If you’re in need of some poker television, then head over to ESPN2, where the 2010 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Europe Main Event began airing last weekend. The action continues this Sunday at 10:00pm ET and will stretch for two hours.
The action picked up on Day 4 of the 2010 WSOP Main Event when there were 22 players left standing out of the original field of 346. ESPN2’s coverage largely focused on Full Tilt Poker front man Phil Ivey. And why not? Ivey has eight WSOP bracelets and over $3.3 million in career World Poker Tour earnings, the 11th highest tally ever.
Early on, Ivey raised to 20,000 before the flop with pocket fours and Jani Sointula moved all-in over the top. Earlier in the episode, Ivey had folded in the same scenario, but this time, he made the call for 30% of his stack. Sointula tabled Q-J to set up a race and immediately took the lead when the flop came 9-J-2.
The turn was a king, leaving Ivey drawing to one of two sailboats left in the deck on the river. Sure enough, one peeled off and Sointula was knocked out in 21st place. ESPN poker commentators Norman Chad and Lon McEachern were in awe at the hand, which trimmed the field down to an even 20 players.
Ivey’s run, however, wouldn’t last much longer. He moved all-in before the flop with A-10 and received a call from Ronald Lee, who showed Big Slick. Ivey was dominated and, after a flop of 9-3-4, was barely breathing. The turn came a king and Ivey was drawing dead to the river; he departed in 19th place.
Ivey told ESPN officials following his elimination, “I’m very disappointed. I wasn’t too happy with my performance. There were a few missteps along the way and hopefully next year I’ll do better.” On the rough-and-tumble field that turned out for the 2010 WSOP Europe Main Event in London, Ivey admitted, “This is the toughest tournament of the year because good players come from around the world and, with the internet nowadays, players have gotten a whole lot better.”
At the same time as Ivey was making a deep run, so too was PokerStars pro Viktor “Isildur1” Blom. The Swede committed his chips before the flop with pocket eights and received a call from Brian Powell, who showed K-Q to set up a race. On the two combatants’ long hair, Chad quipped, “Winner gets the pot, loser gets a haircut.”
The flop came 7-7-Q, giving Powell queens-up and the lead, and a running K-J didn’t change matters. Blom departed in 16th place and the first episode of the 2010 WSOP Europe Main Event on ESPN2 faded to black.
The second one-hour episode, which aired at 11:00pm ET on Sunday night against the last half-hour of the Grammy Awards, began with 15 players remaining. By the final gong, only nine remained.
David “Davidp18” Peters was the final casualty. He was all-in before the flop with A-7 and up against Roland de Wolfe’s A-5 of spades. Despite being ahead, Peters watched in agony as a five hit the window and de Wolfe never looked back. Peters claimed the title of Final Table Bubble Boy.
Victory Poker CEO Dan Fleyshman will be the chip leader when play resumes on Sunday at 10:00pm ET on ESPN2.