An already short Day 1 got even shorter when the €10,300 No-Limit Hold'em event of 2018 PokerStars European Poker Tour Prague started over an hour late, but a decent count of 31 entries had been tallied by day's end.
When the opening day of the festival finished, Akin Tuna bagged the chip lead by turning his 50,000 starting stack into 161,900. It wasn't a particularly auspicious start for Tuna, who busted without making much headway on his first bullet. However, his second crack went far better thanks in large part to a huge pot against Steve O'Dwyer.
It's been a year to remember for O'Dwyer and it looked like his hot run would continue when he and fellow big stack Tuna got all in on the penultimate level of the night, Level 6 (300/600/600). Tuna had flopped bottom set of sixes but was in considerable danger against an overpair and open-ender. True to recent form, O'Dwyer turned a straight, but Tuna filled up on the river to rocket up the counts and collect all of O'Dwyer's chips.
Sam Greenwood (156,000), Charlie Carrel (135,000), Thomas Boivin (132,300) and Jan Schwippert (127,500) were also among those who had strong Day 1s.
Greenwood found a nice double near the end of the night when he check-jammed river against Preben Stokkan — who got second in this event last year — with the backdoor nut flush. Stokkan had turned Broadway and couldn't find a fold despite taking some thinking time.
Carrel made a somewhat surprising appearance after making himself mostly scarce at big live tournaments in recent months and found the waters warm for his return. He busted familiar super high roller foe Jean-Noel Thorel twice to get most of his chips.
In total, 19 players made it through the day and they'll likely be joined by a slew of entries and reentries on Day 2.
Entry will remain open through Level 8 (500/1,000/1,000) as per the initial structure, and Day 2 is scheduled to begin at 12:30 p.m. local time on Saturday. Keep an eye on PokerNews to continue following the first €10K of the final EPT of the year.