Eureka Croatia: Day 1A, levels 1, 2, 3 & 4 updates (blinds 100-200)
6.35pm: Break Time
That's four levels down and players are now a 15 minute break.
Amongst the latest exits is Senadin Cosic who finished eighth in the main event at Eureka Slovenia.
6.20pm: Chip counts
A few chip counts: Michael Leedham (25,000 - up and down he says), Antonio Dieguez Rodriguez (5,000 - rueful shake of the head), Owen Shiels (23,000 - same table as Chris Moneymaker), Chris Moneymaker (10,000 - small uptick) and Denis Kelemen (up to 21,000).
Still leading the way though is Pontus Pantelis with 38,000.
A total of 98 from the 116 that started remain.
Pictured below is Denis 'Djenana' Kelemen who captained Croatia to second place at the 2010 World Cup of Poker.
He gets his nickname because his favourite hand is jack-nine, he swears it never loses and he made up the name 'Djenana' for that hand. But it does lose occasionally such as in the final hand of the 2010 World Cup of Poker, which is well worth watching. In this tournament Kelemen is currently on 16,000.
LEVEL UP: BLINDS 100-200
There's been 13 eliminations so far, amongst them Alexandru Cinca and Croatia's only Supernova Elite - Robert Vukovic.
5.20pm: Leedham lets it go
I don't know the specifics of the betting actions but an in position Michael Leedham (cut off) and Kris Varga both put in 800 each pre-flop to see the dealer spread a flop of 6♦3♥7♥. After Leedham c-bet 850, Varga check-raised to 1,750 total, call from Leedham.
The turn was the J♥ Varga bet 2,500, dwell then call from Leedham. The 9♦ completed the board and Varga moved all-in for 5,425, Leedham tanked, to the extent that the clock was called, but before his ten second countdown began he mucked his hand. Still it's not all bad for Leedham as he'd got off to a good start and after that dent he still has around 18,800.
5.10pm: Down some money
It seems that the 2003 WSOP main event champion Chris Moneymaker has dipped below his starting stack. During the first break he tweeted: "Start with 15k. Up to 19k at one point 13k now. Early."
4.55pm: Scores on the door
It's been confirmed to me that the total number of players today is 116. Currently leading the pack is Pontos Pantelis from Greece who has 33,850.
4.45pm: Back from the break
Players are back in their seats and blinds are 75-150.
4.30pm: Break time
Players are now on a 15 minute break.
4.20pm: Pots in brief
- Antonio Dieguez Rodriguez took one down by raising to 250 and getting no takers
- On a flop of 8♦6♠2♦ Senadin Cosic bet 300 and got one caller in the shape of an out of position Namik Varupa. Both players then checked the 3♠ turn and 9♥ river with Varupa showing 8♣8♠ to take the pot.
4.05pm: Some chip counts
A few chips counts and observations Chris Moneymaker has 17,800 and is filling time between hands playing some kind of Tetris type game. One table to his left Antonio Dieguez Rodriguez has also got off to a good start with around 18,100 and Eureka Slovenia eighth place finisher Senadin Cosic has 18,800.
3.45pm: Bluff gone wrong
I arrived at table 10 to see a board of K♦2♥J♠4♣ and an all-in bet of 6,700 in front of Pavol Horvath. It was quite an over-bet, there was perhaps just 2,000 in the pot, after around a minutes deliberation Daniel Mihai Rinzis made the call and showed A♦K♣ which was well ahead of Horvath's A♥8♣ which was drawing dead.
3.30pm: The hammer
On the last hand before the blinds increased I saw four players at table one see a flop of 2♣2♥4♦, it checked to Daniel Hauptfeld on the button who bet 225 into a pot of 475, only Alexandru Cinca called. The turn was the 5♦ and Hauptfeld fired 350, Cinca check-raised to 825 and Hauptfeld made the call.
The 6♦ completed a low, yet tasty looking board and Cinca fired 1,600 to put Hauptfeld to the test. The latter huffed and puffed cut out chips for a raise, put them back in his stack and then took out four red 1,000 chips and flicked two of them in to make the call, Cinca rolled over K♣7♣ for just king high, whilst Hauptfeld had 7♠2♠ for trip twos.
LEVEL UP: BLINDS 50-100
3.20pm: Also spotted and one more down
Another lap of the tournament room has unearthed Senadin Cosic, Michael Leedham and Owen Shiels. The board is saying 120 players have entered today, we've lost two in the opening level with Mladen Sluganovic also hitting the rail.
3.05pm: No scared Money here
I had the pleasure of watching Chris Moneymaker play at the recent UKIPT Edinburgh event where he went deep before busting out just before the payouts. If there was one word to describe his style of play in that tournament it was 'active'.
The Team PokerStars Pro was seemingly in every pot and he's approaching this tournament with similar tactics. After Jaroslav Barglik had raised to 125 from under-the-gun, Moneymaker three-bet to 400 from the big blind, call from Barglik.
The flop of J♠3♠[10d] was checked by both players, before a bet of 600 from Moneymaker on the 6♠ turn gave him the pot.
2.55pm: One down
A loud clap was audible from the other side of the card room, a surefire sign that a big pot had just occurred.
I scuttled over just in time to see one player double up and another exit the tournament. The carnage had been caused by a good old fashioned aces versus kings coup. That the board had ran 2♠A♣[10d]K♣3♣ made it just that little bit more sickening.
As a result of that hand Pontos Pantelis is up to just shy of 30,000 whilst Feda Causevic is the first player out.
2.45pm: Who's here?
As well as Chris Moneymaker there's a few familiar faces in the field today. Other notables include Antonio Dieguez Rodriguez - winner in Slovenia, runner up in Prague and top of the Eureka Leaderboard. Keep an eye on the chipcounts page I'll be updating it throughout the day.
2.35pm: Play for the day
I've just been told that players will play ten levels today. As usual levels last for 60 minutes and players start with 15,000 chips. Predictions on the number of players for today is around 125.
2.25pm: Shuffle up and deal
Play is underway here in Zagreb.
2.05pm: Welcome to Eureka Croatia
Welcome to the Golden Sun Casino at Hotel Antunovic in Zagreb for the Eureka Croatia main event. It's an apt name for the venue given that the sun is shining and it's a mild 36 degrees outside - coldest day this week by the looks of it.
And whilst we're in the air conditioned confines of a conference room the local football team - Dinamo Zagreb - were sweating their proverbials off last night, just scraping through to the Champions League proper to face some of Europe's big boys. I imagine that's what some of today's players will feel like, well at least those drawn at the same table as Team PokerStars Pro Chris Moneymaker.
The 2003 WSOP Main Event champion is in town as part of his World Tour. Having already taken in Melbourne and Edinburgh, he visits Barcelona and Blankenberge to round it off. He's focused too eschewing the local sights to play a €20 re-buy to the main event a couple of night's ago. And the local's have taken to him too, I've seen a few groups of players posing for photos with him already today.
Play will kick off shortly.
PokerStars Blog reporting team at Eureka Poker Tour Croatia: Nick Wright. Photos courtesy of Manuel Kovsca