FPS Monaco: Midday, and the stars are out

We mentioned how the cash game area has been repurposed for now so as to accommodate the ever swelling France Poker Series Main Event field. A number of familiar faces are among those seated at those tables, including many EPT stars who have come out this afternoon, having chosen this side event to get their Grand Finals started.

At one of those tables sits three such familiar faces, one being Team PokerStars Pro and EPT6 Sanremo Main Event champion Liv Boeree.

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Team PokerStars Pro Liv Boeree

As the day's third level came to close, we saw an interesting hand involving Boeree, one which began as a four-way affair after a middle-position raise and three calls including Boeree in the small blind. She led at an all-club flop, with only the raiser sticking around, then fired again on a blank turn with her opponent calling once more.

The river brought a fourth club, but Boeree was undeterred, pushing out a bet of 6,500 or about two-thirds the pot. Both hemming and hawing followed thereafter, punctuated by a reluctant pushing away of cards as her opponent folded and conceded the pot. That brought Boeree to about 30,000 to begin Level 4.

Seated two seats over from Boeree is the red-haired Dubliner, Dermot Blain.

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Dermot Blain

Blain has tasted success here in Monaco before, winning a big €200,900 prize here a year ago after topping a field of 187 to win the €5,300 no-limit hold'em eight-handed event. His best ever EPT Main Event showing has been a 15th-place at Sanremo the same year Boeree won.

We saw Blain claim a less tense, smaller pot in another blind-defense situation during our visit, putting him a little above the 25,000 with which he stared the day.

Finally across from that pair sits Jack Salter who came oh-so-close to joining Boeree in the EPT Main Event champions club here at Monte Carlo one year ago. Indeed, all who are returning this week remember vividly the marathon heads-up match between the Englishman and Antonio Buonanno, with Salter's Italian foe ultimately earning the trophy in the end.

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Jack Salter

We saw Salter likewise defending his big blind with a call, but after putting up some resistance letting a hand go on the river. He's chipped up nicely, however, as they push past the mid-point of Level 4, having doubled his starting stack to about 50,000.

While smaller, star-studded €100K Super High Roller field battles in a corner of the tournament room, there are plenty of stars in the FPS Monaco Main Event as well.

FPS Monaco Main Event update:
- Adrian Mateos Diaz, Stefan Huber, Ben Warrington, Igor Yaroshvskyy, Ismael Bojang, and Nicolas Villa-Lobos are among the late Day 1B registrants
- 640 players are registered for Day 1B by the start of Level 4
- Registration is open until the start of Level 5
- Levels are 45 minutes for the Day 1 flights, becoming an hour long on Day 2
- The tournament is scheduled to play 12 levels today
- There will be a 75-minute dinner break after Level 9
- 85 survived from 265 entrants on Day 1A (leader: Valeriu Coca, 212,400)

To get all the latest news, chip counts and payouts, don't forget to download the EPT App on both Android or IOS.

Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.