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Eureka Prague: Day 1B, Level 9-10 updates (blinds 500-1,000 ante 100)

1.15am: Daubach tops massive 650 player field in Prague
"If we're really lucky we might get 400 today," said one member of PokerStars staff before Day 1B started. That looked quite optimistic given that just 225 players were registered when shuffle up and deal was announced.

But over six levels of late registration they just kept coming, by the time it had closed 428 players had paid up, add them to the 222 from Day 1A and you get a nice round 650. "I am very excited about the huge number of participants in Eureka Prague, " said EPT President Edgar Stuchly. "It shows that the decision to partner up with National tours was the right one and is well appreciated by players. There is a great chance for this festival to become the biggest poker event ever in Czech Republic."

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Packing them in here in Prague

One of the players to take advantage of the lengthy late registration period was Mark Daubach. The Belgian, who calls London home, registered during level four and finished the day top of the pile with 165,900. "I'm a recreational player," he told me. "I traveled to Prague with a friend for another tournament and decided to stay on to play in the Eureka Poker Tour main event," he added.

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Top Mark - Daubach is head boy after Day 1B

It's proven to be a wise decision as he's currently on course to win the lion's share of the €632,440 prize pool. From that treasure chest, €140,000 will go to the winner, a final table place will lock up a five figure pay day worth €11,900, whilst finishing in the top 72 means you'll get a flag and at least €2,210.

Other players who'll have their eyes on the top prize after a good day at the felt include Marcel Buissink (150,800), Jozsef Liszkovics (142,600), Julian Mitev (133,200) and Martin Jacobson (108,500). The latter has twice finished runner-up on the EPT.

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Marcel Buissink

Team PokerStars Pro was out in force today, five players in all wore the badge with pride, none would make Day 2 though. In short when one of them found a good hand, someone else at their table found a better one. Martin Hruby ran kings into aces, Liv Boeree had her queens crushed by kings and on one of the last hands of the night Toni Judet lost out to pocket aces with A♠Q♣. Martin Horecki and Dag Palovic were the other Team PokerStars Pros who were all members of AFC Variance today.

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Martin got mauled

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Boeree got busted

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Toni got trampled

But around 116 of the 428 starters did make it safely through to Day 2, amongst them were Roberto Rommanello (54,600) and Steven van Zadelhoff (66,000). They'll be ones to avoid when the Day 1B survivors and the 67 who advanced from Day 1A combine for Day 2 from noon tomorrow.

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Steven van Zadelhoff

We'll be back for the usual carnage of Day 2 and we expect the bubble will burst around level 15. A full payout structure and overnight chip counts will be posted on the blog as soon as I have them. To catch up with the action from Levels 9-10 scroll down or click on the links below for action from earlier in the day.

Levels 1-4
Levels 5-8

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Just one of the many beautiful sights in Prague

12.15am: Done
Day 1B is over here in Prague. Approximately 116 players made it through, however Team PokerStars Pro Toni Judet was not among them. With just two hands to go he ran A♠Q♣ into pocket aces for a 60,000 pot.

A re-cap of today's play will appear here shortly.

11.50pm: Last five hands
There will be five more hands until play is done for the day.

11.40pm: Mort
One of the late night casualties of Day 1B play is Morten Mortensen, the Dane was still all smiles though. "I'm here for the next two weeks," he said. Plenty more chances for him then.

11.25pm: Mal contented
With just 30 minutes left to play Mal Hagan has emerged as the new chip leader, he's got a stack of 155,000 in front of him, whilst Mark Daubach isn't far behind with 145,000.

11.10pm: Chip leaders
As the last level of the night gets underway just 150 of the 428 players who started Day 1B remain. The average stack is 42,800 but these players have much more than that and are the current chip leaders: Jozsef Liszkovics (127,000), Rocco Palumbo (115,000), Steve Watts (110,000) and Alexandros Gkampranis (100,000)

LEVEL UP: BLINDS 500-1,000 ante 100

10.55pm: Exits
The following have all been eliminated from the Eureka Prague main event: Catalin Dragomir, Adrian Piasecki, Kevin Price and Ludovit Fischer.

10.45pm: Top, middle and bottom
Three chip counts for you now and as the title suggests one from each area of the chip spectrum. Dutch player Steven van Zadelhoff is going great guns as he's on 77,000. Nestled slightly above average is Veronika Pavlikova, the Czech lady is on 45,000. Whilst Morten Mortensen has some serious work to do as he has just 6,000.

10.30pm: Judet still jousting
Team PokerStars Pro Toni Judet is still flying the flag for Team Pro. The Romanian is on 21,000 but looking very much in the zone.

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Team PokerStars Pro Toni Judet

10.20pm: Double up or go home (part two)
The poker gods give and they take away. This time they took away, that is they took away the tournament life of a short stack, who was all-in for his last 6,000 with, appropriately enough, pocket sixes. The would be executioner was Mariusz Klosinski and his A♠Q♣ got there on the 8♣J♦2♣9♥A♦ board.

10.10pm: Double up or go home
Fortunately for Björn Wiesler the poker gods decided that he should double up. He was all-in with A♦8♦ for his last 12,000 and in bad shape against Ivan Barczi's pocket eights. He had to wait to the river but he got there on the 8♣J♦2♣9♥A♦ board.

9.55pm: Last two levels of the night
The players have streamed back into the tournament room and they have just two levels of poker to negotiate to make Day 2 of the Eureka Prague main event.

Just 120 minutes of folds, calls, raises and re-raises, that's all. Simple right? One player who's been there, done that, got the t-shirt trophy is Roberto Romanello. The Welshman won EPT7 Prague in this very venue back in 2010. "I've got 30,000," he told me during the break.


Can Romanello win a second title in Prague?

PokerStars Blog reporting team in Prague: Nick Wright. Photos by Tomas Stacha.

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