UKIPT Galway, Day 2: Levels 9-10 updates (500-1,000 100 ante)
2.05pm: Level over
Those first two levels of absolute carnage are over. We'll begin again in another post after a 20-minute break. -- HS
1.55pm: Downs up
Nik Downs went to dinner last night still proudly wearing his "lucky" poker hat, but wondering if he should downgrade it to just his "poker hat". He had 20 big blinds left at the end of day 1B and didn't seem too confident about his chances.
However after doubling up within five hands early on day two, and then pulling off another such manouevre soon after, he is much more chipper as we approach the end of level 10.
Downs - and hat, of course - has 55,600. -- HS
1.50pm: Big Stacks
Most of the players who were in the upper echelons of the chip counts before Day 2 started are still there - perhaps not that surprising considering we're less than two levels in. Here's how they stack up: Clas Stoob (84,000), Craig Burke (75,000), Emmet Mullin (53,000), George Stoddart (60,000), James Estrop (122,000), John Willoughby (93,000) and Tim Slater (74,000). -- NW
1.40pm: An hour's silence?
Still no one has turned off the spigot. Laurence Ryan, Maurice Whelan, Mark Goodchild, Cahal Heapes, Simon Randall, Artur Olczyk, Daniel King, Michael Kane, Pat O'Callaghan, Sean Davey, Renat Byeglov, Michael Hill, Nadir Jorephani, Brendan Slevin, Marcos Rodríguez, Reinier Slabbekoorn, James Walsh, Paul Taylor, Keith McFadden, Stephen Devlin, Wes Farrell, Seamus Devlin, Andrew Gilligan, Dean Gavin and Robert Jones are all now out. -- HS
1.30pm: Chip counts
Remember the dead but don't forget the living. With that sentiment here's a batch of chip counts: Nick Abou Risk (91,500), Kevin MacPhee (98,000), Filip Hanusek (105,000), Steve O'Dwyer (35,000), Richard Sinclair (31,000), Joris Ruijs (115,000), Mickey Petersen (31,000), Phil Baker (55,000) and Nicholas Newport (45,000). -- NW
1.25pm: Petersen staying alive
Many of the big online players tend to find the pace of live poker far to sluggish and tend not to be able to focus for the time it takes to go all the way in one of these things. They don't come much bigger in the online tournament world than Team Online's Mickey "mement_mori" Petersen, but he has shown some admirable discipline here in Galway and remains in the hunt.
That said, his tournament life was hanging by a thread moments ago, when he needed an outdraw to stay alive. After Koray Suler opened to 2,100 from under the gun, Arnoud van der Werf called in mid position. It was folded to Petersen in the big blind, who moved all in for 14,500.
Blair seemed to be pondering a shove or a call (it seemed obvious that folding wasn't an option) and in the end he opted just to flat. Van der Werf folded anyway, leaving the two of them for it.
Petersen was well behind with his A♦Q♣ to Blair's A♥K♦. But the board soon helped out the Team Online man. It came [10c]9♣Q♥4♥8♣ and he doubles to more than 30,000. -- HS
1.15pm: Yet more exits
Graham Parkin, Daniel Morgan, Mateusz Warowiec, Ollie Schaffmann and Ross Jarvis are amongst the latest wave of exits. Almost 80 players have been eliminated so far today and Jarvis told me about his demise.
He lost the majority of his stack three-betting all-in from the small blind with [Q][J] over the top of a button min-raise from Ben Jackson, the latter tank calling with [A] and holding. The last of his chips went in with pocket tens but he couldn't hold against [K][J]. -- NW
1.10pm: Whose one time is it really?
Jonathan Crute has just doubled up, winning a flip with his A♦[10h]. He was up against Arkadiusz Liszewski's 9♣9♠ and although the Polish player declared that he was using his one time, the board of A♣8♥2♦Q♣8♠ gave it to Crute.
"That's how you do it," said Ross Jarvis, who had wandered over following his elimination to chat with Crute.
"Yes," said Crute. "You just wither away to 12 bigs and then win a flip."
It is, without question, a simple game. -- HS
1.05pm: American and Canadian relations still civil
'Hey I'm a Canadian too now, just a citizen of the USA,' said Kevin MacPhee to me after I asked Nick Abou Risk and him who was winning the America versus Canadian card war. The former has now moved to Canada as a result of Black Friday.
It seems the newest Canuck has been getting the upper hand thus far, Abou Risk saying that MacPhee had squeezed once and flopped the nuts. Despite that there's been no fireworks just yet between those two. -- NW
LEVEL UP: BLINDS 500-1,000 100 ante
There aren't many nice ways to lose big pots in poker tournaments but losing one when you and your opponent have the same hand is particularly galling.
Cathal Shine held A♠Q♦ and UKIPT Cork runner-up David O'Connor had A♥Q♥ they got it in pre-flop with O'Connor at risk and all-in for around 21,500. The flop of 5♥8♦K♥ meant O'Connor was freerolling and it duly came in on the J♥ turn. O'Connor didn't make a royal flush though as the 2♦ completed the board. -- NW
12.55pm: Plain sailing for Boatman
At about this time yesterday, Barny Boatman's stack was already down to about 7,000, approximately half of what he started with. But by the end of yesterday, he had more than 75,000 and already today he is up to more than 140,000 after a spectacular surge forward.
He accounted for his progress yesterday by saying he just "got his (rude word) together" and although we haven't been offered such insight this morning, we have got word that he spent the early period of the day taking a brisk hike down the beach. These early morning perambulations are clearly just what the doctor ordered. Boatman is looking bright, keen and well-chipped for what could turn into a very profitable weekend. -- HS
12.50pm: Two double ups and an elimination
First the elimination...
Gerard O'Callaghan lost his last 25,000 with pocket tens against John Ward's pocket sixes. The money going in on the 3♣2♠6♣ flop and no ten appearing on the turn or river. Ward up to 72,000.
Now the double ups to prove that it's not all about exits...
Anthony Rafter was down to 10,000 and shoved all-in with 7♦6♦. Jaye Reneghan called with A♦K♣ but the connectors got there on the 6♥9♥[10d]9♦Q♣ board.
And Coilin Conroy is also celebrating a double up, he three-bet all-in with pocket aces for 22,900 and original raiser Luca Franchi made the call with K♥J♥. The [10d]Q♥7♠ flop gave the Italian some outs as did the J♦ turn, but the 8♥ kept the bullets in front. -- NW
12.45pm: Is there something we haven't been told?
Peter Barrable, Gerard O'Callaghan, Morgan Kan, Marcos Paton Bao, Damian Mularczyk, Oluwashola Akindele, Robertus Dezentje, Dean Hutchison, Brian Mallon, Nadeem Riaz, David Sommerfield, Pat McFadden and Brian McCafferty have now also perished. We have lost at least 53 players already today, which is more than one per minute. Is there a free bar somewhere in Galway we haven't heard about?-- HS
12.40pm: More exits
A total of 41 players have been eliminated in the opening 30 minutes of play. Martin Hubner, David Allen, Peter Burnett and Padraig Parkinson amongst the latest batch to be sent to the rail. -- NW
12.35pm: Doubling up
What with all these players getting their short stacks in and getting knocked out, it must stand to reason that some of the short stacks are getting them in and doubling up. Here are a few moments of such prosperity:
On table 29, Steve O'Dwyer was down to 3,000 and clearly looking to get them in. But he had to wait a while as Valerie McGrath shoved her 9,500 all in from early position and Peter Burnett over-shoved for about 11,500 from the cut off. O'Dwyer folded his small blind as the two of them battled it out.
The board helped only McGrath, coming 4♠[10h]Q♣. The turn gave her a sweat: J♠. But the river completed the double up: 4♥.
O'Dwyer had to wait again on the next hand because this time Burnett open shoved his 1,800 remaining chips and Emmett Mullin counted out a raise to 3,600 from one seat to his left. Although Mullin's 6♥4♥ earned some chuckles when it was exposed, particularly against Burnett's J♣J♦, it was only Mullin who was laughing after a flop of Q♥8♥3♥. The Q♠ gave a sweat again. The 9♠ ended it and Burnett was out.
Finally the next hand offered O'Dwyer his chance. It was folded to him and he shoved for 2,800. JP Whyte called from the small blind, McGrath folded her big, and so it was two of them. O'Dwyer's any two turned out to be the K♥4♠. Whyte had J♦8♦ and the board bricked all the way. O'Dwyer's king took it, and he fights on.
Niall Smyth has also doubled up early today. His J♣J♦ bettered Neividas Biriukovas's A♥K♦ on a dry board. Needless to say, that all went in pre-flop too. -- HS
12.30pm: Better late than never
I just saw Marty Smyth take his seat around 25 minutes after kick off. That's one way to avoid being part of the early flurry of exits. The WSOP bracelet holder started today with 25,200 so isn't in the danger zone just yet. -- NW
12.25pm: Boost for Barny
Barny Boatman is up to 110,000 after eliminating Niall Smyth. Boatman held A♣K♠, Smyth A♥[10d], an ace on the flop causing the action. -- NW
12.20pm: Interesting matchups
With 35 tables still in play at the start of the play there was bound to be some tasty tables. Nick Abou Risk and Kevin MacPhee are sat side by side just in front of us, the American having position on the Canadian. Filip Hanusek (eighth in chips in also on that table).
Elsewhere Barny Boatman and Dan Morgan are tablemates as are Andrew Teng, Phil Baker and Nicholas Newport. And UKIPT Champion of Champions Richard Sinclair has two of the overnight chip leaders for company in the shape of John Willoughby and George Stoddart. If any of those players had wished for an easy table draw they certainly didn't get it. -- NW
12.10pm: Other departures
It's not only Ross Boatman who has set sail already today. The short stacks of Mark Wagstaff, Donovan Kool, Martin Silke, Alexander Rhys Davies, Jason Barton, Padraig O'Neill, Stephen Forde, Mark Hutchison, Michael Sheridan, Manus Burke and Frank Callaghan have already also been jettisoned. Oh, and in the time it took to type that, we also lost Dominique Palan, Sandro Rovella, Joe Grech, Ken Murray, David Gant, Dara O'Kearney, Derek McMahon and Dan Rankin. Keep this up and we'll be done by teatime. -- HS
12.05pm: Boatman overboard
First man out today is Ross Boatman, he only had seven big blinds coming back today and lost them on the first hand. - NW
11.55am: Sunny Ireland
Morning all, and welcome for the first time this week to a genuinely sunny Galway. Of course, we won't be basking in any of those soothing rays because it's day two of the UKIPT event here in the Radisson Blu Hotel, and the survivors of both opening flights will now merge for the first time.
What we're set for is a full day of poker - at least eight levels, according to tournament officials. That will takes us through to 9 o'clock again, when one suspects the sun will have vanished once more.
No matter. The action promises to be fast, furious and, of course, fascinating. The previous two days were merely opening jousts; today the real battle commences. There were 311 players who made it through their respective day ones, and expect that to have been trimmed to fewer than 80 by the end of the day.
Check out the day start chip-count page for details of how they all line up at the moment, and then click through to the live chip-count page for updated stacks of some of the main players throughout the day. (That won't be exhaustive, but we'll do our best.)
Get your comments in to the box below and stick with us. It should be fun. Ain't that right, Thomas Finneran, day 1A leader: