LAPT8 Peru: Opening gambit

There are 15 tables' worth of players presently pushing their chips back and forth, all engaging in the usual negotations, provocations, challenges, dares, and games of chicken caused by the cards being dealt to each.

This marks the fourth of six Latin American Poker Tour stops for Season 8, following the Bahamas (January), Chile (March), and Panama (May). From here the tour winds to Punta del Este, Uruguay in September, then comes the Grand Final in Sao Paulo, Brazil in November.

Coming into the day, there were three players left in the LAPT Peru field who had made LAPT final tables this season, and all three made their deep runs in Viña del Mar, Chile -- Brazil's Renata Teixeira (who finished runner-up), Argentina's Nacho Barbero (who took fourth), and Chile's Justo Esquivel (who finished fifth).

After an hour of play today, two of those three remain.

Teixeira entered the day with 33,700, a bit below the average, but ran into trouble after losing a big blind-versus-blind hand with ace-nine versus an opponent's ace-ten, going out soon afterwards.

Esquivel meanwhile nursed a stack of about 15,000 for much of the first hour while managing to steer clear of trouble.


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Justo Esquivel

By contrast, Barbero has been active, having started Day 2 with 113,000 which was good for a spot just outside the top 10 to start the day. He's emerged from various early skirmishes with about 80,000 at the moment.


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Nacho Barbero

Only a couple of tables' worth of players departed along with Teixeira during Level 11, leaving about 115, with everyone still chasing start-of-day leader Chadi Moustapha who at the moment is sitting with arms folded behind his leading stack of 180,000, mostly letting others get on with their transactions, engagements, interrogations, feignings, and games of deceit.

Photography from LAPT8 Peru by Carlos Monti. You can also follow the action in Spanish here and in Portuguese here.

Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.