ANZPT Melbourne Day 3: Level 26 (blinds 25,000-50,000, ante 5,000)
Congratulations to Lee Nelson, winner of the ANZPT Melbourne Main Event!
It was a final table that ebbed and flowed, but in the end the last man standing was Australian Hall of Famer Lee "Final Table" Nelson.
Nelson used all of his experience, skill and instinct to overcome a field of 310 players and a tough final table to add yet another trophy to the cabinet.
Nelson was able to rebound off the aggression of his younger counterparts and, with a big stack in hand, Nelson pushed at the right times to pull off a memorable victory. It seemed like it was always Nelson's tournament to win, and when he found himself racing in the final hand, you could sense that the heart-filled flop was on its way.
Nelson collects $156,550 and writes another chapter in one of the most decorated poker careers in this region. Congratulations Lee!
That concludes our live coverage from the Crown Poker Room, but we'll be back with a complete wrap of the day's action for you later this evening.
10:05pm: Nick Georgoulas eliminated in 2nd place, Lee Nelson wins!
It seemed that these two were here for a good time, not a long time and that's just the way we like our heads-up battles!
There were several big bets and overbet shoves as Lee Nelson reclaimed the chip lead before the final hand of the tournament went down. Nick Georgoulas opened to 150,000 before Nelson moved all in. Georgoulas had 2.1 million in total but he didn't hesitate as he snap-called and the title was once again on the line!
The race was on but it was all but over when the flop landed 8♥A♥K♥ to give Nelson the nut flush! The two were already shaking hands (running fours anyone?) before the 9♥ turn and 2♠ river completed the board to confirm Lee Nelson as the PokerStars.net ANZPT Melbourne champion!
We should also congratulate Nick Georgoulas who came into today as one of our short stacks. He patiently picked his spots and navigated his way through this final table to finish in 2nd place for $99,200 in prize money.
9:50pm: Georgoulas doubles and takes the lead!
After Nick Georgoulas shoved on one of the first hand of heads up play, Lee Nelson was pretty quick to call the second time around. After opening to 100,000 on the button, Nelson called the all-in bet of around 1.6 million and the cards were on their backs!
Nelson would need to find a three-outer to win the title but it wasn't to be as the board ran out 5♣3♠8♦3♣7♥. Georgoulas doubles to 3.2 million to take the chip lead against Nelson's 2.8 million.
9:45pm: Heads-up chip counts
Lee Nelson has a tidy chip advantage over Nick Georgoulas entering heads-up play.
Nelson: 4.675 million
Georgoulas: 1.345 million
The cards are now back in the air with the ANZPT Melbourne trophy on the line!
9:40pm: Danny Chevalier eliminated in 3rd place
We're now heads up for the title following the elimination of Danny Chevalier in 3rd place as the unstoppable run of Lee Nelson continues.
Nelson opened the button to 100,000 before Chevalier moved all in for 825,000 from the big blind. Nelson took a moment of thought and then made the call.
The board ran out T♣A♣8♣J♠T♠ to improve Nelson to a full house to take it down. Chevalier collects $55,180 for his efforts here in Melbourne and picks up enough points to move into second in the ANZ Player of the Year race.
The clock has been paused while the players setup for heads-up play.
9:25pm: Karan Punjabi eliminated in 4th place
It didn't take long following the dinner break for us to reduce the field by one as Karan Punjabi's tournament has come to an end in 4th place.
Lee Nelson opened the button to 100,000 before Punjabi moved all in for a total of 430,000. Nelson made the call.
The board ran out 6♣Q♠8♦7♣4♠ to leave Nelson's pair in front to collect yet another scalp as Punjabi picks up a very nice $43,090 in prize money.
9:15pm: Play resumes
The players are back following the dinner break and the cards are once again in the air!