Battle of Malta 2018 Main Event

Timeline

Canevet C'est Bien! BoM Main Event Final 9 is Set!

Maxime Canevet leads into the final day.
Maxime Canevet leads into the final day.

It was exactly midnight when Andrew Hedley had sat for a while trying to figure out whether he should call for his tournament life or not.

Eventually, he decided to do it, and it proved to be the wrong decision.

Maxime Canevet, who was responsible for the most bust-outs today, took the chips of the Brit with top pair versus second pair (see below).

And with this we have found the last nine men standing out of an original crowd of over 3,800 players!

We started Day 3 today with 60 players and that number dwindled steadily over the course of the day. Ina Pavlova and 888poker pro Sofia Lövgren were the last women standing and eventually finished in 25th and 19th place, respectively.

In the beginning Mantas Urbonas and Andrew Hills made the most noise in the field but in the later stages of the day it was Maxime Canevet who soared to the top and is now the runaway chip leader.

Chip Stacks at the Final Table

Canevet Maxime fr 25,925,000
Hills Andrew gb 17,250,000
Urbonas Mantas lt 15,900,000
Abdalah Fakhreddine lb 9,700,000
Moolhuizen Mateusz fi 8,625,000
Ostergaard Erik dk 5,400,000
Vadenbring Gustav mt 5,075,000
Stropoli Julien fr 4,600,000
Mangum Jerry um 2,950,000
BoM2018Final2

The top nine players will meet again at 2 PM local time tomorrow and battle for the big money.

Out of the €1,850,760 total prize pool, €877,000 will be won at this table alone all the way up to the €300,000 for first place!

Come back tomorrow to follow the action and/or watch the live stream on the Battle of Malta Facebook page! Watch the daily recap video below:

Level
34
Blinds
150000/300000
Ante
300000
Players Left
9
Tables Left
1

Hedley Finds Demise By Canevet - 10th (€19,000)

Hedley heading out.
Hedley heading out.

The last hand of the evening took place on the outer table where Andrew Hedley collided with Maxime Canevet.

Like so many before him, he couldn’t take the Frenchman’s chips.

Hedley opened on the button and found just one caller in Canevet. When we came to the table they were on the turn and this is what the board looked like: T K 5 4

Canevet checked and Hedley bet 500k. Canevet played to the spirit of the game and pushed all-in.

Hedley had just about 3 million chips behind and knew he was making a decision for his tournament life. He took about five minutes and then decided to call.

Hedley: T 9 for second pair

Canevet: K 9 for top pair

The river was a low blank and suddenly the likeable Brit was out of chips and the tournament was over – for today.

  • Payout Level: €19,000
  • Next Payout Level: 9th, €23,000
  • Average Stack: 10.6 million
Level
34
Blinds
150000/300000
Ante
300000
Players Left
10
Tables Left
2

Kettunen Klipped in 11th (€19,000)

Back to the darkness in Finland.
Back to the darkness in Finland.

First hand of the new level and we lose our next player.

Miikka Kettunen was on his very last lifeline with only 3 big blinds and after Andrew Hills raised from middle position he went all-in.

Hills called.

Showdown:

Kettunen: K 2
Hills: A 6

Board: 6 J 8 3 Q

Just like that Hills took it down with pair of sixes and we're down to 10 players and the hard FT bubble!

They're playing "soft" hand for hand now, stopping the action when the other table has a big hand.

Level
34
Blinds
150000/300000
Ante
300000
Players Left
10

Full Counts on the Break

We're getting down to the quick in the 2018 Battle of Malta Main Event with just 11 players remaining.

Who will join us for the 7th BoM final table in history and make their own history as the winner of a record €300,000?

Here's how it's shaping up as the players head out for break:

Canevet Maxime Thien-Duc 20,600,000
Urbonas Mantas 16,900,000
Hills Andrew Christopher 14,300,000
Abdalah Fakhreddine 9,700,000
Moolhuizen Mateusz 9,000,000
Ostergaard Jens Erik Thorsten 5,300,000
Vadenbring Nils Gustav 5,300,000
Stropoli Julien 5,200,000
Hedley Andrew John 4,500,000
Mangum Jerome Steven 3,700,000
Kettunen Miikka Juhani 900,000

Level
33
Blinds
100000/250000
Ante
250000
Players Left
11
Tables Left
2

Benta Set-up, Busted in 12th (€17,000)

Benta busto.
Benta busto.

There is an old saying that goes along the lines of "everything we have, we don’t own -- we just borrow."

Such was the case for the chips Sebastian Benta had just won from Maxime Canevet.

This time it was Canevet on the button who raised and Benta in the big blind who called.

The flop came down J J 3

Both players checked the flop and the 4 on the turn added a flush draw to the board. Benta took the lead on the turn but Canevet wasn’t going anywhere.

The river was the 2, filling up the flush draw and some potential straight draws.

Benta bet again, this time it was a big bet. Cavenet pondered his decision and it turned out to be “all-in”. Benta insta-called.

Showdown:

Sebastian Benta: Q J

Maxime Canevet: J 2

Benta’s flush was dominated by Canevet’s full house. I think that’s called a set-up. Canevet took all his chips back and then all the others that Benta had left and is now stacking what looks like an 18 million chip stack!

Level
33
Blinds
100000/250000
Ante
250000
Players Left
11
Tables Left
2

Benta Doubles Through Canevet

Sebastian Benta.
Sebastian Benta.

Sebastian Benta pushed about 4 million chips – his whole stack in the middle.

Maxime Canevet sat in the big blind and had to give his decision some thought.

Eventually, he did make the call and tabled pocket threes.

Benta had a higher pocket pair with jacks.

The board, however, decided it was time for some drama.

Benta: J J

Canevet:3 3

Board: 4 7 2 --- A ! --- Q

The ace on the turn gave Canevet both flush and straight draws, while it also gave Benta a very bad taste in the mouth.

But the river faded and Benta doubled up. For Canevet, this was but a small dent in the mountain of chips he calls his stack.

Payout Level: €13,000

Next Payout Level: 13th, €17,000

Average Stack: 6.3 million

Level
33
Blinds
100000/250000
Ante
250000
Players Left
13
Tables Left
2

Pierre Sallaberry Out in 13th (€17,000)

Out of our 13 remaining players there were still three Frenchmen vying to join Nicolas Proust in the history books as a BoM Main Event champ.

Now there are just two.

Over on the feature table Pierre Sallaberry finally met his demise.

He was short and all-in with A-5 against Mantas Urbonas who had K-K. The board didn't bring any surprises and the Frenchman is out.

Still, there are two players from France left and one of them is among the chip leaders - Maxime Canevet - with more than 10m.

Vas y Les Bleus!

Level
33
Blinds
100000/250000
Ante
250000
Players Left
12
Tables Left
2

Who's the Real Winner Here?

Two of the strongest players at the TV table are Mantas Urbonas and Andrew Hills.

The two of them just played a medium-sized pot and even though Urbonas won the hand, it feels like Hills is the real winner here.

Hills opened to 500 from UTG+1 and Urbonas called in the big blind with A 5

Flop: T 3 J (1.35m in the middle)

Urbonas check-called a 525k c-bet.

Turn: K (2.4m)

Check / check

River: 6

Urbonas made his nut flush and checked to Hills, hoping to lure into a bet. But Hills didn't comply and quickly checked behind.

Slightly frustrated, Urbonas turned over his nut flush and raked in a pot he sure hoped would have been bigger.

Hills mucked his cards.

Level
33
Blinds
100000/250000
Ante
250000
Players Left
12

Everyone Loves a Family Pot!

Especially Mantas.
Especially Mantas.

Family pots don't just happen in home games.

They also happen during the last 2 tables of a major tournament.

It began with Mantas Urbonas opening from UTG to 425k. Behind him Andrew Hills, Miikka Kettunen and Gustav Vadenbring called.

Flop: A 5 3 (2m in the middle)

The very red flop was checked to Urbonas who c-bet 500k. Only Hills called.

Turn: Q (3m)

Check / check.

River: 2

With four to a flush and four to a straight both players checked. Urbonas turned over J J for a nice flush and took home this 3m pot.

Level
33
Blinds
100000/250000
Ante
250000
Players Left
13
Tables Left
2

Gill Denino Flushed In 14th Place - (€13,000)

Gill out!
Gill out!

Gill Denino pushed all-in under the gun with four big blinds left.

From the button, Andrew Hedley over-shoved to isolate.

The blinds folded and the cards were turned over.

Denino showed 9-8 off-suit while Hedley had K-T suited.

Not too bad for the Israeli player, who had two live cards and over 30% equity.

The flop brought only rags but a flush draw for Hedley filled up on the turn.

And so the tournament comes to an end for Gill Denino, who takes home €13,000.

We're down to 13 players.

Payout Level: €17,000

Next Payout Level: 11th, €19,000

Average Stack: 7.3 million

Level
33
Blinds
100000/250000
Ante
250000
Players Left
13
Tables Left
2

All-in and Call!

Mateusz Moolhuizen pushed all-in from the cut-off and Jens Ostergaard, who covered Mateusz, called in the big blind.

Mateusz tabled A-K

Ostergaard showed J-J

Classic race underway, but it didn’t stay very classic for long.

The board ran out K-K-3 --- 3 --- K

Mateusz went from flip to top-top to top trips to full house to quads, all within seconds.

The Dutchman doubled up and now sits with around 7 million while Ostergaard is back down to about half that stack.

Payout Level: €13,000

Next Payout Level: 13th, €17,000

Average Stack: 6.3 million

Level
32
Blinds
100000/200000
Ante
200000
Players Left
14
Tables Left
2

Double Up for Fakhreddine Abdalah

The action on the TV table has been slow but now two special players clashed.

It began with Gustav Vadenbring opening to 900k (4.5 big blinds) from middle position.

Fakhreddine Abdalah called in the big blind with 3m behind.

Flop: K 6 2 (2m in the middle)

Abdalah checked and Vadenbring went all-in for effectively 3m. Abdalah called instantly.

Showdown:

Vadenbring: J J
Abdalah: 6 6 for a set

Turn / River: 3 8

Just like that, Abdalah doubled up to 8m chips.

Level
32
Blinds
100000/200000
Ante
200000
Players Left
14

Don't Forget About the Live Stream!

Don't forget - over on the Battle of Malta Facebook page you can catch live streaming action from the play down to the final table.

Seated on the feature table over there:

  • Andy Hills
  • Fahkreddine Abdalah
  • Pierre Sallaberry
  • Mikka Kettunen
  • Gustav Vadenbring
  • Julien Stropoli
  • Mantas Urbonas

Hills is the big stack while Abdalah is getting short.

Level
32
Blinds
100000/200000
Ante
200000
Players Left
14

Canevet Takes Another 4 Million Pot

Jens Ostergaard raised from middle position to 450k, Canevet called from the button and Denino called from the big blind.

On the flop 9 T 5, Ostergaard made a c-bet of 500k and was called in both spots.

The turn was the T.

Denino checked and now Ostergaard slowed down and checked behind.

Canevet slid out 750k and both his opponents folded.

Payout Level: €13,000

Next Payout Level: 13th, €17,000

Average Stack: 6.3 million

Level
32
Blinds
100000/200000
Ante
200000
Players Left
14
Tables Left
2

Raising, Taking and Splitting

There has not been an elimination on the outer table since the dinner break but there have been sizeable pots.

On a flop of K T 9, Steven Mangum bet 700k and Sebastian Benta called.

The turn 4 was checked around and on the 2 river Mangum bet another 900k.

Benta released.

Shortly after, Maxime Canevet raised the button and Gill Denino pushed from the big blind.

Canevet called but both players showed A-Q and they split the pot.

Payout Level: €13,000

Next Payout Level: 13th, €17,000

Average Stack: 6.3 million

Level
32
Blinds
100000/200000
Ante
200000
Players Left
14
Tables Left
2

Hills Won't Have Any Of It

No flinching.
No flinching.

Fakhreddine Abdalah apparently has found his kryptonite in Andrew Hills, who sits right next to him.

Hills just took another chunk out of Abdalah's formerly impressive stack.

Hills opened from UTG and Abdalah called in the big blind.

Flop: 9 8 5

With 900k in the middle Hills c-bet 400k after a check. Abdalah called.

Turn: 8 (1.7m)

Both players checked.

River: T

Now Abdalah bet 975k. Hills didn't have any of it and made it 3m.

Abdalah once again let go of his hand to give Hills the chip lead once again.

Level
32
Blinds
100000/200000
Ante
200000
Players Left
14

A Message from Beyond from Sofia Lovgren

Gone but not forgotten.
Gone but not forgotten.

Sofia Lövgren has been a Battle of Malta favorite for years but has always run short of the the kind of luck you need to make it deep in big-field tournaments.

Or at least she did until this year.

The accomplished 888poker pro put in her most dazzling BoM performance yet this year running all the way to 19th spot and the Last Woman Standing title.

How did she feel about things this year?

Let's hear her talk to Laura Cornelius about it:

Level
32
Blinds
100000/200000
Ante
200000
Players Left
14

Lindholm Can't Stave Bust Off Any Longer (15th - €13,000)

Lindholm (Left)
Lindholm (Left)

The first bust after the break is pretty obvious:

Samuel Lindholm, who went into the dinner break with just 200k in chips, was all-in with 2-2 against Gustav Vadenbring who held J-J.

Vadenbring, who crippled Lindholm just before the break, now eliminated his countryman when the board fell 6-7-6-T-7.

Lindholm, who can at least absorb the defeat on a full stomach, takes home a tidy €13,000.

Level
32
Blinds
100000/200000
Ante
200000
Players Left
14

Stunning Trophies from Mdina Glass at Battle of Malta 2018

BOM 2018 Trophies
BOM 2018 Trophies

The Battle of Malta came with a lot of new things for the players in 2018 including some brand new trophies from world renowned Maltese glass factory, Mdina Glass.

The first glass factory on the island, Mdina Glass is actually celebrating 50 years in 2018.

Founded in 1968, the company soon participated in international trade fairs and started exporting to Italy and America (more countries would follow later including Japan).

In 1987 Mdina Glass won the International Award for Tradition and Prestige in Brussels. And in 1996 former US president Jimmy Carter even visited Mdina Glass with his wife.

The company always focused on innovation and quality, also introducing new product lines every year - including trophies with glass engraving.

So how about these amazing new trophies at the BoM 2018?

BOM 2018 Trophies
BOM 2018 Trophies
Paul Jux Holderness winner Pink October Charity even at BOM 2018
BOM 2018 Trophies
BOM 2018 Trophies

Nevise Said, the daughter of Joseph Said, who took over the company after having been one of its first apprentices, told us more about these creations specially made for BoM 2018:

BM: How long does it take to craft a new creation like a poker trophy for the Battle of Malta?

NS: This needs our best master craftsmen – about 5 of them working together for the Main Event award. For the knights it takes our glass maker about 2 hours to do each one.

BM: How long does it take to actually “build” one of the trophies (once the idea is on paper)?

NS: Production takes a few hours and then we need another hour or so to put it together on the base.

BM: What was your inspiration for the trophies this year, and what did you try to express?

NS: We wanted to create trophies which reflected Malta and the battles that Malta faced in the past.

Eight persons in total worked on the creation of the Battle of Malta 2018 trophies! And one thing's for sure; The winner of the BoM Main Event will need strong arms to hold the trophy. It weighs about 5 kgs!

If you want to know more about Mdina Glass and their products (and maybe order a very special gift for your beloved one), check out the website here: https://www.mdinaglass.com.mt

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
15

Let's Eat (and Count Chips)

The players are heading out for a 75-minute dinner break.

Just 15 players remain although looking at these chip counts below we expect it'll be 14 very soon after the players return.

In case you're wondering: Lindholm count is NOT a typo.

Canevet Maxime Thien-Duc 13,700,000
Hills Andrew Christopher 12,100,000
Vadenbring Nils Gustav 11,800,000
Urbonas Mantas 9,700,000
Ostergaard Jens Erik Thorsten 8,900,000
Stropoli Julien 7,200,000
Mangum Jerome Steven 6,000,000
Abdalah 2 Fakhreddine 5,400,000
Sallaberry Pierre 4,900,000
Benta Sebastian 4,100,000
Moolhuizen Mateusz 3,700,000
Hedley Andrew John 3,400,000
Denino Gill 3,100,000
Kettunen Miikka Juhani 2,000,000
Lindholm Samuel 200,000

Enjoy a snack along with them!

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
15

Nobody Gets to the Final Table Without Luck

Samuel Lindholm (with headphones).
Samuel Lindholm (with headphones).

Gustav Vadenbring and Samuel Lindholm have met before. First in Stockholm, but also in this tournament.

Vadenbring has been overbetting pre-flop a lot, but also got 3-bet by Lindholm at least twice. He decided to not have it anymore.

With pocket 8s Vadenbring raised pre-flop to 700k, more than 4x. Lindholm looked at his cards, looked at Vadenbring and raised to two million.

Vadenbring pushed and Lindholm insta-called.

“It was probably my worst play in the whole four days of this tournament," Vandenbring told us later.

“Because now I really want to be on the last table. I shouldn’t have done this.”

Lindholm turned over kings and Vadenbring hit an eight on the flop. That’s how you have to roll to make a final table in a 3,816-entry tournament.

The last 15 players are now on a 75-min dinner break.

Payout Level: €13,000

Next Payout Level: 13th, €17,000

Average Stack: 6.3 million

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
15
Tables Left
2

Andy Hills is Not Afraid

After being quiet for his first few orbits on the TV table Fakhreddine Abdalah found his big bets again.

But he also found his nemesis in Andrew Hills, who seems to have cajones of steel. Or just very good cards.

The two played a huge hand when both were in the blinds.

Abdalah was the small blind and Hills the big blind. We came to the hand on the turn with 1.2m in the middle and T 7 6 3 on the board.

Abdalah bet 975k and Hills eventually called.

River: 3

With a bit over 3m in the middle Abdalah took a lot of time, fumbled with his chips, counted them and eventually slid 3.4m over the line.

Hills only took a a couple of moments to go all-in for a couple million more. Abdalah instantly folded and this 7.5m pot went to Andrew Hills.

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
15

Canevet and Hedley - An Interesting Hand

Canevet.
Canevet.

It was folded to Andrew Hedley in the small blind. He filled up and Maxime Canevet in the big blind checked his option.

The flop was J A T, which could have been a great flop, but probably not for hands that can’t raise pre.

Hedley checked and then called a bet of 175k by Canevet.

The turn was the 6 and went check-check.

On the river A, Hedley checked again and Canevet now bet a sizeable amount of chips. He made it 755k, and Hedley didn’t like it. He really didn’t.

He tried to figure out what was going on in this hand for several minutes and then decided to let it go.

“I don’t know if you bet a 6 like that or if you maybe bluff," said Hedley. “I guess I should have shoved.”

Canevet turned over his cards although he didn’t have to. It was Q Q.

Not exactly what is generally known as a bluff. Canevet is dominating with around 14 million while Hedley has around 3.5 million left.

Payout Level: €13,000

Next Payout Level: 13th, €17,000

Average Stack: 6.3 million

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
15
Tables Left
2

Andrew Hedley Hits the Middle

The Brit John Hedley also was among the shorter stacks. Was.

Now he's in the middle of the pack again. He played a hand against Steven Jerome Mangum and on the turn with 1.2m already in the middle the board read Q 7 4 4.

Mangum bet 400k and Hedley quickly called.

River: 9

Now Mangum checked and Hedley bet 775k. Mangum didn't think long before calling.

Hedley turned over 6 4 for turned trips and raked in this 3.6m pot.

Why he decided to play 6-4-off from early position will be his secret, but he's sure glad it worked out.

He's up to 5m now and has almost average stack.

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
15

Moolhuizen Fades the Ace

Ace, faded.
Ace, faded.

The Dutchman Mateusz Moolhuizen is the shortest stack right now with only 7 big blinds.

Right before he could act the biggest stack right now, Maxime Canevet, raised to 350k.

Moolhuizen looked down and found 6-6.

He shoved all-in and it was folded back to Maxime. 

Canevet could only muster A-3 but the odds were in his favor and he called.

The board fell T-4-J-4-5.

Moolhuizen faded the ace and doubled up to a bit more than 15 big blinds.

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
15

Ostergaard Doubles Again and is Now in Contention

Jens Ostergaard.
Jens Ostergaard.

Just minutes after he doubled up, Jens Ostergaard raised it up UTG to 375k.

Only Gill Denino called.

The flop fell 7 4 7

Ostergaard took the lead and bet 400k, which Denino called.

The turn was the 8 and Ostergaard bet again, this time 520k. Now Denino jumped into action and check-raised all-in, putting the Danish player at risk.

However, Ostergaard only needed a femtosecond to call.

Showdown:

Ostergaard: Q J

Denino: K 7

Denino had flopped trips but Ostergaard found his flush on the turn. He now needed to avoid the board pairing to stay in the tournament.

The river blanked and Ostergaard doubled up. He now sits with over 7.5 million while Denino is down to about three million.

Payout Level: €11,000

Next Payout Level: 15th, €13,000

Average Stack: 6.3 million

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
15
Tables Left
2

Elad Telva Goes Overboard (16th - €11,000)

Two of our Israeli players were just involved in an all-in on the non-TV table.

The shorty Elad Telva moved all-in with 6 6

In the big blind Gill Denino called with A K.

The board fell 2 K 2 J 2 and Denino eliminated his countryman with the bigger boat.

Down to 15!

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
15

Double Up For Ostergaard

Ostergaard (probably).
Ostergaard (probably).

Jens Ostergaard pushed all-in from the small blind once it was folded to him.

Steven Mangum quickly called in the big and we were off to the races again.

Ostergaard: K 8

Mangum: A 2

Board: 6 T 8 - 3 - 6

Ostergaard doubles up and stays in contention. It was much needed for him, as he’s now at just 4 million.

Mangum can live with this. He still has at least twice as much.

At the end of this level there will be a 75-min dinner break.

Next Payout Level: 15th, €13,000

Average Stack: 6 million

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
16
Tables Left
2

Who's Counting? We Are.

Chip Counts for the Final 16:

Canevet Maxime Thien-Duc 14,600,000
Abdalah Fakhreddine 11,735,000
Urbonas Mantas 9,640,000
Mangum Jerome Steven 9,000,000
Hills Andrew Christopher 8,310,000
Stropoli Julien 7,745,000
Vadenbring Nils Gustav 6,705,000
Denino Gill 4,600,000
Benta Sebastian 4,000,000
Sallaberry Pierre 3,570,000
Ostergaard Jens Erik Thorsten 2,600,000
Kettunen Miikka Juhani 2,540,000
Teva Elad 2,300,000
Hedley Andrew John 2,300,000
Lindholm Samuel 2,030,000
Moolhuizen Mateusz 2,000,000

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
16

Andrew Hedley is Behaving Himself

And it's working for him!

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
17

Nobody Calls Vadenbring

Gustav Vadenbring plays a tight, but forceful game.

He doesn’t play many hands but likes to raise 4x and higher when he does.

This seems to work pretty well for him. Not only because he’s still here, but also because nobody wants to play with him anymore.

We’ve seen Vadenbring raise hands five times in the last two orbits and not a single time did any other player call.

Maybe it’s because the last one who did lost his stack to him.

With no more women in the field the BOM has once again become a dude-only tournament and we’re heading into the final stages with just two tables left.

Next Payout Level: 15th, €13,000

Average Stack: 6 million

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
16
Tables Left
2

Wozniak Whacked (18th - €9,500)

Michal Wozniak moved all-in for 1.1m (7 big blinds) from early position and in the small blind Mantas Urbonas clicked it back, making it 2.1m.

The big blind, Fakhreddine Abdalah, thought hard about entering the pot as well but eventually folded.

Showdown:

Wozniak: A T
Urbonas: A K

Board: A 3 3 8 8

With the better kicker Urbonas eliminated the Polish player. We're now down to just two tables and 17 players.

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000
Players Left
17

Beach Party Interlude

Did you know there was a private VIP beach party last night?

Check the footage for evidence:

Level
31
Blinds
80000/160000
Ante
160000

Well, That Sucks: Sofia Says Sayonara (19th - €9,500)

Sofia, out.
Sofia, out.

Sofia Lövgren is the last woman standing at this Battle of Malta Main Event but her journey unfortunately ends in 19th.

First, she lost a huge chunk of her stack.

She opened from early position to 250k and on the small blind Gill Denino called.

Flop: T 8 5 (700k in the middle)

Denino checked, Lövgren bet 350k and Denino called.

Turn: 7 (1.4m)

Now Denino woke up and bet 450k. Lövgren called.

River: 9

With 4 to a straight on the board Denino kept firing, this time 900k. Lövgren took some time to think about the hand, but eventually folded.

She was down to just 1.5m - only a couple of big blinds.

With her back against the wall Sofia then found 9 8 and moved all-in with it.

Behind her Andrew Hills called with A Q. The board was favorable for Sofia up until the turn (9 7 6 7)

But the river fell A, giving Hills the better pair and sending Sofia out in 19th place.

"Well," Sofia said. "That sucks."

We couldn't have said it better. We'll miss you, Sofia. But you represented 888poker like a champ!

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
18

The Dearly Departed

It hurts us too.
It hurts us too.

The bustouts have been coming fast and furious here in the Main Event and it's tough to keep pace.

If you're wondering if your near and dear has become one of the dearly departed, here's quick list of the most recent bustouts:

#20 Nezirevic Mirza
#21 Benshoham Avihai
#22 Sagians Daniel
#23 Bergamo Alessio
#24 Di Romualdo Tziano
#25 Pavlova Tsvetelina
#26 Ascone Agostino
#27 Bonnardot Benjamin Raymond
#28 Yosifov Borislav
#29 Guimond Florian Nico
#30 Neukirch Jonas
#31 Di Mauro Giuseppe
#32 Carmi Eran
#33 Iacopetta Enrico
#34 Jakubcik1 Ondrej
#35 Cammisuli Flaviano
#36 Biton Nave
#37 Spitale Guiseppe
#38 Maimon Amir
#39 Fernandez Crespillo Juan Maniel
#40 Martinez Pedro Jose Arribas
#41 Pagliaro Gianluca
#42 Corral Juan Pablo Navarro
#43 Hoyesveen Daniel Andre
#44 Hazan Mordechai Marko
#45 Glushcenko Nikolaso

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
19

Exploitation Nation

Lindholm (left), Hills (right).
Lindholm (left), Hills (right).

Andy Hills raised under the gun to 275k.

On the button Samuel Lindholm had missed it and announced “raise," throwing in three 100k chips.

As it was his fault, he was now forced to min-raise.

Hills sensed that Lindholm didn’t like the situation and pushed all-in.

All Lindholm could do was smile, fold, and blame himself.

Payout Level: €9,500

Next Payout Level: 17th €11,000

Average Stack: 5 million

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
19
Tables Left
3

Who Wants to Meet a (10) Millionaire?

This bluff catching thing really works.
This bluff catching thing really works.

We just saw a nice family pot on Table 24.

The 4x-raising-nut-folding-chiplead-contending Fakhreddine Abdalah is at said table and is involved in seemingly every other hand.

This hand began with Jen Ostergaard opening to 275k.

He got three calls, including Abdalah on the button.

Flop: Q T 3 (1.4m in the middle)

All players checked.

Turn: 5

Now Ostergaard bet 550k and only Abdalah called.

River: Q (2.5m)

Ostergaard quickly slid 800k over the betting line and almost as quickly Abdalah called.

Ostergaard showed A J for a bluff and Abdalah J T for a nice bluff catcher.

Abdalah now has 10m in chips!

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
20

Mangum Climbs The Hills

Jerome Mangum.
Jerome Mangum.

Steven Mangum clearly was grinding Limit Hold’em in some American card room long before any of the other players were even born.

The American raised to 255k and Andrew Hills popped it up to 775k from the button.

Mangum called and we went to the flop: 6 2 3

Mangum checked and then called a bet of 830k.

The turn J was checked by both players.

On the river 5, Mangum slid out a bet of 1.1 million and it was Hills who had to give it up.

Mangum is now up to 9 million.

Payout Level: €7,800

Next Payout Level: 20th, €9,500

Average Stack: 4.5 million

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
21
Tables Left
3

Pour One Out for Our Last Italian Player

Buona notte, dolce principe
Buona notte, dolce principe

The Battle of Malta would simply not be the Battle of Malta without our always joyful, always entertaining cohort of Italian players.

Filling the BoM seats from its early days, year after year, we've always looked forward to hosting our closest neighbours and they've had no small hand in helping the BoM grow to what it is today.

55 nationalities could be found among the BoM seats this year but by far the largest group - 631 in fact - were Italians.

So it's with a heavy heart we report we have lost the last Italian player left in the Main Event, Alessio Bergamo.

Bergamo was down to 7 big blinds and 3-bet-shoved all-in against Mantas Urbonas' open raise.

Urbonas called.

Showdown:

Urbonas: A 2
Wozniak: Q J

Board: K 3 6 9 T

After the hand Urbonas is up to more than 9m and is among the chip leaders again. Alessio is out in 23rd and collected €7,800

Please, if you can spare it, pour out a bit of Campari in honor of our fallen friend.

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
20

Down to 3 Tables and a Redraw

And we're down to 3 tables in the 2018 Battle of Malta Main Event!

On Table 22 we witnessed a huge all-in where Tziano Di Romualdo was all-in with 4-4 on a 4-3-5 flop against Gill Denino from Israel.

The Israeli showed 6-2 for a straight and his rail erupted in loud cheers.

Turn and river were picture cards and Denino's rail erupted even more.

He's up to 5m now and the floor is breaking up the tables.

 

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
24

And Then There Was One (Woman Left)

No more Ina.
No more Ina.

Maxime Canevet raised from the cut-off and Ina Pavlova pushed from the big blind.

Canevet called.

Pavlova showed A-3 and Canevet had pocket sevens.

The board ran K-Q-Q - 9 - 4

No help for Ina, who's made her second deep run in the BOM main event and has her best result yet in 25th place.

Canevet is up to about 11 million and might be in the lead now.

Pavlova's bust also means 888poker pro Sofia Lövgren is the last woman standing in the 2018 Battle of Malta Main Event!

The tables are now being broken and there's a redraw.

Payout Level: €6,500

Next Payout Level: 23rd, €7,800

Average Stack: 4 million

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
24
Tables Left
4

Let's Go With Something Bigger Here

Min-raising is for suckers. Or at least that's what Fakhreddine Abdalah might be thinking.

With blinds of 60k / 120k he just opened to 500k from early position.

Jens Ostergaard raised from the big blind to 1.2m and Fakhreddine called.

Flop: J 8 2

Ostergaard moved all-in for 1.2m more - half pot.

Fakhreddine took 5 seconds or so and folded his hand.

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
25

Gustav Vadenbring Doubles Again, Fist Pumps

Gustav Vandenbring.
Gustav Vandenbring.

Gustav Vadenbring opened UTG to 400k.

Avihai Benshoham pushed all-in from the cut-off and Vadenbring insta-called.

Benshoam: Q Q

Vadenbring: A A

The board ran 4-9-3 – T – J rainbow

Vadenbring doubles up and fist-pumps.

He’s now up to around 6.5 million while Benshoham is down to about 2 million.

Payout Level: €6,500

Next Payout Level: 23rd, €7,800

Average Stack: 3.8 million

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
25
Tables Left
4

Hills Crests Chip Mountain

Zip your pant legs back on, it's getting chilly up here.
Zip your pant legs back on, it's getting chilly up here.

As the players are on break we eyeballed some stacks.

By the looks of things Andy Hills has strapped on the camelback and gaiters and trekked to the top of Mt. Chipimanjaro.

Steven Mangum isn't far behind and Abdalah Fakhreddine is picking up a new oxygen tank and heading up to the summit himself.

Maxime Canevet is standing on a ridge taking in the view above.

OK; we'll stop with this. You see where we're going. Full counts (approx):

Hills Andrew Christopher 8,000,000
Mangum Jerome Steven 7,300,000
Abdalah Fakhreddine 7,000,000
Canevet Maxime Thien-Duc 6,500,000
Urbonas Mantas 5,900,000
Stropoli Julien 4,700,000
Kettunen Miikka Juhani 4,500,000
Benshoham Avihai Hai 4,500,000
Benta Sebastian 4,400,000
Moolhuizen Mateusz 4,000,000
Denino Gill 3,800,000
Vadenbring Nils Gustav 3,100,000
Sallaberry Pierre 2,900,000
Hedley Andrew John 2,900,000
Katz Darron Charle 2,400,000
Lindholm Samuel 2,300,000
Ostergaard Jens Erik Thorsten 2,300,000
Lovgren Sofia Linnea Matilda 1,800,000
Di Romualdo Tziano 1,600,000
Vasileva Pavlova Tsvetelina 1,600,000
Teva Elad 1,500,000
Wozniak Mr Michal 1,500,000
Sagians Daniel 1,200,000
Bergamo Alessio 1,200,000
Nezirevic Mirza 1,000,000

Level
30
Blinds
60000/120000
Ante
120000
Players Left
25

Queen High is Good!

Back-to-back BoM final tablist?
Back-to-back BoM final tablist?

On the last hand of the level, Avihai Benshoham won a nice 3-way-pot with queen high.

Benshoham opened to 200k from early position and a very short Agostino Ascone moved all-in for 250k.

In the big blind Gustav Vadenbring called as well and they saw a flop.

Flop: A 4 K (900k in the middle)

Vadenbring and Benshoham checked.

Turn: K (900k)

Vadenbring checked, Benshoham bet 250k and Vadenbring called.

River: A (1.4m)

Both players checked.

Showdown:

Ascone: 7 7 for a counterfeited two pair
Vadenbring: 8 7 for a whiffed flush draw
Benshoham: Q 7 for queen high

Queen high was good and Benshoham took the pot while Ascone is off to the rail.

Level
29
Blinds
50000/100000
Ante
100000
Players Left
25

Kettunen Catches On

Bluff catching catching on
Bluff catching catching on

Miikka Kettunen seems to have learned the art of bluff catching from Maxime Canevet at his table.

We just saw the Finn play an impressive hand against Agostino Ascone.

We came to the hand with the flop reading J 6 7 and 550k in the middle.

Ascone checked, Kettunen bet 240k and Ascone called.

Turn: K - check / check.

River: 3

With a bit over 1.1m in the middle Ascone instantly moved all-in for effectively 1.5m. Kettunen thought for quite a while and eventually called with J 9.

He only had 2nd pair with a weak kicker, but his hand was good enough as a bluff catcher as Ascone turned over 9 7 for 3rd pair.

Level
29
Blinds
50000/100000
Ante
100000
Players Left
26

"I'm Always Worried Against You"

"Were you worried?"

Ina Pavlova raised from the cut-off to 225k and Maxime Canevet called.

The flop was Q K 2 and was checked around.

The turn was the 9 and now Canevet bet out 175k. Pavlova raised to 375k and Canevet called.

The river was the 6. Canevet checked and Pavlova fired 600k.

Canevet thought about it for 20s and called.

Showdown:

Canevet: K Q

Pavlova: A 5

“Just a call?”, asked Pavlova. “Were you worried?”

“I’m always worried against you," answered Canevet.

Payout Level: €6,500

Next Payout Level: 23rd, €7,800

Average Stack: 3.5 million

Level
29
Blinds
50000/100000
Ante
100000
Players Left
26
Tables Left
4

Things Just Got Nutty

"Isn't that the nuts?"

On Table 21 we came to a turn which read T T A T.

One player was all-in and Fakhreddine Abdalah and Mateusz Moolhuizen were still in the hand.

Both checked.

The river fell T and with roughly 400k in the middle Moolhuizen shoved all-in for 3m.

Abdalah shook his head, took a close look at the board and stated "Isn't that the nuts?"

The table remained silent and Abdalah needed more time to think. Moolhuizen called the clock and the floor counted Abdalah down.

After 1 minute he actually folded his hand with the nuts on board. Moolhuizen and the all-in shorty split the pot.

Apparently you don't need to play all your nuts when you're gifted with aces, kings and straights multiple times in half an hour.

BoM2018Nuts
Level
29
Blinds
50000/100000
Ante
100000
Players Left
26

Lövgren Still Fighting

Sofia Lövgren.
Sofia Lövgren.

888poker pro Sofia Lövgren is still in this tournament although she was dead short with 10 big blinds before she moved all-in with K J.

Denino Gill called and had her dominated with A K. But the poker gods didn't want Sofia to leave and gave her two jacks on the board: T J 3 5 J.

She just doubled up to 2m.

The other woman in the tournament, Ina Pavlova, has a bit over 3.5m right now.

Payout Level: €6,500
Next Payout Level: 23rd, €7,800
Average Stack: 3.5 million

Level
29
Blinds
50000/100000
Ante
100000
Players Left
27
Tables Left
4

"The Deck is Rigged, Dude!"

Fakhreddine Abdalah just experienced a rather insane run of cards.

Within 2 orbits he found kings, aces and just now kings again.

With the last hand he won a 2m pot against Erik Ostergaard.

On a Q J T A 7 board Abdalah fired three small barrels and Ostergaard called all of them, only to muck after Fakhreddine turned over K-K for a straight.

The Lebanese player is up to more than 4m now and one of the players at his table exclaimed: "The deck is rigged, dude!"

The very next hand Fakhreddine Abdalah won another banger. With A-4 he flopped a straight on a 5-3-2 flop against the last German in tournament Jonas Neukirch.

The chips went in on the turn when a K fell.

Neukirch had K-4 for two pair but could not improve on the river.

Now Fakhreddine Abdalah is up to 7.5m

Level
28
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
80000
Players Left
27
Tables Left
4

Guimond Out

Florian Guimond.
Florian Guimond.

Florian Guimond was all in for his last chips and got three calls!

Canevet, Vandenbrink and Pavlova all came along and checked the board down all the way to the river.

Although everybody had something it was Pavlova who had the best pair and took down the pot.

Florian Guimond takes home €5,495 as we've now jumped a payout level.

Payout Level: €5,495

Next Payout Level: 27th, €6,500

Average Stack: 3.5 million

Level
28
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
80000
Players Left
27
Tables Left
4

Canevet Busts Another One

Maxime.
Maxime.

Eran Carmi was all-in pre-flop and got a call from Canevet in the big blind.

Showdown:

Carmi: Q J

Canevet: Q Q

The board fell 6 T 3 3 8

And Carmi was out.

Canevet is up to about 8 million chips.

Payout Level: €5,495

Next Payout Level: 27th, €6,500

Level
28
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
80000
Players Left
31
Tables Left
4

Maxime Canevet is on Fire

Bluff catching like it ain't no thang.
Bluff catching like it ain't no thang.

Bluff catching seems to be Maxime Canevet's sport.

The Frenchman already showed a brilliant call earlier today and now he showed another good call.

He opened UTG with A 4 and the Finnish player Miikka Kettunen called behind him.

All other players folded.

Flop: T 9 A

Canevet bet and Kettunen called.

Turn: 2

With the third club the action went check / check.

River: 6

Again Canevet checked and with 800k in the middle Kettunen bet 250k.

Canevet thought for a bit and eventually called. Kettunen showed K Q for a whiffed straight draw and Canevet is up to more than 7m now.

Level
28
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
80000
Players Left
32

Iacopetta Put Down

Enrico Iacopetta opened from UTG and it folded to the big blind, Gill Denino from Israel.

He defended and the two of them saw a flop: Q-7-7

Denino checked, Iacopetta bet and Denino moved all-in.

Iacopetta called and turned over A-A.

Denino showed K-7 for trips and his hand held up.

The rail of the Israeli cheered as he raked in this 5m pot and eliminated Enrico Iacopetta.

We're down to 32 players on 4 tables now.

Level
28
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
80000
Players Left
32

Cammisuli Busts To Pavlova

Out:in 35th - Flaviano Cammisuli.
Out:in 35th - Flaviano Cammisuli.

Flaviano Cammisuli pushed all-in with his last 400k from the hijack and got called by Ina Pavlova in the big blind.

Showdown:

Cammisuli: T 6

Pavlova: A 6

The board ran 6-2-8 --- K --- K

Cammisuli is out and one of our last two ladies in the field chips up.

She's now on 2.8 million chips.

Payout Level: €4,300

Next Payout Level: 31st, €5,495

Average Stack: 2.9 million

Level
28
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
80000
Players Left
33
Tables Left
5

Canevet Joins the Leaders

Chips are moving.
Chips are moving.

Maxime Canevet has doubled up again.

This time the young gun was involved in a huge pot against the Frenchman Florian Guimond.

Guimond opened from the button with J-J and Canevet re-raised from the big blind with Q-Q.

The two were quickly all-in in a 5.3m pot.

The board fell Q-5-6-9-7 and now Canevet is among the overall chip leaders.

Guimond, who started the day with 5.1m in chips, is down to 1.6m now.

BoM2018Maxime
Level
28
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
80000

Flaviano Cammisuli Takes From Florian Guimond

Flaviano Cammisuli.
Flaviano Cammisuli.

It’s the first big hand of the day:

The Frenchman Florian Guimond opened from middle position and Flaviano Cammisuli called right behind him.

In the big blind Mordechai Hazan came along and they saw a flop.

Flop: 3 J 7

Guimond bet 130k and Cammisuli instantly raised to 340k. Hazan got out of the way and eventually Guimond called.

Turn: Q

The turn completed the flush and there were almost 1m chips in the middle. Cammisuli fired a 515k bet and this got Guimond to give up his hand.

The Italian is close to even with the Frenchman now.

Since we've already lost four players we're now playing 8-handed at the moment.

Level
26
Blinds
25000/50000
Ante
50000
Average Stack
1703571.4285714
Players Left
56
Tables Left
7

Urbonas Back to 5 Million

Mantas Urbonas began the day with a considerable chip lead but couldn't make much happen during the first two levels.

He lost almost half his stack.

Now we saw him win again as he took out the short stack Juan Crespillo.

Crespillo shoved all-in with 8-5-off from late position for a few big blinds and Urbonas called in the big blind with J-J.

The board even gave him a jack and now he's up to almost 5m again.

Level
28
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
80000
Players Left
38

Quads Drown Cammasuli

DIsaster for Flaviano
DIsaster for Flaviano

After the break Flaviano Cammisuli had a bad run of cards.

First he lost an all-in against the Finnish short stack Mikka Cettunen and then he just doubled up Maxime Canevet.

Canevet was all-in with A-A, Cammisuli with A-T-suited.

The board didn't improve Cammisuli's hand enough.

Cammasuli was down to 1.4m while Canevet went up to 2.2m again.

And now Cammasuli's almost out of luck.

Cammisuli just doubled up Ina Pavlova in brutal fashion.

She was all-in with 8-8 and Cammisuli had her dominated with 9-9.

But the board brought 2 more eights to give Vasileva quads.

Cammisuli is down to a couple of big blinds now and his hopes of another BoM final table are dwindling.

BoM2018Quads
Level
28
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
80000
Players Left
39

A Reminder: Live Stream is On!

If you've been following the 2018 Battle of Malta Main Event from the jump you know we've had a single-camera live stream running over on the Battle of Malta Facebook page.

Or at least we hope you do.

Cards-up coverage (on a 30-minute delay) is the order of the day again on Day 3 today leading up to our full-blast, 5-camera final coverage tomorrow.

Commentary is also being provided with Roy Brindley and Kat Arnsby doing much of the heavy lifting with some guests dropping in from time to time. Norwegian pro Jon Kyte, for example, dropped in for a while yesterday.

It's a nice complement to our live updates here, of course, and a great opportunity to get to know a few players in the field a little closer.

On the feature table today are Brit Andy Hills, with his massive 4.7m+ stack, and American Steven Mangum, who's also got some chips now at 5m.

Head over to the Facebook page to give it watch.

Level
27
Blinds
30000/60000
Ante
60000
Players Left
41

First Break - Mangum In The Lead

Steven Mangum.
Steven Mangum.

We’ve played the first two levels of the day and we already lost 19 players.

Steven Mangum from the US has taken the lead, mainly thanks to a huge pot he won against Borislav Yosifov with top pair against second pair.

Mangum is sitting on the TV table so tune in to the live stream to watch the action unfold.

Sofia Lövgren and Ina Pavlova are the last women standing.

These are the full chip counts after Level 27.

  • Mangum Jerome Steven 5,565,000
  • Hills Andrew Christopher 4,520,000
  • Ostergaard Jens Erik Thorsten 4,500,000
  • Benta Sebastian 4,500,000
  • Guimond Florin Nico 4,200,000
  • Benshoham Avihai Hai 4,000,000
  • Nezirevic Mirza 4,000,000
  • Urbonas Mantas 3,600,000
  • Abdalah Fakhreddine 3,400,000
  • Stropoli Julien 3,300,000
  • Cammisuli Flaviano 3,200,000
  • Hedley Andrew John 3,000,000
  • Denino Gill 2,900,000
  • Moolhuizen Mateusz 2,900,000
  • Katz Darron Charle 2,555,000
  • Teva Elad 2,500,000
  • Di Romualdo Tziano 2,100,000
  • Neukirch Jonas 1,800,000
  • Wozniak Mr Michal 1,720,000
  • Sallaberry Pierre 1,700,000
  • Sagians Daniel 1,600,000
  • Iacopetta Enrico 1,600,000
  • Lovgren Sofia Linnea Matilda 1,500,000
  • Biton Nave 1,500,000
  • Vasileva Pavlova Tsvetelina 1,350,000
  • Bonnardot Benjamin Raymond 1,300,000
  • Canevet Maxime Thien-Duc 1,300,000
  • Vadenbring Nils Gustav   1,300,000
  • Spitale Guiseppe 1,200,000
  • Bergamo Alessio 1,200,000
  • Jakubcik Ondrej 1,200,000
  • Maimon Amir 1,100,000
  • Martinez Pedro Jose Arribas 1,000,000
  • Lindholm Samuel 1,000,000
  • Fernandez Crespillo Juan Maniel 900,000
  • Yosifov Borislav 800,000
  • Kettunen Miikka Juhani   800,000
  • Ascone Agostino 700,000
  • Pagliaro Gianluca 700,000
  • Carmi Eran Dov  180,000
  • Di Mauro Giuseppe 180,000

Payout Level: €4,300

Next Payout Level: 31st, €5,495

Average Stack: 2.3 million

Level
27
Blinds
30000/60000
Ante
60000
Players Left
41
Tables Left
5

Jens Can't See Straight, Moves Up The Ladder

First he doesn't see his straight, now he's among the chip leaders

Jens Ostergaard just doubled up again. This time he was all-in with aces against Fakhreddine Abdalah who held jacks.

The board contained a queen, a king, but no jack and thus Ostergaard doubled up to 4.5m. Fakhreddine is almost out the door.

Payout Level: €4,300

Next Payout Level: 31st, €5,495

Average Stack: 2.2 million

Meanwhile, the Tournament Director announced the prize pool for the High Roller event.

The €1,320 buy-in had 240 players to generate a prize pool of €279,360. 51 players will be in the money but that is still about 15 spots away.

The winner is going to take down €60,000.

Level
27
Blinds
30000/60000
Ante
60000
Players Left
43
Tables Left
5

Horrible Setup for Nave Biton

Mateusz Moolhuizen was just moved to Table 25 and explained the Dutch language to Sofia Lövgren:

"The grammar is totally illogical, it's only spoken in the Netherlands and it's completely useless."

Good take; story checks out.

The conversation wasn't quite so loose for Nave Biton as he just ran into a horrible cooler against Mirza Nezirevic.

The flop read 7-5-4 and Biton had 5-5 for a set. A bet, raise and all-in followed.

Nezirevic turned over 7-7 for a better set and the board blanked.

Nezirevic is up to over 4m. Biton was knocked down to about 1.7m

Payout Level: €4,300

Next Payout Level: 31st, €5,495

Average Stack: 2.2 million

Level
27
Blinds
30000/60000
Ante
60000
Players Left
43

Frontier Justas for Sereicikas

No trophy for Justas this year.
No trophy for Justas this year.

Straight over straight, and Justas Sereicikas is out

At Table 22 there was a clash between Gill Denino and Justas Sereicikas.

The Lithuanian moved all-in for 775k on the turn with the board J-8-9-A with three hearts.

The Israeli went into the tank for a few minutes, then his decision: call

Denino: Q-T
Sereicikas: T-7

It's straight over straight and the 4 at the river didn't change the situation.

Sereicikas is out.

Payout Level: €4,300

Next Payout Level: 31st, €5,495

Average Stack: 2.2 million

Level
27
Blinds
30000/60000
Ante
60000
Players Left
44

Hero call gone wrong for Giuseppe Di Mauro

Mateusz Moolhuizen.
Mateusz Moolhuizen.

On table 24 a big pot was brewing between Giuseppe Di Mauro and the Dutch player Mateusz Moolhuizen.

The hand was on the river and the board read 8 5 6 A 9 with 1.2m in the middle.

Di Mauro checked and Moolhuizen bet 425k. Di Mauro didn't take too long to call. He showed A J for top pair on a scary board. Moolhuizen turned over 9 7 for a straight and a thin, but apparently good value bet.

While Di Mauro is almost out, Moolhuizen has more than 2.5m chips now.

Payout level: €4300

Next payout level: 31st, €5495

Average stack: 2.2 million

Level
27
Blinds
30000/60000
Ante
60000
Players Left
44
Tables Left
5

Straight! I Have a Straight!

Danish player Jens Ostergaard just took out Salvatore Formica and almost doubled his stack in the process.

The two of them were all-in before the flop and a classic race was on the way:

Ostergaard: A-K

Formica: T-T

The board fell 2-5-4-7-3 and Ostergaard slid his chips forward with a look of defeat.

The dealer started counting and eventually the dealer moved Formica's chips to Ostergaard.

Ostergaard looked flabbergasted and then he realized: "Straight! I have a straight!"

He did. And now he's up to 2.5m chips.

Meanwhile, Sofia Lövgren managed to almost double up with 3-3 against A-J and 7-7. She has about 2 million now. Both remaining female players are still in the field.

Payout level: €4,300

Next payout level: 31st, €5,495

Level
26
Blinds
25000/50000
Ante
50000
Players Left
46
Tables Left
6

Rapid Fire Eliminations

Within less than 20 minutes we've lost already 7 players.

The two most recent eliminations were Sebastian Gruszczynski, who lost with K-Q against A-Q, and Sergio Della Ventura who went out losing a coin flip with 5-5 against A-K.

Down to 53 now.

Impressive Hero Call by Maxime Canevet

On Table 23 the two chip leaders were Flaviano Cammisuli and Florian Guimond, but now Maxime Canevet has laid claim to the chip lead.

He just took down a nice pot with an impressive call against Agostino Ascone.

The hand was on the river with the board reading 7 Q T Q K and 500k in the middle.

After Canevet checked, Agostino bet 525k - slightly more than pot. Maxime thought a good two minutes and eventually called with A 7 - a measly bottom pair.

But his read was spot on as Ascone could only muster A 9 for a stone cold bluff.

Payout level: €4,300

Next payout level: 31st, €5,495

Level
26
Blinds
25000/50000
Ante
50000
Players Left
50
Tables Left
6

Cards Are In The Air!

We’re off, and there is a crackle of suspense in the air.

The Tournament Director has just announced that we’re going to play down to the final nine. If it goes quickly, we might even add one more bust-out to make it a final table of eight players tomorrow.

These are the Top 10 chip stacks at the start of the day.

  • 1) Mantas Urbonas, 7,090,000
  • 2) Andrew Hills, 5,260,000
  • 3) Florian Guimond, 5,195,000
  • 4) Borislav Yorisof, 3,980,000
  • 5) Daniel Hoyesveen, 3,760,000
  • 6) Giuseppe di Mauro, 3,165,000
  • 7) Nave Biton, s,945,000
  • 8) Michal Wozniak, 2,400,000
  • 9) Flaviano Cammisuli, 2,360,000
  • 10) Amir Maimon 2,255,000
Level
26
Blinds
25000/50000
Ante
50000
Average Stack
1.6964285714286
Players Left
56
Tables Left
7

BOM Day 3 – 60 Ways To Win The Battle

Lithuania, England, France, Bulgaria, Norway, Italy, Poland, Israel – the top chip counts represent how international the Battle of Malta has become.

Some of the players have never been heard of before; others do come with a poker CV.

Chip leader Mantas Urbonas finished third in an MPN event in Tallinn two years ago. He sits at the top of the table today with 7m chips, looking to secure another five-figure cash – or six, even?

Andrew Hills from the UK sits in second place. He was in the spotlight quite often yesterday, running over his table and being involved in many spectacular hands that usually went his way, including a hero-call that won him a 4.5m pot.

Hills has over $700k in live winnings to his name and is no stranger to the poker scene. He won a Grosvenor Tour event in Manchester last year and he triumphed at the Wynn Summer Classic just this summer in Las Vegas.

Another player to watch today is Sofia Lövgren. The 888poker pro is one of the two remaining woman in the field and with Hendon Mob winnings of over $350k she is one of the most successful players in the field today.

Another seasoned pro in this field is the Dutch player Mateusz Moolhuizen. He's had several successes here in Malta including winning the Unibet Open 2011. With cashes of almost $800k he is the player with highest ranking in the All Time Money List playing today.

Amazingly for such a big event, we also still have two former BOM-finalists remaining:

Flaviano Cammisuli finished 6th two years ago. Today he starts the day as 9th in the count with a stack above average.

The second former finalist is Avihai Benshoham who came in 5th last year. The Israeli starts today with an average stack.

Today, we’re playing down to the final table. The pressure is on. The first player to bust today will receive €3,500, which is nice. The last player to bust – in 11th or 10th place, that remains to be seen – will receive €19,000, which is clearly something else.

But the big money is, as you know, at the last table. Let’s find out who gets there today!

Level
26
Blinds
25000/50000
Ante
50000
Players Left
60
Tables Left
7
Event Name Battle of Malta 2018 Main Event
Venue Casino Malta
Date 25 October 2018
Final Day 30 October 2018
Buy In €550
Entrants 3816
Prize Pool €1,850,760
First Prize €300,000
Level Ante Blinds
Level 1 0 100/100
Level 2 100 100/100
Level 3 200 100/200
Level 4 300 100/300
Level 5 400 200/400
Level 6 500 200/500
Level 7 600 300/600
Level 8 800 400/800
Level 9 1000 500/1000
Level 10 1200 600/1200
Level 11 1600 800/1600
Level 12 2000 1000/2000
Level 13 2500 1000/2500
Level 14 3000 1500/3000
Level 15 4000 2000/4000
Level 16 5000 2500/5000
Level 17 6000 3000/6000
Level 18 8000 4000/8000
Level 19 10000 5000/10000
Level 20 12000 6000/12000
Level 21 16000 8000/16000
Level 22 20000 10000/20000
Level 23 25000 10000/25000
Level 24 30000 15000/30000
Level 25 40000 20000/40000
Level 26 50000 25000/50000
Level 27 60000 30000/60000
Level 28 80000 40000/80000
Level 29 100000 50000/100000
Level 30 120000 60000/120000
Level 31 160000 80000/160000
Level 32 200000 100000/200000
Level 33 250000 100000/250000
Level 34 300000 150000/300000
Level 35 400000 200000/400000
Level 36 500000 250000/500000
Level 37 600000 300000/600000
Level 38 800000 400000/800000
Level 39 1000000 500000/1000000
Level 40 1200000 600000/1200000
Level 41 1600000 800000/1600000
Level 42 2000000 1000000/2000000
Level 43 2500000 1000000/2500000
Level 44 3000000 1500000/3000000
Player Name Chip Count
Canevet Maxime Thien-Duc 25925000
Hills Andrew Christopher 17125000
Urbonas Mantas 15900000
Abdalah 2 Fakhreddine 9700000
Moolhuizen Mateusz 8625000
Ostergaard Jens Erik Thorsten 5400000
Vadenbring Nils Gustav 5075000
Stropoli Julien 4600000
Mangum Jerome Steven 2950000
Position Prize
Past BoM Champions
Year Name Country Payout
2018 Julien Stropoli fr €168,500*
2017 Nadav Lipszyc il €200,000
2016 Robert Berglund se €160,000
2015 Nicolas Proust fr €110,000*
2014 Antoan Katsarov bg €122,750
2013 Louis Cartarius de €68,000
2012 Nicodemo Piccolo it €35,000
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