Alex Tikhoniouk drew upon the proverbial luck of the Irish to climb to the top of the chip counts at the end of Day 2 of the Season 11 edition of the European Poker Tour (EPT) Deauville Main Event.
Tikhoniouk found himself down to a mere four big blinds during Day 2 proceedings but rallied well to bag up a tournament leading stack of 312,600 chips when the curtain came down on proceedings. According to his Hendon Mob page, Tikhoniouk has eight major tournament cashes to his name, all stemming from his exploits in Ireland, four of which our outright wins, the latest of which coming in December 2014 when he took down the €530 buy-in The Sixty in Carlow for €10,000.
Should Tikhoniouk finish in 55th place or higher, and on the form there is no reason why that he will not, he will best that princely sum by €1,100. If Tikhoniouk finishes as the last man standing, he'll be able to brag about a massive €543,700 score, but there is a long way to go – 138 players remain – before he can get his hands on a comedy-sized cheque for that amount.
It wasn't a great day at the felt for Tikhoniouk fellow Irish men or his English cousins, with many falling by the wayside during the course of the Day 2 action.
John Eames and Benjamin Pollak clashed on numerous occasions on the televised feature table so it was fitting that Pollak would send the Southport-born pro to the rail.
Mike “Da Bookie” Hill also went bust, as did Ben Dobson, Team PokerStars Pro Jake Cody, Simon Appleby, Ludovic Geilich, Victoria Coren Mitchell, Alex Lindop, Sunday Million winner Dan Charlton, Nick Hicks and Gareth Teatum.
Some of our players did progress to Day 3 and will be hopeful of at least reaching the final 87 players and bank some money for their efforts in France.
Owain Carey finished with 165,000 chips in his stack and finds himself in the middle of the pack. Carey opted for a high variance line with in a three-bet pot against Carlo Savinellli that saw him overbet check-raise shove on a flop and lose out to . Savinelli put the 120,000 or so of those chips to good use and ended the night with 275,400 betting tokens.
Also through to Day 3 are Tikhoniouk's fellow Irishman Dan “NukeTheFish!” Wilson (203,300), Alfie Adam (135,200), Rhys Jones (63,800), and Martins Adeniya (62,200).
Season 11 European Poker Tour Deauville Main Event Day 2 Top 10 Chip Counts
Play resumes at noon local time on Wednesday and sees a host of stars return to the action. Kevin MacPhee (308,300) looks set for another deep run and should progress to Day 4 we will again have the prospect of crowning another double EPT Main Event champion; MacPhee, of course, won the Berlin Main Event in 2010.
Other stars to look out for are team PokerStars Pros Bertrand Grospelier (281,500), Jan Heitmann (199,000) and Marcin Horecki (112,000), Danish pro Simon Ravnsbaek (197,600), Sergio Aido (146,000), Ognjen Sekularec (101,700), Paul Berende (78,600), partypoker WPT UK winner Matas Cimbolas (53,000), and Dominik Panka (45,800).
Tune into the UK & Ireland PokerNews live reporting pages where you can follow tall of the action, where you can watch the excellent live stream and rail our players throughout Day 3 and hopefully beyond.
Before you watch the action unfold before you eyes, check out this short strategy clip wiith Team PokerStars Pro Eugene Katchalov.