We can’t really dress this one up too much: it’s been a fairly catastrophic day for Team PokerStars Pro. Today we have watched helpless as William Thorson, Dennis Phillips, Noah Boeken, Leo Fernandez, Angel Guillen, Lex Veldhuis, Pieter de Korver, Florian Langmann, Sebastian Ruthenberg, Ivan Demidov and Victor Ramdin hit the rail.
Each is a seasoned campaigner who knows tournament variance is such that these things really do happen: they lasted longer than the esteemed likes of Joe Hachem, Greg Raymer, Dario Minieri, Vicky Coren, Luca Pagano and Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier, for instance, and no one would dare doubt their credentials.
But either Alex Kravchenko doesn’t believe in variance, or he just stares it down defiantly. Once again, the Russian has remained steadfastly bolted to his seat for all of 14 levels we have played over the past two days, and he’s still there now. How he does this is still an absolute mystery: so often we swing by to watch him play a few hands and we never, ever see any action.
Kravchenko is a shrewd folder and a judicious raiser, picking his spots and taking things down, rarely showing his hand. It often makes it difficult to write about him — with nary a crash nor a bang, there’s not much copy. But consider this the mandatory Alex Kravchenko post. We’ve noticed him and are admiring his durability again; he’s up to 100,000.
The other four notable Team Pro members still flying the flag in London represent all corners of the PokerStars world. Although Maria Mayrinck isn’t happy with her day — “I’ve got about 80. Go away. It’s embarrassing,” she said — it’s still a pretty good show from our last remaining Brazilian in the Main Event. Alex Gomes and Andre Akkari are in the midst of a side event and have nothing like maridu’s chances of squeaking her first EPT cash.
Raymond Wu is also in search of his breakout performance on the EPT — and it’s looking likely. The Team PokerStars Asia Pro from Taiwan is playing his first major tournament this far west, but is sitting comfortable behind about 200,000 chips right now.
Neither Arnaud Mattern nor Peter Eastgate could exactly claim rookie status, and they’re making their experience count. Mattern has an EPT title under his belt and Eastgate is the World Champion. The Frenchman has about 110,000 at time of typing, and Eastgate 170,000.
Special mention too should go to Darus Suharto, a World Series final table-mate of Eastgate, who also has more than 200,000 here. Suharto began the day on that most wretched of tables, alongside Jeff Lisandro, David Williams, William Thorson, Peter Petterson, etc. But Suharto has remained completely unconcerned and is still looking strong as 135 players remain.