Sunday Million: lapiksyk secures win, $161K after deal; WalmartCNXN bargains for $165K
After last Sunday's big anniversary event drew over 50,000 entries, the Sunday Million reverted to its regular form this week with a $1 million guarantee for the $215 buy-in no-limit hold'em tournament. A total of 6,717 took part this week, building a guarantee-besting prize pool of $1,343,400, and after almost 12 hours of play it was the Ukrainian lapiksyk outlasting them all to earn a handsome $161,000 first prize.
Thanks to a three-handed final table deal, lapiksyk wasn't the only one earning six figures in this one on Sunday, with Canada's WalmartCNXN in fact earning a bigger score of $165,000 and BOX_HEAD8 of Australia taking away $136,939.69. Here's the story of how those three survived that big field with lapiksyk ultimately winning all of the chips.
It took almost exactly five hours to play down to 990 players and the money, at which point Norway's LuckRoyal and skualoss of New Caledonia topped the counts as the only players with more than 300,000 chips.
A little under three hours later the field had shrunk to less than 100. LuckRoyal was still there with a below average stack while skualoss had been knocked out in 259th ($591.09). Meanwhile, Niktopdollar of Greece had moved into the chip lead, having amassed a stack of more than 2.5 million.
Niktopdollar would continue to maintain a big stack until the field was whittled down under 30, then not long after was knocked out in 21st ($3,143.55). Shortly after that they were down to 18, with tobikuenzli of Switzerland the new chip leader with more than 7 million.
pupon (18th), Nick "YerSoLucky" Newport (17th), and swonnny (16th) were the next players out, each earning $3,761.52 for their finishes.
2013 WCOOP winner Gavon "gavonater" O'Rourke (15th), Whitfield74 (14th), and devilmaylove (13th) followed them to the rail, picking up $5,642.28 apiece.
Then piojosoo (12th), SELOUAN1991 (11th), and JorgeAndino (10th) successively went out, taking away $7,523.04 each for not quite making the last nine.
With ThaSquirrel and WalmartCNXN the new chip leaders with stacks of more than 10 million, the final table was underway with the nine seats represented by nine different nations.
Seat 1: aiamolinbaby (United Kingdom) -- 4,954,379
Seat 2: WalmartCNXN (Canada) -- 10,019,001
Seat 3: emilida123 (Denmark) -- 5,666,884
Seat 4: ThaSquirrel (Malta) -- 10,091,723
Seat 5: Keep2p34Ch" (Morocco) -- 8,730,230
Seat 6: BOX_HEAD8 (Australia) -- 8,104,968
Seat 7: lapiksyk (Ukraine) -- 7,054,432
Seat 8: tobikuenzli (Switzerland) -- 9,485,417
Seat 9: mandraki (Peru) -- 3,062,966
On just the second hand of the final table, the blinds were 150,000/300,000 when Keep2p34Ch" raised to 600,500 from the hijack seat and BOX_HEAD8 called from a seat over. It folded to mandraki in the big blind who reraised to 2.1 million, and Keep2p34Ch" responded by shoving all in for nearly 8.7 million. That earned a fold from BOX_HEAD8, but mandraki called.
mandraki showed 9♥9♠ while Keep2p34Ch" had K♣K♦. The flop brought three queens and neither the turn nor river a nine, and mandraki was out in ninth.
Not long after that hand ThaSquirrel opened with a raise to 636,000 from early position and lapiksyk called from the cutoff. WalmartCNXN then made it 1.8 million to go from the big blind, then ThaSquirrel shoved all in for just over 7.6 million. lapiksyk folded, but WalmartCNXN called.
ThaSquirrel was the one with K♦K♥ this time, but WalmartCNXN had A♠A♥. Five cards later the aces were still best, WalmartCNXN had grabbed a big chip lead, and ThaSquirrel was suddenly out in eighth.
The blinds increased to 200,000/400,000, then a hand arose that saw lapiksyk min-raise to 800,000 from the button, tobikuenzli three-bet to 1.85 million from the small blind, then a short-stacked aiamolinbaby called all in with the almost 475,000 left after posting the big blind.
lapiksyk then folded, and aiamolinbaby turned over K♣6♥. Alas for aiamolinbaby, tobikuenzli had A♥A♣, and when the community cards didn't change things aiamolinbaby was out in seventh.
The final six pushed onward with WalmartCNXN having built a substantial lead with nearly 34 million chips -- just about half of what was in play -- when two more knockouts came in two consecutive hands.
The first saw WalmartCNXN opening for 1,075,000 (just over 2x) from early position, then emilida123 reraised all in for just over 4 million from a seat over and everyone folded back to WalmartCNXN who called. emilida123 had A♦Q♥ and the preflop edge versus WalmartCNXN's J♣T♥, but the flop came 3♦T♣T♦ to give the latter trips. Two sixes filled out the board, and emilida123 was done in sixth.
Then on the next hand Keep2p34Ch" open-pushed all in for just under 5.2 million (a little more than 10 BBs), then lapiksyk reraised all in for a little more and the others folded. Keep2p34Ch" had A♠2♠ while lapiksyk showed Q♦Q♣. The board brought no ace and just two spades, not enough for Keep2p34Ch" who finished in fifth.
They continued into the tournament's 12th hour, then with the blinds at 300,000/600,000 lapiksyk was open-raising to 1,248,000 from UTG, tobikuenzli reraising all in for about 5.6 million from the next position, and after a little bit of thought lapiksyk calling. lapiksyk had 5♠5♥ and tobikuenzli A♦Q♣. The board came 8♠J♠5♦, then 9♠, then Q♠, giving lapiksyk a set and then a flush, and tobikuenzli was eliminated in fourth.
The final three played on, then eventually stopped the tournament to discuss a possible deal with WalmartCNXN still well in front with about 34.7 million, lapiksyk next with about 17.1 million, and BOX_HEAD8 third with almost 15.3 million.
Both "chip chop" and ICM-based figures were produced, and after a bit of back-and-forthing the trio were able to agree to terms and divide up the prize pool, still leaving $20,000 on the table for which to play.
A few minutes after play resumed, WalmartCNXN opened for 1.29 million from the button, BOX_HEAD8 reraised to 4.2 million from the small blind, WalmartCNXN shoved, and BOX_HEAD8 called with the almost 5.65 million left behind.
BOX_HEAD8 had A♠T♣ while WalmartCNXN showed A♥K♣. The board rolled out 3♠9♦K♦5♣T♥, pairing both players' kickers but it wasn't enough for BOX_HEAD8 whose Sunday Million run was stopped in third.
That pot gave WalmartCNXN the edge to start heads-up play with just under 37.4 million to lapiksyk's almost 29.8 million.
The pair played five small hands, then came a huge pot that saw lapiksyk all in and at risk with A♥K♠ against WalmartCNXN's A♣Q♦. The board came jack-high and better hand held, and suddenly lapiksyk had a huge advantage with almost 59 million to WalmartCNXN's 8.3 million.
About a half-dozen hands later the stacks were close to the same when WalmartCNXN open-pushed from the button and lapiksyk called. Once again each player had been dealt an ace, and once again lapiksyk had the edge kicker-wise with A♣J♣ versus WalmartCNXN's A♥T♣. The community cards came 5♦A♦6♥9♠9♦ and it was over -- lapiksyk had won.
Congratulations to lapiksyk for winning this week's Sunday Million, and kudos as well to WalmartCNXN and BOX_HEAD8 who each also secured big six-figure paydays thanks to the three-handed deal.
3/22/15 Sunday Million ($215 No-Limit Hold'em) results
Prize pool: $1,343,400.00
Places paid: 990
1. lapiksyk (Ukraine) -- $161,000.00*
2. WalmartCNXN (Canada) -- $165,000.00*
3. BOX_HEAD8 (Australia) -- $136,939.69*
4. tobikuenzli (Switzerland) -- $73,887.00
5. Keep2p34Ch" (Morocco) -- $56,422.80
6. emilida123 (Denmark) -- $42,988.80
7. aiamolinbaby (United Kingdom) -- $29,554.80
8. ThaSquirrel (Malta) -- $16,120.80
9. mandraki (Peru) -- $10,411.35
*= reflects the results of a three-way deal that left $20,000 in play for the winner
Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.