The final table of the World Poker Tour Merit Cyprus Classic is set. Ran Azor, who managed to win the 2011 Merit Middle East Poker Championship in this very hotel, will be going into the final table as the chip leader. Azor had a yo-yo session on Day 4 but managed to rapidly rebuild toward the end of the day.
Although Erik Cajelais began Day 4 as the chip leader, he never really got going enough to increase his stack, and ended up being eliminated on the final table bubble. Cajelais held against Marvin Rettenmaier's , and despite Cajelais flopping the nut flush draw and turning a gutshot, he missed all 18 of his outs on the river making him the last man out on Day 4.
Rettenmaier led a charmed life on Wednesday that included being all-in with against Ran Azor's and managing to turn a flush. All in all, Rettenmaier is handily placed to become the first ever back-to-back WPT champion.
Joseph El Khoury is the short stack, and Victor Paraschiv, Kiryl Radzivonau and Artur Voskanyan all held the chip lead at some point during on Wednesday, so expect a real battle on the final day.
The Day-4 eliminations came quicker than expected. First Walid Bou Habib knocked out Julien Ehrhardt in a flip then coolered Tolga Demierel with against when all the money went in on the turn of a board. Habib took the chip lead at this point but unfortunately for him, it was the high point of his day.
Speaking of coolers, they were numerous as Rettenmaier doubled with aces against Robert Mizrachi's ace-king before finishing his opponent a little later with versus . Meanwhile Andrey Shatilov, who briefly held the chip lead himself on Day 3 was at the wrong end of another showdown hen his kings fell afoul to Eddy Maksoud's Big Slick. The latter then picked up aces himself to bust another opponent's big slick and tournament director Matt Savage was almost worried that play would finish too early.
Maksoud suffered his own bad luck, losing several key pots and going out holding queens against aces. Yes, the high volume of big hands versus big hands was quite jaw-dropping. Meanwhile Marvin Rettenmaier's charmed life continued and he managed to knock out former chip leader Habib with against by the virtue of flopping three jacks.
World Poker Tour Merit Cyprus Classic Final Table Chip Counts
|6||Joseph El Khoury||435,000|
Action at the final table will begin at 1300 EEST (0300 PDT) and there will be a live stream featuring commentary from the legendary Jesse May.
Be sure and follow all of the action on the PokerNews Live Reporting Blog and as always follow PokerNews India on Twitter for up-to-the-minute news.