Geilich Among Big Stacks After Day 3 Merit Poker Classic

Geilich Among Big Stacks After Day 3 Merit Poker Classic

Ludovic Geilich

On a short Day 3 of the Merit Poker Classic $5,300 Main Event, the bubble burst and two more hands were played before the players bagged up. The tournament only played five levels as they needed to finish before 8 PM local time. Pavel Kovalenko claimed the overnight chip lead with 3,162,000 in his bag.

A lot of Kovalenko’s chips were won when he made the right call against . In a five-bet pot, Kovalenko eventually called all in on the river with pocket kings on a board containing two queens. Darie had nothing but ace-high and Kovalenko soared to the chip lead which he never relinquished.

With more than half a million awaiting the eventual winner, the Merit Poker Classic draws stars from all around the world. Notables bagging big with more than twice the average chip count are Pavel Plesuv with 3,055,000, Day 1e chip leader Kacper Pyzara (3,000,000), Joey Weissman (2,494,000), Boris Kolev (2,318,000), Jacek Ladny (2,125,000), Andreas Christoforou with 2,000,000. Other notable players making it through to Day 4 include Kenny Hallaert, Manig Loeser, Day 2 chip leader Sergey Baburin, Dragos Trofimov, Andrey Pateychuk, Stoyan Obreshkov, Vladimir Troyanovskiy, and, despite losing the massive hand against Kovalenko, Darie made it through as well.

Pavel Kovalenko
Pavel Kovalenko has the lead going into the penultimate day.

The partypoker representatives still have two irons in the fire with Ludovic Geilich and Kristen Bicknell. Geilich tagged 2,147,000 chips at the end of the day, while Bicknell only has eleven big blinds to start Day 4 with. Fellow partypoker pro Joni Jouhkimainen fell to Elvin Sarkarov when he ran his ace-king into the sevens of Sarkarov. Anatoly Filatov was eliminated by Loeser when he shoved his ace-six from the big blind and was called with ace-seven.

Hand-for-hand play started with around 30 minutes left in Level 15 and 73 players remaining. Vicent Bosca was eliminated before the real bubble would start. Bosca called a raise of Ashkan Fattahi but Weissman three-bet in the small blind. Fattahi got out of the way but Bosco shoved which Weissman snap-called with ace-king. Bosca held pocket jacks and flopped a set but Weissman picked up a straight draw and hit it on the turn to eliminate him.

Selahaddin Bedir (right) eliminates [Removed:61
(left) on the bubble" align="center" wh="2048×1365"]Selahaddin Bedir (right) eliminates [Removed:61] (left) on the bubble

During the bubble, four different players managed to double up but it finally burst when [Removed:61] shoved his last 27,000 from the cutoff and was called by the players in the blinds. In the end, it was Selahaddin Bedit who burst the bubble as he held four-trey on the trey-king-jack-trey-four board to make a full house while Youness had queen-jack.

Jeff Hakim, Mikhail Galitskiy, Saar Wilf, Day 1d chip leader Shaul Meir, and Igor Ovcharenko all min-cashed during the final two hands of the night while the rest all bagged up to play Level 16 tomorrow, Saturday, May 11, at noon local time with another six levels of 75 minutes each scheduled.


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Make sure to return at noon on Saturday to follow all the live updates from the Merit Crystal Cove Hotel and Casino as the tournament’s penultimate day will be played here in sunny Cyprus.

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  • The eventual 2019 Merit Poker Classic champion will take home $565,157

  • Loeser, Bicknell, Plesuv also in contention for first place prize of $565,157

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