It’s the European Poker Tour’s oldest chestnut but we can hammer away at endlessly, again and again. Until there is a first double winner on the tour, we will always wonder why not. Over recent years players have emerged to win the Triple Crown, Main Events and High Roller tournaments, but a double win is the next frontier, like Mars exploration and reliable broadband.
But if today is anything to go by we might not have to wait too long. Sure, it’s only day 1a, and a mightier field will descend on this same place tomorrow. But the smaller combined field, coupled with a larger stack, has sent the cream rising to the top. So much so that one former champion is now on a collision course with history.
Chip leader tonight, Carter Phillips
Who would that be? None other than tonight’s chip leader and EPT Barcelona winner, Carter Phillips who, when the clock struck seven levels this evening, bagged up 194,850 which he’ll return to on Thursday. Could he be the first double winner? We’ll know come Sunday.
Regardless, when Phillips takes his seat in the day two field, he’ll find himself in familiar company. The Team PokerStars Pro Luca Pagano, who sat opposite Phillips all day, will be back to rekindle that rivalry after a typically solid display, bagging up 101,575. Clayton Mozdzen is the only other player with a six-figure stack. He tags and bags 103,250 tonight.
It was a mixed day for others, including home town hero Marcin Horecki. The Team PokerStars Pro was crippled midway through the day, reduced at one point to just 75 chips. But he took the antes on the next hand and tripled up on the next. After some late night adventures Marcin Horecki will return on Thursday with 9,850, home field advantage and nothing to lose.
Alex Kravchenko, who was rumoured to have smiled earlier today, finished with 9,000 while Arnaud Mattern did the same with 28,000. The current World Champion Peter Eastgate will also return, surviving the day with 32,000.
A happy Alex Kravchenko
As ever we lost a lot of good men out there today and not just to the cigarette smoke. The Team PokerStars Pros Angel Guillen and JC Alvarado will both make their way back to Mexico empty handed; Rifat Palevic and Pierre Neuville will also leave, although not to Mexico.
We started with 88 and are left with 64 tonight; a full run down of those left, and how much they have, will be on the official chip count page once tournament officials make them, well, official.
In the meantime you can catch up on all the action from today at any or all of the links below:
We’re without the Swedish blogger in Warsaw, something we’re all struggling to come to terms with, but the Germans are providing a German version and the locals are well catered for on the Polish blog. It’s not quite as funny to look at as Swedish but it’s perfectly fine. Video blogs in those same languages can be browsed at your leisure at PokerStars.tv.
For now that’s it from Warsaw. It’s dark and cold outside, but bright and warm in the lobby bar. Players and press are making their choice right now. See you tomorrow for day 1b.