Jonathan Bowers has gone from strength to strength today. Playing thoughtful calculated poker, he hasn’t made many missteps, and he has seen his chiplead coming into the day blossom into a huge stack (currently around 700,000.)
He has had a couple of setbacks recently however. First off, there is the dangerous behaviour of Oleg Egorov, one of the other big stacks populating his table.
Egorov has shown a fearless propensity to pull the trigger if he senses he can get away with it, something he illustrated not long ago, responding to Bowers three-betting him from the blinds by pulling out a likely committing four-bet of over 100,000. Bowers shrugged and laid down his hand on that occasion.
Next up Paul Johnson, a much shorter stack, moved his 69,000 into the middle preflop and Bowers isolated him with a re-raise to 200,000.
Cards on their back, Johnson winced as he was shown Kh Qc by Bowers, dominating his Kd Jd.
Bowers wasn’t a lock for the hand though, and so it proved as a crushing board of Ad 5d 2d appeared to leave him drawing dead (apart from the distant chance of a steel wheel runner-runner chop). “Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh” breathed the table in unison at this development. The irrelevant 8d and Qs completed the board and Bowers passed over the chips that double Johnson through to around 150,000.
Bowers remains on 650,000 however and didn’t look perturbed in the slightest by this hand. You get the feeling if he is to be toppled it will be variance rather than a rash move that will undermine his challenge…