End of Day 2 Chip-counts:

With just twenty players surviving the frenetic last level of action here at the WPT National Event in London’s Aspers Casino, here are the survivors and their overnight chip-stacks. They will return at 3pm tomorrow to start with blinds of 10,000/20,000/3,000 with the average stack at 567,000 (28 big blinds). We’ll see you then!

Edgar Drozdov 1,764,000

Mohammed Zah0ur 1,171,000

Lubys Zanas 998,000

Steve O’Keefe 817,000

Chris Kadji 807,000

Xuan Nguyen 608,000

Kenneth (Chukwuemeka) Lemchi 598,000

——– Average = 567,000 chips ——-

Daiva Baruskaite 545,000

Martyna Vitkauskas 490,000

Haresh Thaker 454,000

Danny Williams 438,000

Sam Macdonald 431,000

Stephen Goldings 330,000

Sonny Tant 314,000

Eric Ramkeesoon 271,000

Paul Newland 260,000

Pierre Morin 214,000

Costin Cristinel 198,000

Dervis Sam 190,000

Hanan Barzel 185,000

 

Chris Richards Out in 22nd

The youngster from Bournemouth busted when his shove from the cut-off was called by the big blind, who held . He could never catch up and instead of joining us on the final day, will have a train journey back to the South coast. Impressive young player, though.

 

Williams Gets His Wish

Danny Williams has been short-stacked for a while, and after seeing Chris Kadji raise pre-flop, decided to get his last 12 big blinds into the middle with . Fortunately for him, Kadji called with and a nice dry board gave Danny a much-needed double-up to 385,000 chips. Kadji doesn’t look too bothered, and that’s understandable given he still has a massive pile of around 905,000 in front of him.

Daiva at the Double

Daiva Baruskaite has largely been short-stacked today, having to work her way back into play at the table, and survive on all-ins through the bubble. She’s just leapt above the average stack for the first time in a while, and has a stack to do damage to even the largest chip mountain out there.

Raising to 33,000 pre-flop from the hijack position, Daiva saw Ebad Hussain in the small blind call her, then quickly shove all of his 260,000 chips into the middle as soon as the flop of landed. Daiva looked down at her 219,000 remaining chip-stack and and decided ‘I just have to call’ before doing so and being shown the flush draw, Hussain holding . He couldn’t look, so turned away, as the turn came , giving Daiva two-pair, and taking out a couple of outs in the process. The river ended Hussain’s chances, and he has spare change left. Daiva is up to over 570,000.

A reminder that play doesn’t start until 3pm tomorrow, so a chance for players, railers, fans and reporters to rest up ahead of what should be an epic final day!

Goldings Gets Gareth

partypoker qualifier Gareth Smirthwaite build himself all the way back up from fumes on the bubble to an above-average stack, but he’s just crashed out of this year’s WPT London Accumulator in 26th place. He got all his chips into the middle with after the board had come out but was called by Stephen Goldings who had flopped the second nuts with . The river of did not help Gareth whatsoever.

Blinds are now 8,000/16,000/2,000 in the final level of play of the night. Average stack is 464,166 (29BB), with 24 players (three tables of eight-handed p0ker) guiding us to the finish in 40 minutes time.

Chipcounts with an Hour Left

With just 29 players still in the race for a Day 3 place, here are a large amount of the chip-counts, with a few very big stacks. Blinds are now an eye-watering 6,000/12,000/2,000, with the 384,137 (32BB) average a dream for some and ancient history for others…

Selected Chipcounts:

Edgar Drozdov 1.4 million

Haresh Thaker 900,000

Chris Kadji 800,000

Lubys Zanas 650,000

Kenneth Chukwuemeka 640,000

Sonny Tant 443,000

Martynias Vitkauskas 440,000

Chris Richards 420,000

Sam Macdonald 400,000

Steve O’Keefe 398,000

Berivan Dag 381,000

Daiva Baruskaite 380,000

Gareth Smirthwaite 245,000

Stephen Goldings 240,000

Dervis Sam 235,000

Eric Ramkeesoon 150,000

Sebastian Parsons 120,000

Batkash Pasha 110,000

Tant Can, Barzel Can’t Drozdov Has No Idea…

Sonny Tant continues to cruise through each level without ever looking in danger of being eliminated. If he keeps that going until tomorrow night, he’ll have won £21,500 and the trophy. After re-raising Hanan Barzel pre-flop from 25k to 62k, he got a call, and on the flop of , led out for 72,000. Enough to get a quick fold and build his stack, now up to around the 700,000 mark. One of the top ten stacks, for sure.

The final 30 players are now on a 30-minute break, we’ll be back when they return.

Drozdov Has No Idea…

…what his opponent, Florin Ignat, open-shoved pre-flop with for 235,000 (or 23 big blinds) . Drozdov on the button looked across to his opponent and attempted a stare-down. After about ten seconds, he broke away from it, leaning back in his chair saying, ‘I don’t know what the **** you’ve got!’ and eventually elected to call.

Ignat turned over and Drozdov was actually in decent enough shape, taking a flip with . The board paid out the big stack, too, with it falling with Ignat’s hopes ignited into flames on the turn.  Drozdov now has a whopping 850,000 (or 85 big blinds). He looks impervious at the table.

Big or Little

There are, as you might imagine, some very big and very small stacks out there in the field now, as 32 players share 4 tables all with the hope of aking Day 3. We’re 18 minutes from the final break of the day (30 minutes), and here are some stack-sizes as blinds are now at 5,000/10,000/1,000 with the average at 340,000 (34BB):

Haresh Thaker (chip leader) 1,020,000

Lubys Zanas 701,000

Sonny Tant 560,000

Sebastian Parsons 200,000

Daiva Baruskaite 83,000

Eric Sets it Up

On a flop of , Eric Ramkeesoon was all-in for 68k into a pot of more than 50k. Called by Stephen Goodings, another was dwelling a call, but eventually let it go. Eric turned over pocket tens for a flopped top set, but Goodings had for an open-straight draw. However, Eric faded both the turn and river to more than double-up to around 180k.

Smirthwaite the Survivor

Down to just four big blinds on the bubble, partypoker qualifier and all-round nice guy Gareth Smirthwaite has been telling us how he managed to turn that into a stack of 315,000 chips, comfortably above the average of 278,000 (34BB) with 38 players left.

‘I got up to 80,000 when my Ace-Ten beat King-Jack. But then I had aces and two players shoved into me. It was a nice situation to find myself in.’

He’s put in the hours, this man. He always manages to satellite three entries into the WPT Accumulator tournaments and is a very popular member of the partypoker community with other players. Now he has the chip-stack to match his personality!

The Five-Minute Bubble

With 48 players returning from a refreshing dinner break, no-one seemed in the mood to make the bubble last any longer than was necessary and it has been burst in record time!

First, Andrius Stepaitis was no more in tournament terms after he was all-in and at risk with against a player who did wish to be named, holding . the board of sending him home on the turn. All of  sudden, we were on the bubble, with 46 players left in the room after another bustee lost his stack. With play going hand-for-hand, only one deal of that format was needed. With two all-ins, Tournament Director Christian Scalzi announced that should both players bust then they would split the £570 money that would be awarded to 45th place.

First up, Graham Wilson was all-in and at risk with pocket queens for what looked like well over 100,000. He was called by his opponnent who held and to ‘ooh’s and ‘ahh’s, he was ousted when a dry board turned wetter than the weather outside as an ace landed on 4th street to bust him.

Next, it was the turn of Mohammed Shah to sweat a £285 deal effectively. He was all-in for just under four big blinds with pocket jacks, called by  a player with . A four on the flop and then a two on the turn sent him packing, and Shah departs, as Graham Wilson does, with £285 cash in his pocket.

The remaining 44 players are shooting for that top prize of £21,500 now!

Back To It!

With just 48 players left, we’re ready to resume and cards are in the air for Level 17 of the 20 we’ll play today. Blinds are now 4,000/8,000/1,000, with the average stack at 237,021 (29BB) .

Three from the minimum cash, which is £570, so we’re virtually on the bubble!

Hardy and Chaplin Bust Before the Break

Dan Hardy got his last into the middle when he three-bet jammed and was called by pocket jacks – the hand he feared just an orbit earlier – and he couldn;t hit a king.

Tristan Chaplin got his last into the middle with but was called by pocket deuces. A deuce on the flop did his chances no good at all and he busts 15 from the money.

We’re at 55 players as those hopeful players go for a 50-minute dinner break, so we’ll do that too. See you back here around 7pm GMT.

O’Keefe Misses Beef, Takes Lead

Steve O’Keefe got involved in two hands which could have seen him exit the tournament, but instead see him take over the mantle of chip leader here on Day 2. First, he got 85,000 into the middle pre-flop with pocket nines against former chip leader Daniel Levy (not that one) who called off 85k with K-6, and didn’t get there.

Next, O’Keefe raised it up pre-flop again and it was Levy who battled back, eventually provoking another pre-flop all-in from O’Keefe, who this time had pocket queens. Levy had K-J and pretty soon, O’Keefe had another massive double.

Levy has since left O’Keefe’s table and stabilised on 240,000, while O’Keefe himself has 520,000 and the ‘yellow jersey’.

Hardy Isn’t a Hero

Daniel Hardy saw Dervis Sam limp UTG and decided that a raise from mid-position would be the best plan. He popped it to 15,500 and Dervis Sam waited patiently for everyone to fold around to him, before shoving all-in for 81,000!

Hardy thought for a long time, two or three minutes, but eventually let the hand go, asking Sam if he had ‘Jacks? You limp under-the-gun, then shove. Felt like jacks.’ Sam reacts to this hand-calling like he may have actually had that hand, but refuses to fully admit it. Eiter way, Hardy’s fold looks better after the hand than it ust have felt to do – Daniel has just 66,000 at 2,5600/500/500 to his name. We are still 16 places from the money.

Massive Three-Way All-In!

A huge hand has ended in a quarter of a million chips being pushed over to one player after three were all-in pre-flop here in Level 14 of the £100,000 Guaranteed WPT Accumulator event in Stratford’s glorious Aspers Casino.

All the chips went in pre-flop, with Justin Tsui holding and 85,500, Berivan Dag holding and 88,500 and Laszlo Balogh holding and 156,000 – more than enough to knock both of his opponents out.

The flop came and that saw Berivan remain ahead, the diminutive  player leaning forward in her seat. The turn of left Tsui calling for an ace, and Balogh for a seven, but the river gave the pot to Dag, who celebrated with a mini fist-pump.

As she begins the mammoth task of stacking 255,000 chips or so, all the players wish Tsui luck in life as he walks away fro the table. Balogh is left with around 18 big blinds.

Break Times

Plenty of the players in the room will be interested in this information, as they’ve been asking!

With 20 Levels scheduled for the day, the breaks will be taken as follows:

Dinner break will be at the end of the level after this one, with players going on a 50-minute break between 6.15pm-7.05pm approximately.

There’ll be a 30-minute break at the end of Level 18, roughly 9.05pm-9.35pm is that one.

Finally, play is likely to finish at around the 11.25m mark. Don’t forget, the final day takes place tomorrow, with cards in the air at a leisurely 3pm.

Never Pasha Pair

Martynias Vitkauskas raised to 6,500, was re-raised to 16,000 by Baktask Pasha and then re-raised all-in for around 275,000 chips. Pasha called and showed , which was in a race with Vitkauskas’ . The board of doubled up Pasha, who was all-in for 71,500. Vitkauskas is still more than steady on over 20,000 with the average at 142,820 (35BB) with 78 players left in seats.

Every Hand Counts

Graziano open-shoved all-in from mid-position with for 33,000 total. Sonny Tant flat-called, but behind him, Al Houssaini re-raised all-in for a lot more, maybe as much as 120,000. Tant folded, and was only too happy to tell his tablemate that he folded ‘Ace-Queen’. Houssaini turned over and was well ahead of Pirovano, who was standing at the start of the deal as the board came out and walking at the end of it.

Tant would have lost a big chunk with A-Q of any suit and made another good fold.

Elsewhere, we have lost last year’s 7th-placed finisher, popular Aspers player Vinnie Anderson. He had another deep run, getting to the top 87 players, but only 45 will be paid. We’re probably still a good couple of hours away from the cash bubble…

Guess the Hand

On a board of and with around 56,000 in the pot, James Manlove in the cut-off shoved all-in for an extra 37,000. That sent the only other player in the hand, Chris Richards, into the tank as he considered whether to call or not. With 140,000 or so  behind him, he could afford to…but would it be wrong? He guessed a few hands that Manlove might have, during which time James continued to talk, firing back questions of his own about Chris’ hand.

When Richards said ‘Maybe you have aces with the ace of diamonds’, Manlove clammed up, sitting down. Eventually, Richards let his hand go, and was shown that his cal was pretty close – Manlove flipped over and smiled, racking up 93,000. At blinds of 1,500/3,000/500, that’s enough to battle back into proceedings. With 96 players left, the average is 117,263.

Drozdov Takes Out Timotheu…and Takes the Lead

Edgar Drozdov raised to 5k UTG, which was re-raised to 12,500 by TimTim, who began the hand with 160,000 chips. On the flop of , both players checked, as TimTim told us, in his case that was with him holding the nuts – for the flopped straight. On the turn of , Drozdov checked to TimTim, who bet 14,500. This was raised to 45,000 and TimTim called. On the river, Drozdov shoved, and TimTim tanked for a considerable time, before calling it off. He was shown Drozdov’s winning hand, for a rivered full house.

Drozdov has the chip lead, but here are a few stacks to go with his as the remaining 100 players exactly take a well-earned break. Chip average is 111,040.

Selected Chipcounts: 

Edgar Drozdov 305,000

Sam Macdonald 270,000

Simon Green 230,000

Sebastian Parsons 201,000]

Vinnie Anderson 100,000

Vince Macaulay 90,000

Tristan Chaplin 57,000

Daniel Hardy 54,000

Neil McCulloch 48,000

Timotheu Climbing the Ranks

With just 114 players left, 40% or so will cash, with the top 45 players paid. but some of the people still in seats are making moves to try and grow a big stack with which to push for a Day 3 place.

One such player is TimTim Timotheu (so good they named him twice?) who came into the day’s play with an accumulated stack of 92,000 chips. He went up to 140,000, then ‘lost a 100k pot with pocket jacks beaten by Ace-King’. Since then, however, there’s been a steady building of TimTim’s chip mountain, and he currently sits behind around 160,000, well above the 97k average.

Kotsev Catches Well

Aleksandar Kotsev was all-in for his final 12,400 chips from under-the-gun, and he saw Justin Tsui in mid-position peel 25k chips from his stack and re-raise to isolate. Everyone else folded and when the hands were turned over, Kotsev’s was way behind Tsui’s . But the flop saw both a king and a four land and Kotsev, who had been standing up pre-flop, stayed ahead through 4th and 5th street to sit back down with 11 big blinds to his name.

Level 12 – Blinds 1,200/2,400/400 – 114 Players Remaining – 97,719 Average Stack (40BB)

Sonny On the Money

One player who dedicated Day 1 followers will remember is Sonny Tant. He made a very good fold way back on Day 1a, and pushed himself to the limit yesterday too, in an effort to build as bigger stack as possible. Having come through to today’s Day 2 well above average with a six-figure stack, he’s now up to 198,000 after having pocket kings dealt to him three hands in a row. Sonny may have played more hands here this weekend than almost everyone…maybe it was due! Every chance, as they say.

Always a Sweat

Every all-in seems to be tense right now, with 125 players remaining and only 45 spots paid. Andrius Stepaitis just shoved for his last 12 big blinds, with and was looked up by Stephen Goodings only, who had more than enough to make the call with . The flop came a rather worrying for Stepaitis, but he faded the turn and river to put himself up to 51,000 (25.5BB). Goodings is still more than comfortable on 120,000.

Champion Won’t Be

Lee Champion got his last 44,000 chips into the middle pre-flop with and was up against Thang Nguyen with . The flop of was safe enough, as was the turn of . But a two-outer arrived on the river, and Champion was out. Nguyen now has around 140,000 and a real shot at a deep run.

Macdonald Busts Another

Sam Macdonald came into play with the chip lead and after taking a dip, he may have grabbed it back. Getting the chips in on a flop of , with his up against his opponent’s , Sam hit an eight on the turn and eliminated another stack from play. He now is up to around a quarter of a million chips.

Even at blinds of 1,000/2,000/300 as we are playing now, that’s plenty! We have 131 players remaining, with the average stack at 85,000 (42.5BB)

In or Out?

As players make moves for a decent stack, the whole of Aspers Poker Room seems to be on auto-pilot for a few periods over the last 80 minutes. That’s because Leicester are winning 3-0 at Manchester City, and with every goal, a huge roar rang out among the players.

Going for their own title with bold moves were Denis Prickett and Daniel Hardy, with varying degrees of success. Prickett shoved pre-flop with pocket queens, but was called by a bigger stack who held pocket kings, and Denis departed.

Hardy holds firm, however, after re-shoving over the initial all-in from his opponent and a 20,000 call fro Krzystof Prygowski. Prygowski got out of the way when Hardy shoved for 58,000 total, and turned over . Prygowski open-folded so was pretty relieved, and Hardy’s opponent held a doomed , which had no chance on the board of . Hardy has 98,000 at 800/1,600/200.

Green Hoping to Go One Better

With the reigning WPTNUK champion Irina Nikolaidi a no-show for this week’s tournament, last year’s runner-up Simon Green is hoping that he can improve by one place and take down the title.

Simon is up to 130,000 and that’s well above the average of 65

Parsons On the Nose

We’ve seen little dramatic action between big stacks in the first level of the day, but a big hand involving Sam Macdonald just happened. On the river of a fairly moderate pot, with the board showing , Parsons led for 30k into Macdonald, with the pair heads-up for the second time in three hands.

Macdonald called, and Parsons turned over , good enough to win a chunky pot, which brings him up to around 180,000. Macdonald came into play with well over 235,000, but by our estimations, he only just covers Parsons now with 182,000 or so.

Elsewhere, Chris Gordon busted ‘in three hands’ in the cruellest of starts at his Day 2 table. His exit hand was a 5-bet shove against the most attacking player on his table, who had just played J-5 aggressively, but although Chris held , he ran into the man’s pocket kings, and that was it for Gordon.

Shoveland

With some way to the money, players who have come back shorter than most are utilising the first level of the day to try to double up or get a shove through. Raheem Tadj-Saadat shoved for 18 big blinds with and bought the blinds and a raise. We have lost a few players so far, however, so have 189 still involved.

The top prize is £21,500 and the famous WPT National trophy.

196 Players Return

With blinds in Level 9 (the first level of Day 2) starting at 600/1,200/200 , we have 196 players in their seats, with the average stack at 56,836. That’s a very healthy 47 big blinds, and with blind levels now up from 30 minutes to 40  minutes, there will be plenty of play across today’s 12 levels. Play is scheduled to finish at around 11.00pm.

The top 45 players will get paid, with a minimum cash at £570.

Day 2 is On!

Welcome back to Stratford and Aspers Casino here in London as we bring back all the players who have accuulated a chip-stack from one, two or even three Day 1 flights.

Going into play, Sam Macdonald looks to be the chip-leader, but there are plenty of big names and big stacks too!

Lets get back to the action…

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