Day 1b completed
Day 1b completed
What a day that was! A total of 528 players packed onto 54 tables today to play Day 1b of the PokerStars.net EPT Prague Season 9. That meant a total of 864 players across the two flights, smashing the 722 players that entered last year. The prize pool was released late on and the top prize of a massive €835,000 easily surpasses the €720,000 paid to Martin Finger last season. This is now officially the richest tournament ever to be held in this country.
Leading the way at the end of play was Vadim Belov who pipped Luis Rodriguez to post after he bagged up 179,300 chips. For long periods we thought Luis Rodriguez was going to end the day as leader after he won a huge pot versus Makarios Avramidis in a aces versus kings confrontation. He dropped back to finish on 176,800.
The play was frantic from the off, with cooler hands popping up all over the room matching the temperature outside. Martin Hruby and Byron Kaverman were two players with high hopes for the tournament, but they busted in the same hand after both flopping sets on flop. Mikita Badziakouski was sat in wait with for a straight though and sent them both packing.
Those sort of hands continued throughout the day and we recommend you read back through today’s coverage to absorb what the players had to contend with and what we witnessed.
Team PokerStars Pro had 14 representatives in the field today but not all made it through the minefield. Dario Minieri, Dag Palovic, Max Martinez, Michael Keiner, Luca Pagano, and Salvatore Bonavena all joined Hruby on the rail. We will welcome back Alex Kravchenko, Juan Manuel Pastor, Christian de Leon, Ville Wahlbeck, Pier Paolo Fabretti, Johnny Lodden and Ana Marquez on Day 2 though.
Those having to contend with the bulging side events this week after busting included former champions Kevin MacPhee, Benny Spindler, David Vamplew, Michael Tureniec and Davidi Kitai along with Faraz Jaka, Max Silver, Lars Bonding, Elio Fox and Griffin Benger.
The remaining 462 players from both day 1a and 1b will return for day 2 tomorrow at 12:00 PM CET, where they’ll make steady progress towards the 128 players that’ll leave with a Prague scented Christmas present worth a minimum €8,000. Some eyes will be on the final table prizes (listed below) but that there in dangerous behavior.
The PokerNews reporting team will be back and full of vigor later on today where confirmed heroes and heroes in waiting will continue to brawl over the baize.
The tournament officials have just announced that the remaining players will play five more hands before bagging and tagging. We're off to get some counts, so stay tuned for those as well as out full recap of Day 1b action.
With 10,500 in the pot and a board reading , Marian Kulifaj and an unknown player got their stacks in, with the latter committing his last 25,000 with . Unfortunately for him, Kulifaj had flopped a bigger set with . The river was of no consequence, and Kulifaj chipped up to 175,000.
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls. We have the official payouts for you.
A total of 128 places will be paid out here in Prague, a min-cash is worth €8,000; a final table appearance €75,000 and the eventual champion will leave Prague with a cool €835,000!
David Peters has doubled up and is now armed with almost 60,000 chips.
It appears the chips went into the middle preflop in a clash with Nikita Nikolaev, Peters holding and his opponent an in danger pair of queens. Peters' kings stayed in front on the flop, and Peters locked up the hand when the fell on the turn. The inconsequential river completed the board and Peters began stacking his new found chips.
Nikolaev on the other hand is left with just 5,200 chips.
Balasz Botond was all in and at risk for his tournament life on a flop of holding . Manuel Cortada Dominguez called with two black aces, and held as the turn and river came , respectively.
Botond hit the rail, while Dominguez increased his stack to 130,000 chips.
James Carroll opened to 1,400 in middle position, Michael Grob three-bet to 3,400 in the cutoff, and the action folded back to Carroll, who called.
The flop was , and Carroll checked. Grob continued for 3,700, and Carroll called.
The turn was the , Carroll checked again, and this time Grob knuckled behind.
The suicide king () completed the board, and Carroll checked a third time. Grob thought for a bit, then fired 7,500. Carroll raised his brow, then cut out enough chips to make the call. He counted the rest of his stack, wondering how much he would have if he made the call and was beat, and tossed them forward.
Grob tabled for a pair of kings, and Carroll mucked is hand.