Sunday Million: Faranius goes from worst to first, banks $150k

When this final table began, Faranius was one of five short stacks just hoping to move a few rungs up the money ladder. Less than two hours later, he was a Sunday Million champion. However, thanks to a three-way deal, it was actually third-place finisher luznypapa who claimed the lion's share of the prize pool. This week's Sunday Million final table was a wild one, as chip leaders fell, short stacks rose, and a 60 million-chip coin flip decided it all.

6,613 players came out for this week's Sunday Million, the prize pool topping out at $1,322,600. 990 players earned a share of it with first place set to take home $201,171.60. Seven Red Spades were in the field including Joe Cada, Caio Pessagno, Joao Nunes, Henrique Pinho, Bryan Huange, and Lex Veldhuis. They all finished out of the money, but Greece's Stavros "IDOLLS" Kalfas made a deep run, finishing in 96th place.

Blinds were up to 100,000/200,000 on the final table bubble. Darks89 was one of the larger stacks with 8.8 million and opened for 430,000 from UTG. Travoltanc three-bet to 1 million from the big blind and Darks89 moved all-in. Travoltanc called and turned up J♣J♦, having him covered by about 2.5 million. Darks89 was racing for his tournament life with A♦Q♦, but his hopes were crushed by the K♣J♥9♦ flop. Travoltanc flopped middle set and turned jacks full of nines, taking the chip lead with over 20 million as Darks89 hit the rail in tenth place.


Final table chip counts

Seat 1: travoltanc (20,360,411 in chips)
Seat 2: luznypapa (8,568,000 in chips)
Seat 3: przem77 (5,917,117 in chips)
Seat 4: avivgigi (12,470,745 in chips)
Seat 5: bagoch (4,456,351 in chips)
Seat 6: grasdal89 (3,554,136 in chips)
Seat 7: Tarzancev (3,698,160 in chips)
Seat 8: Faranius (4,054,672 in chips)
Seat 9: chrispker23 (3,050,408 in chips)

Greased lightning

By virtue of that 17 million coinflip, travoltanc arrived at the final table as the dominating chip leader, his closest competition avivigigi with 12.5 miilion. Of the five players with stacks between 3 and 4.5 million, bagoch was the first to put his tournament life at risk. Bagoch opened for a min-raise to 500,000 and travoltanc called on the button. Bagoch check-raised all-in on the A♦9♦9♣ flop and travoltanc called, his A♠2♠ having outflopped bagoch's T♦T♣. Bagoch couldn't pull off a miracle on the turn or river and exited in ninth place ($10,250).

Bagoch may have run afoul of the deck after his shove, but przem77 was far more successful, doubling to 9.6 million when his A♦K♣ rivered a wheel against avivgigi's pocket deuces. However, those chips didn't stay in his stack for long. A few hands later przem77 three-bet to 2 million from the big blind and travoltanc called. Both players checked the T♠9♥2♠ flop, but przem77 made it another 2 million to go when the 8♣ hit the turn. Travoltanc called. The river was the T♣ and prezem77 checked. Travoltanc bet 11.75 million and przem77 surrendered the 8.3 million pot.

Tarzancev, chrispker23 eliminated

Onetime chip leader avivgigi was down to 7.7 million when he picked up 6♥6♠. Luznypapa opened for a min-raise to 500,000 and avivgigi flat-called on the button before Tarzancev moved all-in for 2.96 million from the big blind. Luznypapa folded and avivgigi called. Tarzancev's A♠K♣ did not improve on the eight-high board and departed in eighth place ($15,871.20).

Two hands later, luznypapa opened for 500,000 from UTG and chrispker23 moved all-in for his last 2.3 million from the small blind. Travoltanc called from the big blind and luznypapa called as well. Travoltanc check-folded to luznypapas 4.43 million shove on the K♠J♣2♥ flop and luznypapa turned up A♣K♦ for top pair. Chrispker23's T♦T♣ was in dire shape. Luznypapa made trips on the turn and chrispker23 was out in seventh place, earning $29,097.20.

przem77 doubles, travoltanc still leads

Meanwhile, przem77 was still hanging on with 4.4 million. The action folded to him in the small blind and he open-shoved with A♣J♠, but przem77 called with 6♦6♠ in the big blind. Przem77's sixes held and he doubled to 8.9 million.

Three hands later, przem77 picked up pocket tens and opened for 690,000. Travoltanc three-bet to 1.8 million from the big blind and przem77 shoved for 8.8 million. Travoltanc called, revealing... 6♦7♥. Przem77 flopped a set and turned tens full, the board running out K♥T♣2♠K♣4♥ to give him a massive double-up to 18 million. Travoltanc retained the chip lead with 23.5 million.

Three hands after that, grasdal89 open-shoved for 2.2 million from UTG and luznypapa called on the button. Luznypapa's pocket sixes held up against A♥8♣, eliminating grasdal89 in sixth place ($42,323.20). Without so much as a stop for breath, the action roared on in the next deal as przem77 opened for 690,000 and Faranius shoved for 3.56 million. Przem77 called and opened up K♣J♠ while Faranius showed A♠T♠. Faranius's ace-high held and he doubled to 7.5 million.

Faranius doubles through travoltanc

Down to only 3.7 million with the blinds up to 150,000/300,000, avivgigi open-shoved with A♦9♣ and travoltanc looked him up with pocket fours. Travoltanc flopped a set, the board running out 7♠6♦4♠5♠9♥ to send avivgigi to the rail in fifth place ($55,549.20).

Travoltanc rebounded to 32 million in chips, but gave up a good chunk of it three hands later when Faranius beat him in a 13.7 million kicker war:

luznypapa tramples travoltanc

Following that hand, travoltanc held 21.7 million in chips, przem77 was second with 18 million, Faranius held 13.7 million and luznypapa was the short stack with 12.6 million. However, luznypapa wouldn't wear that crown for long. Four hands later, luznypapa moved all-in on a Q♣4♠3♣ flop and travoltanc called. Luznypapa's 5♣5♠ hung on against travoltanc's unimproved A♠K♥ and he doubled to 25.8 million.

Travoltanc was left with 7 million and he open-shoved with A♠T♦ on the next deal. Luznypapa reshoved with A♦Q♥ and his dominating hand held up on the A♣8♠2♣K♠A♥ board. Once the runaway chip leader, travoltanc was suddently out in fourth place, earning $72,743.00.

Three-way chop

Immediately after travoltanc's elimination, the final three agreed to pause the action and discuss a potential deal. Here's a look at how they stacked up at the time:

luznypapa - 33,869,040
przem77 - 19,472,272
Faranius - 12,788,688

The players were presented with chip count chop and ICM numbers and quickly agreed to a deal that split the difference. With $20,000 still left to play for, cards went back in the air.

luznypapa takes third

After a long stretch of small pots where luznypapa whittle Faranius down to less than 5 million, Faranius doubled back up when his A♦K♥ made the nut flush against przem77's A♥8♥. Four hands later, Faranius doubled again, this time at luznypapa's expense. All-in preflop, Faranius's A♠7♠ flopped top pair and turned aces up vs. luznypapa's K♠T♠, good for a 20.4 million pot.

Down to 12.8 million, przem77 picked up J♦J♠ and five-bet shoved pre flop. Faranius called with T♦T♠, but the jacks held, doubling przem77 to 26 million. Faranius fell to 12.2 million but doubled through luznypapa a short time later when T♣T♦ won a race against A♠Q♥. Faranius moved up to 30 million in chips and luznypapa fell to 15 million.

A few minutes later, luznypapa opened for a min-raise to 1 million from UTG. Przem77 called and they saw a K♣J♠7♠ flop. Przem77 check-raised to 2.5 million and luznypapa called. When the 9♥ came on the turn, przem77 led out for 3 million. Luznypapa shoved for 14.2 million and przem77 called, revealing Q♠T♦ for the nut straight. Luznypapa was drawing dead with K♠2♠ and przem77 raked in the 31 million pot, leaving luznypapa on only five big blinds.

The last of luznypapa's chips went in the middle five hands later. Both przem77 and Faranius called and checked the 6♦5♥4♠ flop. Przem77 led out for 1.8 million when the 8♠ hit the turn and Faranius folded. Przem77's 9♦5♠ made two pair on the river, the 8♣ falling to eliminate luznypapa in third place. However, thanks to the three-way deal, luznypapa took home the largest share of the prize pool at $163,772.10.

Heads-up chip counts

Seat 3: przem77 (35,645,600 in chips)
Seat 8: Faranius (30,484,400 in chips)

Przem77 chipped up to 41 million before Faranius won a 10 million pot on the river to reset the chip counts to where they were when heads-up play began. They traded the chip lead several times before one massive pot decided it all. All the money went in before the flop, Faranius making the final raise, a five-bet shove with pocket jacks. Przem77 called with A♣Q♥ and although he flopped a queen, a jack came with it to make Faranius a set:

Congratulations to Faranius on winning his first Sunday Million title! He banked $150,000 for the win, while runner-up prezem77 earned $142,000.

PokerStars Sunday Million results for 7/14/2013

Players: 6,613
Prizepool: $1,322,600.00
Places paid: 990

1. Faranius (Lithuania) $150,000.00*
2. przem77 (Poland) $142,000.00*
3. luznypapa (Poland) $163,772.10*
4. travoltanc (Portugal) $72,743.00
5. avivgigi (Israel) $55,549.20
6. grasdal89 (Norway) $42,323.20
7. chrispker23 (United Kingdom) $29,097.20
8. Tarzancev (Russia) $15,871.20
9. bagoch (Lithuania) $10,250.15

*= reflects the results of a three-way deal that left $20,000 in play for the winner

Kristin Bihr is a freelance contributor to the PokerStars Blog.

Kristin Bihr
@PokerStars in Sunday Million