2010 PCA High Roller: Final table player profiles
After a titanic nine-handed struggle, lasting more than three hours, we eventually have our final eight to contest the 2010 PCA High Roller final table.
There are professional players from the online and live environments, plus High Rollers from the business world. It's a fascinating mix and will be an intriguing table.
Here are your contenders:
Seat 1: Adolfo Vaeza, 57, Montevideo, Uruguay - 790,000 chips
While most of the finalists spend all year traveling the poker circuit and/or grinding online, Adolfo Vaeza - who runs a construction company - has only ever traveled to three events. The twist is that he's made the final every time. He finished fourth in the High Roller event at the EPT stop in London last year, winning £141,000, and he came fifth in the €5,000 no limit hold 'em side event at the EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo last season. That was worth €51,000. Now the 57-year-old father-of-four has done it again.
Seat 2: William Reynolds, 21, Sioux City, Iowa - 482,000 chips
William Reynolds has been playing poker since he was 16 and by the time he was 18 thought he might well be able to make a living at it. He decided to defer college for four months and see how poker worked out; after four months, he decided to take a year off; after a year, he decided to take off another year. He came to international attention when he came fourth at the EPT San Remo main event last season, winning €377,000. He also recently cashed in 13th place at the LAPT event in Playa Conchal, Costa Rica. Reynolds thrives online and has enjoyed good results - he won an event in 2007 for $205,000, came second in a $1,000 event on PokerStars in November in 2008 for $60,000 and fourth in the 2009 $5,000 SCOOP pot limit Omaha event for $87,000. He said: "This is a really prestigious event and it's awesome to be part of a field where you know everyone is very talented."
Seat 3: Michiel 'utreg' Brummelhuis, 26, Amsterdam, Netherlands - 394,000 chips
Michiel Brummelhuis started playing small limit hold 'em games online and grinded his way up to playing poker professionally. His success in cash games translated into tournament poker and he is now one of the biggest winners in Holland. His biggest online cash was $144,000 for winning the $1,000 WCOOP second chance tournament on PokerStars and $101,000 in another big Sunday tournament. He has also been successful in live events: his best result so far was winning the €1,000 freezeout at the Master Classics of Poker, earning €68,310. Brummelhuis also made the final of the 2009 WSOP $10,000 limit hold 'em event, finishing in seventh place.
Seat 4: Dimitry Stelmak, 24, Moscow, Russia - 150,000 chips
Dimitry Stelmak is a full time poker professional from Moscow who come to the PCA with a group of friends from Russia. Before playing poker, he was studying mathematics and science at the University of Moscow. His favorite poker game is pot limit Omaha high. He started playing five years ago online and four years ago went to his first live tournament. His best live result so far was last year when he chopped a $3,000 event at the Bellagio Cup, winning $104,095. He has also won a side event on the Russian Poker Tour, a $2,000 event with a 100 players. Last September he cashed at EPT Barcelona, coming 38th for €20,000. He also came 14th in a €2,000 side event.
Seat 5: Will "molswi47" Molson, 22, Montreal - 669,000 chips
Will Molson, a 22-year-old student from Montreal, clearly enjoys high rolling in the Bahamas. Last year, he finished second to Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier in this same $25,000 buy in event, earning $228,000. Since then, Molson has cashed at EPT London while taking a year out from college to travel and play poker. Molson goes into the final with 669,000 chips, a remarkable turnaround since the end of day two, when he had the fewest (60,000) of the remaining 24 players. He plays at PokerStars under the moniker "molswi47" and is a regular around the high stakes cash tables.
Seat 6: Tobias 'pokernoob999' Reinkemeier, 22, Germany - 1,072,000 chips
Tobias Reinkemeier has been having a highly successful time here at the PCA, where he has already recorded his biggest live cash to date ($52,000) for 46th place in the Main Event. Reinkemeier is widely considered in the German poker community to be one the country's best tournament players. He has played numerous EPT events and cashed in all three he has played this season, including 11th place at EPT London for £28,000. He has total live tournament winnings of $360,000. He also earned $168,750 for winning a $1,500 SCOOP heads-up event this year. Originally from Cuxhaven in Germany, Reinkemeier moved to Malta 18 months ago.
Seat 7: Lisa Hamilton, 38, Las Vegas, USA - 440,000 chips
Well-known as a high stakes live cash game player, Lisa Hamilton had never played a major live tournament until the World Series last year. However her decision to take part in the $1,000 ladies event paid off in emphatic fashion when she bested the 1,060-strong field to take the first place prize of $195,390. Despite this success, all her decisions to play live events still seem to be made on a whim - she only came to the PCA at the insistence of her good friend, the Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier. Originally from Honolulu in Hawaii, Hamilton moved to Las Vegas in 2005. As well as playing poker, Hamilton also spends time helping out with her family's clothing retail business.
Seat 8: Matt "ADZ124" Marafioti, 21, Toronto, Canada - 236,000 chips
Matt Marafioti is another player who has already made the money at this year's PCA - finishing 26th in the $1,500 no limit hold 'em freezeout on Sunday for $3,570. That is peanuts compared with the guaranteed $66,885 he'll win for making the final of the High Roller event. Although best known as a high stakes online cash game pro, Marafioti is now getting great results in live events and has cashed in the most recent four out of five that he's played. Last summer, he came 12th, winning $172,120, in the $40,000 anniversary event at the World Series and in July was runner-up to Christian Harder at the $5,000 Bellagio Cup in Las Vegas, winning $165,985. His total live tournament earnings now top $600,000. Marafioti is a SuperNova Elite on PokerStars and had so many Frequent Player Points he was recently able to trade them in for an Aston Martin. He almost got blinded out at the start of the High Roller event as he was still playing in the $5,000 event on the other side of the Imperial Ballroom.