Popular for his singing, impeccable politeness and killer instinct at the tables, Flying Dutchman Marcel Luske lines up in level one a seat to the left of Team PokerStars Pro ElkY. Swapping Caribbean sun for European glum, ElkY’s peroxide hair is fading slightly but you sense a man on top form. Marcel I’d imagine wouldn’t know what a bad patch looked like.
Talking of patches, (how’s this for a link?) Marcel sports an additional feature to his tailored suit, a Team PokerStars badge discreetly placed on his waistcoat. No, this is not first word of the newest member of Team PokerStars, more a friend, but it hasn’t escaped the notice of a few photographers and spectators.
Although the attention could have been caused by a hand – a slow hand typical of many I’ve seen featuring Marcel. A player acts first and Marcel keeps calling. It’s as if the original raiser is being pushed slightly, then a little more, until he has no choice – walking the plank with Luske giving the orders. It keeps on like this until the river – a bet, a call and Marcel takes the pot. The pattern continues and Marcel gets a nice early addition to his stack.
A few tables along sits Pavel Blatny. You might remember the Czech from our EPT coverage in Prague. Pavel is a former Chess Grand Master who has made the conversion to tournament poker with some success – success that served him well up to now, although it doesn’t look that way just this minute. I arrived at his table to see him all-in. He won the hand, that was good, but his stack was on the meagre side to begin with and the double up only boosted his hopes to the height of 300 chips. That was bad.
“Chip and chair” he says, and he’s right. It may only be a matter of time before he faces check-mate.
Meanwhile Kara Scott caught up with ElkY before play began to talk about his PCA win, his killer form and his hopes of a second win in a row…
Tournament update –
Hendon Mobster Ram Vaswani has made his traditional EPT start by doubling up inside the first level. On a board of 9-A-9-8 the money went in – Ram showing Q-9, Pelzner A-K. A blank river and Vaswani up to 20k.