The penultimate day of the 2014 partypoker World Poker Tour Merit North Cyprus Classic Main Event started out with 30 players remaining. The goal was to play down to a final table of six, so it promised to be a long day.
In one of the first hands of the day, start-of-day chip leader Antonio Buonanno lost a huge pot to Oliver Price. Price had check-raised with the nut straight on the flop, and Buonanno simply shoved all in for a whole lot more with his over pair of kings. Price took over the chip lead just like that.
Buonanno won some back by eliminating the first player of the day, as he sent Dmitry Bayramov home with eights against king-jack.
Sofia Lövgren fell a couple spots down. She was short for a long time and eventually called all in with . Dmitry Gromov had and eliminated the last female player of the tournament.
The bust outs followed each other up rather quickly, and before we knew it the tournament was down to its last two tables.
Some big bluffs failed for Price, Chouity, and Christian Christner, but those proved not lethal yet for the gentleman. Price was the one to go in 11th place. His bust out was a roller coaster as he got it in with queens against the of Chouity. Price flopped top set, but Chouity hit his gutshot on the turn to send the Brit packing.
With 10 players left, the tournament was down to one table. Now that play was again full ring, action slowed down a lot. For hours it was a 10-handed game, the shorties kept doubling, and the big stacks avoided each other.
In the end, it was Christner who departed in 10th place, good for $22,500. He never really recovered from that big bluf that failed and got it in with from the small blind. Chouity called with suited out of the big blind and won the hand.
Buonanno, the European Poker Tour Grand Final winner, departed some time later. He had flopped quad aces to stay alive a little bit before, but couldn't dodge a jacks-versus-kings hand. Ori Miller was the one setting a trap for the Italian, and Buonanno walked right in. His ninth-place finish netted him $30,000.
Short stack Dimitrios Ballas departed in eighth ($40,500). He shoved with and got called by Chouity, who was committed with his . Chouity made a straight and sent the last Greek home.
Alexander Nudin was the last to bust. He got it in with aces against Alexander Lakhov's . Despite flopping top set, Nudin couldn't evade the flopped flush for Lahkov and was eliminated.
The six finalists will return to the Merit Poker Room at 1 p.m. local time to play 36 more minutes in level 26 (20,000/40,000 with a 5,000 ante). The WPT will have 60-minute levels instead of 90 on the final day, and when play gets down to heads up, the levels will be sliced to 30-minutes long.
There will be a live stream on a delay, but PokerNews will be supplying all the updates in real time. See you tomorrow!