Main Event has begun. Watch that here.

And side event coverage - lots of it - can be found here. Whilst the results of the events that have already finished are being collated here.


Nick Wright
@PokerStars in European Poker Tour