Wednesday, September 23, 2009 4:01 PM Local Time
As they prop Erik Cajelais' winning hand up in his chip sea for his winner's photo, it becomes apparent by his relaxed smile that he's not one of the players trying to keep a toe dipped in the £5k Pot Limit Omaha tournament running right now.
However as one WSOPE event crowns a champion, another progresses towards a final, maybe to be played with the very chips being stacked and bagged by the TDs right now... it's like the wheel of life. Right now, it's across the room and off to the PLO for me - bring on Event #3.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 3:55 PM Local Time
Still comparatively non-stacked, Mats Gavatin gave another Omaha double-up a go, moving all in preflop with
, given a spin by Erik Cajelais with his
A flop of
clearly delighted Cajelais, who smelled victory as the turn and river came
. Filling up, he finally amassed the last chip in the game.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 3:49 PM Local Time
Heads up looks most uneven, with nearly a million in chips for Erik Cajelais, and less than 180k for Mats Gavatin.
However, a quick Omaha double up gives the short stack a tiny bit more breathing space - he raised on the button with
and was out of options when he was put all in by Cajelais'
. The board came out
which handed Gavatin and his two pair the pot.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 3:43 PM Local Time
A few hands into the Hold'em round saw Robin Keston's last stand. With such a huge discrepancy between chip leader Cajelais and the other two, he made a bid for a double through raising preflop and then moving in over Cajelais' pot bet. He was quickly called - Cajelais held
, and he was drawing dead by the turn on the
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 3:40 PM Local Time
While Mats Gavatin and Erik Cajelais play out a small heads up pot, the popular Robin Keston joins a bunch of people on the rail who cluster briefly round him like kids around the one whose birthday it is and who's giving out the candy... Michael Greco and other successful Omaha afficionados Richard Ashby and Ben Grundy give him support (while they're on a break from Event Three perhaps, but still...)
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 3:36 PM Local Time
Button Robin Keston makes it 35k to go in the one remaining Omaha hand left in the round, the first played at the new level after the break.
The flop comes
. Check to Keston who bets 40k. Cajelais quickly raises a further 160k and takes it down, flashing his hand to Keston as he scoops in yet more chips to add to his lead. We've been moved into the Gallery and off the Stage in preparation for the huge rig of equipment getting fixed in place for imminent filming, so my myopic eyes couldn't catch any more of his hand than the
which is admittedly not much to go on. Whatever it was, it got a nod from Robin Keston as they switched games to Hold'em.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 3:23 PM Local Time
Not a glimpse of a pair or quartet of hole cards for quite a while now. Both games are being played preflop and on the flop, with the aggressive, or at least perma-involved Erik Cajelais seizing the lead and holding on to it with his large tattooed arms.
It's start-of-day leader Mats Gavatin who's nearest the chip danger zone now, though. He just raised pot on the button to get back to 180k. When he gets back after the break, he'll find the pressure even more firmly on him as the blinds go up.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 3:04 PM Local Time
I remember hearing that of the final five players, at least two were intending to start playing the Pot Limit Omaha event at midday, then switch over to polish off the FT of the ROE, then head back to climb the mountain of a second final.
All in a day's work - but it seems that Erik Cajelais and probably Robin Keston too are looking in antsy fashion round at the PLO tables wondering how their respective stacks are faring without their gentle hands to guide them to victory...
I'm sure they're fine; eyes on the prize now, lads...
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 2:49 PM Local Time
All three do, of course, but in these sorts of amounts:
Erik Cajelais - 460,000
Robin Keston - 320,000
Mats Gavatin - 310,000
Stacks are changing to the tune of 50k up or down each time even with a small raise preflop, folded on the flop... so this has become a close one again.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 2:38 PM Local Time
If he kept calling the shortstacks, chances were Erik Cajelais was going to bust one eventually, and Men Nguyen was still short despite having doubled up recently. When Nguyen re-raised him all-in preflop in Hold'em, Cajelais gave him a spin with
looked good - and much better after the
turn gave Cajelais a few more straight outs, one of which popped out in the form of the
on the river!
A clearly disappointed Nguyen left the table, and we are now three-handed.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 2:32 PM Local Time
First off Men Nguyen, down to a dwindled 39k got it all in preflop against Robin Keston, who'd raised with
and found Nguyen with
. Nguyen instantly leaped ahead on the flop:
and stayed so over the
turn and river. Nguyen now on just over 100k.
Then it was Robin Keston's turn to double through Erik Cajelais with
vs. the dominated
. It's all action, all the time...
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 2:27 PM Local Time
Again, Robin Keston had his tournament on the line just now as he moved all-in on the turn in Hold'em vs. Erik Cajelais. Cajelais had called his 20k on the
flop, unlike Men Nguyen, but declined to call Keston's shove when the
came out next.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 2:18 PM Local Time
A couple of chips found their way back out of Erik Cajelais' stack in the last few hands - he's taken a shot at seeing a couple of flops, but given up each time before showdown, having called raises preflop. Robin Keston has been the biggest beneficiary, and has increased his stack by over 50k in the last 10 minutes, while dwindling somewhat is Men Nguyen, having just raise-folded to Mats Gavatin. Still, it's anybody's jewellery, and they know it.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 2:02 PM Local Time
After an all-change sort of stack realignment during the first level of the final today, it's Richard Gryko who became the first casualty after tangling with Erik Cajelais yet again. In Hold'em, Gryko raised to 21k preflop, and found Cajelais reraising a further 45k. After some consideration, he called. They saw a
flop. Check to Cajelais, who bet 80k. Gryko, however, wasn't prepared to give this one up and moved in, quickly called. He held
, in pretty bad shape against Cajelais'
, and with no help on the
turn and river, Gryko was shaking hands and exiting stage left (no really, we're on a stage here at the Empire, gradually getting surrounded by TV cameras).
Meanwhile Cajelais, who started today with the second-shortest stack, is now springing towards the lead, if not in possession of it.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 1:52 PM Local Time
The pristinely-coiffed Jack Effel has finally received a working microphone and is announcing the final table to a growing crowd of people who are mostly standing with their arms crossed looking like they're judging the finalists.
Just now Richard Gryko took down a Hold'em pot preflop with a reraise over Mats Gavatin (button) from the big blind. As he scooped in the pot, Men Nguyen piped up with a complaint about the announcing: "You don't need to give extra information, 'He raised on the button,' just say, 'He raised.'"
The impression this gave was that Gryko had been positively aided by being reminded of his relative position and added, "Why don't you just announce 'Action.' for every hand?" It looked like Mr. Effel was agreeable to limiting the free information, however, so we're just getting the bet amounts and flop cards from now on.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 1:43 PM Local Time
Erik Cajelais just took down a six-figure pot mainly at the expense of Richard Gryko in Omaha. The two of them saw a
flop, with Cajelais check-calling Gryko's 45k bet. Both players slowly checked the
turn. On the river -
- Cajelais riffled and toyed with 60k in red chips, before shifting them over the line. Gryko pondered a brief while before giving it up.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 1:34 PM Local Time
...With a double through to 110k through Mr. Gavatin. Small blind Mats Gavatin raised big blind Robin Keston to 16k, and then called his all-in, showing
. The dealer didn't create too much suspense for the short stack, giving him a safe run of
shipping another of the short stacks a new lease of life, and chipping away at former chip monster Gavatin.
For good measure, Keston took 40k off Men Nguyen the very next hand, repopping him preflop and then shoving for 69k on a
flop, with no call.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 1:25 PM Local Time
With the PLO on a 20 minute break, the rail for the final table of the Round of Each has swollen with the curious non-smokers who can't get enough of the four-card form.
They got some action just now from one of the short stacks Erik Cajelais, who called a Mats Gavatin raise to 17k preflop, before getting it all in on a
flop with a quicker-than-you-blink pot bet and call all in.
Cajelais made a straight on the
turn and held it on the
river to double through to over 150k.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 1:19 PM Local Time
In both the chip and placement senses:
Men Nguyen - 268,000
Mats Gavatin - 448,000
Robin Keston - 63,000
Richard Gryko - 329,000
Erik Cajelais - 81,000
Wednesday, September 23, 2009 1:14 PM Local Time
With the briefest of fanfares, the final five players in the Round of Each are shuffled up and dealt to. One of them will win a bracelet today. The others will have to make do with gradually increasing piles of cash...
Shuffle up and deal!