When the day began, they were 40. When the dust settled at the end of a furious Day 3, only 8 players remained at the PokerStars European Poker Tour Baden event. Some of poker's biggest names journeyed to Austria for their shot at the Baden title, including Norwegian poker legend Thor Hansen, WSOP bracelet winner Alan Smurfit, and two young superstars from this year's World Series of Poker Main Event final table, Alex Kravchenko and Hevad Khan.
Anton Allemann took the chip lead into Day 3, with the top 5 chip stacks looking like this -
Anton Allemann 140,000
Acar Mazlum 136,000
Daniel Mangas 134,500
Thomas Fuller 128,800
Vladimir Poleshchuk 122,600
It didn't take long for the flurry of bustouts to begin. It was Hevad Khan who started the exodus from the field when he ran into Manfred Hammer's pocket Aces, and the young member of Team PokerStars became the first player eliminated on Day 3. Thor Hansen and Surinder Sunar followed soon after, as a total of 13 players were eliminated little more than the first hour of play.
The pace of play slowed a bit once the bubble neared, but it was still early in the day when Heimo Kramer became the EPT Baden bubble boy in 25th place. Kramer pushed all in over the top of David Sonelin's preflop raise with , and was called by Sonelin and Age Spets. Spets and Sonelin checked it to the river, when Sonelin bet out with on a board of . Spets called with the , and Sonelin's set of eights scooped the pot and sent Kramer to the rail.
Dinner break followed soon after the bubble burst, but it only took a couple of hours after diner to eliminate the last remaining players and set the final table. Once players came back from dinner, bustouts came in bunches, with Kalil Rahal, Alan Smurfit and Victor Goosens all busting out one right after the other. Alex Kravchenko picked as the hand to make his stand with, but ran into Pascal Perrault's . No help for Kravchenko, and he was done in 17th place.
Perrault didn't last much longer, busting in 15th when he held and ran into Julian Thew's pocket Aces. Age Spets, Michael Durrer and David Sonelin all busted soon after Perrault, and then Sebastian Ruthenberg busted in 10th to consolidate to one table and the EPT final table bubble. The nine players for the final table bubble were as follows -
Gunnar Rabe - Sweden - PokerStars qualifier
Ted Lawson - USA
Thierry van den Berg - Holland - PokerStars qualifier
Thomas Fuller - USA
Julian Thew - England
Manfred Hammer - Germany
Vladimir Poleshchuk - Russia
Denes Tamas Kalo - Hungary
Anton Allemann - Switzerland
Gunnar Rabe was the odd man out as the final table was set, when he moved all in with , and picked up one caller in Manfred Hammer. Hammer's was not looking great until the flop of gave him a gutshot draw to go with the pair draw. The on the turn filled Hammer's gutshot and sent Rabe to the rail in 9th place.
The final table chip counts looked like this as Day 3 drew to a close with Rabe's elimination -
Vladimir Poleshchuk - 624000
Julian Thew - 610,000
Denes Tamas Kalo - 468,000
Manfred Hammer - 369,000
Anton Alleman - 254,000
Thierry Van Den Berg - 227,000
Thomas Fuller - 190,000
Ted Lawson - 81,000