PCA 2012: Three-handed stalemate
Stalemate at the final table as the final three players play on, fairly deep in blinds but Viktor Blom still in the driving seat, stacked up with more than that of Galen Hall and Dan Shak combined.
Blom seems in control in other aspects also. For some time Hall and Shak had been discussing a deal three-handed, reassured that their initial doubts as to their individual tax returns would not be effected by any published pay-out. But Blom was having none of it, convinced no doubt that he was in the best position and playing at the top of his game. As out hand for hand reports suggest, Blom is playing solid poker with little sign of any recklessness that has cost him before.
Eyeball to eyeball: Viktor Blom (left) and Galen Hall
Away from the table the scene is unchanged. The bank of seating remains full. Behind them a standing room area is busy with casual observers sneaking a peek at Blom in the flesh for any potential "I was then when" moment. Coronations in poker are seldom, it would be bad form to miss it.
That still feels some way off though as we play on towards what will be a 30 minute dinner break. Liv Boeree has turned up to watch from the front row, as have a few other players railing their buddies. Ever present has been the Blom clan, their heads permanently cocked back, looking up at the screens above showing the board. Their hair is the same matted mess Blom used to sport (now washed and trimmed and mother-friendly), and the cameras pick them out whenever Blom tangles in a pot.