German Arias had been living a charmed life the last few days. His big hands held up and netted him the stacks of several opponents in the process. Every decision he made seemed like the correct one and, better yet, worked out.
Things have turned against him during the last hour, however. First, holding ace-king, he tried to eliminate Team PokerStars Pro Cristian “El Grillo” de Leon for about 550,000 each. Grillo had two of the other three aces and secured a big double-up. The loss dropped Arias to 750,000, the first time in about five or six levels that he found himself below 1 million in chips.
Then, in a battle of the blinds, Arias tried to take out Eduardo Akl on a 7-4-7 flop. Akl committed with 5♦4♥, a hand that had to draw against Arias’ Q♣4♣. And draw it did. The turn 6 and river 8 gave the excitable Akl a straight and a double-up. Arias sank to 450,000.
One good turn for Arias. He picked up another big hand, pocket queens, and had Mariano Gomez three-bet him all in for 420,000 with A♥10♠. Arias called and faded the remaining aces in the deck, 7♠9♠K♠J♣8♠, to knock Gomez out in 13th place.
The pot righted Arias’ ship. He now has about 900,000 in chips. He’s no longer the leader – that honor belongs either to El Grillo or Pablo Luzardo, each of whom has around 1.2 million in chips. Grillo’s fellow Team PokerStars Pro, Angel Guillen, got a boost of his own when he eliminated Hector Perez in 14th place on a flip. Guillen’s pocket 8s stood tall against Perez’s K♦10♣ on an all-small board.
The average stack is now roughly 786,000. Right now, the two Team Pros, Arias, and Luzardo all look strong for a seat at tomorrow’s eight-handed final table. Things can change between now and the final table, however. Just ask Arias how his last hour went.
Dave Behr is a freelance contributor to the PokerStars Blog.
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