It has been a big weekend for poker. In addition to the regular and stellar lineup of online poker tournaments offered on PokerStars, the live tournament scene is heating up as the European Poker Tour hit Deauville for its annual French stop. Moreover, the number of tournaments on that schedule was amplified because the EPT joined with the France Poker Series, which attracted an impressive number of poker players from around the world. Keep up with the action here all week.
Meanwhile, the Sunday Million still stood as one of the most popular of the Sunday majors. Many players qualified for the $215 buy-in NLHE tournament through satellites in the days and hours before the tournament, all hoping to get a piece of the $1 million guarantee.
And as usual, the outstanding player turnout catapulted the prize pool well beyond the guarantee. The final numbers were:
Prize pool: $1,516,800
Paid players: 1,080
Team PokerStars was well-represented in the Sunday Million this week. As the tournament drew closer to the money, only a few remained in action, and Team Online's Mickey "mement_mori" Petersen was one of the unfortunate bubble players; he exited in 1082nd place. A bit later, Team Pro Marcel Luske saw his run come to an end when he departed in 622nd place. The last player with a PokerStars logo was Team Online's Naoya "nkeyno" Kihara, who made it to 315th place.
It was near the 10-hour mark that the tournament was reduced to only two tables, and play moved forward with the final table in sight. It took nearly an hour to get there, though. Hand-for-hand play went on for a while after the 11th place elimination of justdoing88, and then LoredanKK doubled through KrazyKiddo. The latter was left with a stack of about 1.7 million chips and pushed them all-in on the next hand with K♦Q♣. Henne205 called with A♥5♥, and the board of 5♦9♥9♦Q♥J♥ brought the flush. KrazyKiddo was out in tenth place with $8,342.40.
Levan-geo navigates into initial lead
The final minutes of Level 38 brought about the final table, with blinds of 150,000/300,000 and a 30,000 ante, along with these players and their accompanying stacks:
Seat 1: ohulahan1 (7,589,416 in chips)
Seat 2: henne205 (10,985,329 in chips)
Seat 3: LoredanKK (6,538,640 in chips)
Seat 4: levan-geo (12,210,916 in chips)
Seat 5: Lukie99 (9,138,323 in chips)
Seat 6: Kaymanys (5,685,522 in chips)
Seat 7: gypsymagi820 (1,994,068 in chips)
Seat 8: petesgotaces (10,629,661 in chips)
Seat 9: ch0ppy (11,068,125 in chips)
Action was fast, as gypsymagi820 doubled through ohulahan1 on the second hand of the table, and gypsymagi820 doubled again a few hands later through Kaymanys.
With less than 200K chips, Kaymanys pushed all-in from the small blind on the next hand with 8♠4♣, and original UTG raiser petesgotaces had J♣J♦ with which to call. The jacks held up to the 2♥6♣6♦Q♥T♥ board, and Kaymanys exited in ninth place with $11,755.20.
And then, the players slowed down. More than 30 minutes passed before another all-in and call, which resulted in LoredanKK doubling through ohulahan1. Meanwhile, levan-geo lost a great deal of ground and sunk to last place on the leaderboard, while petesgotaces and Lukie99 held up the top two spots with gypsymagi820 in a close third.
Legan-geo decided to push with approximately 2.5 million chips holding A♠2♣ from middle position, and petesgotaces called from the small blind with 5♠5♦. The flop of T♥7♥2♦ gave levan-geo the pair of deuces, but nothing helped further on the Q♦ turn or 3♥ river. Levan-geo left in eighth place with $18,201.60.
This big double for ohulahan1 through LoredanKK put the former in contention for the lead:
LoredanKK was left with less than 500K chips and pushed from the next hand in the small blind. Original raiser ohulahan1 showed with A♠8♥, and LoredanKK turned over 5♠4♥. The board came J♣8♠3♥A♦6♦ and eliminated LoredanKK in seventh place, which was worth $32,611.20.
Gypsymagi820 took a pot worth nearly 14 million chips from petesgotaces to jump into the lead, but a bit later, petesgotaces took a 9.3 million-chip pot from gypsymagi820 to regain the lead. Ch0ppy then doubled through gypsymagi820 to put the latter on a short stack.
But it was ohulahan1 who was the next player to move all-in. It happened after an initial raise from petesgotaces, and ohulahan1 responded by pushing for more than 9.8 million. Petesgotaces called with 9♥9♦, and the race was on with ohulahan1's A♠K♦. The flop of 7♥9♣9♠ was all they needed to see as petesgotaces picked up quads, and the 7♦ turn and A♦ river made it official. Ohulahan1 departed in sixth place with $47,020.80.
Gypsymagi820 chipped up a bit, and when Lukie99 moved all-in, gypsymagi820 called and covered with Q♥Q♦. Lukie99 was at risk with 7♦7♣, and nothing came on the board of 2♠8♣8♥4♣5♣ to change the outcome. Lukie99 finished the tournament in fifth place with $62,188.80.
Ch0ppy, better known to his parents as Matt Kay and familiar to poker fans for his wins in things like the Turbo Takedown, was on a roll. He became aggressive and took pot after pot to climb into the lead, one that put him at 34,462,250 chips by the 12.5-hour break, while no one else exceeded 18 million chips.
Henne205 doubled through petesgotaces, but gypsymagi820 did the same through henne205 just three hands later. Two hands after that, when petesgotaces raised all-in, henne205 called all-in for little more than 7 million chips with A♠3♦. Petesgotaces showed 9♠9♥, and that pair held up to the K♦3♥8♠4♣T♥ board. Henne205 took fourth place in the tournament for $80,390.40.
Petesgotaces started to gain ground and took a pot worth nearly 20 million chips from ch0ppy, but gypsymagi820 surged way ahead with this double through petesgotaces:
Petesgotaces did double back through gypsymagi820 to stay alive, but the latter remained at the top of the leaderboard. At the point that the final table had been running for two hours, gypsymag820 had more than 30 million chips, petesgotaces had more than 27 million, and ch0ppy had fallen to 17.5 million. But soon after, ch0ppy doubled through petesgotaces to return to first place. Petesgotaces doubled through gypsymagi820 to take that lead away, though, and gypsymagi820 doubled through ch0ppy to put the latter on the shortest stack of the three.
With blinds at 850,000/1,700,000 and a 170,000 ante, we can say this stage of the tournament was a bit of a roller coaster.
Ch0ppy had little more than 14 million chips when he pushed all-in with A♥7♥, and gypsymagi820 called with K♥J♣. Another double-up seemed in order as the flop came 6♦5♣6♥ and the turn 5♠. But the K♦ hit on the river to give gypsymagi820 the best two pair, and Matt "ch0ppy" Kay had to accept third place and the $121,344.00 that went with it.
Nearly even heads-up start
The last two players in the tournament started with these chip counts:
Seat 7: gypsymagi820 (40,107,020 in chips)
Seat 8: petesgotaces (35,732,980 in chips)
Gypsymagi820 jumped out to even more of a lead as the match got underway, but then petesgotaces doubled through for more than 49 million chips.
It didn't take long for gypsymagi820 to push all-in for less than 20 million chips, and petesgotaces called with A♠Q♥. Gypsymagi820 was at a disadvantage with A♦J♦, especially after the flop came 9♠Q♠Q♦. The 9♦ on the turn made it interesting, but the 3♥ on the river closed it out. Gypsymagi820 took second place and $167,409.21.
Petesgotaces claimed Sunday Million victory and $227,524.92 in cash. Congrats!
Sunday Million Results for 02/03/13:
Paid players: 1,080
1st place: petesgotaces (Australia) - $227,524.92
2nd place: gypsymagi820 (Finland) - $167,409.21
3rd place: ch0ppy (Canada) - $121,344.00
4th place: henne205 (Germany) - $80,390.40
5th place: Lukie99 (Germany) - $62,188.80
6th place: ohulahan1 (Germany) - $47,020.80
7th place: LoredanKK (Romania) - $32,611.20
8th place: levan-geo (Latvia) - $18,201.60
9th place: Kaymanys (Denmark) - $11,755.20
For more information on ways to register and qualify for upcoming Sunday Million tournaments, visit the Sunday Million page.
Jennifer Newell is a PokerStars freelance contributor.