Eureka3 Croatia: Nothing average about Georges Yazbeck
It's not an exact science but in the middle to late stages of Day 1 of a poker tournament when searching for big stacks and chip leaders you can take a look at the average stack, multiple by it a factor of three and you'll not be far off the chip leader. Whilst anyone with two and a half times the average stack is in with a shot too.
The average stack is currently 26,753, some quick mental arithmetic means that a stack of 66,900 to 80,250 is the right ball park for the chip leader. The man who's currently out in front is Georges Yazbeck and it's been this way for much of the tournament. We've clocked him on a stack of 57,000 then a stack of 75,000. Whilst that indicates he's been going in the right direction, it's still somewhat of a surprise to see him on a stack of 135,000 at this stage. That's over five times the average, a positive outlier to our hastily concocted three times the average theory.
The way he got them is almost as standard as they come. I say almost because whilst Yazbeck had pocket aces and Diyan Stanev had pocket kings that would be missing out the crucial part of the story.
In a three-bet pre-flop pot three players saw a king high flop and that's where the majority of the money went in. First to speak on that flop was Stanev, he bet 3,500, Yazbeck raised to 16,000 with his aces, Staev, sitting on top set, not unsurprisingly pushed the rest of his not inconsiderable 50,000 stack over the line and Yazbeck called. The Lebanese player got lucky on the turn as he hit an ace to skyrocket his stack to it's present dizzying height. Whilst an understandably distraught Stanev was eliminated. A glance around the room reveals that Yazbeck's closest challenger has around 65,000, that's quite the gap.
And Yazbeck is definitely a danger in this field, he's got almost $600,000 in lifetime winnings, he final tabled the € 2,000 No Limit Hold'em - Turbo Bounty event at the EPT Grand Final earlier this month and made the final two tables of a €500 turbo event at the same series. He's also got two EPT side event wins to his name, has cashed in three EPT main events and final tabled two other EPT side events. He's definitely one to watch that's for sure.
Tournament update: We're now into level six here in Croatia and 76 of the 103 players who started remain. In 30 minutes the players will take a one hour dinner break.