EPT Monte Carlo: Battle for final table -- live

Players have re-started at the 12,000/24,000/3,000 level. If you’re following the action throughout the day you can press refresh for the latest news which will appear at the top of each post. You can also keep tabs on the latest chip counts here. Winner information is available here.

3pm -- Final table chip counts based on seating order...

Denes Kalo -- Hungary -- 1,190,000
Michael Martin -- USA -- 1,320,000
Luca Pagano -- Italy -- Team PokerStars Pro -- 688,000
Valeriy Ilikyan -- Russia -- 1,396,000
Antonio Esfandiari -- USA -- 501,000
Maxime Villemure -- Canada -- 1,206,000
Glen Chorny -- USA -- PokerStars qualifier -- 3,613,000
Isaac Baron -- USA -- PokerStars qualifier -- 2,853,000

2.08pm -- With the final table in place there will be a break for interviews and for any final adjustments to be made. Play is set to resume at 3.15pm.

Seat 1: Denes Kalo
Seat 2: Michael Martin
Seat 3: Luca Pagano (Team PokerStars Pro)
Seat 4: Valeriy Ilikyan
Seat 5: Antonio Esfandiari
Seat 6: Maxime Villemure
Seat 7: Glen Chorny (PokerStars qualifier)
Seat 8: Isaac Baron (PokerStars qualifier)

Coming soon to these pages...chip counts and bios of all the remaining players.

2.05pm -- With nine players remaining few pots had developed into anything more than a pre-flop bet followed by a series of folds. That was until now. Henrik Gwinner had been next in line for the short stack after Stig Top Rasmussen departed and moved in from the button with A-9 with close to 500K. Isaac Baron two seats along called showing A-T. The crowds closed in to see the board A-K-J-8-5, a board that brought no help for Henrik, who becomes our ninth place finisher.

1:56pm--The crowds are now beginning to press in. The original schedule had the televised final table start about this time today. As we were forced to break early last night, that didn't happen. Play has tightened up with the final nine as we sit on the TV-table bubble. It's a tense time that makes you wonder...if not for poker, what would everybody else be doing right now. The PokerStars Video Blog asked the same question.

1:34pm--We're down to nine players and it was not without a lot of drama. Antonio Esfandiari was getting quite active on one table, but losing chips one raise at a time. Finally, he came in for a raise and, as usualy, Isaac Baron re-raised. Antonio tanked. Meanwhile, on the other table, there seemed to be an all-in every hand. Never a call though until this last confrontation that saw Stig Top-Rasmussen stepped into a hole from which he could not extricate himself.

Facing a raise from Michael Martin, Valeriy Ilikyan was next to act. Before he could, Stig announced all-in. Say it with us..."woops."

The ruling: If Vaelriy ony calls, Stig must be all-in. If Valeriy raises, Stig can fold.

Valeriy simply called, Stig was forced to be all-in, Micahel folded as fast as he could. Then, Valeriy called again, to see Stig's pocket tens. Valeriy had jacks. The board bricked out, Stig was eliminated in tenth place, and we're down to a table of nine.

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Sting Top-Rasmussen -- © Neil Stoddart

1:14pm--The final ten players have reconvened at two tables of five. When one player is eliminated, they will consolidate to one table. When the ninth place finisher exits, we will have the official TV final table.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in EPT Monte Carlo