MicroMillions III: 2g00t4ubarn burns through Event #19 ($4.40 NLHE 4-max.)
Small blind. Big blind. Cutoff. Button. The action seats, from which you're playing most of your hands. And from which those ups and downs are frequently most up and most down.
Late position? Lucrative. The blinds? You bleed. These are the seats from which the winning and losing most often takes place.
Then again, make the game four-handed -- cut out the middle men, so to speak -- and everything changes. Such was the case for Event #19 of the MicroMillions III series, a four-handed no-limit hold'em tourney featuring an inviting $4.40 buy-in, in which 13,587 action-seekers played and 2g00t4ubarn of Portugal ultimately prevailed.
Finding a final four
That huge field meant another MicroMillions III guarantee was easily met. The promise was $30K for this one, and with all those runners the prize pool ballooned to $55,428. The top 1,800 places paid, with $5,122.62 due the winner.
It took a while to get to the money, and shortly after Team Online member Naoya "nkeyno" Kihara was among the early cashers, finishing 1,574th for a $8.86 score. Here's how Kihara looked just a week ago while playing in the Main Event of the APPT Macau Asia Championship of Poker:
They were approaching the six-hour mark when the field had been cut to just 100 players gathered around 25 tables. The Russian monsterFanya had opened a lead by then, sitting with more than 3.8 million when the nearest challenger had less than 2.2 million.
An hour-and-a-half later just 20 players remained, now at five tables. monsterFanya was still high up on the leaderboard in third position, now behind first-place 2g00t4ubarn (Portugal) and FENOMENICO (Russia), with all three just above or below the 7 million-chip mark.
They'd crossed the eight-hour mark when lexaa237w (Russia) went out in ninth for a $298.20 payday, leaving just two four-handed tables to continue. 2g00t4ubarn, monsterFanya, and FENOMENICO were still there with big stacks, although kanishka27 of India had passed them and was closing in on 15 million.
VASSA (Portugal) soon fell in eighth after having 5♠5♥ fail to hold versus 2g00t4ubam's A♣Q♥. Then Gontsa (Russia) was knocked out in seventh in a preflop all-in versus monsterFanya. Gontsa had been at risk with T♦T♣ versus monsterFanya's A♣3♦, and was fine through four streets until the A♦ fell on the river.
And not too long after that it was FENOMENICO going out in sixth after running A♦Q♠ into the A♥K♦ of 2g00t4ubarn. Like VASSA and Gontsa, FENOMENICO earned $438.98.
The remaining five were reseated around a five-handed not-quite-final final table -- the only instance during the entire tournament that the game was not four-handed -- with 2g00t4ubarn now well out in front with a commanding lead over the other four.
Just a few hands later India's kanishka27 was ousted in fifth after failing to improve with A♠Q♣ against monsterFanya's 7♦7♣, picking up $703.38.
It was time for one last four-handed table.
Seat 1: ioclauxx1983 (Romania) -- 6,189,069
Seat 2: monsterFanya (Russia) -- 14,927,143
Seat 3: 2g00t4ubarn (Portugal) -- 46,390,550
Seat 4: ssswib85 (Norway) -- 1,778,238
The stacks were lopsided to start the final table, and as it happened it would take 2g00t4ubarn less than a dozen hands more to gobble up the rest of the chips and claim the victory.
The blinds were 150,000/300,000 to start the final table, and they'd finish before there would be another increase.
On the very first hand of the final table, it folded to 2g00t4ubarn who open-shoved from the small blind, and ssswib85 called from a seat over for 1,440,738. 2g00t4ubarn showed 6♦5♣ while ssswib85 had Q♠T♠, but after the 6♥5♥K♦ flop it was 2g00t4ubarn with the commanding advantage. The turn was the J♦ to give ssswib85 a straight draw, but the river brought the 3♦ and ssswib85 was out in fourth.
Just one hand later, 2g00t4ubarn opened with a 2x raise to 600,000 and monsterFanya called from the big blind. When the flop came 5♠7♣2♠, monsterFanya promptly pushed all in for 14,252,143 and 2g00t4ubarn made the call. monsterFanya had A♦5♥ for fives while 2g00t4ubarn had hit top pair with K♥7♦. The turn was the T♠ and river the Q♣, and in a flash they were suddenly down to two.
It was 63,320,931 for 2g00t4ubarn to ioclauxx1983's 5,964,069 to start heads-up play -- a better than 10-to-1 edge.
After trading small pots for eight hands, ioclauxx1983 open-pushed all in for 6,751,569 from the button and 2g00t4ubarn called. ioclauxx1983 revealed K♣4♠ while 2g00t4ubarn had A♣J♠. The flop came 7♦3♦Q♠ and 2g00t4ubarn was still best, but the turn brought the 4♥ and a pair for ioclauxx1983.
Then came the river... the A♦! A better pair for 2g00t4ubarn, who had burned through the entire field and final table to take the title!
Congratulations to 2g00t4ubarn for topping a field of 13,857 to turn a $4.40 entry into $5,122.62!
MicroMillions III Event #19 $4.40 NLHE (4-max.) final table results (*reflects two-way deal):
1st: 2g00t4ubarn (Portugal) -- $5,122.62
2nd: ioclauxx1983 (Romania) -- $3,095.65
3rd: monsterFanya (Russia) -- $1,793.65
4th: ssswib85 (Norway) -- $1,115.76
Prize pool: $55,428.00
Places paid: 1,800
It's just Day 3 of MicroMillions III, meaning an entire week's worth of low-limit fun remains. Check the MicroMillions page for details.
Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.