ANZPT Auckland: Early Final Table Shenanigans
Two players down! The early stage of the final table here at ANZPT Auckland has been moving at a rapid pace, with two players already finding the rail. Not much of note had happened before the first elimination of the day. The button had travelled less than once around the table before Patrick Healy would find the cards he wanted to commit all his chips with.
It all started when Pravin Harji opened the pot to 52,000 from middle position. With blinds at 6,000-12,000 that seemed a little high for Graeme Putt, who quipped, "I think that's too many chips." The action then folded around to Healy in the big blind and he would move all in. It was 209,000 in total for Harji to make the call and it wouldn't take him long to do just that.
When Healy turned over his 7♣7♥, he got out of his seat and watched Harji's J♣J♥ fall on to the felt. Healy was needing some help, but the 9♠4♠T♠Q♦Q♥ board wasn't what he was looking for and he was sent home in 9th place, collecting NZ$10,350.
With Healy out the door, the eight remaining players kept grinding along, until Graeme "KiwiG" Putt decided it was his time to get all the chips in the middle. However, before he did that, we witnessed something at the final table we have never ever seen before. Ever.
Looking at the above image might make readers think, "Wow, this final table has really bonded over the last few days." However, we can tell you that Monica Eastick and Graeme Putt are friends from way back when, with Eastick even telling us that it was Putt who taught her how to play poker. Maybe Putt should have taught Eastick to not eliminate him.
The next bust-out of the day started when Eastick opened the pot to 35,000 from middle position. Putt, on Eastick's direct left, then moved all in for 126,000. The rest of the table was out of the way and Eastick made the call, albeit, almost apologetically. Eastick's 8♠8♥ was coming up against Putt's A♣K♦ and when the 5♣7♥6♣4♥4♣ board was spread along the felt, Eastick had made a straight and was sending Putt home in 8th place.
Eastick gave her friend a farewell hug and made sure the room knew that Putt had taught her everything she knows. With that, "KiwiG" collects a nice little NZ$13,455, adding to his poker resume that spans several decades of results.
And then there were seven! Be sure to check out Lynn Gilmartin's interview with "KiwiG" below.