Malta Poker Festival Grand Event Day 1c Recap

29 Apr
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Thursday saw Day 1c of the Malta Poker Festival Grand Event really build on the momentum from the first flights earlier this week, and the largest number of entrants so far at 191. 53 of those battlers made it through the full 13 levels of Day 1c, to pass through to the Day 2 which will run on Sunday.

The player of the match for today’s play was Greek player Georgios Ninis, building a tower of chips totalling 429k by the end of play, but there was another player out there very close on his heels who was a formidable presence at the tables all day, and that was Tanja Vujanic, a mere 12k chips behind him on 417k. Vujanic stormed Day 1c unrelentingly, and she will certainly be one to watch on Sunday. She is also sporting a very fine PokerDeals patch.

One tussle we saw Vujanic involved in saw her smooth calling the Small Blind against a 4.5k Button open by Giovanni Palma, and Big Blind Gustav Andersson called as well. The flop was dealt - 7KA, silencing the three players, who all checked. On an innocent 2♣ turn however Vujanic opted to throw in a bet of 4.5k, folding out Andersson but getting a quick call from Palma. On the J river Vujanic hesitated briefly before counting out a bet of 10.5k to which Palma sighed, called, and mucked when Vujanic tabled QT for a straight. 

Tanja Vujanic

We caught up with Gabriel Stoica in a big spot, finding himself facing an open of 5k from UTG+2 and two callers, he opted to rip in his stack of 60k and saw a sigh-call from opponent Domenico Gala, who tabled AJ♠. Stoica was ahead though with the J♣J and he held up to double his stack. Stoica survives to Day 2 albeit with a since-damaged stack, returning to 61k by end of play.

Gabriel Stoica

We bore witness to the departure of PokerDeals Last Longer Participant Ian Morris, when he jammed the last of his stack Blind vs. Blind with T♣3♣ and unluckily ran into A♣J♣, crushing his outs. Morris spiked a pair on the KQ♠3 flop but after a harmless 7♣ turn he saw the pair he didn’t want to fall - the T came out making his opponent a straight.

Ian Morris

Alexis Lucarini cut out a 5.5k open in the Cutoff and was met with a call by the Button and by Michele Iracani in the Small Blind. When the flop came down A♣3J♣ Iracani wasted no time in lead shoving his remaining stack of around 35k, and Lucarini made the call. It was bad luck for Iracani as he tabled his set with 3♣3♠, as Lucarini had the top set with JJ. The remaining cards changed nothing and Iracani was eliminated. 

Alexis Lucarini

Moments later we saw PokerDeals Last Longer Player Antonio Guerrero take a scalp in an all-in from the Cutoff against Marco Herman in the Big Blind, a classic face-off with Guerrero’s A♣A holding up against Herman’s K♣K. He even had the suits covered, and the 378♠ 3 Q offered him no further hope this time. Better luck in the next one Herman!

Antonio Guerrero

We’re looking forward to a huge Day 1D today as action continues at 2pm, so check out PokerDeals Live Reporting for more coverage of this great event, and if you’d like more entertainment and images from the Grand Event, head over to the PokerDeals Facebook Page.

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Daniel Lakerveld Ships Malta Poker Festival Grand Event for €71,000

He's had a wild ride to get here, and besting a field of 1,014 entrants Daniel Lakerveld has done it, he has gone on to take it down in first place after eliminating Simon Gyorgy heads-up. The end game was surprisingly fast and brutal in this one, with players busting out almost ceaselessly late on Sunday evening as they played down to 18 . Our PokerDeals Last Longer winner was finally crowned, as Robert Lim was eliminated in 17th place when his K ♦ T ♦ couldn't hold up against James Clarke's Q♠J♠ . This made Federico Petruzzelli the winner of a free entry to the very next Malta Poker Festival Grand Event (as well as a PokerDeals hoodie of course!). Petruzzelli himself was also sadly eliminated in 13th place when his A♠6♠ could not catch up with Chris da Silva's 9♣9 ♥ . Federico Petruzzelli - PokerDeals Last Longer Winner! One by one today across those first hours of play the field fell away until it teetered on the very brink of the final table - just one player left to go out for the final table of nine to be formed. It was James Clarke's fate to be that man, although you might argue he made that fate himself. In a limped pot good for 480k , Clarke checked back the 5♣2 ♦ with composure but then on the T ♥ T♠5 ♦ flop the Brit opted to rip almost 4x the pot with his remaining stack, giving Silva, who held T♣7 ♦ , a very easy chip-up with his hand. The 8 ♦ , 4 ♦ runout did absolutely nothing for him, and Clarke walked out as the Final Table bubble, 10th for €5,500 . James Clarke When Polish player Piotr Tuczynski got dealt QcJc in the Big Blind early on in the final table of nine he had two options, facing a 400k min-bet from Chris da Silva . He could flat or he could jam, with his 17bbs . Both fine options. He chose the latter, and he might have regretted it shortly thereafter as he ran straight into da Silva's A ♥ Q ♥ . The Q♠8♣6 ♦ 4 ♥ 6♣ runout could not help him, and he went home in ninth with €6,500 for his troubles. Piotr Tuczynski Nicolay Langfeldt from Norway had just got short. Like really short. With no time to waste, he put his last 425k , less than 2bbs at time time, into the pot with K ♦ J ♦ , met Georgios Ninis' A♠9♠ in the middle, and could not win the standoff, losing as he did on an A ♥ 8 ♦ T ♦ T ♥ 5 ♥ board and exiting in eighth with a €7,500 payday. Nicolay Langfeldt In a similar story UK player Stephen Kane got his last 4 bigs in facing a min-open from da Silva on the Button and sitting in the Big Blind. He was met with an ace under ace situation - his A♣6 ♦ against da Silva's much prettier A♠T♠ , and the T♣6♣7 ♦ J♠ Q♠ runout was nothing more than a tease. Kane busted in seventh with €9,000 to mop up his tears. Stephen Kane Polish Pawel Zawadowicz was powering through at the end of Day 2, as Chip Leader coming into today, but he had to put his last chips in the middle sometime, and this was the moment, as he looked down at A ♥ K ♥ . A shove, he decided, with just south of 12bbs in his 3.5 million chip stack . He was in the Cutoff , it might certainly look weaker than an open to some players. Lakerveld had too good a hand to think twice, with 8 ♥ 8♠ on the Button. The two players flipped it out, and Lakerveld landed on his feet, with a T ♦ 6♠2♠ flop making him a firm favourite. The turn and river brought nothing but a Jack and a five of ♠ s for the Pole, and the pain of elimination, and he walked out in sixth, taking home €11,000 with him. Pawel Zawadowicz Greek Georgios Ninis had been playing a solid game. He got it in on this final table in an excellent spot, A ♦ 5 ♦ on a 9 ♥ 2♣5♣ 5♠ board against a worse five, exactly what you want. Gyorgi Simon was the other involved, stuck in there with just T ♥ 5 ♥ . Then a miracle - the T♠ ! With very even stacks Ninis was struck out in fifth in a huge near 9 million chip pot. Ninis took away €14,000 in winnings from this one. Georgios Ninis Dutch player Jasper van Moorsel got it in in very fine shape with his J♣J♠ blind vs. blind against Simon Gyorgy's Q♣7 ♥ , but it was his turn to run bad as a Q ♥ in the window followed by a 5♣2 ♥ K♠ K♣ spelled the end for van Moorsel and had him out in fourth, cashing for €18,000 . Jasper van Moorsel When Simon Gyorgy put his 10 million stack in the middle from the Button and it folded to British player Chris da Silva's Big Blind , da Silva decided this was the spot to take a stand, and called it off with A ♥ 3♠ . Gyorgy showed down 4♣4♠ for the best hand preflop, and just to make the point, boated up on a Q♣8♣4 ♦ 8 ♦ 6 ♦ board runout. Da Silva, a live Pokerstars Pro, has to settle for third place this time, and €25,000 . Chris da Silva There had been some talk of a deal at three, and at two players remaining, but in the end no deal was struck, and Hungarian Simon Gyorgy would square up against Dutch player Daniel Lakerveld heads-up, playing for the trophy and a final pay-jump of €28,000 . The heads-up was, like the final table itself, to be relatively short-lived and dramatic, with the two players entering level 34 with roughly even stacks at 25-26 million apiece. With blinds at 300k/600k Lakerveld min-opened and Gyorgy called to see a T♠5 ♦ 3 ♥ flop, on which Lakerveld continuation bet 600k and Gyorgy called. The 8♣ turn was checked by both players, but on the 5♠ river something overtook both players. First of all Gyorgy checked, and Lakerveld overbet, 3.5 million. Then Gyorgy after the tiniest of hesitations jammed it in, to be immediately called. Gyorgy revealed K♠5 ♥ for trips, but Lakerveld had the best trips of all, holding A ♥ 5♣ . Simon Gyorgy - runner up Thus this incredible Grand Event was brought to its conclusion in fitting style with an epic cooler, Gyorgy departed €43,000 richer as runner up, and Daniel Lakerveld shipped the trophy, the €71,000 and the glory! Daniel Lakerveld - Malta Poker Festival Grand Event Champion 2022! We have thoroughly enjoyed our time here in the lovely land of Malta covering this series for you, and the vibe has been excellent throughout. Good weather, good people, and oh such good games! We'll be back to do it all again soon, and we hope you will too. In the meantime, if you'd like to touch base or hang out, do please connect with us over on the PokerDeals Discord channel. May the poker gods shine on you, and best of luck. by Lucky Luke

2 May
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Malta Poker Festival Grand Event Day 2 Recap

Sunday 1st May saw an epic day of poker action at the Malta Poker Festival Grand Event as 273 became just 18 after a mammoth day of play here at the Portomaso Casino. A strong cohort of 73 PokerDeals patched players competing in the PokerDeals Last Longer made it to Day 2 . These have surprisingly been cut down to just two players standing , vying for who will win the free ticket to the next Malta Poker Festival Grand Event: Robert Lim & Federico Pizzazz They are also of course, more importantly, competing for some serious payouts, at the top of the pile is the glory prize itself, 1st place , rewarding €71,000 and of course, the Malta Poker Festival trophy ! Pawel Zawadowicz is the man to catch right now, leading by over 2 million chips with his stack of 7,820,000 in chips. Let's check in on how our PokerDeals Last Longer players and others were doing in the late-night action. We dropped in on the final six tables as they were rapidly slashed back to just three, across the late hours of Day 2 , and it didn't take long for us to witness some serious brutality. In fact we counted at least 17 eliminations across less than 90 minutes of play, in the final field of 45 players. That's pretty rapid, even for a Texas Hold'em tournament. Some of these spots were simply unavoidable of course, just your classic coolers. For a case in point we could look at the elimination of Cosimo de Gennaro at the hands of Jasper Van Moorsel . A simple matter of TT running into AA preflop, Big Blind vs. Button . Nothing to be done about it, and when the board ran out 9♠8 ♥ 3 ♥ 7♠ K ♦ there was no shame in this Italian's walk from the arena. Cosimo de Gennaro Another all-in hand we bore witness to featured the Daniel Lakerveid being despatched by PokerDeals Last Longer competitor Federico Cirillo , when Lakerveid's BB hand K ♥ 6 ♥ failed to get there all-in against Cirillo's K♠J♣ from the Button . Federico Cirillo Another all-in shove from a short stack was Nicolaj D'Antoni's K ♦ 7 ♦ getting it in against the A♠4♠ of the seemingly indestructible Pawel Zawadowicz , the board running out a hopeless 9♣J ♥ Q ♥ 6 ♦ 9 ♥ to secure Zawadowicz the win with just Ace high. Pawel Zawadowicz But there was worse to come, at least for PokerDeals patched player Paul Morris , who had the spot players live (and die) for, A ♥ A♣ in the Big Blind facing action when short-stacked. Who knows, he might have flatted against one, but when Jordan Dumas opens Cutoff and James Clarke decides to come along from the Small Blind , and you're sitting on well under 15bbs , a jam seems very acceptable, and that's just what Morris did. Paul Morris After consideration Dumas decided to stick around with Q♣J♣ , Clarke got out the way and the flop thundered down around Morris' head, 8 ♥ J♠J ♦ . The turn and river had nothing more to offer Morris as they fell an irrelevant 5 and 7 of ♠s . It's rough when you've grinded for days to get there, but it's all part of this game we love, and this is why we are in it for the long run! One other hand of note came from canny players Jason Shellum and Mantas Petrauskas as they negotiated a 3 ♥ 4♣6♠ 3 ♦ Q ♦ board. Petrauskas had bet all the way, and he didn't let up on the river, putting Shellum to a major question with his river bet of 600k . Shellum went deep into the tank. He was down there a while, he may have had an oxygen mask on. Eventually someone at the table called time on Shellum , and it was during that final minute of decision-making that he found the call, with, wait for it… AJ offsuit . And he was good, Petrauskas quickly mucking. "A hero call!” someone nearby remarked to him. "A hero read!” was his quick reply. We literally couldn't be more excited for Day 3 , the final day of this Grand Event today kicking off at 2pm, and a fascinating end to this highly competitive Grand Event . We'll have more coverage of the day coming out this evening on our PokerDeals Live Reporting page. Also if you'd like to see even more videos, photos and social interaction covering the event, please do join us on our PokerDeals Facebook Page !

2 May
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18 Remain In the Malta Poker Festival Grand Event: Day 3 Chip Counts

Just 18 players remain standing at the end of this long Day 2 in the Malta Poker Festival Grand Event , playing out 12 levels across the day and seeing numerous poker pros and recreational players alike bite the dust. The largest stack leading the field for going into Day 3 is Polish player Pawel Zawadowicz who by the end of the night had put together an impressive stack of 7,820,000 , over 2 million ahead of the next player in the leaderboard. Only two contenders for the PokerDeals Last Longer promotion now remain standing out of the remaining 18, and these are Robert Lim from the United Kingdom, working a stack of 2,020,000 chips, and Italian Federico Petruzzelli , sitting on 2,385,000 . With blinds ending for Day 2 at an eye-watering 40k/80k with an 80k BB ante , a mere 4.5bbs currently separate these players. Who will capture the free ticket for the next Malta Poker Festival Grand Event , and who will be left winning the runner-up prize of an awesome PokerDeals hoodie? Only Day 3 will tell, and we'll also find out who will win the first prize in this Grand Event, an awesome €71,000 ! Here is the full seat draw for Day 2 of the Malta Poker Festival Grand Event: Malta Poker Festival Grand Event Day 3 Chipcount Entries: 1.014 Players left: 18 PLAYER CHIPCOUNT 1 ZAWADOWICZ PAWEL 7,820,000 2 KANE STEPHEN OLIVER 5,365,000 3 DA SILVA CHRISTOPHER 4,865,000 4 NINIS GEORGIOS 4,360,000 5 CLARKE JAMES MICHAEL 3,190,000 6 VAN MOORSEL JASPER ARTHUR 3,155,000 7 LAKERVEID DANIEL M 2,855,000 8 PETRAUSKAS MANTAS 2,425,000 9 PETRUZZELLI FEDERICO 2,385,000 10 LIM ROBERT JR CABRAL 2,020,000 11 FRENCH DOMINICK LEON 1,750,000 12 SIMON GYORGI 1,685,000 13 CHEUNG HO TIEN 1,670,000 14 TUCZYNSKI PIOTR 1,595,000 15 DUMAS JORDAN BERRAND MANUEL 1,510,000 16 IOSUB DRAGOS-GABRIEL 1,400,000 17 LANGFIELDT NICOLAY 1,370,000 18 MUSACCHIA MARIO 1,350,000 PokerDeals Live Reporting will be covering the latest as we head into the Final Day of this Grand Event . We also put up a ton more photos and videos of the event, over on our PokerDeals Facebook Page !

2 May

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