Kitai Leads High Roller Final Table
Day 2 of the 2014 PokerStars and Monte-Carlo® Casino EPT Grand Final High Roller is in the books, and leading the final table is Davidi Kitai. Kitai bagged 2.2 million chips, and his closest competitors are Byron Kaverman (1.813 million), Scott Seiver (1.553 million), and Philipp Gruissem (1.47 million).
Kaverman is fresh off of his runner-up finish in the WPT World Championship, where he earned $727,860 for finishing second to Keven Stammen.
Players had until the start of play on Day 2 to register or reenter. More than a couple used that option to increase the total amount of entries from 205 to 214. 104 players still had chips in front of them at the start of the second day. With 31 players in the money, that was the first horde to take.
The action started as expected with plenty of action. Take Griffin Benger, for example. He reentered the tournament with a fresh stack of 50,000, 25 big blinds at the time. The first hand of the day he got those chips in with pocket eights versus Martin Finger's queens and that was it for Benger.
Benger didn't have to spent his time on the rail alone. Big name players like Justin Bonomo, Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier and Erik Seidel joined him soon. Grospellier wouldn't be the only Team PokerStars Pro, Negreanu and Mercier also didn't make it into the money stage of the tournament.
It only took a couple of levels for the tournament to reach the bubble period. There were several short stacks, but it was a bigger stack that eventually would go out first. Igor Yaroshevskyy was really unlucky as he lost with kings pre flop all in against Andrew Chen's queens. The queen on the flop meant he had to continue severely short stacked. The few chips he did have left he lost not much later to Davidi Kitai with eight-seven suited up against ace-nine.
As per usual, right after the bubble the short stacks had their chips in before you knew it. In some cases that meant a double up, in others it meant eliminations. Dutchman Govert Metaal was the first to depart in the money. He took home €46,150 after losing with sixes to Philipp Gruissem's queen-ten. David Peters, Adrian Mateos, JC Alvarado and the last Team PokerStars Pro Angel Guillen followed not much later.
The next one to go was none other than Ole Schemion. For the third time this season he achieved the "EPT Triple Crown" (as we dubbed it), cashing in all the three big tournaments this festival. He kicked of the EPT Grand Final with a cash in the €100,000 reentry (7th for €265,000), continued his good run in the €10,000 Main Event (44th for €24,400) and cashed in 25th place in the €25,000 Single Reentry High Roller (€51,400). He did the same in Barcelona and the PCA this year, and cashed in several other EPT's as well. How good is this guy? And how good is he running? Good enough for the PokerStars EPT Season 10 Player of the Year award anyway.
With Schemion's exit in 25th, there were three tables left, all full of recognizable names. The initial plan for the day was to play 10 levels, or down to a final table of 8. In the end the organization decided to play an extra level. With 11 one-hour levels the tournament got down to 9 players. To get down from three full ring tables to one last table, a lot of big pots were to be played.
Belgian EPT and bracelet winner Davidi Kitai had his fare share of those. He won a one million one from Vasily Kylukin without showdown. On a flop with two aces a lot of chips went into the middle. Both players checked the ten on the turn and Kylukin bet out 100,000 on the river eight. Kitai pushed all in and Kylukin folded and he showed an ace.
At the same time it seemed like Philipp Gruissem had accepted his fate that he wouldn't be playing cash games that night. With that illusion out of his head, he really stepped it up. The constantly laughing Gruissem started raising and three-betting and before we knew it he had 1.3 million, without really ever having to show his cards.
Kitai wasn't laying low either, but he did need a showdown every now and then. He won one of the bigger pots of the tournament from Calvin Anderson with jack-five. Anderson didn't believe Kitai at all, but couldn't beat the Belgians top pair.
Start of day chip leader Benny Spindler found himself all in with queen-seven up against Pascal Lefrancois' ace-seven. EPT London winner Spindler didn't improve and headed for the exit in 18th (€63,000). Anderson could never recover from the blow by Kitai and left not much later in 15th (€77,600).
With just half an hour left on the clock, it looked like a lot of players would need to return on Day 3. All of the sudden people busted left and right though, and before the clock reached zero there were only nine players left. Andrew Chen (14th for €77,600), Rui Cao (13th for €85,450) and Noah Schwartz (12th for €85,450) all busted with the clock still barely running.
The clock was stopped with 15 minutes left and they announced there would only be played three more hands. Before those were over, two more guys had busted. The likable Simon Higgins found himself all in in the first of three hands more to be played. He squeezed all in with king-jack suited and was looked up by Scott Seiver with pocket fours. Seiver hit a four on the turn to leave Higgins drawing dead.
Vasily Kylukin wouldn't make it either. He pushed his pair and flush draw pretty hard but ran into Byron Kaverman's trips. The river bricked and the tournament was down to it's final nine players:
The tournament resumes tomorrow at noon local time. In less than 9 hours the remaining nine players are expected back in the Monte Carlo Bay conference center. They will battle it out for the €1,105,000 first place prize, the trophy and a stunning “Black and Rose Gold” watch from luxury Swiss brand SLYDE, the Official Watch Sponsor for EPT Season 10 Main Events and High Rollers.
PokerNews will again be ready to supply you with all the updates of this stacked final table. Check back here and see who follows up Steven Silverman, who won here last year.