MicroMillions: Zabaleta1 wins the Main Event!

micromillions-thumb-blog.pngTen days, 100 events, thousands of prize winners, millions of dollars in cash. The PokerStars MicroMillions offered something for everyone and lived up to the hype in every way possible. Could the Main Event possibly match the previous 99 events and cap off a series to remember? You bet it could.

The MicroMillions Main Event was a $22 buy-in and offered a mind-blowing $1 million guarantee. Some quick arithmetic and we knew that we'd need 50,000 players to reach that figure. Could that really be possible? Just a few years ago, that number would've set a new world record, but today a massive field of 54,065 took part in the MicroMillions Main Event to produce a $1,081,300 prize pool - proving that the bean counters at PokerStars know their stuff.

The members of Team PokerStars were out in force, as they knew that a MicroMillions Main Event title would be an achievement for the ages. The best placed PokerStars Team Pro was Irishman Jude "j.thaddeus" Ainsworth who picked up $205.44 for his 451st place finish.

Marcin "Goral" Horecki from Poland also finished in the money, winning $54.06 for 2392nd which may possibly be enough to see him top the MicroMillions Player of the Series leader board. With a 2013 PCA package to be won, it would certainly be enough to make all of those min-cashes worthwhile for Horecki! Martin Staszko and George Lind were the other members of Team PokerStars to cash in the Main Event.

In all, 7,335 players reached the money stage with Nom-Nom-Yuss from Canada the unfortunate one to bubble the $43.25 min-cash. It took over 12 hours to reach the final table, and when German icantplay111 was eliminated in 10th place, the official MicroMillions final table was set.

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Final table lineup
Seat 1: zhenjkoTy3 (41,593,630 in chips)
Seat 2: Gleb Zheglov (20,577,480 in chips)
Seat 3: sebastion86 (169,333,244 in chips)
Seat 4: scanonerest (41,749,637 in chips)
Seat 5: dannyboi1987 (44,850,664 in chips)
Seat 6: Maggüs (33,572,464 in chips)
Seat 7: Zabaleta1 (97,660,393 in chips)
Seat 8: DashkaShkoda (26,089,581 in chips)
Seat 9: Anton Marcus (65,222,907 in chips)

The final table commenced at Level 54 with the blinds at 1M/2M/250k. It sounds like a whole lot of zeroes, but only Gleb Zheglov and DashkaShkoda were in the danger zone with around ten big blinds, while sebastion86 was a clear chip leader. With Portugese Team PokerStars Pro Andre Coimbra overseeing the action, the cards were in the air.

Of course with so much cash at the pointy end for such a small investment, deal talks were always expected and they didn't take long to surface:

dannyboi1987 said, "anyone interested in a deal?"
sebastion86 said, "Im not unless I get over 6 figures"

With deal negotiations on hold, DashkaShkoda was able to land an early double up with J♥J♣ holding against the K♠9♣ of Maggüs. This put Maggüs back onto the short stack but a double up with 6♣8♥ against Gleb Zheglov's J♥7♣ kept Maggüs in the game, albeit briefly.

Maggüs shoved his last six big blinds with A♠J♦ and found two callers who both checked down the board of 4♦7♠Q♠T♣3♦ to attempt to eliminate the short stack. No one made a pair, but DashkaShkoda showed down A♣K♠ to kick Maggüs out in 9th place for $5,103.73.

With plenty of raising and three-betting, Gleb Zheglov was unable to get anything going, slipping down to a little over two big blinds when moving in with A♥6♠. Two callers checked down the board of K♦A♦5♦T♦7♣ where Anton Marcus threw out a bet to get a fold from scanonerest. On the four-diamond board, Gleb Zheglov's top pair wasn't going to be good as Anton Marcus showed J♦3♦ for the flush. Gleb Zheglov picked up $7,655.60 for a fine tournament.

Nut flush against second nut flush saw scanonerest double up, but sebastion86 still held onto a healthy chip lead with seven left.

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ZhenjkoTy3 found one double up, but then gave us one of the most bizarre folds of all time.

Action folded around to Anton Marcus who moved all in from the small blind. ZhenjkoTy3 was in the big blind and, after a little thought, open-folded K♥K♦ rather than stick the last ten big blinds into the middle. The other players were obviously gob-smacked:

DashkaShkoda said, "what???"
sebastion86 said, "what is wrong with you?"
scanonerest said, "pff"
sebastion86 said, "are you waiting for aces?"
dannyboi1987 said, "are you mental?"

We were unable to come up with any logical reasoning for the fold, but zhenjkoTy3 did offer an explanation:

zhenjkoTy3 said, "i want 6th place"
sebastion86 said, "wow lol"
sebastion86 said, "I want first if anyone was curious"

The plan appeared to backfire for zhenjkoTy3 when short stacks dannyboi1987 and scanonerest quickly found double ups. dannyboi1987 then landed another with pocket kings against sebastion86 to get right back into contention.

Perhaps zhenjkoTy3 realised the previous mistake and decided to make a move with A♦6♠. It was only for four big blinds, so sebastion86 made the call with 2♥6♦. Both players paired up but zhenjkoTy3 doubled as no-one was budging an inch.

Ironically, the player to break was Anton Marcus when he called bets on the turn and river on the board of 3♥K♥6♦Q♣Q♥ against sebastion86. The turn call was good, but Anton Marcus' T♥T♣ had been rivered as sebastion86 showed A♥5♥ for the nut flush. Anton Marcus had to be content with $12,759.34 for 7th place.

DashkaShkoda was next to go when 9♠9♥ wasn't enough as Zabaleta1 held T♦T♥. The board of J♣Q♠6♦A♠3♥ produced no surprises to leave DashkaShkoda to pick up $20,414.94 for 6th place.

Dannyboi1987 found another double up after turning a set to better sebastion86's flopped top pair as Zabaleta1 was threatening for the chip lead.

ZhenjkoTy3's plan for survival had succeeded in reaching the final five but that was as far as it would go. ZhenjkoTy3 blinded down to two big blinds and moved all in with A♥K♣ as Zabaleta1 and sebastion86 both called. The two live players checked the 3♣2♠8♦9♣5♣ board through to the river where Zabaleta1 tossed out a bet. Sebastion86 folded and Zabaleta1 tabled A♣2♣ for the stone-cold nuts. After the earlier antics with pocket kings, you'd have to think that zhenjkoTy3 would be pretty happy with $33,174.28 for 5th place.

Scanonerest was next to go, caught shoving a little over ten big blinds from the button with 9♦6♦. Zabaleta1 was in the big blind and made the call with A♦8♦ to kill the diamonds for scanonerest. That proved pretty important when the flop fell 7♥5♦3♦, but the 2♠ turn and T♣ river bricked out to leave Zabaleta1's ace-high in front. Scanonerest received $51,048.17 for a great run that ended in 4th place.

The three remaining players then agreed to take a look at the numbers.

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The initial deal proposal was based on a chip chop, but chip leader Zabaleta1 played a little hard ball. Eventually the players found some middle ground with the following deal quickly agreed to:

Zabaleta1 - $120,000.00
sebastion86 - $111,183.84
dannyboi1987 - $90,781.72

The deal also left an additional $20,000 for the eventual winner.

With the numbers locked in, it was game on for the $20k and the title of MicroMillions champion. Dannyboi1987 found a quick double up when his pocket aces held against the open-ended straight draw of sebastion86, before doubling again with ace-ten holding against the ace-four of Zabaleta1.

It was a great comeback by dannyboi1987 to get back into contention, and perhaps it rattled his opponents a little as sebastion86 soon got caught bluffing in a couple of key hands against Zabaleta1:

RSS readers click through to see replay


RSS readers click through to see replay


The second hand in particular was a terrific read and call by Zabaleta1 and left sebastion86 reeling. The knockout blow came soon after, when the two players got their chips in on a board of 9♠K♥5♠6♠. After both players had checked the flop, sebastion86 bet and then called for his tournament on the turn with Q♠9♦ for a pair and flush draw, but Zabaleta1's flush had already got there with J♠T♠. The river was the 5♥ to see sebastion86 on the rail in 3rd place for $111,183.84.

Heads-up play commenced with Zabaleta1 holding a commanding chip lead:

Zabaleta1 (483,707,504 in chips)
dannyboi1987 (56,942,496 in chips)

Dannyboi1987 had doubled up on multiple occasions on the final table, and secured one more with A♥T♣ holding against K♣Q♠, but that was the end of the incredible run. The final hand came with dannyboi1987 getting the chips in good with A♣9♥ as Zabaleta1 made the call with a dominated A♥8♥. The board was spread K♥4♦7♦8♦3♣ to pair up Zabaleta1's kicker for the win!

Dannyboi1987's gallant run added $90,781.72 to the bankroll as Zabaleta1 won $140,000.00 and the title of MicroMillions Main Event champion! Not bad for an investment of twenty bucks.

Final table results
1st Zabaleta1 (Czech Republic) - $140,000.00*
2nd dannyboi1987 (United Kingdom) - $90,781.72*
3rd sebastion86 (Canada) - $111,183.84*
4th scanonerest (Netherlands) - $51,048.17
5th zhenjkoTy3 (Latvia) - $33,174.28
6th DashkaShkoda (Ukraine) - $20,414.94
7th Anton Marcus (Russia) - $12,759.34
8th Gleb Zheglov (Russia) - $7,655.60
9th Maggüs (Germany) - $5,103.73

* denotes deal

And with that, the PokerStars MicroMillions has come to an end. It's been a wild ten days with 100 incredible events and millions of dollars in cash won by our micro-stakes players. To re-live every MicroMillions moment, why not check out our MicroMillions recaps? Or if you're looking for results, statistics and more, then head to the MicroMillions Main Page.

We hope you enjoyed the series and we'll see you on the tables again for the upcoming SCOOP series.