EPT11 Deauville: Christmas comes but once a tournament

Belgian PokerStars Qualifier Fabrice Somers was one of the early pacesetters on Day 1B. He got his stack of 30,000 up to 70,000 before the halfway point of the day by virtue of a real big blind special.

In a three-way dance he defended his big blind with 5♠2♠ and won a big pot as the A♠3♠3♥4♠A♥ board made him a straight flush. Making a big hand is one thing of course, but having an opponent holding one that can stand a bet is quite another. In this case Soumers found not one but two willing customers as both his opponents - Roberto Ruiz and Sylvain Mousnier - held an ace apiece and with the nut full house they unsurprisingly paid off Somers's river bet. Perhaps he should have won more?

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Somer's hit a real big blind special

Since then the Belgian has mostly hovered between 70,000 and 80,000 and that's the sort of stack he had when we next saw him play a large pot. This time he was the one forcing the action, raising it up to 1,200 from early position and getting a call from Bastien Panciarola.

The action though would snowball from here with fellow Belgian Bart Moens pushing the price of poker up to 4,000 total from a stack of around 18,000. When the action folded back round to Somers he didn't take very long to push out a tower of grey 5k chips, which covered both Panciarola and Moens.

With the metaphorical shot clock now back on Panciarola he took his time, eyeing up Somers who, at this point was giving little away. After a quick glance back at his cards, usually one of the cast iron international signs for 'I'm about to fold', the Frenchman pushed his cards over the betting line and leaned back, he could now dip his concentration levels and save them for a more crucial moment.

Moens needed no such dwell or time in the tank, just moments after Panciarola had folded he flicked a chip into the pot and Somers recoiled, letting out a "arrgh," which among other things is the international poker noise for 'hand caught in the cookie jar'. Soumers sensed he was in bad shape and turned over A♥3♥, he basically knew he had three clean outs but would it be the ace or the kicker he was hoping to hit? It soon became clear that he wanted to hit his over card as Moens showed J♠J♦.

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Arrgh

A 7♠5♦[10s] flop missed Somers entirely, rendering any hopes of an unlikely flush dead. The 5♣ turn card was just as useless as far as he was concerned and the K♥ was not the paint card he was looking for. Harking back to the earlier hand when he made a straight flush he said: "It's not Christmas every day," and laughed. An admirable attitude for a man who'd just lost a big pot.

He's still doing just fine though as that hand reduced his stack to 50,000 which is still well above the average stack which is currently a tick under 40,000. As for Moens that hand sees him climb to right around average and he's in a far more comfortable position now.

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He won the pot, honest!

Coverage from the Main Event of EPT Deauville is on the Main Event page. Check out all the action from around the festival on the main festival page.

Nick Wright
@PokerStars in Main Event