PokerStars Festival Marbella: €700,000 guaranteed Main Event starts today
Good afternoon all, and welcome to a bright and sunny Marbella. Or, to put it another way, welcome to Marbella.
We've been running events in conjunction with Casino Marbella since 2013. For the past four years it was a Estrellas/UKIPT mash up but this week sees the PokerStars Festival pitch up here for the first time.
The week-long festival features 17 events and today the daddy of them all - the Main Event - gets under way. The most significant note to make about the Main Event is its guarantee: the prize pool will be at least €700,000, even if it's just you and me who turn up.
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That seems unlikely given that the festival, which started on Monday, has got off to one hell of a flyer. The first marquee event was the €170 MegaStack. It was the fourth time that PokerStars had run such an event - either as a stand alone or at a Festival - and it smashed it. Smashed records that is. The 761 runners eclipsed all previous MegaStacks and the winner will pick up €20,700. That's some ROI on a €170 buy-in.
As the Main Event just gets started the MegaStack will play to a winner today. As will the Turbo Win the Button. That event, which started last night, was slated to be done and dusted in one day, the clue's in the name! However, such was the turn out that play was paused with nine players remaining. The final table resumes at 1pm local time and over €8,500 awaits the winner of that one.
But let's turn our focus back to the Main Event for a moment. Today's entrants will play 11 45-minute levels and they'll start with 25,000 in chips with blinds at 50-100. Team PokerStars will be represented by Fatima Moreira de Melo, Marcin Horecki and Lex Veldhuis. While Stephen Hendry has swapped baize for felt and the snooker legend will be hoping for successful pots of a different kind here in Spain.
Day 1B is tomorrow and will the exact same format and anyone who falls foul of poker variance can enter the turbo Day 1C flight at 10pm. The players will then combine for the first time on Friday for Day 2. The bubble will burst on Day 2 and then on Day 3 the plan will be to play down to the final table, which takes place on Sunday.
For those that don't make it that far then there's the Marbella Poker Cup (€330, €100,000 guaranteed) The High Roller (€2,000, €200,000 guaranteed) and various other side events to keep people busy. You can see the entire schedule here.
And for those who want a little divertido to go with their poker we've a poolside player party complete with DJs, BBQ and, of course, a free bar.
We'll be here every step of the way. Stay with us for all the action.