Ifold2ndnuts wins, shaniac seventh in seven-way chopped Sunday Million

Sunday Million logo NEW.PNGNew Year's Day brings its own excitement. It's more than a holiday for many people, as the start of a new calendar year also signifies new beginnings for poker players with goals to be met, bankrolls to be built, and old bad beats to be wiped from recent memory.

Of course, January also brings the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, a chance to compete with some of the best poker players in the world and win millions of dollars. Most would agree that the PCA is kinda a big deal. But with a day or so to spare before competitors and fans board their flights to the Bahamas, the Sunday majors beckoned on January 1, the first Sunday of the year.

The Sunday Million, as usual, drew an impressive crowd, especially considering that some were still nursing a New Year's Eve hangover and/or relaxing on the holiday. The final numbers at the end of registration showed:

Players: 7,296
Prize pool: $1,459,200.00
Paid players: 1,080

The tournament played forward through the money bubble and on to the last few tables. After the nine-hour mark, three tables remained with PokerStars Team Online's Shane "shaniac" Schleger at the top of the leaderboard. He remained there as three tables became two, and as the final table bubble came into view.

Shane Schleger.jpg

At 15 minutes past the 10-hour mark, hand-for-hand play saw 10 players battling for the nine spots at the final table. Then a battle of the blinds ensued between the blinds at one table, and that resulted in Robertus2309 all-in with K♠5♠ against the 4♥4♦ of Pokerassss01. The board came 8♥2♥6♠T♠6♣, and Robertus2309 had to exit in tenth place with $8,025.00.

Outeiri and Team Online's shaniac fight for chip lead

The final table was set with only minutes to go in Level 37, with blinds at 125,000/250,000 and a 25,000 ante. Starting stacks were as follows:

Seat 1: Pokerassss01 (10,654,062 in chips)
Seat 2: tomdblade (4,600,000 in chips)
Seat 3: Ifold2ndnuts (7,675,960 in chips)
Seat 4: Tellef (5,158,236 in chips)
Seat 5: shaniac (11,013,037 in chips)
Seat 6: FMorbiducci (10,121,987 in chips)
Seat 7: NUMBJkE (4,854,470 in chips)
Seat 8: Outeiri (11,377,855 in chips)
Seat 9: VEENSTRA.R (7,504,393 in chips)

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Outeiri had just taken the chip lead before the final table, and that lead continued to extend in the first few rounds of play. With several big pots, one worth nearly 10 million chips, Outeiri soon climbed over 20 million and began to run away from the pack. Tomdblade did double through Outeiri, though, to push the latter back down a notch.

NUMBJkE then moved all-in from middle position with 7♣7♥, and VEENSTRA.R reraised all-in from the small blind to isolate, which worked. VEENSTRA.R showed A♠K♠ and flopped a straight on the J♥T♦Q♦Q♠A♦ board. That left NUMBJkE a little numb and out in ninth place with $11,308.80.

Tomdblade doubled again through Outeiri, cutting further into the latter's lead and taking the former out of the danger zone.

Pokerassss01 was nearing the 4 million point and moved all-in with A♣K♣, but FMorbiducci looked down at K♥K♦ in the big blind and called. The flop of Q♥J♦8♥ provided straight outs for Pokerassss01, but the 9♦ and 3♦ cards failed to deliver, leaving Pokerassss01 out in eighth place with $17,510.40.

FMobiducci was on a roll and took a pot worth nearly 10 million chips from Outeiri to climb into the lead, while Outeiri was relegated to the middle of the chip counts.

Seven-way deal

Play remained seven-handed for awhile, and in the middle of Level 40, they paused to look at chip-chop numbers. On most occasions, it is difficult to reach deals with fewer players, but nearly 30 minutes of discussion led to a deal for the final seven! With $20,000 set aside for the winner, the deal was as follows:

Seat 2: tomdblade (6,550,000 in chips) = $78,642.14
Seat 3: Ifold2ndnuts (9,255,960 in chips) = $96,104.61
Seat 4: Tellef (5,323,236 in chips) = $70,093.80
Seat 5: shaniac (6,662,537 in chips) = $84,000.00
Seat 6: FMorbiducci (21,264,881 in chips) = $147,602.19
Seat 8: Outeiri (13,489,524 in chips) = $110,425.21
Seat 9: VEENSTRA.R (10,413,862 in chips) = $103,576.93

It only took a few hands for short-stacked Tellef to push all-in, and the double-up was successful through tomdblade. Then, tomdblade doubled through shaniac.

A big hand soon developed in which tomdblade raised preflop from early position and Ifold2ndnuts reraised all-in. Shaniac called all-in with K♣K♦, tomdblade folded, and Ifold2ndnuts showed Q♥Q♣. The flop and turn were innocent enough with A♣7♠9♥4♥, but the Q♦ hit hard on the river to eliminate Team Online's Shane "shaniac" Schleger in seventh place with $84,000.

Two hands later, tomdblade moved all-in preflop from the small blind, and original raiser Outeiri called with A♣A♥, dominating the A♦9♦ of tomdblade. The board of 3♠T♥J♠Q♠7♦ changed nothing, and tomdblade was gone in sixth place with $78,642.14.

On the very next hand, Ifold2ndnuts raised from the button, and Tellef reraised all-in from the small blind. Ifold2ndnuts called with A♥Q♠, and Tellef showed 7♥7♦. The board came T♥T♦9♦4♦Q♥, and Ifold2ndnuts rivered the best two pair to eliminate Tellef in fifth place with $70,093.80.

VEENSTRA.R doubled twice through Outeiri, leaving the latter with a short stack of less than 10 million. Outeiri then moved all-in on the next hand with K♥2♣, and FMorbiducci called with Q♠9♦. The river of 5♣9♥7♠ gave FMorbiducci the pair of nines, and the 5♦ on the turn made that two pair. The 4♥ on the river officially ousted Outeiri in fourth place with $110,425.21.

Soon after, VEENSTRA.R and Ifold2ndnuts went into battle with a raise and reraise preflop. The J♥T♣5♣ prompted a bet from Ifold2ndnuts and all-in raise from VEENSTRA.R. Ifold2ndnuts called with Q♣T♠ for middle pair, and VEENSTRA.R showed K♦Q♠ for the straight draw. The 2♠ and 2♣ failed to make that straight, though, leaving VEENSTRA.R out in third place with $103,576.93.

Ifold2ndnuts vs. FMorbiducci

The final two competitors began their battle with these stacks:

Seat 3: Ifold2ndnuts (44,423,649 in chips)
Seat 6: FMorbiducci (28,536,351 in chips)

Play was contentious well past the 12-hour mark of the game, and FMorbiducci finally closed in on Ifold2ndnuts. With the subsequent winning of a 23-million chip pot, FMorbiducci took a lead in the match.

This hand, however, put Ifold2ndnuts firmly back in the chip lead:

RSS readers click through to see replay

FMorbiducci hung on for awhile but finally pushed all-in with T♦9♦, and Ifold2ndnuts called with A♦5♠. The board came 9♣4♣Q♠4♠A♥, and FMorbiducci had to accept second place and the $147,602.19.

IFold2ndnuts grabbed the first Sunday Million title of 2012 and $116,104.61 in prize money. Congrats!

Sunday Million Results for 01/01/12 (reflects deal):

1st place: Ifold2ndnuts ($116,104.61)*
2nd place: FMorbiducci ($147,602.19)*
3rd place: VEENSTRA.R ($103,576.93)*
4th place: Outeiri ($110,425.21)*
5th place: Tellef ($70,093.80)*
6th place: tomdblade ($78,642.14)*
7th place: Team Online's Shane "shaniac" Schleger ($84,000.00)*
8th place: Pokerassss01 ($17,510.40)
9th place: NUMBJkE ($11,308.80)

*Numbers based on a seven-way chop agreement

For more information on ways to register and qualify for upcoming Sunday Million tournaments, visit the Sunday Million page.

Jen Newell
@PokerStars in Sunday Million