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Day 1a = Done

Day 1a of the inaugural WPT Prague is in the bag, over an done with, done and dusted, whatever you want to call it, it is completed.

A total of 231 players started the day and according to the TV screens around the room 93 have made it through to Day 2, which starts at 1400 on Saturday afternoon. Until the chip counts are sent to us in a few hours time the unofficial chip leader is Jan Ramik who bagged and tagged 209,300 chips at the end of ten long levels of play. Also flying high are Jan Bendik (180,300), Eron Malkin (169,200) and Adria Balaguer (154,000).

Once we receive the full counts we will let you know which of the PartyPoker qualifiers made it through to the next day of play and which will have to re-enter if they want to keep the WPT Prague dream alive.

Join us again at 1400 on Friday for Day 1b of the WPT Prague Main Event!


Rettenmaier Busts At The Death

Marvin Rettenmaier has been eliminated at the hands of Vojtech Ruzicka. The latter min-raised under the gun and then when the action folded to Rettenmaier in the big blind he moved all in for what looked like 40,000 chips. Ruzicka snap-called and his was way in front of the German’s . And it stayed that was as the board ran out to send Rettenmaier home early.


What Did We Say About El Sayed?

Remember earlier in the day when we said Sam El Sayed would either finish the day with a stack of 250,000 or would be on the rail watching from the outside. Well it is the latter that is true.

We did not see his exit hand but there is an El Sayed shaped hole at his former table and Irishman Dermot Blain has suddenly found himself armed with more than 150,000 chips so it is safe to say he is the cause of El Sayed’s demise.


No Action For Ruzicka

Despite playing what seems like every other hand Vojtech Ruzicka’s raises seem to still be earning him respect. In a hand just now he opened from middle position to 2,100 and he picked up the blinds and antes.

Ruzicka has started to put in some impressive performances over the last six months or so including a win in this very casino back in May, a result that netted him a career-best score of €59,890.


Balaguer Continues His Rise

The flop reads and from the big blind’s seat Adria Balaguer makes it 4,100 to play. Jerome Barr is his sole opponent and is seated in early position, he calls and the duo see the peel off on the turn.

Both players check and the on the river completes the board. Balaguer bets 6,100 chips prompting Barr to double check his cards before placing them into the muck.

The young Spaniard is now up to around 155,000 chips and is in great shape in this tournament.


Finne Finished

Timothy Finne’s Main Event is over for today at least if him storming out of the tournament area is anything to go by. He leapt from his seat wide eyed knocking over Almira Skripchenko’s glass of Red Bull energy drink in the process, smashing it into a dozen or so pieces and leaving the tournament staff to clean up the sugary liquid.

“Christ,” he blasphemed as he barged his way out of the room. Christ indeed.


An Interview With Our Current Chip Leader

In this video we caught up with our current chip leader, Adria Balaguer


Moorman Heads For The Exits

Chris Moorman has been eliminated from Day 1a of the WPT Prague Main Event after a move went horribly wring for him. He raised preflop from the late position and Marty Smyth, the former PartyPoker World Open champion, flat-called. The Sam Holden lookalike we spoke of earlier squeezed to what looked like 6,100 and when the action was back on Moorman the Brit moved all in. Smyth then sprung into action and re-shoved, and the Holden wannabe quickly folded.


Even before the dealer put out the flop Moorman had risen from his seat but he paused briefly as he realised he could catch an unlikely runner-runner spade flush. That became impossible when the landed on the turn and by the time the appeared on the river Moorman was already heading for the exits.


Kenney Continuation Bet Does The Trick

Bryn Kenney has not found himself with the pile of chips you usually find him sat behind but he has just added a few more to his stack after a rather standard hand.

The action folded to Mr Kenney on the button and he raised to 1,800, which seems like a standard raise at this blind level. The small blind folds but the big blind stays in the hand meaning it is heads up to the flop. After the big blind checked Kenny made a continuation bet of 2,500 and that was enough to end the hand immediately.


No Action For Schleps

Austria’s Florian Schleps has just taken down the blinds and antes after nobody wanted to take on his under the gun raise to 1,800. Marty Smyth looks like he considered call from the small blind but both he and the Sam Holden lookalike in the big blind let their hands go.


Frankenberger Finished

If Andy Frankenberger is going to win WPT Prague then the WPT Player of the Year is going to have to re-enter on Day 1b because he has just been eliminated. He lost all but 6,000 chips when he six-bet shoved [Qx][Qx] into the [Kx][Kx] of the aggressive Vojtech Ruzicka.

Then, according to his Twitter feed, he pushed with pocket fives and lost to ace-queen. Good game Mr Frankenberger. See you tomorrow?


Rettenmaier Sees In The Witching Hour With A Shove

American Steve O’Dwyer raised it up to 2,200 from under the gun and the action folded all the way around to Marvin Rettenmaier in the small blind. He rapidly riffles his white 100 chips before moving a tower of chips forward worth around 12,000. We did not get time to count them because as they crossed the betting line O’Dwyer’s cards hit the muck.


Last Break Of The Day

The players have been sent on their last break of the day, which may take longer than the scheduled 15-minutes as the floor is going to race off the now unneeded 25 denomination chips.

Expect a lot of the short stacks to start getting shove-happy in an attempt to double up or bust.


Ruzicka Represents Flush, Wins Pot

From UTG+1 Vojtech Ruzicka raises to 1,325 and when Andy Frankenberger and James Akenhead fold, Benjamin Pollak three-bets to 3,125. This forces the action to fold back around to Vojtech, who has been staring intently at Pollak since he three-bet and he calls.

The flop comes down and Ruzicka checks to Pollak and the Frenchman bets 3,600 and Ruzicka makes the call. The on the turn is checked by both players but when the lands on the river, completing a possible flush. Ruzicka takes a second peek at his cards before making it 6,225 to play. Pollak must believe his Czech opponent’s story because it does not take long for his cards to start heading towards the muck.


Rettenmaier Shoves And Takes Down Pot

Marvin Rettenmaier raises to 1,325 from UTG+1 and the player to his direct left makes a tiny three-bet to 2,800. This is called by the next player to act but when the action folds back to Rettenmaier he makes it what looks like 19,000 with just a couple of thousand behind. This scares off his opponents and the German rakes in the pot.


Chips Counts Of The Rich And Famous

Here are some chip counts of the bigger stacks from around the room:

  • Adria Balguer: 160,000
  • Tobias Wagner: 150,000
  • Jan Brandejs: 130,000
  • Sergey Samsonenko: 120,000
  • Mikhail Shaknovich: 120,000
  • Christian Jeppsson: 115,000
  • Sam El Sayed: 112,000
  • Jan Bendik: 110,000
  • Florian Schleps: 110,000
  • Eoghan O’Dea: 85,000


Brammer Has Clock Called On Him

Chris Brammer qualified for this event on PartyPoker saving himself a small fortune so you would think he would be happy. Wrong. He does not look happy at all and that is down to fellow online qualifier Mikolaj Zawadzki who called the clock on the Brit even though he was not in the hand.

Brammer had raised to 1,325 from under the gun and the player to his direct left made the call. he was the only one to do so, so it was heads up to the flop. Brammer made a continuation bet of 1,800 and his opponent quickly called. The turn was the and now Brammer checked but not before riffling a pile of grey 25 chips for a few moments, then for over a minute when he was thinking about whether or not to call the 2,600 bet he was facing. He did call and we saw a river card, the .

Brammer tapped the table and checked but his opponent wasted no time in making it 6,600 to play. Brammer went into the tank for around 90 seconds before Zawadzki called time on him. The floor came over, much to the surprise of Brammer who asked, “Who called the clock?” removing his oversized Dr Dre headphones as he spoke.

He did not look impressed in the slightest and before the floorman could count down the final ten seconds he mucked his hand.


Nitsche Three-Bet Gets Job Done

The action folds around the the blue hoodie sporting button and he raises up the ante and makes it 1,350 to play. Jamie Rosen is next to act and he looks like he could be putting up some resistance but he ultimately folds leaving it up to Dominik Nitsche in the big blind to stop the button pushing them around.

The German is more than up to the task and after checking his holecards he three-bets to 3,550 and takes down the pot uncontested.


Schleps Loses Some But He’s Still In Good Shape

PartyPoker qualifier Florian Schelps is still in good shape despite losing just shy of 4,500 chips in a hotly contested pot. It was Schleps who opened the betting to 1,600 when first to act. The next two players folded but then came a three-bet to 4,400 from the the next player. Only Schleps called and it was heads up to the .

The flop contained more spades than a gravedigger’s shed and that seemed to put off Schelps who quickly checked when it was his turn to bet. His opponent was not as shy though, instead he bet 6,300 and it was more than enough to get the job done because the Austrian Schelps relinquished his hand in record time.


Official Attendance

The official attendance for Day 1a of WPT Prague is a most impressive 231 runners. From this bumper crowd there are 143 players remaining.


Shorr Is No More

Just as we predicted Shannon Shorr’s tournament is over after he moved his crippled stack into the middle holding . Steve O’Dwyer three-bet to 3,500 holding and the cutoff who had in the hole moves all in for 7,600. O’Dwyer calls and the dealer gets busy putting out the community cards.


With that Shorr is eliminated but I have a sneeky feeling he will be back tomorrow.


Steve O’Dwyer Decimates Shannon Shorr’s Stack

From early position Shannon Shorr makes it 1,150 to play and when the action folds around to his fellow countryman Steve O’Dwyer in the cutoff he three-bets to 2,900. The button and blinds get out of the way but Shorr four-bets to 5,150 and O’Dwyer makes the call.

The dealer puts out the flop and Shorr fires a continuation bet of 3,800. O’Dwyer makes the call and it the duo see the land on the turn. Shorr checks the turn, O’Dwyer shoves for around 12,500 and Mr Shorr makes the call.


Shorr is in big trouble and needs a queen and only a queen to win the pot. The dealer burns a card and puts out the on the river, winning the hand for O’Dwyer and leaving the impeccably dressed Shorr with just 1,550 chips. These will surely be going into the middle sooner rather than later.


Kaverman Folds To Four-Bet

Byron Kaverman, the man who reached the final table of the WPT Grand Prix de Paris has just dropped more than 2,500 chips without even seeing a flop. Adria Balaguer opens the betting from middle position with a min-raise to 1,000. Two players fold and the action is on Kaverman and he sits motionless for 30-40 seconds before three-betting to 2,600.

To his direct left is PartyPoker qualifier Grayson Ramage and he asks to see Kaverman’s stack, possibly to four-bet but when he sees Kaverman only had 18,000 behind he changes any plans he has for raising and he passes. The spectacled button is not folding though, he four-bets to 6,100 which immediately folds out Balaguer but Kaverman thinks for his customary 30-40 seconds before releasing his hand.


Blinds For Brammer

PartyPoker qualifier Chris Brammer starting the preflop betting round with a raise from under the gun to 1,100 but this is the only positive action in the hand because the entire table passed and Brammer is left with just the blinds and antes for his troubles.


Bedinar Beats Frankenberger

Andy Frankenberger raises to 625 from middle position, Patrik Bedinaris seated in the cutoff and he calls and Christopher Lastiwka calls on the button. Both blinds also call due to the huge implied odds they are now receiving.

The flop is and the play checks through to our reigning World Poker Tour Player of the Year and he continues to 1,600. The only player to call is Bedinar and they see the appear on the turn. Frankenberger fires a second barrel of 2,100 and again Bedinar calls rather quickly. The final card in this hand is the and Frankenberger slows down and checks. Bedinar bets 4,100 and Frankenberger folds his hand.

Frankenberger still has around 47,000.


Sam El Sayed Hits Quads

We did not see the hand but our photographer, Francesco Rizzo, did and explained to us that Sam El Sayed moved all in after his opponent bet on an [Ax][Ax][7x] flop. His opponent held [Ax][6x] and El Sayed [7x][7x]. The turn was a blank but the river was the case seven, gifting El Sayed quad sevens and the win.


Get Some Bread, We’ll Make Some Toast

On a flop reading , Dan Carter bets 1,100 and his sole opponent is the young man to his immediate left. He reaches for chips and raises to 3,100. Carter, who has now finished his massage, studies the board for a solid 90 seconds, maybe more, before moving all in for around 8,000.

His opponent instantly mucks then his face turns into a deep shade of scarlet. Quick, grab some bread we can make some toast on his cheeks! Something tells me Carter’s little friend was bluffing!


Schleps Aggression Pays Off

The action folded to the player in the three seat, which was in late position, and he made it 900 to play. To his direct left is Marty Smyth and he smooth-calls. The player to his left folds but Florian Schleps is on the button and he squeezes to 2,500. The initial raiser folds but Smyth calls.

The flop comes down and Smyth checks, Schleps bets 2,600 and Smyth gets out of the way.


Cichocki Chips Up

The man who finished as runner-up to Ronny Kaiser in the EPT Tallin Main Event, Grzegorz Cichocki has just been paid off, to some degree, by Dan Carter.

Joining the hand on the river of a board reading , Cichocki bet 1,500 from the under the gun position and Carter, who is still having one of the longest massages in living history, makes the call and mucks when the Pole turns over for trip eights.


No Action For Eames

Poor John Eames, nobody wants to play with him! In a hand we saw just now he raised to 1,000 from under the gun and within seconds the dealer was shuffling the deck again because everyone insta-folded.


Nitsche Welcomed To His New Table

Dominik Nitsche, fresh from his recent win in an EPT side event, has been moved to a new table at the far end of the room. Shortly after arriving he raised preflop from middle position and only the small blind wanted to play with the German, everyone else folded.

The flop was checked by the small blind but Nitsche is the type of player who bets at every opportunity and this was an opportunity to bet. So he did, making it 1,350. His opponent thought about his options for around a minute before check-raising to 3,100.

Nitsche said, “OK” and instantly mucked. Welcome to the table sir.


Losing Pot Does Not Spoil Carter’s Massage

Dan Carter has just lost a 5,000 chip pot but it has not spoiled his massage that he is currently receiving from one of the Revive Touch girls who are dotted around the tournament area.

It was Carter who opened the betting with a 700 raise, a raise that saw the next player look up from his iPad 2 long enough to fold his hand but Barabas Amdras saw an opportunity to pick up some chips and after asking how many chips Carter had he three-bet to 2,350. Everyone folded back to Carter and he confidently tossed in the chips required to call.

Flop: – Carter, still having his back rubbed vigorously, checked and then quickly called when Amdras bet the same amount he had three-bet to preflop, 2,350.

Turn: – Carter checked again and this time Amdras checked behind.

River; – Carter once again tapped the table and checked and then mucked when Amdras check behind and showed for top pair.


O’Shea Done For Today

John O’Shea has been eliminated from the WPT Prague Main Event but he will be returning to the felt tomorrow on Day 1b. His elimination hand saw the action fold to the highly talented Swede Christian Jeppsson and he raises to 700. O’Shea was in the big blind and he moved all in for around 5,400 and was instantly called.



O’Shea, done.


Sam El Sayed Up To 100,000

The 2010 WPT Amneville Main Event winner Sam El Sayed has passed the 100,000 chip mark and is now the tournament’s chip leader. The way El Sayed plays he will either finish the day with 250,000 or we will see him walking past us in the media area having lost his entire stack.

Watch this space.


Andy Frankenberger Reveals The Secret To His Success


Break Time

We are now on a 75-minute dinner break, rejoin us in, well, 75 minutes!


Kenney Folds To Four-Bet

After seeing his pork pie hat wearing opponent make it 700 to play, American Bryn Kenney three-bet to 1,875. Nobody was prepared to match this bet except the initial raiser who sat with his head resting on his left hand, almost falling asleep or at least that is what it looked like from where we were standing.

He suddenly woke up, took back his 700 bet and replaced it with 5,025. Kenney checked his holecards, bit his index finger then used a 25 chip to flick his cards into the muck.


Easy Squeezy For Brammer

The spectacle wearing gentleman in seat three opened the betting by making it 700 to play and after one player folded the hijack called. Sam El Sayed folded and Chris Brammer, on the button, squeezed to 2,600, folding out the initial raiser but the hijack called.

Both players checked the flop but when the hijack, who is heavily tanned and his electric blue T-shirt highlighting this further, checked Brammer seized the moment and bet 3,000, enough to win the hand.


Marvin Attacks An Old Foe

Fresh after doubling up after sucking out with against Marvin Rettenmaier has just taken on the same foe. His opponent raised to 800 from UTG+1 and Rettenmaier three-bet to 2,125. The action folded back around to the original raiser and he got out of the way leaving a smiling Rettenmaier to add some extra chips to his stack.


Marvin Rettenmaier Doubles Up

Marvin Rettenmaier is back in business after he doubled up to around 21,000 chips. A preflop raising war saw the German all in for his 9,975 stack with and looking like he could be heading to the sidelines as his opponent tabled .

The flop was no help to Rettenmaier but the on the turn certainly was. The on the river completed the hand and with that Rettenmaier doubled up.

Have a look at Rettenmaier’s entry into Prague in this short video:


PartyPoker Man Down!

It appears that one of our PartyPoker qualifiers, Stephane Beguin has been sent home for an early bath because he is nowhere to be seen. We just did an orbit of the tournament area and discovered that the seat where Beguin once sat is now empty and where his chips used to be is just empty space.

Looking at his former table mates’ stacks, it appears his executioner could be Eoghan O’Dea as he seems to have the most chips at the table, a position that he was not in 15-20 minutes ago.


Kastle Takes On Akenhead

Both James Akenhead and his new next door neighbour Casey Kastle checked the turn of a board reading taking the hand down to the final street. The on the river saw Akenhead check again and after Kastle bet 2,000 the Brit folded.


Unofficial Day 1a Figures

The TV screens around the room are displaying the fact 229 players have entered WPT Prague on Day 1a, as soon as that number is confirmed as gospel we will update you further but so far everything points to a bumper field, as expected, here in the Czech Republic.


Toby Lewis Eliminated. Will He Re-Enter Tomorrow?

Toby Lewis has been sent to the rail, today just was not his day at all. After losing the huge pot described in the hand below, he committed the rest of his chips with pocket kings and ran straight into a pair of aces.

We have not had the chance to speak to young Mr Lewis to find out if he will re-enter on Day 1b but we would be shocked if he did not.


Toby Lewis Loses Out In 65,000 Chip Pot

Toby Lewis, arguably the highest profile PartyPoker qualifier in the field has just lost out on a massive pot to be left with just 12,000 chips. According to his Twitter account the popular Brit check-raised all in with on a [7x][4x] board and missed.


Beguin Caught With Fingers In The Cookie Jar

Stephane Beguin, who qualified for this event for a fraction of the cost on PartyPoker, has just been caught trying to steal a pot on the turn, though he did not lose many chips.

The cutoff raised to 500 and Beguin, in the big blind, called. A flop that read was checked by Beguin and the cutoff decided to check behind. The appeared on the turn and now Beguin lead into his opponent with a 700 bet but he quickly folded when his bet was raised to 2,000.


Staszko Continues To Chip Up

Martin Staszko raised to 450 from early position and both blinds came along for the ride. The draw heavy flop was greeted by a check from PartyPoker qualifier Mikolaj Zawadzki, a check from the big blind and finally a check from the Czech!

The on the turn received exactly the same treatment, all three players not wanting to pull the trigger. It looked as if the on the river was going to be checked around but when the action was on Staszko he pulled a solitary yellow 1,000 chip from the bottom of the stack he was holding and he tossed that into the pot. Both opponents folded and the November Niner continues to pick up chips.


Easy Game For Eames

Poker is not always about big bluffs and huge pots, sometimes it is the smaller pots that are the order of the day and John Eames just helped himself to one of those.

The action folded around to the Brit in the cutoff and he raised to 500. The button and small blind both folded but the big blind put in the extra chips and called. The flop came down and the big blind checked. Eames put a yellow 1,000 chip into the saying “Eight” as he did making the bet 800. The big blind instantly folded and Eames adds some more chips to his stack.


Another Split Pot For Frankenberger

Joining the action on a flop reading , Tobias Reinkemeier checked in the small blind and Andy Frankenberger bet 4,000. Next to act was Christopher Lastiwka and the Canadian waited for a solid 90 seconds before he unfolded his arms, reached for chips and made the call. The player to his direct left folded, as did Reinkemeier leaving it heads up to the turn.

The dealer put out the on the turn and now Frankenberger checked to his opponent. Lastiwka, sat with arms folded once again, stared at the board before turning to Frankenberger and asking, “How many chips are you playing?” The WPT Player of the Year did not answer, instead he simply moved his arms apart to allow full view of his stack. Moments later Lastiwka bet two red 5,000 chips and Frankenberger quickly called.

The river is the and Frankenberger checked. Lastiwka asked to see his opponent’s stack again and then bets 15,000. Frankenberger instantly reaches for chips then waites for 10 seconds before calling.


Frankenberger clapped his hands and announced, “same hand! I knew it,” as the dealer got to work splitting the pot.


Martin Staszko Interview

Our team caught up with the WSOP Main Event runner-up Martin Staszko and asked him about him returning to home soil to play in the WPT Prague Main Event.


O’Dea Stack Dented

November Niner Eoghan O’Dea has just taken a big hit to stack after he paid off his opponent who was sat there with the nut flush. The board read and the player in the small blind fired a bet of 6,750 and O’Dea went into the tank.

He stayed complete submerged for close to four minutes, his eyes darting to and fro between the board and his opponent. His face looked like he wanted to call but was not too happy about doing so at the same time, a tough decision for the Irishman.

After almost four minutes in the proverbial tank he asked the dealer who much the bet was and when it was confirmed it was 6,750 he made the call. The small blind turned over for the nut flush and we will never know what O’Dea held because he flicked his cards into the muck.


Turn Bet Takes Down Pot

WSOP Main Event runner-up martin Staszko opens the betting with a raise to 450 from middle position only to see the cutoff, Toby Lewis (button) and the small blind call. The flop comes down and each of the four players check, though for a moment it did look like Lewis was going to try and steal the unwanted pot.

The turn is the and the small blind checks again. Staszko, sat with his hands in a fist in front of his face, almost exactly how Phil Hellmuth sits at the table, checks behind but the cutoff takes a 1,225 stab at the pot and his three opponents quickly release their hands and he picks up the pot.


Second Pair Good For Meszaros

On a board reading the player in the small blind checked to PartyPoker qualifier Tamas Meszaros. He obviously likes his holding as he bets 3,600 but the cutoff calls giving him something to think about on the river. The action then passes to the small blind and he has to be prompted by the dealer to act as he is enthralled by the magazine he is reading. When he does act he makes the fold.

The on the river sees Meszaros check and his no lone opponent quickly check behind.

Meszaros turns over for a pair of kings, enough to win the hand as his opponent pushes his hand towards the dealer.


Weisner Wastes No Time

Melanie Weisner has only just taken her seat in this tournament but that has not stopped her from doing what she does best, ruthlessly accumulating chips. We heard the dealer shout “Seat Open!” and immediately headed in the direction of the table to see Weisner re-stacking her chips after her pocket kings stayed in front of the now busted player’s sevens.


The Magical Prague Party

Our friends over at the World Poker Tour have shared this video with us showing some of the magic tricks from the welcome party last night.


Zawadzki Not Afraid Of Staszko

One of Tony G’s favourite players, Martin Staszko may have recently become a poker multi-millionaire but that does not faze the PartyPoker qualifier by the name of Mikolay Zawadzki. On a board reading , Zawadzki called a bet of 3,200 from the man who finished in second place in the World Series of Poker Main Event, taking the hand to the river.

The river was the and Staszko checked its arrival. Zawadzki turned away from the board, almost disinterested in the hand now before returning his focus to the felt and betting three yellow chips worth 3,000. Staszko shrugged slightly before passing his cards to the dealer. A small hit to his stack but he still has more than the 30,000 that he started the day with.


Ace-High Flop Not To Beguin’s Taste

PartyPoker qualifier Stephane Beguin opened the betting to 600 from middle position and his only customer was the gentleman to his direct left who happens to be sporting one of the shiniest watches I have ever seen in my life.

The flop sees Beguin quickly check but Mr Dazzling watch attempts to buy the pot with a 700 bet and it works because Beguin folds his hand.

As the shiny watched one stacks his chips the light reflects off the bezel of his timepiece and almost fries the retinas of three of his opponents.


Split Pot For Frankenberger

Andy Frankenberger, fresh from his PartyPoker Premier League Mixed Game Championship win is in the house and he seems in a jovial mood. The action folded around to the button and he raised to 325. Frankenberger made the call from the big blind, calling the entire bet with just 25 denomination chips.

The dealer put out the flop, a flop that neither player seemed too interested and they both checked their option to bet. The turn card was the and this seemed to inject some excitement into proceedings, Frankenberger betting 400 and his opponent calling.

The on the river was quickly checked by both parties and Frankenberger showed . His opponent showed the and then the meaning it was a split pot.

“Were you calling my river bet?” quizzed the reigning WPT Player of the Year.

“Maybe not if you bet 5,000!” came the tongue-in-cheek reply.


Some Prague Trivia For You

Everyone loves a little bit of trivia and seeing how we are in Prague we thought it would be a good idea to share some Czech related trivia with you good people.

  • The sugar cube was invented in the Czech town of Dačice back in 1843
  • The soft contact lens was invented in Czechoslovakia by professor Otto Wichterle in 1961
  • The Czechs are the #1 beer drinking nation in the world, consuming the most beer per capita in the world
    (160 liters or 43 gallons). They have been drinking beer since at least 900 A.D.


Ramage Doubles Up

PartyPoker qualifier Grayson Ramage has just doubled up in a hand that took almost ten minutes to complete! The soon to be busto player in the cutoff raised to 400 only to see Ramage three-bet, from the button, to 1,100. “Mad” Marvin Rettenmaier then puts in a four-bet to 3,125 and the cutoff has a tough decision to make.

After almost two minutes he says “all-in” and moves his 12,000 or so chips over the betting line. Ramage has not moved an inch whilst all this has been going on around him, instead his has remained stoic with his head resting on his left hand, a position that he seems to adopt during each hand he is involved in. Forty-five seconds pass before he moves his stack forward too, moving all in for 25,200.

This causes Rettenmaier to smile and have a little chuckle to himself but it is no laughing matter because if he calls and is wrong then he will completely crippled. He considers his options for a good four minutes, checking his card on more than one occasion before finally letting his hand go.


Ramage picks up aces at the perfect time and is a massive favourite to more than double up. The flop fails to improve either player and Ramage is still in front. The on the turn locks up the hand for Ramage and by the time the appears on the river the cutoff has already put on his jacket and is heading for the rail.

“Good luck for tomorrow,” says one of his former table mates. If he does indeed re-enter tomorrow we will be sure to get his name!


Being Out Of Position Isn’t Always Bad

The under the gun player who is sporting a bright red jacket and a back-turned cap opens the betting with a raise to 350 (blinds 75/150) and after the player to his direct left folds the PartyPoker qualifier Stephane Beguin puts his shades on and announced call. A couple of players relinquish their hands but the Eoghan O’Dea calls from the cutoff seat.

After burning a card the dealer put out the all heart flop, prompting checks all round from the trio of players. The on the turn stands out like a sore thumb but our under the gun player likes it and bets 600. Beguin pauses for 15 seconds before flicking his cards towards the dealer but O’Dea calls the bet.

Another black paint card lands on the river, the and the under the gun player sees no reason to slow down and he continues his story by betting 1,525. It must be a convincing tale as O’Dea wastes little time in mucking his hand.


O’Dea Gets Out Of The Way

The action folded around the Ireland’s Eoghan O’Dea in the cutoff seat and he bets two white chips and a grey one meaning he has made it 225 to play. The button folded but both blinds decided to come along for the ride.

The flop came down and both blinds almost instantaneously checked but there was no such action from O’Dea. No, he tested the water with a rather small 250 bet. Just as quickly as they had initially checked, both blinds called.

The turn card was the and it was greeted with a check from the small blind but the big blind reached for chips and bet 1,250 without any thought whatsoever. His quick play scared off both O’Dea and the small blind and he raked in the pot.


Carter Brushes Off Farges

PartyPoker qualifier Yves Farges is down to 13,000 chips after clashing with British pro Daniel Carter in a monster pot. On a flop reading the small blind lead out with a 500 bet, Farges called from the big blind, the next player folded but Carter pumped up the action and made it 1,600 to play from late position. Whatever the small blind thought was a good enough hand to lead out into three opponents suddenly became garbage and he mucked by Farges stayed in the hand and called.

The turn was the and Farges decided his best option was to lead into Carter with a 5,000 bet but Carter was having none of it and after a brief pause he raised for the second consecutive street, this time a massive 20,000 leaving himself just a few thousand chips behind. Farges sat staring at Carter in a vain attempt to get a read from him butCarter was giving nothing off. Farges took a deep breath in before mucking his hand, leaving Carter to get busy stacking his huge pile of chips.


Not The best Of Starts For Meszaros

One of our PartyPoker qualifiers Tamas Meszaros has not got off to the best of start, dropping around 1,500 chips. We joined the action on a board reading and waiting for Meszaros to act in late position. He studied the flop before announcing “400” and putting a green 500 chip into the pot. His white baseball cap wearing opponent quickly called, also with a 500 chip, and the dealer got busy putting out the on the turn.

Being called on the flop seemed to slow down Meszaros and after 30 seconds or so he tapped the table three times and checked. His opponent fired a feeler bet of 700 and after several moments Meszaros called. Our river card was the and it did not seem to interest our hero much because he once again tapped the table three times and checked. His opponent picked up on this passivity and he placed 1,200 worth of chips over the betting line, which was enough to win the pot because Meszaros got out of the way and mucked his hole cards.


El Sayed And Brammer Clash

There is an interesting dynamic forming over on the far end of the room where the 2010 WPT Amneville Champion Sam El Sayed and PartyPoker qualifier Chris Brammer are seated directly next to each other.

The highly aggressive El Sayed opened the betting with a raise to 250 from the cutoff seat and Chris Brammer, who was in possession of the button, tossed in the necessary chips to make the call. The flop came down and El Sayed wasted very little time in making a continuation bet of 325. The young Brit was prepared to pay this price and he made the call.

The fourth community card was the innocuous looking and after taking a quick sideways glance at his opponent, El Sayed bet again, this time making it 900 to play. No sooner had the bet landed on the felt, Brammer had flicked his cards towards the dealer and El Sayed helped himself to an early pot.


Lewis Regains Some Lost Ground

Just as we arrived at Toby Lewis’ table we saw the conclusion of a hand that had created an ample looking pot, a pot that was heading in the direction of November Nine’s Martin Staszko. But like the true professional that Lewis is he jumped straight back into the saddle and got to regaining some lost ground.

From the button the beanie-hat wearing Lewis made it 250 to play and just as it looked like he was going to pick up the blinds he picked up a caller in the big blind. The dealer burned the initial card before placing the flop onto the felt.

The big blind tapped the table and checked but Lewis showed no signs of slowing down and he promptly made it 400 to play. His sole opponent made the call and it was off the the turn. Without diverting his eyes away from the board the big blind checked putting the onus back on the EPT Vilamoura champion.

Lewis sat almost statuesque for 45 second, his right arm resting on the table before he leapt back into action and bet exactly 1,000 in a single orange chip. The big blind rechecked his card, possibly hoping they had magically changed into pocket aces but unfortunately for him they had not and he flicked them into the muck.


Flying The PartyPoker Flag

The players are busy counting their starting stacks to ensure they have 30,000 tournament chips. Here are the names of the aforementioned PartyPoker qualifiers:

  • Anton Astapau
  • Christopher Brammer
  • Florian Schelps
  • Grayson Ramage
  • Jannick Wrang
  • Jeffrey Hakim
  • Joe Ebanks
  • Luke Staudenmaier
  • Markus Ferlin
  • Mikolaj Zawadzki
  • Philipp Gruissem
  • Russell Carson
  • Sean Ruane
  • Stephane Beguin
  • Tamas Meszaros
  • Thomas Muehloecker
  • Tobias Reinkemeier
  • Yves Farges
  • Toby Lewis


Hello and welcome to the luxurious Corinthia Towers Hotel where the King’s Casino is located and where in around 30-minutes time the inaugural World Poker Tour Prague Main Event will kick off.

The €3,200 +€300 buy-in event seems to have captured the imaginations of poker players across the world and we are expecting a bumper crowd across the two official starting days. The attendance figures will be boosted by the fact this is a Re-Entry tournament meaning if a player busts out during today they can buy back into the tournament on Day 1b!

Last night saw a fantastic welcome party take place in the hotel that featured a caricature artist, Glenmorangie malt whiskey tasting and a trio of magicians who performed some quite unbelievable tricks. Hopefully the players will have recovered from the free bar and will be performing some magic at the felt themselves today.

Our tournament director has just informed us that we will play ten 60-minute levels with a yet-to-be announced 90-minute dinner break thrown into the mix. This means the players will be bagging and tagging at around 0200 in the morning, a very long day for everyone involved. For those of you who are reading this little piece of the internet and are planning on registering for WPT Prague fashionably late, you can do so right up to the end of the fourth level.

The focus of today’s blog will mainly be on the various PartyPoker qualifiers who won their seats for a fraction of the €3,500 buy-in. Can one of them go all the way and take down WPT Prague? Stay tuned to find out.


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