On a rare trip to the future (carried out exactly 60 minutes ago), I did a quick headcount at the final table. All eight players were still in their seats.
As we’ve already speculated, it’s likely they’ll be a long day of play ahead, which makes Timo Pfutzenreuter’s decision to bring a book seem like simple good sense.
Pfutzenreuter has been reading The Wolf of Wall Street since opening day. Winning chips has competed for his time so he has some way to go before he reaches the end, but a deep run today could change that.
The players themselves no doubt have grasped the potential time scale. Some already look tired, others focused. Others, well, annoyed at something.
Back row: Marko Neumann, Olekssi Khoroshenin, Pablo Gordillo, Simeon Naydenov.
Front row: Ruman Nanev, Timo Pfutzenreuter, Anthony Ghamrawi, Frei Dilling.
Specifically this is Oleksii Khoroshenin. The Ukrainian has been in contention since Day 1, but wears a natural expression of frustration. It’s surely nothing, but it gives him a table presence of some menace.
Marko Neumann and Frei Dilling meanwhile look fed up, while Pablo Gordillo could be the most serious looking player at an EPT final ever. Not only is this his first EPT, he is the latest hope for a Spanish winner – still elusive after nearly ten full seasons. It looks to be a burden.
Elsewhere the mood is much less edgy. Around the Festsaal there is a typical last day feel to things. Those occupying the seats in front of the main stage, watching the action, are enjoying themselves, as are those taking part in the remaining side events that are either just starting or coming to a close.
One such event burst its bubble, causing a wave of noise. Arms were raised, either with intent or irony, and ditto the backs being slapped.
The Mozart MegaStack event proved that, contrary to initial opinion, the words “Mozart” and “Mega” could after all be used in the same sentence. It also proved that people will play a poker tournament simply for the free chocolate being handed out at the start.
Outside the tournament room there are signs that the EPT Vienna Festival is drawing to a close. The Skrill desk, normally a hive of activity, or at least typing, is now empty. It’s filled instead by the weary wives and girlfriends of players enjoying themselves in the next room. The café is also less frenetic and table service has resumed.
Back on stage Anthony Ghamrawi still leads, his stack hardly touched.
Stephen Bartley is a PokerStars Blog reporter.