2011 PCA $25K High Roller: Day 3, level 23-25 updates (25,000-50,000, 5,000 ante)

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpg5:37pm: Playing higher
The players have now moved on to 30,000-60,000-5,000 blinds. Will Molson remains the chip leader. We've begun a new post, which you can find here.

5:32pm: Approximate chip counts
With three players remaining, here are some rough counts on the stacks:

Will Molson: 3.9 million
Max Lykov: 2.3 million
Leo Fernandez: 1.3 million


Will Molson

5:27pm: Molson and Seidel race to the death, Seidel loses
Erik Seidel raised to 125,000 in the small blind, leaving himself around 1 million behind. Will Molson checked his cards and announced, "All-in." Seidel didn't look necessarily pleased about it, but said, "I call." Molson turned up pocket fives to fight against Seidel's A♥Q♦. The board ran out 9♣T♠2♦3♦J♣ and Seidel was gone in fourth place for $295,960. --BW


5.15pm: State of play
Still four-handed and Will Molson continues to apply the pressure. On this one he made it 100,000 from the button and Max Lykov called from the big blind. The flop was A♣7♦[10c] and Lykov check-called Molson's 130,000. Both checked the 8♣ turn, but on the 7♥ river Lykov checked then folded when Molson reached for 275,000 more.

Here are the approximate stacks right now:

Will Molson, 2,650,000
Max Lykov, 2,200,000
Erik Seidel, 1,600,000
Leo Fernandez, 980,000
Fernandez has gone from the big stack to the shortie in recent levels. -- SY

5:06pm: Molson picking on Fernandez
Now that Will Molson has some chips, his days of having to worry about tangling with Leo Fernandez are over. The two just saw a flop out of the blind reading A♠5♠J♥. Molson led at it for 60,000 and got the call. The amount was 140,000 from Molson on the Q♥ turn. Fernandez called again. When the T♦ hit on the river, Molson put 280,000 in the pot, well enough to get Fernandez to fold. --BW

5pm: Seidel slips while Molson has the Will
Seidel opened for 125,000 in the small blind. Will Molson called from the big blind for a flop of T♥K♦6♦.

eric seidel hr3.jpg
Eric Seidel

Seidel then bet another 165,000 which Molson raised to 350,000. Seidel paused before announcing all-in, which Molson snap called. "Wow," said Seidel, as Molson turned over A♦A♠. Seidel could only manage A♣6♠.

will molson all in hr3.jpg
Will Molson

The turn came 5♦ and the river 8♦ to double up Molson who now sits with around 2,550,000, the all in being for 1,130,000. Seidel paid him off, his own stack down to 1,450,000. - SB

4.53pm: Lykov wins, loses
The first hand of four-handed play saw Max Lykov raise and take the blinds and antes. Next hand Erik Seidel limped and everyone folded while Lykov checked his option in the big blind. Both checked the 7♣J♦5♠ flop, then Lykov bet 125,000 on the [kh[ turn. Call. On the K♦ river it was Seidel who bet out, picking up the pot. -- SY

4:45pm: Metaal gone in fifth
After being crippled, tripling up, then doubling up again, Dutchman Govert Metaal has gone bust. He shoved it in with A♥3♦. Will Molson over-shoved with pocket jacks. Metaal was dead on the flop when Molson flopped quads. Metaal earns $240,470 for his efforts. --BW

4.36pm: Cards in the air again
Blinds are now up to 25,000-50,000 with a 5,000 ante. -- SY

4.30pm: Team PokerStars Pro news
Some happy news from the side events, where Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin has just shipped the $1,500 No Limit Hold'em event for $49,000. He was up against Kevin O'Donnell heads-up and took it down when he flopped the nuts with 4♦5♦ on 2-3-6 flop. -- SY

4.25pm: Break
That's the end of the level. There is now a 15-minute break while the 1,000 chips are colored up. -- SY

4.22pm: Pedal to the Metaal
Two hands to keep Govert Metaal alive in the High Roller final. The first involved Metaal moving all-in from under-the-gun for 207,000 with A♣3♦. He was called by Will Molson next to him who showed A♦5♦ but the board of 7♣9♦A♠7♥6♣ ended with a split pot.

On the next hand Eric Seidel opened for 270,000 in the small blind which Metaal called in the big blind, turning over Q♦T♦ to Seidel's K♦Q♠.

It looked to be over for Metaal on a board of A♣J♣7♣3♦ until the river card K♥ gave him the straight. Metaal back up to 500,000 chips. - SB


Happier now: Govert Metaal

4.18pm: Full Metaal Jacket
Just when he needed it most, Govert Metaal come out all guns blazing for a triple up. He was only on 65,000, I grant you, but a triple up is a triple up.

After being crippled in the hand described below, it was folded around to the Dutchman on the button and he moved all-in. Will Molson liked his hand and re-raised to 120,000 from the small blind, only for Leo Fernandez to raise again - all in, covering Molson. Molson looked disgusted and mucked.

Fernandez: 4♣4♥
Molson: Q♠[10h]

The flop was kind to Metaal, coming Q♣8♣5♠, the turn was 2♠ and the Q♥ river made him trips. He's back up to 300,000 but that's still only five big blinds. -- SY


William Molson can't believe it

4:12pm:Metaal cripples himself, Molson back in the hunt
Play folded to the blinds where Govert Metaal looked at his cards and thought for a long time before putting in a huge raise, one that would commit him to any shove by Will Molson. So, when Molson looked at his hand and shoved for 564,000, Metaal insta-called with 7♥J♠. Molson had A♥K♦, ended up pairing his king, and doubled to more than 1.1 million. Metaal, meanwhile, is crippled. --BW

4.10pm: Seidel picks up chips from Fernandez
On a flop of A♦5♠T♥ Eric Seidel checked from the big blind before Leo Fernandez made it 100,000 to play. Seidel called for a 9♣ turn card which both players checked. On the 3♦ river Seidel bet 250,000. Fernandez moved in his seat a little before eventually calling, giving a hindsight nod when Seidel turned over A♥9♠. - SB

4.05pm: Some little chunks of action
Max Lykov made it 90,000 on the small blind and Erik Seidel called to see a Q♥2♥K♠ flop. Lykov, first to act, checked then folded when Seidel bet 100,000.

William Molson then decided to shove all-in for 560,000 but got no customers. Seidel took the next hand, raising from the button and getting no action.

Finally, Lykov made it 80,000 from under the gun and Leo Fernandez called from the big blind. Both checked the A♥5♦[10s] flop, and on the 9♣ turn Fernandez check-folded Lykov's 100,000 bet. -- SY

3:51pm: Lykov nips into Fernandez's stack
After play folded to Leo Fernandez in the small blind, he made it 120,000 to play. Max Lykov called in the big blind and they saw a flop of 2♥J♦3♥. Both players checked to the A♥ on the turn. Fernandez check-called a 130,000 bet. When the river came as the 6♦, Fernandez checked, and Lykov pushed out a stack. Fernandez looked up at the dealer and asked, "How much?"

"Two ninety-five," the dealer replied.

"I call," said Fernandez.

The problem was this: the bet was actually 395,000. After the floor came over, the bet was re-stated and Fernandez still called. Lykov showed him K♥7♥ for second nuts and the win. --BW

3.40pm: All quiet
A quiet spell, all things considered. There are still the all-ins we've seen since the start it's just no one is calling them.

Will Molson is doing the shoving. He's the short stack and pushed first for 764,000 and then a few hands later with 571,000. Neither time did a caller step forward.

Leo Fernandez also shoved. He did it behind a button raise by Govert Metaal. The Dutchman folded leaving Fernandez just short of 3,000,000 chips. -- SB

3.27pm: Every little helps
Erik Seidel has inched up to 1,560,000 after taking two small pots. First William Molson bet 60,000 and Seidel call from the big blind to see a 9♦[10d]8♥ flop. The turn was a dangerous 6♦ and Seidel bet out 60,000. Molson gave it a bit of thought but mucked.

Next hand Seidel opened from the small blind for 95,000 and Govert Metaal defended his big blind. On the 7♦9♣7♦ flop Seidel made a continuation bet of 115,000 and Metaal folded sharpish. -- SY


Erik Seidel

3:22pm: Level up
The five remaining players have just moved up to 20,000-40,000-4,000 blinds.--BW

3:18pm: Seidel puts Lykov in his place
Just because Erik Seidel is from the old school doesn't mean he can't throw down with the young'uns. Witness his recent confrontation with Max Lykov. The Russian Team Pro came in for a min-raise to 60,000 and faced a quick three-bet from Seidel to 140,000. Lykov wasted little time before making the bet 262,000. This time Seidel just called. On a flop of K♠5♠3♥, Lykov checked, then folded to a 250,000 bet from Seidel. --BW

3.12pm: Bye bye Baker
David Baker is the latest player to be eliminated, sent to the rail by Leo Fernandez.
Baker moved all-in from early position for just short of 500,000 chips. The action was folded to Fernandez in the small blind. He checked his cards, protected them and waited for the count to be confirmed. Then he raised all-in making it a heads-up showdown.

Fernandez A♣Q♥
Baker 4♠4♦

The board ran 3♦K♥J♠Q♣J♦ to send Baker to the rail in sixth place, earning $203,475. - SB


David Baker, busto

3.06pm: Shoving
A little lull, peppered only by pre-flop raises and takes, is broken by William Molson moving all-in from under the gun for 503,000. Max Lykov looked semi-interested, but folded like everyone else. -- SY

3:02pm: That didn't take long
Within minutes of busting out of the $25,000 High Roller in eighth place, Jason Mercier was registered for and sitting in the last 2011 PCA event, a--get this--$10,000 turbo tourney. Why not, right?--BW

2:54pm: Chip leaders tangling
With seven players remaining, Leo Fernandez and Max Lykov sit atop the leaderboard. They have apparently decided there is no such thing as Team Pro or chip lead respect to be observed. Just now, Fernandez came in for a raise to 80,000 and Lykov called. On a K♦3♣3♠ flop, Fernandez made it 104,000 and Lykov called. The turn was the 7♠. Fernandez didn't shrink and led out for 210,000. This time, Lykov relented and sent the pot over to his fellow Team Pro. --BW


2.50pm: Marafioti busts
Matt Marafioti is out in seventh place, dispatched by Team PokerStars Pro Leo Fernandez.

Fernandez opened for 80,000 in middle position before Marafioti raised all-in from the button, saying . The blinds folded leaving Fernandez with the decision. He called showing 8♦8♥ to Marafioti's A♣Q♠ for a classic race.

The board ran 5♥7♣2♣6♣7♦ sending Marafioti to the rail, earning $166,480. - SB


Matt Marafioti

2.40pm: Metaal bites into Fernandez
It was folded around to Govert Metaal on the button and he raised it up to 63,000. William Molson gave up his small blind but Leo Fernandez, our chip leader, called to defend his big blind. Both checked the [10c]K♦[10h] flop, and also the 6♠ turn. On the Q♦ river Fernandez seemed to have given up and checked once more, then folded when Metaal bet 101,000. -- SY

2:33pm: Jason Mercier eliminated
With play folded around to the blinds, Jason Mercier moved all-in from the small blind for 330,000. Govert Metaal called in the big blind with pocket sevens. Mercier turned up Q♣6♠. He failed to catch a queen and was gone in eighth place for $129,480. As he left, Mercier asked David Baker, "Do you ship there?" After Baker confirmed the size of Mercier stack, he announced, "Yes." So, Mercier has that going for him...which is nice. --BW


2.30pm: De Vries out in ninth
Shander de Vries becomes out ninth place finisher, making way for our official final table of eight.

He moved all-in on the small blind with 610,000 which was called by Eric Seidel in the big blind.

De Vries K♠8♠
Seidel K♥Q♥

The board ran 2♣3♣6♠2♥T♠ to send the chips to Seidel and left De Cries almost out.

"You have like two chips left," said Jason Mercier helpfully. He was wrong. De Vries had six chips left, yellow ones worth 6,000, half of which would go on the ante on the next hand, the other half to go all-in with 7♦4♦. Govert Metaal called with K♥J♥ and flopped trips.

De Vries out in ninth place, earning $110,985. - SB

2.25pm: How they sit
As they begin nine-handed play on the last table, here's how they sit:

Seat 1: David Baker, 560,000
Seat 2: Jason Mercier, 324,000
Seat 3: Govert Metaal, 755,000
Seat 4: William Molson, 645,000
Seat 5: Leo Fernandez, 2,050,000
Seat 6: Max Lykov, 1,548,000
Seat 7: Matt Mariofioti, 355,000
Seat 8: Shander de Vries, 654,000
Seat 9: Erik Seidel, 625,000

Here's how they look... -- SY


2.15pm: Back again
That's the end of the break and players are settling back in their seats. Just one table is left, but the basic math of this thing is that our nine remaining players need to be whittled down to eight, and then we can start the final table proper.

Team PokerStars Pro Leo Fernandez is our current chip leader with 2,050,000. But there's a long way to go before he can start dreaming about the $1,072,850 first prize.

This is level 23, and blinds are now 15,000-30,000 with a 3,000 ante. -- SY


Leo Fernandez

PokerStars Blog reporting team (in order of current feeling of being unloved): Simon Young, Brad Willis and Stephen Bartley (all in equal measure)