2009 PCA: Level 23 updates

Real-time updates from Level 23 of the 2009 PCA are brought to you by Howard Swains, Paul McGuire, and Brad Willis. Click refresh to see the latest updates.

Levels are 75 minutes long and blinds are 20,000-40,000 (4,000).

Post last updated at 10.05pm

10.05pm--Monster call from Saul, good

Benny Spindler has just learned a valuable lesson: don't try to bluff Kevin Saul. Saul raised 95,000 from the button and Spindler re-popped 275,000 in the small blind. Saul called. The flop was 2s-10c-10d and both players now checked. The turn was the Ks and Spindler bet 375,000, which Saul also called. The river made this board even more threatening: Ah and Spindler seemed to like that too. He bet 650,000. Now Saul went deep, deep into the tank but eventually found a call and Spindler insta-mucked. Saul asked to see it, as is his right, and was shown Q-8c for complete air. Saul didn't have a whole deal better, but his pocket sevens - fourth pair - was good. A breathtaking call from Saul that keeps him well in command of this feature table as we end level 23.


9.50pm--Hoodies go head-to-head

Tony Gregg and Kevin Saul have the most prominent hooded tops on the feature table, and they are also the most eager to get their chip in the pot. This time, Saul raises to 95,000 from under the gun, his standard raise, and Gregg calls on the button. The flop comes 4h-8h-6d and all manner of hooded hell breaks loose. Saul bets 75,000; Gregg makes it 428,000; Saul re-pops to 733,000. That's good enough and Gregg gets out the way, licking wounds of about 500,000.

9:40pm--Gomes Loses Almost 1 Million

Alex Gomes, fresh off his massive double up, opened for a 105,000 raise. Poorya Nazari called. The flop was Ah-Jc-7d. Gomes fired out 185,000 and Nazari called. The turn was the 8s. Gomes slowed down and checked. Nazari bet 274,000 and Gomes called. The river was the 7h. Gomes checked and Nazari pulled out an entire column of white chips and announced a 504,000 bet. Gomes shook his head and called. Nazari tabled Ad-Kh for Aces up. Gomes tossed his hand into the muck and Nazari dragged a pot worth over 2.1 million. Gomes slipped to under 4 million in chips.


9.34pm--Saul on the move again

Kevin Saul just shortened Andy Fitzpatrick's short stack. Fitzpatrick button raised, Saul defended his big blind but they both checked the Qd-8c-6h flop. Saul bet 135,000 on the 4d turn, called, and then Saul fired 250,000 at the 2h river. Fitzpatrick folded.

9.27pm--Gregg gunning at the table captain

Tony Gregg and Kevin Saul get to a flop for 95,000 apiece. They see 8s-6s-2s and both check. The turn is the 5c and Gregg bets 133,000, which Saul calls. The river is the 2d and this time Gregg's bet of 317,000 is good. Saul mucks.

9:21--Gomes takes chip lead

In a classic case of wrong decision, right result, Team PokerStars Pro Alex Gomes just hit what is likely the river of his life. He had come in for a button raise to a little more than 100,000. Adam Geyer re-raised to make it 350,000 straight. The flop came down Tc-6d-5h, Geyer led into the pot for 625,000. Gomes thought for a moment before declaring all-in. Geyer called in an instant and showed Jd-Jh. Gomes held Ad-5c. Geyer's supporters called for a jack. Gomes' friends called for the ace.

And there it was on the river.

Geyer sat short-stacked and devastated about the bad beat. Gomes meanwhile stacked his chips. How many?

"Almost five," he answered

That's five million, folks.


9:14pm--Jan Fernandez Doubles Up

Short-stacked Jan Fernandez shoved from the button for 388,000. Adam Geyer called from the big blind with As-9s. Fernandez tabled Jh-10h. The flop was Jd-Js-3c and Fernandez took the lead with trips. The turn was the 2s and Geyer picked up a couple of outs with a flush draw. The river was the 5c. Fernandez's trips held up and he doubled up to almost 800,000.

9.04pm--Huge pot brews, fizzles out

Tony Gregg opens for 103,000 from two off the button. Benny Chen makes it 275,000 from the small blind. The flop comes 9c-10d-Qs and Chen bets 275,000, which Gregg calls. Both players are more circumspect on the 4h turn and check, seeing a Kc river. That gets Chen betting again, another quarter million, and Gregg counts out the call. Then in a massive anticlimax they both show K-Q to chop the million dollar pot.

8:50pm--David Baker eliminated 16th place

With a raise in front of him, David Baker made his move. All-in was the call. Trouble was, Dustin Dirksen woke up with AdKc, a kew notches better than baker's A-T.

Baker instructed the dealer, "Do it super slow so I can get the most out of my sweat."

The dealer obliged and went as slowly as possible. Baker got his sweat, but no ten or other miracle. For 16th place, he earns $75,000.


8:45pm--In for a long night

If the ensuing levels go anything like the last one, we may very well see the sun come up before bed time. The players are holding on tough. Sixteen players remain on the trek to the eight-handed final table.