When Andy Black started today his stack of just over 40k was about average. Pretty soon he’d be climbing high at close to 100k and whilst he never really got above that, his role at the EPT Warsaw was never in doubt – part jester, part adrenalized bully, part tournament favourite expected to not only make it through the day but to still be here come Saturday when the final nine battled it out to find a new champion.

Eight hours later that might still be the plan, but it came not without a rough journey of close calls and calamity, that saw the Irishman at one point down to just 15k, all-in a few times, and then bouncing back to threaten once again.

In today’s eight levels 130 players were reduced to just 26. After a tense bubble play finish and a short period of free-for-all, play ended leaving the survivors to bag up chips in preparation for the business end of an EPT tomorrow afternoon.


PokerStars sponsored player Sebastian Ruthenberg

Chip leader going into that day will be Spaniard and PokerStars qualifier Juan Maceiras ahead of Claus Nielsen. Maceiras excelled whilst Nielsen manoeuvred his way through one of the more difficult tables today, surviving where Thierry van der Berg, Theo Jorgensen and PokerStars qualifier James Honeybone couldn’t. PokerStars Sponsored Player Sebastian Ruthenberg kept his seat, finishing the day on 93,500. Also in the fray are Henrik Gwinner and Trond Eidsvig as well as Christoffer Sonesson and Andreas Hagen.


Claus Nielsen


PokerStars qualifier Ken Hicks Jr.

Performances by other PokerStars qualifiers stood out, notably that from Ken Hicks Jr., who kicked off our reports today, and put in a well crafted day at the office to keep him at the head of the pack and out of the limelight. He finished the day on 225,000 having also been responsible for sending Italian Cristiano Blanco out of the competition on the bubble. PCA final table finisher Craig Hopkins, another PokerStars qualifier, finished on 69k.


Bubble finisher Cristiano Blanco

But the big story was undoubtedly Andy Black’s rise and fall, and rise again, ending day two on 85,000. The flip side of that coin was the elimination of several big names. Former EPT winners Julian Thew, Mads Andersen and Magnus Petersson were all sent packing, as well as Liz Lieu, Woody Deck, Johnny Lodden and Danny Ryan.

Along the way we put a face to the name of Ken Hicks Jr., reinforced the fact that Joseph Serock is not Joseph Sebock, and followed Mel Judah in his first EPT day two in eight attempts. We also played witness to a new record being set by two players; each becoming the first to record four cashes in one EPT season. They would be Thierry van den Berg (Baden, Dublin, PCA and Warsaw) and Trond Eidsvig (Barcelona, Dublin, Copenhagen and Warsaw) who will both finish in the money.


Trond Eidsvig

So to tomorrow – another 2pm start where we shall play down from 26 to nine. Here’s a reminder of the payouts…

1st — Zl2,154,000 or €609,782
2nd — Zl1,220,600 or €345,543
3rd — Zl718,000 or €203,261
4th — Zl538,500 or €152,445
5th — Zl437,980 or €123,989
6th — Zl344,640 or €97,565
7th — Zl272,840 or €77,239
8th — Zl201,040 or €56,913
9th and 10th — Zl122,060 or €34,554
11th and 12th — Zl100,520 or €28,456
13th and 14th — Zl78,980 or €22,359
15th and 16th — Zl57,440 or €16,261
17th to 24th — Zl43,080 or €12,196
25th to 32nd — Zl28,720 or €8,130

For anyone looking to catch up on the posts from today, click on the links below. You can also get an up to date list of chip counts by clicking here or on the link at the top of the page.

Day 2 about to begin

The Silver Fox returns…

Faces to names

He’s Joe Serock and you’re not

Robinson aiming to pick up where he left off

The unofficial feature table

The situation at the dinner break

Bad Beats and Bad Breaks

The Black Death Watch

The Art of Riffling

Play reaches the bubble

And finally, the video blog team have a wrap up of the days action…

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