2011 PCA Main Event: Day 4 Level 22 (cont.), 23 & 24 updates (15,000-30,000, 3,000 ante)


3.20pm: End of level
That's the end of level 24. Th eplayers are off for a well earned 15 minute break. Get your caffeine in. -- RD

3.20pm: Wiemes wiped out
Wesley Wiemes is out in 31st place. Having got some good fortune in his last all-in it went the other way this time against Nicholas Kamen.

Nicholas Kamen opened then called the all-in which amounted to about 340,000. Wiemes showed K♠9♠ to Nicholas Kamen's Q♠J♠. Wiemes seemed confident but the flop of A♠8♥T♣ gave Nicholas Kamen outs. The K♦ on the turn was one of them and the 4♠ on the river was irrelevant. - SB

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Wesley Wiemes, out in 31st

3.17pm: Stelmak nicks it
Dmitriy Stelmak made it 66,000 and got a call from Mike Sowers to see a 8♣2♣[10h] flop. Dmitriy then bet out another 87,000, called again by Sowers. Both then checked the Q♦ turn and K♥ river - and Stelmak showed K♦J♦ to take the pot. He's up to a million while Sowers has around 1.2million -- SY

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Dmitry Stelamk deep in thought

3.15pm: Bou diddly
Down to less than 200,000 chips Wesley Wiemes just moved all-in with T♣2♣ against Walid Bou-Habib's A♠3♥. Wiemes was out of his chair fearing the worst but actually got a good deal with a board of 9♣6♣T♥5♦T♦. Good for a fist pump, a double up, and a little more than 300,000. - SB

3:12pm: Marquez unafraid
It was down to a blind vs blind confrontation between Bolivar Palacios and Ana Marquez, with Palacios raising out of the small blind, then calling Marquez's three-bet. On a 3♣5♣6♣ flop, Palacios led for 138,000. Marquez didn't shrink. She made it 360,000 to go. Palacios checked dark before the turn, K♥, hit. Marquez thought for a moment before shoving out an entire stack of green 25,000 chips for half a million. Palacios thought for five minutes before folding. Marquez quietly pushed her cards toward the dealer and stacked another nearly half a million of Palacios' stack among her chips. --BW

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Palacios and Marquez going head to head

3.09pm: Barbieri bust
Another elimination from the feature table saw Marcio Barbieri bust Shayne Khanna. We think all the chips went in pre-flop with Barbieri holding 9♠9♥ to Khanna's A♦K♣. The board ran out 5♥A♥3♠2♠Q♣ to pair Khanna's ace. -- MC

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Shayne Khanna dropping the fist pump at the TV table

3.03pm: Stein slays another
Eric Froehlich is out. Sam Stein had put in a pre-flop raise only for Froehlich to move all-in from the small blind for around 900,000. Stein called instantly.

Stein: K♦K♥
Froehlich: 4♠4♣

Froehlich was in a world of pain, but he liked the 3♠6♥5♠ flop which added an open-ended straight draw to his outs. The turn was K♣ giving a set to Stein but he
still had that straight to dodge. The river was a harmless 9♦ and Froehlich got up to shake Stein's hand and departed to the cash desk. Stein is up to around 2.5million. -- SY

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Sam Stein has gone on a tear this level...

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...and Eric Froelich was one of his victims

2.59pm:The Stein way
A big pot just went the way of Sam Stein against Edward Sabat. The drama came on the turn, with the board already showing 4♠5♦T♣A♠. Stein, in the small blind, checked to Sabat on the button who bet 100,000. Stein called.

The river came 9♠ and again Stein checked again. Sabat bet another 200,000 before Stein came to life, moving all-in for more than a million. Sabat shuffled in his chair and then hardly moved for four minutes. Eventually he mucked his cards. A bit pot that takes Stein past 2,000,000 chips. -- SB

2.55pm: Toby Lewis out
Toby Lewis has just been busted by Chris Oliver. The hand took place on the TV table so it's hard to gather exactly what happened but Lewis was the first into the pot, so I've been told.

Lewis: 7♠7♦
Oliver: K♣Q♣

The flop couldn't have been much better for Lewis; 6♥5♣4♦, giving him an open-ended straight draw as well as a made hand. The turn changed all of that with the K♠ and the 4♠ river kept Oliver ahead.

I was told that it had gone in pre-flop but given that flop it's possible that it went in post. Either way, Lewis is out and won't be adding to his PCA title this time around. -- RD

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Toby Lewis will have to wait before adding to his trophy cabinet

2.50pm: Easy way to go
He'd probably been faced with much tough decisions over the previous three days, but in the event it was a very easy one that ended his event. John Andress, a PokerStars qualifier from the US, got his last chips in with J♣J♥ but found himself up against the Q♣Q♠ of Martin Mathis in the next seat.

No dramas on the flop, and Andress was on his way to the cash desk to pick up $59,000. Not too shabby. -- SY

2.44pm: Germany flying, Gould out
If this was a national team event America would be way out in front at the moment, but they'd be keeping a wary eye on Germany. Max Lehmanski and Rafael Golka have both just won large pots pushing Deutschland further ahead in the chip counts.

Max Lehmanski struck first winning a 1.2 million pot against Mike Sowers. The German had opened the pot to 69,000 and was called by Sowers on the button. He bet 85,000 on the 5♦6♥3♣ flop, 160,000 on the J♠ turn and a final 285,000 on the 4♥ river getting called by Sowers every step of the way. Lehmanski showed A♥2♥ for a rivered straight. Lehmanski is up to 3.7 million.

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Lehmanski is approaching the 4 million mark

Golka managed to knock out Alan Gould in dramatic circumstances. He opened for 77,000 from early position and Gould moved all-in for 480,000. Matt Lichtie went deep into the tank and wrapped his hoodie across most of his face. He eventually decided to retreat, wisely so as it would happen. The action passed back to Golka who made the call.

Golka: Q♣Q♠
Gould: K♦K♥

Lichtie rose to his feet and said to a supporter on the rail: "You know it's going to be an ace ball for a million," admitting that he had passed a big ace. The flop dropped 3♣6♣3♥, the turn was the T♣ before a Gould-crushing Q♦ fell on the river. Gould slapped the table, stood up and gritted his teeth. And he didn't even know it was the case queen, Gould did. "That was the case queen, man. The case queen!" he repeated to his friend behind the rail. Gould out, Golka up to 1.2 million. -- RD

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Rafael Golka

2.40pm: First lady
Ilan Rouah is the latest player to fall victim Ana Marquez. There was an early position raise before Rouah shoved for around 500,000 from the cut-off and Marquez called from the button. The initial raiser folded to leave it heads-up.

Rouah: J♥9♥
Marquez: K♣K♥

The board ran J♠7♦6♥8♥Q♠. Rouah picked up a host of outs but the Spaniard faded them all. -- MC

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Ana Marquez is battering her opponents

2.30pm: The last 36
Bryan Colin opened for 60,000 in middle position, his big back in its third hour of massage. The action reached Galen Hall on the button who went to his chips and raised, making it another 135,000 to go on. Colin's expression didn't change as he rolled backwards and forward, eventually announcing all-in and getting a quick fold from Hall.

There were more all-ins on the table behind them. Michael Pesek shoving for around 500,000 only to find no takers. Still 36 players remain. - SB

2.25pm: Nice flop
Josh Bergman managed to fade to unders and flopped a full house for measure as he doubled-up to just over 1.1 million chips. He raised from the cut-off and called all-in when Joel Patchell set him in from the small blind. Bergman tabled J♣J♥ to Patchell's 7♠8♠ and the board ran 9♥9♦9♣3♣J♦. Patchell drops to around 900,000 after the hand. -- MC

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JOsh Bergman has scored a vital double up

2.15pm: Stein's pot
On a 7♣8♦[10d] flop, Sam Stein bet out 87,000 only for Eric Froehlich to bump it up to 210,000. Stein thought for a minute or two about this, and then decided he was good to raise it up again - to 460,000 this time. Now it was Froehlich's turn to fret. He gave it a good three minutes before folding. For his trouble, Stein flashed [8][10] for two pair. -- SY

2.10pm: Rouah to whimper
Ilan Rouah started this one off with a raise to 68,000, getting calls from Ana Marquez in the next seat along and Calvin Anderson from the big blind. The flop was 6♣3♠9♦ and Anderson checked, Rouah made it 165,000, Marques folded and Anderson called.

That put the wind up Rouah who slowed down to check down the 4♦ turn and 5♣ river. Anderson's [10d][10c] was good against the Frenchman's [a][k] -- SY

2.05pm: Returning to their seats
Here's a look at the featured table as players return to the fight.


1:50: Break time
Players will be back soon to continue to the fight down to the final 24.

1:49pm: Patchell refuses to budge
Some stubborness from Joel Patchell won him a sizeable pot from Josh Bergman. Patchell had made it 57,000 before Bergman re-raised to 129,000. Call. The flop was 9♠9♣A♦ and Patchell check-called Bergman's 105,000 bet. The turn was Q♣ and again Patchell check-called, 145,000 this time. Finally, on the 5♥ river Patchell checked and Bergman did the same,perhaps realising he was not going to shake his man off.
Patchell peeled A♠[10s] and Bergman mucked, very slowly. That sends Patchell up to 1.6million while Bergman slips to 600,000. -- SY

1.40pm: All the ingredients for a big hand
A board of K♠8♣9♦T♣, two TV cameras, two boom mics, a spare dealer, a floor person, a producer, some guy who jumped the crash barrier and a couple of reporters. Just a standard hand in the Main Event.

Galen Hall and Edward Sabat were involved and had got this far by betting and calling. At this point Hall in the cut-off had checked to Sabat on the button who made it 31,000 to play. Hall then raised, 149,000 more which Sabat called for a J♣. Hall now bet another 275,000. Sabat called. Hall didn't want to show but did, turning over 6♠5♠. Sabat showed K♦Q♦ to take the pot, moving up towards the 1,500,000 mark. - SB


Eddy Sabat

1.34pm: Oliver loses a chunk to Palacios
Bolivar Palacios just took a 460,000 sized chunk out of chip leader Chris Oliver in a battle of the blinds. Oliver raised to 59,000 from the small blind and Palacios made the call from the big.

Oliver fired a 67,000 c-bet at the 4♠2♠4♣ flop and Palacios made the call again. Another 139,000 on the 3♥ turn failed to shake the man from Panama off of his hand. Call. The 5♦ hit the river and Oliver finally looked like giving up on the hand.

He checked and Palacios pushed 200,000 across the line. Oliver slowly made the call and Palacios showed A♣6♦ for the rivered nut straight. Quite the river card for Palacios. -- RD


Chris Oliver

1:29pm: Gibbons gone
Mike Sowers came in for a raise and William Gibbons shoved over the top for around 400,000. He might have gotten by Sowers, but Paulo Rink got in the middle with a pair of tens. Gibbons only had A♦5♠. The tens held and Gibbons is gonzo.--BW

1.28pm: Someone get a forty for Jansen
Sander Jansen is the 40th place finisher taking home $59,000 place after busting to Calvin Anderson. All the cards went in on the turn with the board reading K♥5♠Q♠A♠. Jansen had a pair and a flush draw with K♠4♣ to Anderson's K♣J♥ but failed to hit on the T♥ river. -- MC

1.20pm: Big one for Marquez
Ana Marquez, now the only lady left in the field, just got a huge double up to more than 2.5 million in a shocker of a hand for Philippe Plouffe. He had raised to 54,000 from the button before Marquez re-raised to 130,000 from the big blind. Call. Both checked the A♥6♣J♦ flop, but then it all kicked off on the 9♦ turn.

Marquez checked, then Plouffe bet 275,000. Marquez counted some chips, then announced calmly that she was betting 790,000. "Wow!" Plouffe muttered. Wow indeed. He had Marquez covered, and announced he was all-in. She called instantly:

Plouffe: 9♠9♥
Marquez: J♥J♠

It was a set-over-set for the lady from Spain, leaving Plouffe with just one out on the river. The [10d] was not it. He still has well over 2 million though. -- SY


Ana Marquez

1.18pm: Double for Baksic
Gregory Baksic doubled up to around 600,000 after getting all-in with jacks against Ed Sabat's A♦K♥. Cries of "hooooooold" on the rail were duly obeyed by the dealer as the board ran 2♥7♣9♣[10h]3♠. -- SY

1.17pm: Valente out
A mentioned at 1.05pm there were two short stacks at the TV table. Now there's just one, although he'd argue he's not so short now. Peter Valente shoved from the button for 212,000 and was looked up by Marcio Barbieri in the small blind. Valente's A♣2♠ in dire straits against the Brazilian's A♠J♣. The flop gave some chance to chop with 6♥3♠6♦ but a 7♥ and K♣ turn and river left Barbieri out front, who appears to be on well over half-a-million now. -- RD

1.15pm: Stein stuck
Heads-up to a flop of 3♣4♣5♥ Bolivar Palacios bet 175,000 from the big blind which Sam Stein called two seats along. Both checked the 9♣ turn for a Q♣ on the river. Palacios checked and Stein bet 213,000. Palacios wasted little time in calling, showing his J♠K♥ to Stein's 8♣8♥ which was met by gentle fury from Stein who slammed his cards down and slapped the top of his stack. - Stein down to 650,000. - SB


Sam Stein

1.12pm: Bergman bags lucky break
PokerStars qualifier Martin Mathis is down to 220,000 after getting three-outered by Josh Bergman in a battle of the blinds. Mathis informed us he lost the 1.2 million pot to Bergman holding ace-king. Bergman had ace-queen in the big blind and spiked the three-outer to stay alive. -- MC

1.05pm: Short shoves
Both Peter Valente and Marcio Barbieri are short stacked. They are sat in seats one and two on the TV table and have both been all-in during the last few hands. Valente's was a late position shove while Barbieri's was a little more fruitful coming as it did over the top of Chris Oliver's 52,000 open raise. Neither were called, both are still in with a shot. -- RD

12:58pm: So long, Cerasti
Within minutes of our reporting two women left in the field, the number is now one. Erika Cerasti was down to her last 250,000 and pushed all-in with A♥5♠. That might have worked had Max Lehmanski not woken up with A♦K♠. The dealer peeled off the following: A♠6♥J♥Q♠J♣. Cerasti is gone, leaving Ana Marquez as the last woman sitting (and, yes, I'll insist on not calling her the "last woman standing," because she is quite literally not standing at all). --BW


Erika Cerasti

1pm: Aces for Ruiz
Pablo Martin-Romo Ruiz has recovered to his starting stack of just over 600,000 after picking up aces. He raised from the cut-off and bet three streets. Aaron McCready defended from the big blind and check-called all three streets. The final board read 8♥8♠9♦7♥2♠ and McCready's 5♦5♠ was no match for Ruiz's A♠A♥. -- MC

12.55pm: Golka doubles
Rafael Golka has doubled up to more than a million after getting his J♦J♣ all-in against Joel Patchell's [10s][10h]. If he was in a sweet spot, it got even better on the 9♦5♦K♥J♠7♦ board. --SY

12.50pm: Ladies
We have two ladies still in the field. Erika Cerasti, a PokerStars qualifier from France is sitting on 300,000, and faring even better is Ana Marquez, a PokerStars qualifier from Spain, with more than 1.2million. -- SY

12.48pm: Rink-a-dink
Paulo Rink, the former German soccer star, is up to more than a million. He just three-bet Calvin Anderson off a hand, and then did the same to Mike Sowers a few hands later. -- SY

12.46pm: Action from the feature table
It's a bit cagey at the feature table at the moment. Anton Ionel has won two small pots, one of which was a walk. Chris Oliver limped into Toby Lewis' big blind from the cut-off and fired a 2♦2♥K♦ flop and took it down unopposed. Tim Finne scooped the last pot. He raised to 52,000 under-the-gun and was called by Chris Moneymaker in the big blind. A simple 52,000 c-bet on a Q♦5♣T♣ flop was enough to beat the Team PokerStars Pro out of the pot. -- RD

12.50pm: Golka doubles
Another all-in, this time between Rafael Golka and Matt Lichtie, Golka coming out of it with a double-up, showing T♣T♠ to Lichtie's A♣K♥. The board ran 6♥Q♠T♥4♠Q♥ to send Golka up to around 560,000. - SB


Rafael Golka

12:47: Curtains for Curtin
Steven Curtin had recently suffered a suckout in which he'd lost a big chunk of his stack to ace-ten. So, when he came in for a raise to 56,000 and was put all in by Philippe Plouffe, it was clear what Curtin was thinking.

"Maybe it's destiny," he said, called, and turned over A♥T♠. It was no good against Plouffe's A♠K♠.

The board ran out Q♠9♠7♥J♣Q♦ and Curtin exited stage left.--BW

12.45pm: Spadavecchia busted
John Spadavecchia is out. On a flop of J♣8♣8♦ he checked from the big blind to Philippe Plouffe who bet 100,000. Spadavecchia then moved all in for around 800,000 which Plouffe called, showing A♣J♥ to Spadavecchia's 7♥7♦, good for a fist pump from Plouffe.

Spadavecchia needed help but it didn't come on either the 5♣ turn or Q♣ river. Spadavecchia looked over at his wife on the rail, looking apologetic. She just smiled and waved him off to get his money. - SB

12.40pm: Curtin crushing, then crushed
Steve Curtin took his time in calling the shove from Wesley Wiemes, but when he did he was a happy man. Curtin had opened and Wiemes shoved for his 400,000 stack. Curtin eventually made the call.

Curtin: A♦Q♥
Wiemes: A♣T♦

"No ten, I'm dominating, no ten," shouted Curtin, as the flop ran out 5♦3♣9♦. The turn was the 7♥ and Curtin looked set to break the million mark. The river, however, was the T♣ and Wiemes leapt towards the rail to celebrate with friends. He's back up to 800,000. Curtin down to 375,000. -- RD


Steve Curtain

12.37pm: Cezarescu feels the cold
Robert Cezarescu is the latest player eliminated after feeling the feeling the force of the big stacked Max Lehmanski. Paulo Rink started proceedings with a raise to 50,000 before Cezarescu three-bet to 128,000 from the button and Lehmanski four-bet to 275,000 from the small blind. Cezarescu shoved and Lehmanski snapped him off.

Lehmanski: K♣K♠
Cezarescu: A♠K♦

The board ran Q♣2♣3♣6♦7♦ to add another half million or so to Lehmanski's stack that sits at 2.8 million. - MC

12.31pm: Level up
The level has gone up. We are now in level 23 with blinds at 12,000-24-000 and a 2,000 ante. -- SY

12.30pm: Geyer gone
Adam Geyer is out, eliminated during a feature table all-in against Chris Oliver. Geyer opened for 44,000 which Oliver raised to 117,000 before Geyer moved all-in for around 400,000. Oliver called showing A♠Q♥ to Geyer's J♥J♠. The board ran 5♣6♦5♥7♣Q♣, the river card ending Geyer's tournament. -- SB


Adam Geyer

12.28pm: Beren disappears in Plouffe of smoke
Eric Beren's PCA Main Event is over, getting tangled with Philippe Plouffe in a flop that was designed for action. That flop was 5♦J♣5♣ and Beren, who was in the small blind, checked before Plouffe in the big blind made it 80,000. Max Weinberg was also in the hand on the button, but he folded.

Now things perked up a little. When it was folded back to Beren he re-raised to 200,000. Plouffe took about five seconds before announcing he was all-in. Beren, with around 800,000 behind, slumped in his chair. He was covered, and his tournament was at risk should he elect to call. He called!

Beren: A♣4♣
Plouffe: 8♠5♥

Beren was in trouble; he needed to hit a club without the board pairing. The turn was no good, 6♠, while the river of J♠ made Plouffe's full house. Plouffe, a PokerStars qualifier from Canada, let out a "yes, yes, whooooo". As well he might - he's up to 2.3million. -- SY

12:17pm: Perepletchikov, a name we won't have to type anymore
Eric Froehlich started to the day with about a 200,000 lead on Russia's Oleg Perepletchikov. That would become important within the first few hands of the day. Froehlich came in for a raise to 47,000, then called the Perepletchikov small blind raise to 122,000. On a flop of 5♦6♦8♦, Perepletchikov led out for 220,000. Froehlich announced he was all-in, and Perepletchikov quickly called with K♠K♣. Bad timing for that, as Froelich had flopped the ace-high flush with A♦9♦. No miracle runner, runner and Perepletchikov was gone. --BW


Eric Froehlich

12.17pm: Double up for Spadavecchia
A crucial double up for John Spadavecchia. He moved all-in behind a raise to 125,000 from Wesley Wiemes. Spadavecchia shoved for 280,000 and was called by Wiemes who turned over Q♥Q♦.

Spadavecchia stood up, looked around for someone he might recognise, found her and told her the situation. Then he waited as the TV cameras arrived. This took some time so he sat down again, the two microphone booms hovering over his head making it appear more like a press conference than a make or break hand.

Eventually the board: 9♦8♠A♦3♠8♣. Spadavecchia pumped his fist on the flop. He doubles to to close to 600,000 while Wiemes slips down the rankings to 400,000. - SB


John Spadavecchia

12.12pm: First all-in of the day
The pace has carried on right from the off. We have the first all-in of the day and it's at the Moneymaker/Oliver/Lewis table. Tim Finne opened under-the-gun and was called in the small blind by Anton Ionel. The Romanian checked the 9♠6♠4♣ flop to Finne who bet 66,000 and Ionel check-raised to 133,000. Finne moved all-in for 600,000 total and Ionel passed. Unsurprisingly, this line-up has been put on the TV feature table and will limit our access. A bit of neck craning and elbowing of cameramen should do it. -- RD

12.05pm: And they're off
The race to get down from 48 players to 24 has begun. Cards are in the air, folks. -- SY

11.15pm: Back for Day 4
Welcome back to Day 4 of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure main event. Things have been moving pretty quickly around here. Today just 48 players from the original cast of 1,560 return with the intention of playing down to 24 in front of the television cameras. There's no telling how long it will last, and as spectators we never like to tempt fate with these things, but with the way things have been going this might be a quick day. There, I said it.

We can't work out why things have skipped along at such a pace; we'll leave those phenomena to the National Geographic Channel. But what it has done is make this one of the most don't-miss main events we can remember.

Play starts at 12noon, and that's 40 minutes away. Plenty of time to get the Jamba Juice in, coffee if you prefer, and warm up your "refresh" finger. Stand by.

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Chip leader Chris Oliver's chip stack

PokerStars Blog reporting team in the Bahamas (in order of extra "options" with this morning's Jamba Juice):Simon Young, Rick Dacey and Brad Willis (shot of protein), Stephen Bartley (protein, anti-oxidents and the caffeine), Marc Convey and Alex Villegas (protein, anti-oxidents, the caffeine, adrenaline and a defibrillator)