Eureka3 Czech Republic: Eiler, Brinkmann et al lurk in ever-growing field
Sometimes it takes a seasoned poker observer to notice the sharks in the pool, but if Michael Eiler wants to go through this event incognito, then he is going to need to lose the baseball cap.
Eiler wore his distinctive brown cap, with gold crest on the front, to victory at EPT Vienna two years ago, and now he is beneath it again here in Rozvadov. In order to emerge victorious in Vienna, he had to beat Daniel Negreanu and Martin Hruby, among others at the final table, so one suspects he won't be too fearful of his opponents here.
Eiler, who has also won the Sunday Million on PokerStars, was an online qualifier when he took down the €700,000 purse in the Austrian capital. He has taken the same route to this tournament in the Czech Republic and is worth watching all the way.
Torsten Brinkmann is also no stranger to the very biggest stage, and also no stranger to having the entire poker community rooting for him. In May 2011 Brinkmann found himself heads up for the EPT Grand Final in Madrid, squaring off against the rascally Ivan Freitez, who had made himself quite an unpopular figure during the tournament in the Spanish capital.
Freitez would emerge victorious from that duel, but Brinkmann won €900,000 for that second place and is a good degree more welcome to Rozvadov than one suspects Frietez would have been.
Bodo Sbrzesny has one of those results lists that must make environmentalists weep. He has tournament scores from Las Vegas (USA), Melbourne (Australia) and Mauritius, as well as countless European destinations, suggesting his carbon footprint is larger than the average man on the street. But this is clearly a pretty profitable job for the young German, and he is gradually clambering up the corporate ladder too. At the end of last year, he made the second WPT final table of his career, finishing third in Prague and earning €143,476, comfortably his biggest payday yet.
In contrast to Sbrzesny, Armin Mette's results list is an exercise in economy. He only has three registered tournament scores, but one of them is a fifth place at EPT Berlin, which was worth €180,000. That's not bad for a debut. He has also finished second in a SCOOP event.
Tournament update: The rush of eliminations today has not been quite as rapid as it was yesterday. So far, "only" four players have lost all their 20,000 starting stack, the latest two of whom are Dogan Güngör and Pavel Kellner.
With registration still open for a couple of levels, the final number of players won't be known for two hours at least. But the tournament clock currently shows that we have had 271 players sign up today.