The 2017 PokerStars Championship Barcelona attracted a field of 1,682 entries from all around Europe and the rest of the world. And it took four days of play before that original field was reduced to just 16 hopefuls, all eyeing the €1.4-million-plus first-place prize, the tournament trophy, and all the accolades that go along with winning a tournament of this scale.
Day 4 of the event was played on Friday, starting with 70 survivors who were headed by Australia’s Benjamin Richardson. Usually action slows down a bit when poker tournaments reach their closing stages. However, action was far from slow at the beginning of the fourth day of this year’s Barcelona Main Event.
Players were eager to get involved in contention for big pots and to enter all-in confrontations. However, while the beginning of the day saw more action and more players busting out, things assumed an usual pattern towards the second half of the day. Eventually, Day 4 survivors played six levels before calling it a day. Play concluded shortly after midnight with just 16 players bagging and tagging for the night.
And Brazil’s Andre Akkari was the player to bag and tag the largest stack. The PokerStars Team Pro member, the only surviving in the field, had accumulated 6.16 million in chips by the time Day 4 ended. He will start Day 5 not only as the hopeful with the best position to target the first-place prize, but also as the only one to have passed the 6-million mark. Brian Kaufman Esposito with 5.48 million and Usman Siddique with 4.65 million are the players with the second and the third largest chip stacks of all the 16 survivors left to contend for the prestigious title.
With live tournament winnings of over $1.6 million, Akkari is Brazil’s fourth most profitable poker player. His HendonMob profile shows that he has cashed in 77 different live events over the course of his career and has made a number of final table appearances. Akkari’s best poker accomplishment was his first place in the 2011 WSOP $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em, for which he won a gold bracelet and his career best live cash of $675,117.
About Day 5 of the Barcelona Main Event
Each of the 16 finalists in the Barcelona Main Event is guaranteed a minimum payout of €61,400. Play is set to resume today at noon local time at the poker tables of Casino Barcelona. The remaining survivors will play down to the official final table of six, which will, in turn, be played on Sunday.
A notable to watch out for will be Italy’s Raffaele Sorrentino, who took down the PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo €5,300 Main Event this spring. The player scooped €466,714 for his performance. He will start Day 5 of play with 3 million in chips. Mauricio Salazar Sanches, who finished Day 2 of the event as the chip leader, is still in contention. The player will enter today’s action as the short stack with 655,000 in chips.