PCA 2016: Day 2 $25,000 High Roller updates (Levels 11-16)

January 13, 2016


This is an archive of Levels 11-16 of the 2016 PCA $25K High Roller. Click here to continue to updates from Day 2, Levels 17-21.

6:43pm: Dinner break

Players are now on a 75-minute dinner break. Play will continue at 7.55pm with 36 players remaining. The top 31 finish in the money. Sean Winter leads with 840,000. Find the full chip counts here.

6:42pm: Zaichenko chips up
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000-6,000 (1,000 ante)

“Time on table one,” shouted the dealer and a member of floor staff arrived to tell Georgios Zisimopoulos that he had one minute to make a decision. He was heads-up against Andrey Zaichenko but the pot had been four-way at one point.

Pre-flop it was Zisimopoulos who was the aggressor. He raised to 13,000, Zaichenko called as did Pablo Melogno (small blind) and Andrew Chen (big blind). On the 4♣9♦6♥ flop Melogno led for 17,000, Zisimopoulos raised to 38,000 and Zaichenko then re-raised to 65,000.

That got rid of Melogno and Chen, but Zisimopoulos called. Both players then checked the 2♦ turn and the 10♥ fell on the river. After Zisimopoulos checked, Zaichenko bet 50,000 and this is where Zisimopoulos’s tanking began.

As the time ticked down on his allotted minute he seemed no closer to a decision. He mucked his hand with one second remaining. -NW

6:40pm: Shorty vs Shorty action
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000 – 6,000 (1,000 ante)

Neither Nicolas Yunis nor John Krpan had many chips. Now one of them has none. Krpan jammed with pocket Jacks and Yunis called with A♠10♥. An Ace on the flop sent Krpan to the exit and crowned Yunis with a still-troubling 85,000 stack. 36 remain now. – RJ

6:35pm: Laxxin’ and chillin’
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000 – 6,000 (1,000 ante)

Joshua Beckley doesn’t seem to be affected by the impending $47k bubble – he’s just ordered a beer. As the can of local lager Sands sat in front of him, so did a 15,000 pre-flop raise. One player who wasn’t quite so relaxed was Ben Heath. He wanted to get aggro. Heath made it 52,000 and, after a long pause, Beckley eventually folded.

After that tiny setback Beckley is still doing better than OK with 550,000. And a beer, don’t forget that part. – RJ

6:30pm: Kornuth continues to climb
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000-6,000 (1,000 ante)

Chance Kornuth is up to 870,000 after win a pot post-flop against Dario Sammartino.

Tyler Patterson couldn’t have known what he’d started when he opened to 13,000 from the hijack. His bet was called by Kornuth (cut off) only for Sammartino to three-bet to 48,000 from the big blind. That got rid of Patterson, but Kornuth wanted a count. Having received on he made the call.

A 5♦8♦7♠ flop hit the felt and Sammartino gave up the betting lead. Kornuth bet 50,000 and Sammartino smooth called. On the 6♦ turn Kornuth bet again, this time the wager was 104,000. It was enough to get rid of Sammartino. He’s down to 350,000 whilst Kornuth is now up to 870,000. –NW

Chance Kornuth_2016 PCA_25K HR_Day 2_Giron_8JG0184.jpg

Chance Kornuth

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6:25pm: Chips for Chen after doubling through Mateos
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000-6,000 (500 ante)

Andrew Chen just earned a double-up through Adrian Mateos after getting the last of his stack in behind Q♥Q♦ and just needing to fade five community cards versus Mateos’s 7♦7♥. The J♦10♣J♥K♣4♦ proved amenable for Chen, and he now has 165,000. Mateos has 292,000, just a couple of big blinds shy of the average at the moment. – MH

6:20pm: It’s starting to get squeaky
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000 – 6,000 (1,000 ante)

38 players remain and 31 will get paid. It will be tough to take for seven players in this field to play for nearly two full days and go home $25k (or $50k if they rebought) lighter of pocket. A min-cash is worth $47,520 so it’s very much worth hanging around for. – RJ

6:15pm: Mateos shoves the river
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000-6,000 (1,000 ante)

A curious pot just played out that involved Adrian Mateos, Brendon Rubie and Jonathan Jaffe. It was one of those that you desperately want to see reach showdown.

The action was started by Jonathan Jaffe. He raised to 15,000 from early position, Mateos called on the button and Rubie put in the extra 9,000 from the big blind. The 10♦9♦7♥ flop looked like it had to have hit someone, but all three players checked.

There was no such passive play on the 5♣ turn. Rubie bet 26,000, Jaffe folded and Mateos smooth called. The 6♦ river completed flush and straight draws. Rubie bet 54,000 and Mateos now went deep into the tank.

He stayed there for about five minutes and then he announced that he was all-in. Rubie, who had about 200,000 back, soon mucked his hand. Pot to Mateos. -NW

6:10pm: Kings vs Queens
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000 – 6,000 (1,000 ante)

Tom Hall had the Kings and Jared Jaffe had the Queens. The better hand stayed in front on the 4♣3♦6♣4♥7♦ board and Hall doubles to 285,000. Jaffe drops to a still-healthy 375,000. – RJ

6:05pm: Rettenmaier ousts Andress
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000-6,000 (500 ante)

John Andress open-raised all in for his last 40,500 from under the gun and the table folded around to Marvin Rettenmaier in the big blind who called.

Andress tabled A♦9♥ while Rettenmaier showed 5♣5♦. The board rolled out 2♠3♠2♥, then 8♦, then 5♥, and Andress wished the table luck before departing.

Down to 38 players now. Rettenmaier has 221,000. – MH

6:02pm: Foxen catcher
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000 – 6,000 (1,000 ante)

Greg Merson has been a picture of poise and menace in the field today. He’s just knocked out William Foxen to increase his blooming chip stack some more.

Merson raised the button to 13,000 and Foxen jammed from the big blind for 59,500. It was just less than ten big blinds and, after doing the maths, Merson concluded that he was getting the right price to call with 9♥8♥. He was up against 5♣5♠ so it was a solid call.

The A♠8♦4♥ flop spelled the end for Foxen and he didn’t hit a Five on the turn or river to confirm his doom. Merson moves up to 500,000 and will be a major factor in this tournament from here to the finish. – RJ

6:00pm: McDonald takes it on the Chen
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000-6,000 (500 ante)

Mike McDonald was all in with a below average stack with K♣2♣ versus Andrew Chen who held A♣8♠, and after the community cards came 5♣5♦4♣4♦7♠, Chen’s hand was best and McDonald hit the rail. Chen has about 170,000 now. – MH

5:55pm: Big pot for Rubie
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000 – 6,000 (1,000 ante)

Brendon Rubie won a live satellite into this event and he just won a large pot against Pablo Melogno to boost his chances of a significant ROI. The action before the river is unknown, but there was around 130,000 in the pot by this point and the completed board was 7♠7♣5♦8♥Q♠. The Australian had bet 69,500 and his Uruguayan opponent was in the tank and faced with a decision for about half his stack.

A minute or so passed during which Melogno – who was to the direct left of Rubie – talked to Rubie and suggested a few hands he thought the Australian could have. After another minute or so he called and Rubie turned over K♦7♦. Melogno looked disgusted that Rubie could have a seven here and did a couple of wild hand gestures to that effect. He’s now well and truly in the danger zone. -NW

5:50pm: The Francisco kid is out
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000 – 6,000 (1,000 ante)

Francisco Candamo shoved with Q♥7♥ and was called by Nicolas Yunis’s A♣9♣. Ace-high remained the best hand after the flop, turn and river were dealt, meaning that Candamo is eliminated in 43rd place. Yunis now has 230,000. – RJ

5:45pm: Level 16 begins
Level 16 – Blinds 3,000-6,000 (500 ante)

The big board shows 44 players remain — that’s 13 off the cash — as the new level starts. After this level, those who remain will be taking a 75-minute dinner break. – MH

5:45pm: Hook hooks Loosli
Level 15 – Blinds 2,500-5,000 (500 ante)

Charles Hook, Jr. has just eliminated Sylvain Loosli. We only had a chance to witness the last moments of Loosli’s tournament which involved Hook shoving the river with the board showing 8♣5♠2♦2♣6♣, Loosli calling off and then appearing to muck kings after Hook tabled Q♣7♣ for a rivered flush.

Hook is up to 440,000 now as they near the end of Level 15. – MH

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5:40pm: A trio of hands with Sean Winter
Level 15 – Blinds 2,500 – 5,000 (500 ante)

Sean Winter is having an excellent day in the High Roller, building his stack from 186,000 all the way up to 600,000. I just witnessed three hands at his table – Winter is not in the mood for folding right now.

1) William Foxen checked to Winter on a 10♣4♥10♦2♥ board. Winter bet 16,000 and took it down.
2) Kyle Frey raised pre-flop to 12,500 and Winter three-bet to 32,000. Winter took it down.
3) Daniel Alaei was the next player to step up and challenge Winter, who going for a hat trick. Winter raised to 12,500 and both Alaei and Greg Merson called from out of the blinds. The flop was 8♥4♠3♣ – Alaei and Merson checked it and Winter bet 12,000. Alaei finally put a stop to the Winter roadshow by check-raising all in to win. Alaei moved up to 160,000 but this table is very much in the hands of Sean Winter for now. – RJ

5:35pm: Eyeing Sammartino’s stacks
Level 15 – Blinds 2,500-5,000 (500 ante)

Jared Jaffee is sitting across the table from Dario Sammartino. Just now he was eyeballing Sammartino’s stack, which is something a lot of us have been doing given how much it has increased all afternoon.

As Jaffee noted, Sammartino has not only been challenging to play against today, but his stacks are just a little challenging to count given that the tall stacks sitting in front of him are getting taller. None are quite the same height, either, all a little above or below 40 chips high.

Two are of blue chips (worth 5K each), four-and-a-half are yellow (worth 1K), and one-and-a-half pink (500). It looks like about 645,000 altogether, which puts him just behind Kornuth at the moment

Meanwhile Jaffee and others keep eyeing those stacks. And thinking of ways to whittle into them somehow. – MH

5:30pm: Komarov takes one from Beckley
Level 15 – Blinds 2,500-5,000 (500 ante)

The pre-flop action is unknown but Josh Beckley, who finished runner-up at the 2015 WSOP Main Event, bet 11,500 on a J♠4♠Q♣ flop. His lone opponent was Alexandr Komarov and he smooth called.

On the K♠ turn Komarov (big blind) checked and Beckley (button) did likewise. Then they watched as the 9♦ fell on the river. Komarov checked for a third time, Beckley bet 21,500 and Komarov snap called. The American showed K♥7♥ but lost out to the 10♣9♠ of Komarov. -NW

5:25pm: Loosli shoves on Chartier
Level 15 – Blinds 2,500-5,000 (500 ante)

Sylvain Loosli is looking to add a plain old high roller title to the Super High Roller title he won in Barcelona in August. He’d dropped to about 50% of the average stack, but just got some back in a hand against Sam Chartier.

The Frenchman opened to 11,500 from early position. Chartier three-bet to 29,000 and Loosli then moved all in. Chartier didn’t even bother getting a count before mucking his hand. Loosli is up to 130,000 after winning that hand. –NW

5:15pm: Baron overthrown
Level 15 – Blinds 2,500 – 5,000 (500 ante)

We just reported that Isaac Baron had five big blinds. Now he has none. – RJ

5:10pm: Smaron’s seat barren
Level 15 – Blinds 2,500-5,000 (500 ante)

The knockouts continue as Kenneth Smaron recently lost the last of his stack to James Calderaro. Calderaro has 155,000, which is about two-thirds of the average stack at present. – MH

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5:05pm: Not a good day for the Baron
Level 15 – Blinds 2,500 – 5,000 (500 ante)

According to Michael Kamran, Isaac Baron has been running pretty bad today and it just got even worse. Baron shoved with Queens and was called by John Krpan. Usually getting it all in pre-flop with pocket Queens is going to work out just fine for you, but not when your opponent happens to have Kings.

Krpan’s Kings held up and he doubles to 100,000. Meanwhile, the once high flying Baron has one foot out of the door. He has 27,000, which equates to just over five big blinds. – RJ

5:00pm: Beckley eliminates Pahuja
Level 15 – Blinds 2,000 – 4,000 (500 ante)

I missed the pre-flop action, but on a 6♦4♣2♦ flop Mukul Pahuja got his remaining 125,000 in with 10♦10♠. He was pipped by Josh Beckley who held J♠J♥. The A♥ turn and 2♠ river didn’t save Pahuja and he’s out.

50 players remain, 31 get paid. -NW

4:55pm: Adrian Mateos doubles up
Level 15 – Blinds 2,000 – 4,000 (500 ante)

EPT11 Grand Final winner Adrian Mateos is up to around 350,000 after doubling up through Jonathan Jaffe.

The latter raised to 12,000 from under-the-gun and picked up calls from Andrew Chen (under-the-gun+1), Mateos (hijack) and Pablo Melogno (big blind). So it was four-way to a 7♥A♥9♣ flop, Jaffe c-bet 25,000, Chen called and Mateos then moved all-in for 133,500.

That got rid of Melogno sharpish, but Jaffe wanted a count. He got one, thought for a bit and moved all-in. Fold from Chen.

Mateos: 9♥8♥
Jaffe: K♥10♥

Mateos had flopped best but he didn’t want to make a flush. The J♠ turn was an action card as it gave Jaffe more outs. The 10♠ river hit his hand, but it made Mateos a straight. He breathed a sigh of relief. -NW

4:50pm: Shakerchi hits the bricks
Level 15 – Blinds 2,000 – 4,000 (500 ante)

Marvin Rettenmaier has just eliminated Talal Shakerchi from the tournament, leaving us with 53 players. Mad Marvin is up to 180,000. – RJ

4:46pm: Level 15 begins
Level 15 – Blinds 2,500-5,000 (500 ante)

Players have returned and cards are in the air for Level 15. They’ll play two more one-hour levels, then will come the Day 2 dinner break. – MH

4:31pm: Jaffee and Sammartino split one
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

With the board showing J♦Q♦10♥, Jared Jaffee checked from the small blind, Tom Hall checked from nearby, then Dario Sammartino bet 14,000 from middle position. Jaffee then check-raised to 36,000, and both Hall and Sammartino called, bringing the pot up over 150,000.

The turn brought the 4♣ and it checked all of the way around, then when the A♣ came on fifth street, Jaffee set out a column of chips as a bet of 71,000. Hall stepped aside, but Sammartino called. Jaffee had K♦5♦ while Sammartino showed K♠8♠, meaning both had Broadway and chopped the pot. – MH

4:30pm: O’Dwyer ousted
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

Just before the conclusion of Level 14, $50K Single-Day High Roller champ Steve O’Dwyer was eliminated, ending his hopes for a second high roller trophy this festival. There are now 55 players remaining. – MH

4:25pm: Foxen survives versus Shakerchi
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

In the last hand before the break, Talal Shakerchi opened for 9,000 from middle position and it folded around to William Foxen in the small blind. Acting with deliberation as usual, Foxen took his time before finally pushing all in for his last 56,000 or so. It folded back to Shakerchi who thought for a while himself before calling.

Foxen: 8♠8♥
Shakerchi: A♥7♥

The board came 5♥5♣7♣9♥Q♠, and Foxen’s eights held. “Sweaty turn,” he remarked, noting the flush and straight draws Shakerchi had with one card to come.

Foxen goes to break with 123,000, while Shakerchi is down to 19,000. – MH

4:20pm: Limping back in fashion
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000 – 4,000 (500 ante)

You won’t see too many players limping into pots in a $25,000 tournament but that’s just what Nicolas Yunis did a few minutes ago – and it led to him doubling up.

nick_yunis_pca2016_hrd2.jpgNick Yunis
Yunis limped from early position, Heath completed from the small blind and then Mukul Pahuja put an end to this limping nonsense by raising to 20,000. It was here that Yunis’s plan became clear as he shoved over the top for around 110,000 total. Heath scrammed but Pahuja called with pocket Nines. They were racing against Yunis’s A♦J♥.

Pahuja was technically still in the lead on the 4♦K♦Q♥ flop but Yunis had a bajillion outs. One of them came in on the turn as the 10♣ gave him a straight. Muhuja was drawing dead and had to pay the man his money.

Mahuja drops to 170k and Yunis is up to 200k. He’s also brought limping back into fashion. – RJ

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4:15pm: Chip leader on the move
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

From under-the-gun Nick Maimone raised to 10,000 only for Chance Kornuth to three-bet to 24,700 from middle position. It folded back to Maimone and he wasn’t scared to face off against the chip leader out of position.

Neither player bet the A♦4♦J♣ flop and the 10♥ fell on the turn. Bet of 19,000 from Maimone, call from Kornuth. The 3♦ completed the board and both players checked it down. Maimone showed A♣9♣ and Kornuth said: “You’re good,” before turning over A♠9♠ for the chop.

That would be the last hand at that table as we’re down to 56 players and the table was broken, “I’m not going to lie, this table’s been pretty good to me,” said Kornuth. His new seat assignment was favourable too. He’s been moved to a table where only one player has an above average stack (the average is 200,000). That player is Sam Chartier and Kornuth is on his direct left. — NW

4:10pm: The fours awaken
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

With the board showing 6♦J♦4♠ and about 30,000 in the middle, Andre Akkari led for 11,500, Connor Drinan raised to 26,000, and Akkari called. Both players checked the 10♥ turn, then the 8♥ fell on fifth street. Akkari checked, and when Drinan slid out a bet of 35,000, Akkari called without hesitation.

Drinan had A♣J♠ for jacks while Akkari had flopped a set with 4♦4♣. The Team PokerStars Pro is up to 272,000 while Drinan has about 90,000. – MH

4:00pm: Heath ascends the cliff
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000 – 4,000 (500 ante)

UK player Ben Heath just took out Finland’s Jyri Merivirta after hitting a two-outer in the 200,000 chip pot. Heath had called a raise from Nicolas Yunis when Merivirta shoved for 89,000. Yunis got out of the way but Heath called. His pocket Nines were in huge trouble against Merivirta’s Jacks.

Heath’s troubles turned upside down on the turn when a Nine hit. Suddenly Merivirta was knocked out and Heath was up to 370,000. – RJ

3:55pm: Kornuth continues to crush
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

Chance Kornuth is wielding his chip leading stack like an axe and just took down a pot with a pre-flop five bet.

chance_kornuth_pca2016_hrd2_2106.jpgChance Kornuth
He opened the action from middle position, raising to 9,000. Next to act was Tom Hall and he three-bet to 24,000. This pot was percolating nicely and William Foxen decided he wanted in as well. He cold four-bet to 54,200 total from the cut-off and action folded back to Kornuth.

He wasn’t done with the hand either and slid out a five-bet of 109,000 total and one by one Hall and Foxen folded. -NW

3:50pm: Start-of-day leader Johns falls
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

Start-of-day leader Dustin Johns has been eliminated not quite halfway through the day’s fourth level, with Dario Sammartino taking the last of his chips.

dustin_johns_pca2016_hrd2_2.jpgDustin Johns – OUT
Johns was all in before the flop with 6♠6♦ and hoping to hold versus Sammartino’s A♦K♠, and the 4♠5♥5♠ worked adequately for him that effort. But the A♠ turn was a fly in the ointment, and after the 7♠ river he wished the table good luck as he departed.

Sammartino now has 368,000. There are 59 players remaining. – MH

3:45pm: Maimone hits river, eliminates Sointula
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

Jani Sointula is the latest player to be kicked out of the High Roller, ousted in a multi-way hand involving Nick Maimone.

Maimone raised from early position and got a couple of callers, including a short-stacked Sointula playing from the small blind. The flop came 5♦8♦A♣ and after Sointula checked, Maimone continued for 7,500. It folded back to Sointula who check-raised all in for 16,600, and Maimone called.

Sointula had A♠3♦ for aces while Maimone had 10♦7♦ for a flush draw. The turn was the J♣ and was good for Sointula, but the river was the Q♦ to give Maimone the flush and end Sointula’s day.

Maimone now has 275,000. – RJ/MH

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3:40pm: Richard Seymour sacked out of the tournament
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

A short time ago we reported that NFL legend Richard Seymour was down to less than 20 big blinds after losing a big pot to Alex Lynskey. He’s just been eliminated from the tournament in unfortunate circumstances. Lynskey who did the hatchet job.

In the hand in question Chance Kornuth raised from under-the-gun, Lynskey called from the small blind and Seymour came along from the big blind. The flop fell 3♥Q♠10♦, Kornuth c-bet 7,200 and both Lynskey and Seymour stuck around.

The 9♠ popped out on the turn. Lynskey checked it to Seymour but he was done checking. He bet 16,000, that got rid of Kornuth but Lynskey was going nowhere. After about 15 seconds he announced all-in and Seymour, who had about 64,000 total, instantly called.

“King-jack?” said Lynskey to Seymour and that was indeed what the former Patriots and Raiders defensive tackle had. Lynskey showed Q♦10♣ meaning he still had outs. One of those, the Q♥ fell on the river and the table gasped.

Seymour took it very well and gathered his belongings up before exiting the tournament. -NW

3:35pm: Level 14 begins, blinds/antes increase despite Kamran proposal
Level 14 – Blinds 2,000-4,000 (500 ante)

“Can we vote to reduce the blinds next level?” asked Michael Kamran with a grin as Level 13 ticked down to its conclusion. “Go back to 1,200/2,400?”

The others chuckled, and the clock flipped over to Level 14 and as always happens the blinds and antes went up, not down. There are 65 players remaining. – MH

3:30pm: Krpan collects, Hunichen hurting
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500-3,000 (400 ante)

In the last hand of the level, Daniel Alaei raised and then Chris Hunichen pushed all in from late position for about 36,000. John Krpan then called all in from the small blind for a bit less, and the big blind and Alaei tossed away his cards.

“Did you fold one of these?” asked Hunichen of Alaei, pointing to the K♠10♥ he’d tabled. Alaei didn’t affirm or deny, but Krpan showed he had a couple of the cards Hunichen was referring to as he had 10♦10♠. The board came 4♣3♦7♦8♠J♠, and Krpan survived while Hunichen is now down to just a couple of big blinds. – MH

3.25pm: Beckley bounces Vogelsang
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500-3,000 (400 ante)

Christoph Vogelsang was in for two entries in this one, and he just lost the last of his second stack not long after losing that recent hand to Ben Heath.

2015 World Series of Poker Main Event runner-up Joshua Beckley was the player managing to secure Vogelsang’s remaining chips. Beckley now has 191,000. – MH

3:20pm: Heath puts the hurt on Vogelsang
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500-3,000 (400 ante)

A pot between Christoph Vogelsang and Ben Heath reached the turn of a [3][9][[9][5] board. Heath had bet 21,200 and Vogelsang was in the process of making the call. The 5♦ fell on the river and Vogelsang checked the action to Heath.

The British player didn’t take too long to fire out a bet of 44,800. Vogelsang then began one of his trademark tanks. It was over half his stack to call so it wasn’t exactly a straightforward decision. Still, he thought about it long enough for Jyri Merivirta to call the clock.

As the floor arrived Vogelsang pushed forward the chips to call so there was no need to read him his rights. Heath showed A♥9♥ and Vogelsang said, “nice hand,” as he mucked. -NW

3:15pm: Seymour on fourth and long
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500 – 3,000 (400 ante)

Richard Seymour is battling away against some of the best players in the world and one could say he’s doing well just to make it midway through Day 2 of the High Roller. The NFL legend’s journey could be on borrowed time now after he lost a big pot to Alex Lynskey a few moments ago.

Lynskey bet 27,500 on the river of a A♦2♦5♠3♠J♥ board. Seymour confidently called but mucked when Lynskey showed A♥2♠. Seymour has less than twenty big blinds on 55,000. Lynskey is doing much better with 210,000. – RJ

3:10pm: Aces over kings help O’Dwyer
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500-3,000 (400 ante)

Steve O’Dwyer and Andrey Zaichenko just got involved in a preflop raising battle that started slowly then ended abruptly with a rapid all-in-and-call, followed by a “Wow!” from Zaichenko.

Zaichenko had tabled K♥K♣, and the reason for his final comment was plain to see when one looked at the cards O’Dwyer had — A♦A♠.

The board ran out A♥2♣7♣8♥Q♦, meaning Zaichenko was already drawing dead by the turn. He’s not dead in the tournament, though, as Zaichenko still has about 110,000. Meanwhile O’Dwyer is now up to 130,000. –MH

3:05pm: Salman falls after Chance encounter
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500-3,000 (400 ante)

Chance Kornuth, third-place finisher in the 2015 PCA Main Event, is smiling once again here in the poker room at the Atlantis. He’s been accumulating all day and has just added still more to his stack after knocking out Salman Behbehani.

chance_kornuth_pca2016_hrd2.jpgChance Kornuth with Sergio Garcia earlier today
Kornuth is up to 546,000 now, having pushed into first position in the counts with 72 players left. – MH

3:00pm: Andre Akkari hits the treble
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500 – 3,000 (400 ante)

Andre Akkari has been short-stacked all day and shoving with impunity. Depending on what he held, Akkari’s timing was either great or terrible because he never seemed to be called. That all changed a moment ago and now Akkari is up to the spectacular heights of 130,000 after trebling up.

andre_akkari_pca2016_hrd2_2010.jpgAndre Akkari
He jammed. Mike Leah called it off and then fellow shortie Piotr Franczak called too.

Akkari: J♠J♣
Leah: 7♥7♦
Franczak: K♥Q♦

It was far from easy for Akkari to win the pot and the board seemed to change who was the favourite on every street. Akkari kept a thin grasp on the pot after the A♥6♠10♠ flop. Then Franczak jumped in front on the Q♥ turn. Poor Mike Leah was the only guy left out in the cold at this point. Finally the K♠ river was bingo for Akkari as he hit Broadway.

That river card sent Franczak out of the tournament but Leah is still doing well with 245,000. – RJ

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2:50pm: Carrel’s chips corraled by Mateos
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500-3,000 (400 ante)

Charlie Carrel’s tournament run has come to an end here during the early stages of Level 13 after losing the last of his short stack. Carrel, who won the EPT11 Grand Final High Roller in Monte Carlo, was felted by the winner of that same festival’s Main Event, Adrian Mateos.

Mateos now has just over 80,000. – MH

2:45pm: He just won’t die
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500 – 3,000 (400 ante)

They say the number thirteen is unlucky for some. That obviously doesn’t include Steve O’Dywer. Seconds after we moved into Level 13, he just doubled through Nick Maimone. O’Dwyer jammed his remaining 25,000 with 3♥3♣ and was called by Maimone and his K♣5♠.

nick_maimone_pca2016_hrd2.jpgNick Maimone
A King flashed on the flop and the dream looked over for O’Dwyer, but as the dealer spread the other two flop cards to reveal a Three, suddenly he was back in the game. There were no runner-runner shenanigans on the turn or river and O’Dwyer now sits with 54,000. Maimone is still above the average with 240,000. – RJ

2:40pm: Seymour tackling the shorts stacks well
Level 13 – Blinds 1,500 – 3,000 (400 ante)

Richard Seymour is transformed his stack in the past half hour. He was down to 30,000 a short while ago but now has 170,000, his most recent success being when he knocked out Amit Makhija with ace-king. -SB

2:25pm: Play resumes

We’re now into level 13 with blinds of 1,500 – 3,000 with a 400 ante.

2:10pm: End of the level

Level 12 has ended and players are now on a 15 minute break. There are 81 players remaining.

2:05pm: Champing at the bit
Level 12 – Blinds 1,200 – 2,400 (300 ante)

In the wake of winning back-to-back WSOP bracelets in 2012 many in the poker world lauded Greg Merson as the best currently playing the game.

He’s trying to add even more credibility to that statement here in the High Roller, and just won a decent pot to take him up to 345,000.

Merson raised to 5,600 and was called by Nicolas Yunis in the big blind. They checked the flop but, with the board reading 9♥4♠J♦5♣, Yunis bet 11,000. Merson called. Yunis then bet 17,000 on the 6♦ river and Merson called again pretty quickly. Yunis could only display 7♦6♥ for a pair of Sixes, meaning Merson’s A♦9♠ won the pot.

It was another example of Merson extracting the maximum value from his opponent. He’s won huge tournaments before – can he do it here again at the PCA? – RJ

2:00pm: Chip leader
Level 12 – Blinds 1,200 – 2,400 (300 ante)

Among the leaders right now are Faraz Jaka (440,000), Jonathan Jaffee (400,000) and Chance Kornuth (330,000). For the full chip counts, including a list of the eliminations today, CLICK HERE.

1:50pm: Hall of fame
Level 12 – Blinds 1,200 – 2,400 (300 ante)

UK pro Tom Hall just did what few other have done before him; win a pot versus Steve O’Dwyer. The $50k High Roller champ opened to 6,000 and Hall three-bet to 16,200 on the button. O’Dwyer called and checked the 5♥4♣8♣ flop. Hall bet 19,000 to take it down and join an elite club all at the same time.

O’Dwyer is rocking away on 110,000 but he will have to go on a decent run to catch the soaring Hall. He’s got 266,000. – RJ

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1:45pm: Numbers

There were 225 entries to the $25,000 High Roller event, consisting of 173 unique players and 52 re-entries.

Day 1 entries: 214 (170 unique players + 44 re-entries)
Day 2 entries: 11 (3 new players + 8 re-entries)

Prize pool: $5,400,000
Places paid: 31
First prize: $1,142,100

1:40pm: Zinno is zapped
Level 12 – Blinds 1,200 – 2,400 (300 ante)

Anthony Zinno was short-stacked when the remainder of his chips went into the middle. First, Will Failla took a shot at getting those precious Z-chips by isolating with a raise to 14,000. Failla’s plan failed when the action got to Mike Leah on the button. He pushed out a large stack of blue 5,000 chips that indicated a re-raise. Failla threw his hand away as Leah flipped over pocket Nines and Zinno revealed A♦K♦.

Leah stated he’s never won an all in versus Zinno before. He has now. The board ran out Queen-high and Zinno was gone. Leah moves up to 245,000. – RJ

1:30pm: Schemion out
Level 12 – Blinds 1,200 – 2,400 (300 ante)

Ole Schemion is out. On a flop of 7♣Q♣8♥ he shoved for his last 34,000. Jarred Jaffee was in middle position and called with Q♠Q♦. When Schemion saw that he knew his tournament was over, and his 10♠Q♥ was easily beaten by the J♦[and K♥ river. – SB

1:25pm: What are the chances?
Level 12 – Blinds 1,200 – 2,400 (300 ante)

It’s funny how often this happens. See if you agree by the end of the hand. Andre Akkari started the action by raising, Iaron Lightbourne three-bet and then Alexander Lynskey jammed all-in on the button. Akkari quickly folded and Lightbourne called off all of his chips with A♥K♠. Lynskey had J♣J♠ so the race was on.

The hand is all very standard so far. The board? Not so much. It ran out 4♣5♦6♣7♠8♣ to give both players a straight and chop it up. As I said above, what are the chances? Answers on a postcard please. – RJ

1.20pm: Mandavia out
Level 12 – Blinds 1,200 – 2,400 (300 ante)

Ankush Mandavia is out. Former world champion Greg Merson sent him to the rail. After Mandavia opened for 14,000 in middle position with pocket queens, Merson raised to 30,500 form the button. After a little thought Mandavia moved all-in, at which point Merson snap called with pocket aces. The board changed nothing. Merson now up to 300,000. – SB

1:15pm: Take a Chance on me
Level 12 – Blinds 1,200 – 2,400 (300 ante)

There have been plenty of eliminations here so far today but, of the 95 players remaining, there aren’t many bigger stacks in the room than Chance Kornuth right now.

The American finished 3rd in the PCA Main Event in 2015. This year he’s up to 266,000 in the $25k High Roller and will be looking to hit another final table here on Paradise Island. – RJ

1:05pm: Explaining an enormous noise
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

When there’s the sound of players laughing and cheering so loudly that even the commentators on EPTLive mention it, you just know it has to be something worth running over to the table for. In this instance it was Michael Kamran busting Andy Andrejevic in brutal fashion.

Kamran had called Andrejevic’s shove with pocket twos, only to find the American was holding aces. Not to be deterred, Kamran got out his camera phone and started recording the whole thing as the table, led by the booming tones of Noah Schwartz, played along. It was looking anti-climactic until the river when a Deuce plopped down.

The table (and the surrounding tables too) erupted with whooping and shouting. Poor Andy Andrejevic could do nothing but look on in shock. – RJ

1:05pm: Winner to get $1.1 million
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

The prize pool has been announced. Full details to follow but 31 places will be paid, with $1,142,100 for the winner tomorrow. A min cash is worth $47,000. – SB

1:00pm: Bad timing for Timex
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Mike McDonald just got caught with his hand in the cookie jar versus Ben Heath. McDonald had the betting lead on the 2♥2♠9♣ flop and bet 5,500 when checked to. Heath called. The 6♠ turn prompted Heath to check again. This time McDonald stuck him all in, but when he was instantly called he knew it was trouble.

Heath had slow-played pocket Aces to perfection and McDonald was drawing dead with A♥10♦. Heath moves up to 65,000 and McDonald down to 45,000. Maybe it’s time he got a new watch… – RJ

12.50pm: Ung’s Kings forced to abdicate
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Senh Ung is out, sent to the rail by Andre Akkari. Ung had found pocket kings so was ahead against Akkari’s jack-eight. But Ung made an “Owww” noise on the flop, that paired Akkari’s eight and gave him a straight draw, then a louder “Owww!” when a third eight arrived on the turn. Kings well and truly dethroned, and Akkari back up to 43,000. – SB

12:45pm: Jetten powered
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Peter Jetten just got a 120,000 double-up through Davidi Kitai. Jetten opened the button to 5k and Kitai jammed on him from the big blind. Kitai had the covering stack and would be left with 48,000 if he was called and lost.

That’s exactly what happened. Jetten called with A♠10♠ and it was a good call because Kitai had pocket Sevens. An Ace on the flop was good enough for Jetten. – RJ

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12.40pm: More eliminations
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Joining those on the rail are Gleb Remzin, Isaac Haxton, Jason Mercier, Daniel Dvoress, Tom Lutz and Francois Billard. – SB

12.35pm: Not playing but not out
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Half an hour into Day 2 and Adrian Mateos is not yet at his seat. He started the day with 58,000. – SB

12.30pm: Beast silenced
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Ryan ‘The Beast’ Riess is the latest player to hit the exit doors after losing a hand to Kenny Smaron. He now has 140,000.

Riess, who only bought into the event at the start of Day 2, was one of a number of WSOP Main Event champions in this tournament. He joins Joe McKeehen, Greg Merson and Joe Cada. – RJ

12:25pm: New arrivals
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Eight players re-entered at the start of Day 2. They are:

Isaac Haxton
Agshin Rasulov
Charlie Carrel
Darren Elias
Kevin MacPhee
James Calderaro
Piotr Franczak
Tom Lutz

In addition three players entered for the first time prior to the start. They are:

Ryan Riess
Jyri Merivirta
Jason Koon

12:20pm: Steve O’Dwyer is in demand
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Noah Schwartz comes into Day 2 with one of the shortest stacks in the room. He has 20,600, or just over ten big blinds.

However, something else has caught his eye at the table where he is seated with Isaac Haxton and Steve O’Dwyer.

steve_odwyer_pca2016_hrd2.jpgSteve O’Dwyer
“Where do I get one of those?” said Schwartz, pointing at a plasticine Steve O’Dwyer doll that Haxton (and others) have been using as a lucky charm all week. O’Dwyer – the real one, not the inanimate object – was quick to pass on the information to Schwartz, who was relieved to hear they cost only $35.

“I’m so happy right now! I’m down $2m the past two week but I’m getting a doll!” You win some, you lose some. – RJ

12.15pm: More eliminations
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

As well as Negreanu, JC Alvarado and Scott Seiver are among the first to depart today. – SB

scott_seiver_pca2016_hrd2.jpgScott Seiver among the first to depart
12.10pm: Negreanu exits early
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Cards are now in the air for Day 2 of the $25k High Roller and one of the first casualties of the day is Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu.

daniel_negreanu_pca2016_hrd2.jpgDaniel Negreanu
He entered the day with less than ten big blinds and couldn’t spin it up. Table Negreanu, which also includes Kevin MacPhee, will be a whole lot quieter from now on. – RJ

12:00pm: Play starts
Level 11 – Blinds 1,000 – 2,000 (300 ante)

Players are back and cards are in the air.

11.30am: High rollers back for day 2

Registration is still open, so there is no official seat draw for Day 2 of the $25K High Roller. But we can tell you that last night Dustin Johns bagged up the chip lead with 298,100. But it was tight at the top, with Robert Gorodetsky (294,900), Brian Tae-Hyun Yoon (294,000), and Jared Jaffee (293,600) close behind. The full list of Day 1 chip counts can be found HERE.


Want to be here next year? Sign up for PokerStars and start your journey. Click here to get an account.

Take a look at the official website of the PCA, with tournament schedule, videos, news, blogs and accommodation details for the Atlantis Resort in The Bahamas.

Also All the schedule information is on the EPT App, which is available on both Android or IOS.

PokerStars Blog reporting team on the $100,000 Super High Roller: Stephen Bartley, Martin Harris, Ross Jarvis, and Nick Wright. Photos by Joe Giron and Carlos Monti.


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