Saturday, April 30, 2016

Travel Report: EPT12 Grand Final, Day 5 -- Cracked

“That should be some sort of art installation.”

So suggested Remko Rinkema, speaking of the cracked window there to the left. One of a few looking out the media room onto the Mediterranean Sea, it has been cracked in this way for as long as anyone can remember, and there are a lot of lengthy memories among those who have been covering EPTs over the last dozen years.

Was a little overcast today, making for a less stunning view through those cracks. More often the sky is a light shade of blue and the water a deeper one, with cruise ships typically passing to and fro to create an animated postcard constantly in motion behind us as we work.

The window takes on a symbolic significance with each passing day, too, as everyone tries to hold it together while the festival unrelentingly marches onward. In truth, aside from a few sore throats and a cough here and there, everyone seems to be managing just fine as we approach the halfway point of this year’s European Poker Tour Grand Final.

Five days are done, and six more are left. Today’s fifth day was a long one for your humble scribbler who again was helping cover the France Poker Series Monaco Main Event. Meanwhile the EPT Main got started, the €100K Super High Roller finished up (won by Ole Schemion with Mustapha Kanit part of the heads-up chop, natch), and a myriad of other side stuff was going on as well to make for another crowded time at the Sporting Club.

Our tournament started with 1,261 runners, 60 of whom returned for Day 3. From that bunch just six are left to play tomorrow, with France’s Stephane Dossetto the leader just ahead of the often entertaining British player Niall Farrell. They’ll be streaming “cards up” coverage of the final table on Sunday, so if you tune in over at EPT Live starting at 2 p.m. Monaco time (that’s 8 a.m. ET), you can watch this one play out to a conclusion.

None of the players seemed to crack up today, at least not in observable ways. A decision made near the end of the night to keep on playing down to six players (rather than stop at eight) was met with approval. It’ll make for a shorter day on Sunday, for certain, which I think also will make things a little easier for these final half-dozen if they wish to jump in the second Day 1 flight of the Main.

Check out yesterday’s coverage of all the big events over on the PokerStars blog, and tune in today for some FPS final table fun as well, as I’m sure James Hartigan, Joe Stapleton, and Matt Broughton of EPT Live will have viewers cracking up.

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