EPT Monte Carlo: Live action from Level 14

Day three is underway at the PokerStars.com EPT Monte Carlo Grand Final, now entering level 13 with blinds at 1,000/2,000 with a 200 ante. 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. See previous action from Level 13 HERE.

4:25pm--We hit the bubble with :26 remaining on the clock. It will be hand for hand when we return. Now players are on a 15 minute break.

4.14pm -- Andreas Hagen just had the decision of his life it seemed, a wait of over ten minutes. To their credit no player called the clock. It started with a bet from Andreas pre-flop, called by PokerStars qualifier Rami Boukai. The flop came 7d5h5d which both players check for a turn card Js. 30K this time from Andreas, called once more for a river card 8c.

Now the trouble starts. Andreas makes it 60K but Rami moves all-in. What follows is an inner-dialogue, spoken outloud by Andreas in a period of excruciating decision making. “Thing is it’s so sick you checked the flop” says Andreas. At first a few people were watching, now several dozen. “It’s going to be embarrassing now if I fold!” he adds, looking around.


Andreas Hagen (left) and PokerStars qualifier Rami Boukai

Like deconstructing a project he’s gone wrong, Andreas begins to concede the pot, in excess of 250K. “I slow played my hand, you know? I’m going to lay them down this time...” He does, showing his pocket aces, and gets on with the next hand, down to 45K.

4.11pm -- A short while earlier Neil Channing was a surprise exit pushing with K-5 only to run into the jacks of PokerStars qualifier Jonathan Dwek. Also narrowly missing out on a first EPT cash is French actress Alexia Portal, out within two seats of the bubble.

4:09pm--Stars of Poker Update--We know a bunch of folks are out there watching bigjoe2003 fight in the Stars of Poker event. Here's a look at your Supernova Elite.


3:54pm--82 players remain. Hand for hand at 81.

3.45pm -- Another bust out as we approach the bubble. Spanish PokerStars qualifier Raul Paez’s hopes extinguished by the aces of David Kruger sat next to him, who watched the board whilst begging his hand to hold up. It did. 84 players left.

3:42pm--75 players remain.

3:37pm--Stars of Poker Update--Level 3 key hands. With the blinds at 75/150 bigjoe2003 raises to 375. Dario calls and Barry makes it 2000 to play. Dario calls all in once bigjoe2003 folds. Dario shows AK and 99 for Barry. The board bricks out and Dario is eliminated in 8th. Several hands later ElkY calls a raise of 325 from Vicky. Both check a flop of 9c-4s-5d. 8d on the turn and ElkY calls a 700 bet from Vicky. The river is Ad and Vicky bets 800. ElkY calls and Vicky shows 6-7 for the straight.

bigjoe2003 calls an early position raise of 425 from ElkY and everyone else folds. The flop is 4h-3s-8d and bigjoe2003 calls a 550 bet from ElkY. Both check the turn which is a 6c. The river is a Kd and ElkY fires 950. bigjoe2003 moves in for 1000 more and ElkY calls. bigjoe2003 shows pocket aces for the win.

Near the end of the level ElkY raises to 400 called by John Duthie. The flop comes 10d-10c-Kd and both players check. Jc on the turn and a 350 bet from John is called. 8c and John bets 1300 to set ElkY all in. ElkY calls and John just mucks - clearly on a bluff. Chips at the end of level 3 are as follows:

bigjoe2003 6K. Katja 6K John Duthie 12K Noah 6.5K Barry 5K Vicky 5.5K ElkY 4K

3:35--Mel Judha appears to have been eliminated, though the details of his departure are unknown.

3:34pm--Christopher Klodnicki was eliminated after pushing his remaining chips (less than 15k) only to be called by Thomas Boekhoff. Christopher, holding A9 was not pleased to see Thomas turn over AQ. The board didn't come to the rescue and Christopher headed for the rail.

3:33pm--A notable blind vs blind confrontation unfolded with Amit Makhija in the big blind and Max Dillemure in the small. Amit opened the action with a raise to 6k and Max made it 14k to go. After some consideration Amit called. The dealer laid out Jc Jh 8d which led to a quick check, check. The turn brought the Ah and more checking. The river 9d didn't seem to interest Amit who checked. With little delay Max made a substantial play for the pot, tossing in 26k chips. Amit cut out 26k from his stack, barely making a nick in it. He then spent a couple of minutes shuffling the chips as he tried to get a read on Max. Finally he tossed them across the line. Max turned over A2. Amit took on a pained expression and sent his cards to toward the dealer face down.

3:26pm--90 players remain. Eighty get paid. Hand for hand at 81.

3:19pm--Joe Hachem has just been moved to a big-stacked table. It suits him, as he has one of the biggest stacks in the room. We walk up on a conversation he's having with Irish Open winner Neil Channing.

Channing: "People look into my soul...I don't like it."
Hachem: "I didn't know you had a soul."

Seconds later, it's a battle of the blinds between Joe Hachem and Neil Channing and Hachem. Here at the 1,200/2,400/300 level, Hachem makes it 7,200 to play. Channing calles quickly. The flop comes out 3dTc7c. Hachem makes it 11,500 and Channing again throws out the call. The turn, an ace of diamonds, slows neither player down. 25K from Hachem and a call from Channing. Finally, the Ac on the river. Hachem now make sit 30 and without much though Channing calls. Hachem, indredulous, asks, "You call?"

"Yeah," says Channing, flipping over QT.

It's A2 for Hachem...runner-runner trips he was never given the chance to fold. That pot was good for 80,000 and solidifies Hachem's spot on the leaderboard.


3.14pm -- PokerStars Sponsored player Benjamin Kang just took a knock. Oyvind Riisem had originally started it all pre-flop with a 7K raise, getting two callers, including Kang, before the big blind player re-raised to 24K. Only Ben called for a flop of A-Q-9. That was checked for a six on the, a 20K bet with Ben called instantly. Checking again on the river ace but it’s not good for Ben who was up against a set of queens all the way.

3.12pm -- Jan Sjavik has been eliminated, all-in with pocket sixes and called by the Q-T of Michel Carvin. It was a good flop for the Frenchman, 2-2-T which gets a him making a few noises of the relief kind. A harmless turn and river send Sjavik to the rail.

3:02pm--Bad new for Day 2 chip leader Oyvind Riisem. We missed the action, but the result was clear. Mostafa Belkhayate, of Morocoo, held KQ with the king of spades. The flop was queen high, and the board ran out four spades as well. Still counting but the post looked to be in the 220K range.

2:58pm--It's the flop he never knew he never wanted to see. Thomas Fougeron gets it all in with AQ on an ace-high flop. Michael Martin of the U.S. was happy to get it in, seeing as how he held ocket aces. Sorel Mizzi, sitting across the table, said he was pretty sure Martin had aces pre-flop and was definitely sure on the flop. "I'd fold kings there," Mizzi says. Fougeron doesn't hear it. He was nearly out the door before the river hit.

2:53pm--Report from the 500 euro rebuy tells us Boris Becker still has a massive chip lead over the field and looks good for the final table.

2:52pm--A little leftover action from Level 13...

The following action seems to confirm the old saw that "big stacks avoid confrontation". Johnny Lodden and Benjamin Kang "clashed" with Lodden on the button and Kang in the small blind. Johnny opened for 5500 and Benjamin raised to 14k. After some thought he got a call. The flop came 5h Th Kc and the action went check, check. After the turn showed a Kh, the flop action was repeated. Rinse and repeat for the river 5h. Kang showed AQ hearts and Lodden showed those standing behind him 44, no heart before sending the cards to the muck face down.

2:50pm--Players are returning from break. While we wait for them to get seated, here is the first video blog of the day.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in EPT Monte Carlo