EPT San Remo: The story of day 1b

Day 1b closes after nine levels with PokerStars Sponsored Player Jan Heitmann among the leaders, ending the day at the top of the chip count list after what could well be described as a tough day for Team PokerStars Pro.

Among the leaders on the day were French players Anthony Lellouche on 97k and Eric Koskas on 106k whilst Jan Heitmann will take 91k into day two.

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PokerStars Sponsored Player Jan Heitmann

Just as day 1a saw the likes of Team PokerStars Pros Luca Pagano, Raymond Rahme and Dario Minieri survive the often gruesome terrain yesterday, the toll was much higher a day later, with five of the six Team PokerStars Pros who started sent to the rail, with just Daniel Negreanu as the lone survivor on a day fraught with big hands and big names – a combination that left us with just over 100 players today.

Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier would go first after what he confessed to be an early bad bluff, followed literally minutes later by Team PokerStars Pro Lee Nelson who’s bumpy journey through the day ended in a hand with queens. Isabelle Mercier had jetted in to play her first EPT in some time but was unable to make it a long visit. She couldn’t get going today and was out before the dinner break.

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Team PokerStars Pro Isabelle Mercier

Team PokerStars Pros Noah Boeken and Vanessa Rousso would hang around until after the split dinner break; Noah had wrestled with a short stack all day but fell in the sixth. Vanessa Rousso ploughed on.

Vanessa’s was a tough table. With just a short stack to work with Vanessa did well to claw her way through a few scraps with Englishman Jon Kabbaj. A table change offered her the change to begin again but she remained handcuffed by her chips that measured around ‘chronic-low’.

“I just need to double up.... I can double up!” she’d said, showing wit and fighting spirit, but there’s only so far that will take you.

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Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu

That left Daniel Negreanu flying the colours of Team PokerStars Pro but others seemed ready to take charge. PokerStars Sponsored Player Johannes Strassmann rallied in the eighth level, up from 20k to 50k which should make good reading in the notes he’d been keeping all day. George Danzer tried the same but had the opposite result, out with the end of play in sight.

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The cardroom at Casino San Remo

363 players started. Johnny Lodden had the dubious honour of busting first, set over set, and Chad Brown would exit not be far behind. Whilst PokerStars Passport winner Dustin Mele joined Kara Scott for a trip around town, and ‘Bold and the Beautiful’ actor Daniel McVicar talked about his poker game; former champions Arnaud Mattern and Michael Schulze were busted. All plans to win a second EPT title stopped dead. Frenchman Fabrice Soulier’s welcome return to EPT action was not to lead to glory, ending prematurely this evening.

From a wall to wall start with tables everywhere, play moved across the room, ending with the press packs surrounding the big names. Who would cut and run in the last few hands? Who would double up or die? You can find a list of who made it by clicking here, or on the link at the top of the blog.

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For anyone wanting a recap on the day, including stories, pictures and reports from the video blog team you can click on the links below. Day two meanwhile is just under ten hours away. Ville Nyman and Eric Koskas are our unofficial leaders but tomorrow the field will be chopped up in all directions, starting at 3pm local time tomorrow – that’s 2pm GMT, or 9am ET.

Back for more on day 1b

Early line ups

Early flare ups and the calm before the storm

Two struck out in level four

Isabelle out at the dinner break

Passport to world poker

Keeping track of table Rousso

Boeken to the rail but Heitman on track

Defeated but still bold

Negreanu and Strassmann battling to the end


A wrap up of the day from Kara Scott and the video blog team...

Photos © Neil Stoddart

Stephen Bartley
@StephenBartley in EPT San Remo