UKIPT Dublin: Day 1A, level 1 & 2 updates (50-100)
4.05pm: Break time
Players are now on a 15 minute break, you'll find level three updates in a new post which you can find by clicking here. -- NW
4.03pm: Chip counts
Here are some chip counts from the upstairs room: Dan Williams (23,000), Chris Dowling (25,500), Alex Scott (27,000), Dermot Blain (14,800), Grzegorz Cichocki (9,200), Damian Porebski (18,100), Nicholas Newport (21,100), Nicky Power (9,600) and Alex Ferguson (25,000). -- NW
3.58pm: Dale and Ward meet again
UKIPT Edinburgh final tablists Jamie Dale (3rd, £22,900) and Thomas Ward (4th, £16,800) are sat at the same table but neither are enjoying prolific starts to their Dublin campaign. Dale is down to 7,500 and Ward 12,000.
Ward is currently making the classic poker headphones faux pas: "I'VE GOT ONE OF THOSE," he shouted (note the shouting capitals) after calling the river of a T♣5♦9♠3♠K♠ board and getting shown A♦9♦. His little iPhone ear buds are working overtime. -- RD
3.50pm: Robinson ruined
This tournament is taking place in the ROI and everyone's ROI has just shot up a bit as Owen Robinson has been eliminated. Our Irish spy (Danny) gave us the details saying that he'd suffered a bit of a cooler with pocket fives against [A] on a [A][A][K] board and then lost the last of his chips with [A][K] to pocket kings. -- NW
3.45pm: News in brief
Some news in brief in from the main room, Bong!
- Jamie Dale and Thomas Ward (third and fourth at UKIPT Edinburgh respectively) are on the same table , Ward in the one seat has around 20,000 whilst Dale in the six seat is down to 9,000.
- Craig Brown is up to 16,100, Gerard Harraghy also trending upwards on 18,000 whilst Kevin Letham (14,800) and Richie Lawlor (9,375) have taken minor and major hits during the opening 90 minutes. -- NW
3.41pm: Too late for the rubs
We saw a Tweet a short time ago from Irish cashing sensation* Richie Lawlor, which read:
"Guy 2 to my left is really tilting me with his facial expressions #ukiptdublin #closeyourmouthfish"
By the time we got back to his table to see who the open-mouthed face twitcher was it had been broken. Thinking back though we think there was a good chance that it had been Jon Spinks. We can't say so 100% but for the sake of stirring up some kind of Twitter war reminiscent of the EPT Snowfest heads up between Vladimir Geskenbein and Kevin Vandersmissen, we'll say it's likely. -- RD
*Using the term 'Irish cashing sensation' is what's called artistic license, but he has scored three cashes this season.
3.30pm: Breaking bad?
We've just been told that for today at least tables will be broken from the main room and players funneled to the upstairs 'side room' known as tournament room B. Seems a little strange but despite being up a flight of stairs it's closer to the media room so mustn't grumble. -- NW
3.28pm: Betting on lucky eights
George Clyde-Smith had just returned to his table from a two-hand penalty for early mucking* when he and Sam Razavi embarked on a three flop, no eight bet. Razavi had been convinced that there must be "about twelve eights in the deck" as many had been appearing on the flop. And so a side-bet began.
Clyde-Smith would win €50 if no eight appeared over the next three hands and Razavi would scoop if one did.
Flop one: 9♠4♥6♦
Clyde-Smith won the hand, a small pot.
Flop two: 9♥T♠8♥
The eight of hearts flopped as the window card and Razavi stood up and bellowed. Most hands in the upstairs tournament turned to see the not unusual sight of Razavi on his feet and acting up.
"That's two Jaegerbombs in Dublin," said UKIPT Cork winner Razavi as he pocketed a crisp €50 note.
You get the feeling that's not going to be the last of the side bets. -- RD
LEVEL UP: BLINDS 50-100
3.05pm: Short day for May
James May Neil Rawnsley is an early casualty here at UKIPT Dublin. Apparently he'd lost some chips to Fintan Gavin (he has 26,000) and then ran top two pair into Christopher Bogren's set to complete a thoroughly miserable tournament for the serial qualifier. There was only one other exit in level one for a surprisingly sedate start to the tournament. -- NW
2.52pm: Owston off to a stinker
Loud Welshman Dan Owston provides a lot of entertainment to players on the UKIPT, whether they want it or not. The Owston radio is in danger of an early switch-off after this hand though. On a 9♥Q♦4♣Q♠ board Owston check-raised out of the small blind from 1,500 to 3,025 before leading 6,300 into the 7♠ river.
His opponent, a young Scandie type with skater boy hair and an over-sized sports cap, made the call. Owston's pocket eights were crushed by Q♥T♠. Owston done to 4,800. -- RD
2.45pm: News from tournament room B
The players are split over two rooms here in Dublin. There's the main tournament room and if you come out of there, walk through the bar area, take a left and walk up a winding staircase you'll find room B. There are currently 11 tables in action up there and that's where I plonked myself for the past ten minutes. Here's what I saw:
- Sam Razavi looking tired, letting out a yawn as if to prove it. On Tuesday the final table of UKIPT Cork, which Razavi won, was broadcast on Channel 4. On one of the first hands of heads-up play Razavi shoved all-in on the river with just ace high, his opponent, David O'Connor, had top pair (albeit on a scary board) and had he called would've won the tournament:
"I thought I was good with ace high," said Razavi, "I would've called had he moved all-in but when he checked to me I thought hang on he's got something here so I better shove!" Sadly he's left his mascot Seamus at home.
- Owen Robinson's table is currently playing five-handed, his table's not alone in playing short-handed there are a number of late arrivals still signing waiver forms including Damian Porebski, resplendent in a blue PokerStars fleece.
- Alex Ferguson is up to 18,000 telling me that he flatted a raise pre-flop with [A] and saw a nice flop of [K][J][Q]. Although the turn paired the ten he bet every street and got paid off. The loud Scotsmen (his own words) is eagerly awaiting the level up music although he thinks it's a conspiracy that both Razavi and he have been put in the upstairs room where there are no speakers. -- NW
Just before the tournament started I asked a few UKIPT faces how they thought they'd fare in this tournament.
Jon Spinks made a thinking face - lip slightly jutted out, eyes looking up - and after muttering how many runners he thought would play (around 650) he said: "32nd." Spinks finished 14th in the WCOOP-10: $265 PLO Omaha Knockout last night for $1,728 and with $349,517 in live winnings he's certainly got the quality to make the last 32. If he doesn't spew it all off, of course.
Owen Robinson had a great UKIPT season last year scoring three deep cashes; 4th in Nottingham, 13th in Killarney and 9th in Edinburgh. This season has not been so kind. He's had zero cashes so far but he's predicting a 13th place finish this weekend.
Tom Hall, who finished sixth in the €110 six-max last night, wouldn't give a straight answer, "Deep fifties," he said before banging on about tournament variance and such like. Just give me a number, man. "30th."
Three players with confidence enough to state a deep finish, but not so blind as to claim that they'll win it outright. We wouldn't be surprised to see any of these three finish the day with a top five stack. -- RD
2.20pm: Familiar faces
Dotted amongst the field are some familiar faces, quite a few actually and more than we usually spot on a Day 1A, which is oft reckoned to be the softer of the two starting days.
There's UKIPT winners Sam Razavi (not wearing a tiny hat) and Fintan Gavin. They're not the only UKIPT success stories in the field though, there's also Owen Robinson, Jamie Dale, Craig Brown and Dan Owston. They've all made UKIPT final tables but are yet to win one.
There is Irish poker cream aplenty too with Richie Lawlor, Nicky Power, Dara O'Kearney, Nicholas Newport and Gerard Harraghy amongst those hoping for a home win. And lastly, there are a couple of Poles hoping it'll be their flag atop the metaphorical podium come Monday; EPT Tallinn runner-up Grzegorz Cichocki and Damian Porebski will have made a couple of stating tables that little bit tougher. -- NW
2.03pm: Play begins
Play has begun. You can check the chip counts page by clicking here or on the widget to the right. Names will continue to fill out this list as they appear or build up a larger stack. -- RD
1.45pm: Welcome to Dublin
Hello ladies, gentlemen and associated poker
degenerates fans. This is the last stop of the regular UKIPT Season 2 (there is still the UKIPT Grand Final, which doubles as EPT London. That £5,000 buy-in runs from 30 September to the 6 October). We've got two tournament rooms here ready for a large field overspill, although we're guessing that there's going to be a heavy imbalance in favour of Day 1B. Nick Wright has been sent to the tournament floor to see who's playing today - although I firmly suspect he's just going to buy a sandwich...
Play starts at 2pm and the word on the tournament floor is that we'll be playing nine levels, probably with a split dinner break. -- RD
PokerStars Blog reporting team in Dublin (in order of nutritional value of dinner last night): Nick Wright (two corn beef sandwiches with cheese and lettuce, laced with salad cream) and Rick Dacey (one Snickers bar and 12 tic tacs, at just two calories a pop). Photos by Mickey May.