MicroMillions 5: UpToInfinite is ascendant in Event #20 ($2.22+R NLHE 3x Turbo)
Any old Saturday on PokerStars includes the Saturday Splash, a six-figure guaranteed tournament with a two dollar buy-in and unlimited rebuys. Tis the season of MicroMillions and that meant an extra fifty-thousand dollars in the prizepool this weekend's event #20 incarnation. But so many players said yes to "rebuy?" that by the time the dust settled another 50k brick had been thrown together, making for a final prizepool of $201,654.58.
8,200 players began at 1100EST. Through late regisration 19,030 players (making 71,006 re-buys) dwarfed that figure and after 90 minutes 9793 players added-on ten starting stacks (30,000 chips) for just another two bucks. A well priced add-on if there was ever one.
Today's final table was hosted by none other than PokerStars Team Online's André Coimbra who knows a thing or two about grinding microstakes tournaments. What he and all on the rail would witness was right out of a Tarantino flick, an elimination every five hands, until Romania's UpToInfinite stood alone.
Final table chip counts
Seat 1: Revvenant (99,520,298 in chips)
Seat 2: TristanFran (43,099,690 in chips)
Seat 3: fredburger11 (27,245,690 in chips)
Seat 4: ziara (23,873,632 in chips)
Seat 5: wtoal (208,799,710 in chips)
Seat 6: airads (16,884,374 in chips)
Seat 7: Vadimklip (44,275,190 in chips)
Seat 8: footprint666 (14,728,480 in chips)
Seat 9: UpToInfinite (85,470,936 in chips)
The first hand was indicative with airads, sporting a Michael Jordan avatar, moving all-in under the gun at 1.6M/3.2M with a 320,000 chip ante, for less than ten big blinds. Just two hands later ziara open shoved from the cutoff with 21,313,632 and A♦ 2♠. Chip leader wtoal flat called with Q♣ J♣ next to act and the blinds got out of the way. The flop was in the chip leader's favour, Q♥ J♦ T♠, and ziara could not find a king or running cards to prevent theirs being the first exit in ninth.
Just two hands after that airads raised for the minimum (still on the short stack) in late position, to have an even shorter stacked button in footprint666 put their last two-and-something big blinds all-in with, you guessed it, 6♣ 6♦. It was no match for the tricky A♦ A♥ of the initial raiser, however, and airads good start included the dispatching of the eight place finisher.
Having crossed the ten big blind danger zone was not enough, however, as airads found themselves battling chip leader wtoal blind versus blind not long after. wtoal has made the minimum raise from the small blind with 7♣ T♠ and airads had defended his big with J♦ 4♦. The flop came a dry, and decisive, 7♠ 2♥ 4♣ and all the money went into the middle. There was no help for the shorter stack, airads out in seventh, while wtoal approached a collosal hundred big blinds, a tough mark to break in a 3x turbo format.
The next hand of consequence was also the most curious, when Ukraine's Vadimklip min-raised for 26% of their stack, only to fold 8♣ 8♠ face up, to UpToInfinite's three-bet. That would see them ladder one more pay jump as fredburger11 tried to shove on wtoal's big blind with 3♣ 4♣ and found themselves in rough shape against the dominating A♣ 5♣ of who was the proverbial favourite at this point of the tournament. A T♦ 6♦ 6♠ flop ran out hopelessly for the sixth place finisher.
Vadimklip's pair was one better a few hands later when they shoved all in from the button and 9♣ 9♦. UpToInfinite and Revvenant both called from the blinds, the former leading small into a dry side pot on the turn with the board showing K♣ 5♣ 7♦ J♣. It was the worst possible news for the Ukrainian after the big blind got out of the way, UpToInfinite's A♣ 2♣ had made the nuts and they were out fifth.
Four handed concluded after four hands with TristanFran shoving under the gun for 62 million at 2M/4M/400k with 3♦ 3s], and getting called in the small blind by UpToInfinite's A♣ K♣. The community cards continued to entertain. The flop came T♣ 9♦ 8♠ with all sorts of possibilities for scoops and even chops. The turn 4♣ and river 7♣ backdoored another nut club flush for UpToInfinite and TristanFran would have to console themselves with fourth place money.
Three handed was brief, but perhaps the most interesting phase of the carnage. As it began wtoal, in a gambling mood with 9♦ 8♦, doubled Revvenant's K♣ 8♠ in blind versus blind, making for somewhat comparable stacks between the final three titans.
168M for UpToInfinite
134M for Revvenant
261M for wtoal
"deal?" UpToInfinte broached on the button
"I can look" proferred Revvenant.
There was silence from wtoal and therefore from the Team Online moderator: it would take three to tango here.
Revvenant could not wait to dance, however, as they moved all-in the next hand on the button, an open shove of close to thirty-five big blinds, with A♥ T♣. UpToInfinite didn't wait to snap call with 9♣ 9♠ and the winner of this particularly large explosion would seize the chip lead from wtoal for the first time at this final. The flop was innocuous for the wired pair, J♣ 8♦ 3♥, the 4♦ turn brought zero backdoor draws, and the K♥ completed the board. With that we were heads up, Revvenant out, guns blazing, in third.
After nine hands of sparring, wtoal 3x'ing the button with UpToInfinite min-raising, another explosion. At 2.25M/4.5M blinds, UpToInfinite min opened the button, wtoal three-bet to 49,500,000 and was met in kind with a for 260,141,222.. wtoal decided K♦ 3♦ were sufficient to play a half-billion chip pot and took them up against UpToInfinite's A♠ 9♣. It was looking like a well judged gamble when the flop fell 4♥ 7♦ 3♠. But on this day, UpToInfinite's calm in the storm would be rewarded, the turn card, the A♦. Or would it? wtoal had added a flush draw, so now any diamond, king, or three, would say the hand back in their favour. They could run practically wire to wire to take down this event should they hit any of those fourteen outs. But the 5♣ crushed hopes of that and left wtoal decimated, facing a ten to one chip deficient.
The next hand the short stack picked up 9♥ 9♦, moved all-in, and was called by the pretty J♣ 9♣ of UpToInfinite. The A♣ Q♠ T♥ could not have wtoal feeling too comfortable, and for good reason, as the J♥ turned, leaving them drawing to one lonely out, the 9♠. Poker is not one for melodramatic climaxes and this shootout would be no different, the 2♣ meaninglessly concluded the action, and wtoal was out in second place.
Congratulations to MicroMillions 5 Event #20 champion UpToInfinite! Like most Tarantino scenes today's final table could only have one survivor and the Romanian champion stuck to their guns for a $21,762.97 payday!
MicroMillions 5 Event #20 Results
Places paid: 2,475
1. UpToInfinite (Romania) $21,762.97
2. wtoal (Canada) $17,140.63
3. Revvenant (Poland) $13,107.54
4. TristanFran (Argentina) $9,074.45
5. Vadimklip (Ukraine) $7,057.91
6. Fredburger11 (Iceland) $5,041.36
7. airads (Australia) $3,024.81
8. footprint666 (Canada) $1,814.89
9. ziara (Luxembourg) $1,209.92
Gareth Chantler is a freelance contributor to the PokerStars Blog.