Day 2 of the 2015 PokerStars.com EPT Season 12 Malta Main Event went off inside The Casino at Portomaso on Tuesday with the field cut close to a third of its size by the time it finished up.
The day began with 386 players, plans to play six 75-minute levels and Italian Carmelo Crucitti bringing in the combined chip lead from the two starting flights with him. By the time they bagged and tagged, just 131 players remained, and Swede Alexander Ivarsson was on top.
Registration closed at the start of the day and the final tally was 651 total entries creating a €3,157,350 prize pool that will pay 95 spots. A min-cash is worth €9,320, with a hefty €602,400 awaiting the winner.
Ivarsson got the inside track on that dominating his table early, then winning a 170,000-chip pot when his sixes made a set to hold versus big slick to push above the 500,000-chip mark. He bagged 529,200 and almost 180 big blinds coming into tomorrow.
Top 10 Day 2 Chip Counts
Those who were not so fortunate included Friend of PokerStars Natalie Hof, who double once, but busted soon after, joining a litany of big names on the rail including Andrew Chen, Gaelle Baumann, Ismael Bojang, and Danish Team PokerStars Pro Theo Jorgensen, who ran kings into aces to go broke in the second level.
Just a couple days removed from winning the €25K High Roller here at EPT Malta, Mike McDonald built it up to mid six figures by busting German standout Bojang early. In the late stages, he five-bet shoved with jacks into Antonio Scalzi's pocket queens and four-flushed on the river to move up to a spot among leaders. McDonald ended on 314,200.
2015 WSOP $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em runner-up Natasha Barbour ran it up early as well, but bagged just 74,000. Faraz Jaka came in with a big stack and only added to it all day, collecting 375,200 and a spot in the top 10 to finish the day. €10,200 High Roller champion Steve O'Dwyer was pushing close to 300,000 as the day played on, but just a day after jumping up to the top of the EPT all-time money winner's list, he fizzled a bit, ending on 98,100. Norwegian Team PokerStars Pro Johnny Lodden remains the only hope for the home team, bringing a similar 102,400 with him.
Day 3 will go off Wednesday with plans to play five 90-minute levels with a 20-minute break between each, starting at 12 p.m. local time.
Stay tuned as the PokerNews Live Reporting team will be here throughout, bringing you all the action from from start to finish.