Seat 2 – Kent Lundmark – 3,025,000
Seat 3 – Konstantin Puchkov – 4,160,000
Seat 4 – Shander De Vries – 3,120,000
Seat 5 – Giuseppe Pantaleo – 5,655,000
Seat 6 – Francesco Notaro – 745,000
Seat 7 – Thor Stang – 1,290,000
Seat 8 – Georgios Skotadis – 1,105,000
Seat 1: Jesus Cortes Lizano, 22, Zaragoza, Spain – 3,800,000 chips
Lizano is a full-time poker pro from Zaragoza. He started playing when he was 18 and now divides his time 60:40 between online and live, usually cash games. He only came to EPT Barcelona to play the cash games, but entered the live satellite on a whim. He says this is by far his best live result. He gained a lot of respect earlier on Day 4 when a mix-up over chip stacks meant he had been given 500,000 too many – and he swiftly alerted the tournament director. He is being railed in Barcelona by two friends from home but a lot more plan to come tomorrow for the final.
Seat 2: Kent Lundmark, 22, Stockholm, Sweden – 3,025,000
Lundmark is an EPT regular who mainly plays tournaments but also some cash games at 3/6, 5/10 levels. He’s also a tournament regular in the Krukan cardroom. One of his first EPTs was the PCA last season where he was the longest-lasting Swede – finishing in 29th place for. This is his third EPT cash and his biggest result to date although he has made the final of events in Sweden and Estonia. He started playing poker four years ago after finishing high school. He is also a keen footballer and plays for a team in Sweden’s Fourth Division although he admits that poker takes the most of his time.
Seat 3: Konstantin Puchkov, 58, Moscow, Russia – 4,160,000
As amateurs go Konstantion Puchkov has a pretty impressive record. The Russian has notched up $771,606 in tournament winnings including a second place finish in the €5,000 six-max side event at the 2009 EPT Grand Final and a bracelet-winning victory in this year’s $1,500 World Series H.O.R.S..E. event. By sheer brilliant coincidence Puchkov lists his profession as a horse breeder and trainer. Puchkov has been playing poker since 1999 and while he prefers playing tournaments, he isn’t afraid of a bit of $10/$25 action in the side games. Puchkov has been an active player throughout the tournament and enters the final table second in chips. ‘Today was the hardest day because I was all-in with aces and was drawing to seven outs,’ recalled Puchkov who had Ah Ad against Luis Rufas’ Js 8c on a Jc-flop. Rufas caught an eight on the turn before Puchkov rivered an ace. ‘It was the first time that I was really at risk all tournament.
Shander started playing poker four years ago and built his bankroll playing the $4.40 180-player Sit & Gos on PokerStars. He later specialized in MTTs with good results. Making the EPT Barcelona final is by far his best result although he has previously cashed at the 2008 WSOP and EPT Prague in Season 5 when he finished 27th for € 11,000. After graduating (in economics) in December, he plans to travel and, if he wins the EPT, buy himself a nice apartment. Shander is being cheered on in Barcelona by his girlfriend and another friend.
Seat 5: Giuseppe Pantaleo, 22, Bielefeld, Germany, PokerStars qualifier – 5,655,000 chips
Pantaleo is a whole and international trade specialist and has been playing poker for three years . He usually plays tournaments. In July he finished the PokerStars Sunday Warm-up in fourth place and won it a month later. EPT Barcelona is his third EPT cash after last season’s EPT Berlin (142nd) and San Remo (37th). He says he sometimes plays cash games as well “but actually I’m bad in cash games!” Giuseppe was born and raised in Germany but both his parents and all his siblings were born in Italy and he says “my heart is Italian!”
Seat 6: Francesco “cecho1977” Notaro, 33, Galatina, Italy, PokerStars qualifier – 745,000
He played playing poker 15 years ago and now plays regularly on PokerStars.it. He started competing in live events in 2006 in tournaments organized by Team PokerStars Pro Luca Pagano and his family at Casino Sanremo. Francesco is the owner of a betting agency and used to have a poker club before Italian law prohibited it. Notaro loves live tournaments even though he originally started playing online. In 2009 he was runner-up the Sunday Special. His nickname is “cecho1977” on PokerStars.it.
Seat 7: Thor Stang, 27, Bergen, Norway – 1,290,000 chips
Student Stang has been playing poker for four years and mainly plays cash games. He said “I don’t really like tournaments that much. In cash games, you can reload if you get short but here I’ve been short-stacked all day! I came into Day 4 third in chips but then ran queens into Kings and since then I’ve never had more than 25 big blinds all day. It’s very frustrating but on the other hand, tournaments are exciting.” This is Stang’s best live result to date.
Seat 8: Georgios “NickDandolos” Skotadis, 35, Greece – PokerStars qualifier – 1,105,000 chips
Although he was born and raised in Dusseldorf in Germany, sports bar owner Georgios Skotadis definitely considers himself a Greek first. He is engaged to an Irish girl – Aisling- who he’s been dating for 12 years. At EPT Barcelona, Skotadis is not only playing his first EPT, but also his first major live event. Online, he won the Sunday Million three weeks for $195,000. He started playing poker two years ago in local poker rooms, tourneys and cash games. He said: “I’m living the month of my life – and it’s not over yet!”