Russia’s Sergey Pichugin finished as the chip leader after a short Day 2 of play in the EPT Sochi Main Event. The player bagged and tagged 858,000 at the end of the day, topping a chip counts chart of 136 hopefuls.
Day 2 action at Sochi Casino and Resort kicked off with 359 survivors from the three Day 1s. They were joined by 88 players who took advantage of the late registration option. Registration into the tournament eventually closed at the start of Day 2.
The Main Event’s field was thus capped at 861 entries who cracked the ₽150,000,000 guarantee. The prize pool eventually reached ₽150,692,220. Once registration was closed, organizers announced that the top 127 finishers would receive a portion of the money with min-cashes starting from ₽306,000. The winner of the first EPT Main Event since the live poker series’ resurrection after a one-year hiatus will be awarded ₽27.3 million.
Main Event participants were scheduled to play five 90-minute levels at Sochi Casino on Sunday. However, play was stopped after three and a half levels as the remaining players were just a single table away from the money bubble. Organizers deemed it necessary to put an end to Day 2 play to prevent what could have turned into a log jam of bubble action and chips being bagged up for the day.
Chip Counts and Day 3 Action
As mentioned above, it was Pichugin who bagged and tagged the largest stack of the day. The player accumulated 858,000 yesterday to secure a good start into Day 3. Most of his chips came from a three-way all-in confrontation. The player won that important pot, which was worth over 600,000, with aces against his opponents’ queens and ace-jack. Pichugin never looked back from that point on.
As many as 136 players made it to the end of the day short day. They are set to return at the host venue today at noon local time and play five 90-minute levels or until organizers deem it necessary. Big stacks at the end of Day 2 included Andrey Kaigorotsev, who collected 610,000, Nikita Kalinin with 608,000, and Sergey Kerzhakov with 511,500.
Reigning champion Pavel Shirshikov joined the event’s field in a bid to score a back-to-back victory, but was eliminated on Day 1A. Last May, the player bested a field of 387 entries in the PokerStars Championship Sochi ₽318,000 Main Event for a first-place prize of ₽29.1 million, his first-ever live poker title and his third live cash. The player has secured one more in-the-money finish since then.
Last month he finished 41st in the partypoker Eurasian Poker Tour ₽66,000 Main Event for a payout of ₽273,600.
This year’s EPT Sochi Main Event kicked off on Friday, March 23 and is set to run through March 29 when the final tablists will play down to a champion. As mentioned above, the winner will collect ₽27.3 million. Each of the final table participants is guaranteed a min-cash of ₽2.58 million.
Terry Davis holds a degree in Psychology, but it was after his graduation that he found his real passion – writing. Previously, he worked for a local news magazine.