Ami Barer crowned 2014 Aussie Millions champion!
The 2014 Aussie Millions Poker Championship has been run and won with 22-year old Canadian Ami Barer defeating Sorel Mizzi to take the title and AU$1.6 million in prize money.
In Barer's words, the heads-up contest was "short and sweet".
After exchanging a few pots back and forth, the final hand would see Barer open the button before Sorel Mizzi announced himself all in. That would be a fatal mistake as Barer instantly called and tabled A♥A♠. Mizzi opened Q♦8♦ and would need diamonds, straightening cards or a few ladies or snowmen to extend the match any further.
The flop of 2♣K♠2♥ brought none of those things. Mizzi was a long way from that board and it was all over when the 3♥ landed on the turn. To place an exclamation point on the victory, the A♦ was the river card as Ami Barer officially became the 2014 Aussie Millions champion!
Earlier in the day, the final seven would take their seats in Studio 3 of the Crown Entertainment Complex with dreams of Aussie Millions fame and fortune.
No one wanted to be the first to go, with several hours of play and multiple double ups unfolding before an elimination occurred.
It would be overnight short stack Scott Seiver who would be first to fall. Seiver put up a great fight, but eventually lost a coin flip with pocket eights against Darren Rabinowitz's ace-ten to be the first sent to the cashier. His AU$170,000 prize will almost cover his buy-in into the LK Boutique $250,000 Challenge on Sunday should he choose to run it up!
The great Australian hope was Andrew Phaedonos. It was a brave run by the amateur player of the final table, but when he overplayed Q♣J♣, Sorel Mizzi was waiting to strike with his pocket kings. Still, AU$250,000 is not a bad week on the Crown Poker tables for Phaedonos.
Vincent Rubianes was next to fall. The American just couldn't get much happening on this final table, and commented in his post-game interview that he was pretty card dead. He decided to make a stand with K♣J♣ but his timing was unfortunate as Darren Rabinowitz held the pocket rockets. There was no help on board for Rubianes as he was out in fifth.
The four-handed battle was quite intense and it wouldn't be until the early hours of the morning before we lost two players in a matter of moments.
Darren Rabinowitz pushed pocket fives into Ami Barer's pocket nines to depart in fourth place before the most dramatic hand of the final table would end the run of Jake Balsiger and the hopes of an American breaking their duck at the Aussie Millions.
Balsiger and Barer engaged in a preflop raising war that would see Barer push with A♦T♥ but Balsiger snapped it off with pocket kings only to watch in horror as the board ran out 9♣8♥7♣5♣6♥. Barer made a ten-high straight to see Balsiger out in third place and leave us with an all Canadian heads-up battle.
That battle was over quickly, which is just the way we like it at 4:30am, as Sorel Mizzi ran smack into Ami Barer's aces to bring the championship to an end. Mizzi became the first player to reach two Aussie Millions Main Event final tables, and he was able to top his third place finish in 2010, but once again he misses out on that elusive title.
The Aussie Millions title heads to Ami Barer who announces himself on the international poker stage with a breakthrough win. This victory, combined with a formidable online record under the handle "UhhMee", certainly makes him a player to watch for in future. Congratulations Ami!
Aussie Millions Main Event Final Table Results
1st Ami Barer - AU$1,600,000
2nd Sorel Mizzi - AU$1,000,000
3rd Jake Balsiger - AU$650,000
4th Darren Rabinowitz - AU$450,000
5th Vincent Rubaines - AU$335,000
6th Andrew Phaedonos - AU$250,000
7th Scott Seiver - AU$170,000
That wraps up our coverage from the 2014 Aussie Millions Poker Championship. The partnership between the APPT and the Aussie Millions has undoubtedly been a success, and now with a full twelve months to prepare, we can't wait to see what's in store for the 2015 Aussie Millions.
Many thanks to Joel Williams, Jim Preston, Natasha Stipanov and all of the Crown Poker team for their hospitality towards players, fans and media throughout the Main Event week and the full twenty days of the championships. It's always a pleasure to be a part of any event at Crown, the home of poker in Australia.
The next major event on the Asia Pacific Poker Tour is the APPT Seoul event from April 3rd to 6th, while the next local event in Australia is the ANZPT Perth event from February 26th to March 2nd. You can qualify for both of these events online right now at PokerStars.
Thanks for following at home and burning the midnight oil throughout our coverage. We look forward to seeing you at the next event! Until then, so long from Melbourne!
Heath "TassieDevil" Chick is a Freelance Contributor for the PokerStars Blog.