UKIPT Killarney: Vinny Gavin is the Killarney chip captain
It's said that if you took a long enough lever and had a place to stand you could move the Earth. Well, that's what Archimedes said but then again he did run naked down the streets of Syracuse shouting 'Eureka!' so perhaps you shouldn't trust everything that flew out of his gob. If you took that said same lever and balanced it perfectly it would mean that you'd be slap bang in the middle and that's exactly where we are at the UKIPT Killarney, the centre point of the Season 1 tour. Enough of existential ramblings, who are the overinight chipleaders? They are Irishmen Vinny Gavin (79,850) and Sean Molloy (77,350) who are doing their best to follow in Padraig Parkinson's footsteps and keep the Irish UKIPT titles on homesoil. These two are leading the charge of the 143-strong field that are coming back to play day 2. Over one hundred players fell today from the 253 that contributed to the €253,000 prizepool and another hundred more will face elmination before the payouts begin with a €1,650 handshake for a 32nd place finish.
Nathan Watson (75,125) is leading the charge from the UK players looking to take the title back out of the Emerald Isle but there have been plenty of players in the early chase and some exciting/enigmatic poker played. Manchester final table finisher Dan Owston is the prime candidate for play of the day, one which he freely admits was fuelled by a little tilt. Kate Langshaw had limped under the gun at the 100/200 blind level and had been raised to 700. Owston had called from the small blind with 2♥2♠ and check-called 1,650 on the J♥3♥6♠ flop, 3,100 on the 5♦ turn and a final 6,200 - from his opponent's 11,000 stack - on the 9♣ river. A fail here would have left Owston with a mite over 2,000. 'I would have put him in for my last few chips if I thought he'd call,' said Owston who refused to show his hand until his opponent showed his [a][q]. Fishy calls or Brunsonesque underpair to the board bluff catch? We'll leave that to your discretion but we'd like to err towards the latter. Owston finished the day on 40,350.
Enough of that, back to our chipleader Gavin. The 27-year old from Galway is a former poker pro who now works as a casino manager. He was down to 6,000 towards the end of the day but had a storming last level ripping his way up to almost 80k. He got J♦8♦ in on a 9♦T♦[x] flop against sixes pocket sixes and hit a jack. Another double up with ace-king took him up to 40,000 but on the final hand of the night his A♠8♠ tunred an ace after getting it in against K-J on a K♠J♠ flop pushed him into the chip lead. That's quite a rush.
Despite that as Irish comps go the play has been largely sensible, in comparison to the normal insanity that goes on anyway... There's a definite sense of tournament simmering and a palpable sense that day 2 is going to see some large explosions. Join us for blow ups, burn outs and bluff catches from 2pm.
Check up with all the action from the day by clicking on the links below.
PokerStars Blog reporting team at UKIPT Killarney: Rick Dacey and Nick Wright.