What a wild week-and-a-half! The fifth installment of PokerStars’ popular MicroMillions series has come to a conclusion, once again offering players 100 different opportunities to make a lot out of a little via small buy-in tourneys promising big rewards for the winners. The $22 buy-in Main Event (Event #98) provided the most dramatic example of such on Sunday, with stygher of Lithuania managing to top an enormous field to turn that small investment into a $160,726.14 first prize!
Small buy-in, big field… enormous prizes
The MicroMillions 5 Main Event needed to attract at least 50,000 entrants to meet its $1 million guarantee. As the first hands were dealt on Sunday afternoon, the total number registered was pushing toward 32,000, though in less than an hour and 15 minutes enough had late registered for the field to reach 50,000.
There was still another hour and 45 minutes left for players to join in, however, and thus did that total entrants figure continue to increase steadily during that period. Finally at the three-hour mark late registration closed, with the total settling at 59,213 players.
That big group created a prize pool of $1,184,260, to be divided ultimately by the top 7,920 finishers. A min-cash was worth $47.37, while anyone making the final two tables would be guaranteed four-figure paydays. Meanwhile everyone still in the event at that point continued to entertain thoughts of capturing the eye-popping $160,726.14 reward scheduled to go to the winner (thus exceeding the event’s promise for at least $150K to go to the champ).
That was one enormous carrot dangling out there to motivate everyone, a prize worth a little more than 7,305 times the $22 players had parted with to play!
Bubble bursts, Team PokerStars Pros cash
It took a little over five hours to play down to 7,920 players and for the cash bubble to burst. By then divan lol had moved into first position in the counts with nearly 500,000, at the time more than six-and-a-half times the average.
It would take two hours more for the field to be cut down to 1,000 players, with a couple of Team PokerStars Pros among those cashing in the interim.
First it was Richard Toth committing his last seven big blinds or so with A♣7♦ and hoping to improve versus Keole’s A♦Q♦. The board ran out 6♦J♦2♣K♦9♦, however, giving Keole the better flush and knocking Toth out in 6,112nd ($47.37).
That left just Martin “AABenjaminAA” Hrubý to sport the red spade, and he lasted a while longer before a hand arose in which he was calling Glider1’s all-in shove for 66,258 (just over nine big blinds) holding 10♣10♠ versus Glider1’s A♠4♣.
Alas for Hrubý an ace came on the turn, Glider1 won the hand, and the Czech Republic pro was down to just a couple of thousand chips. jc_el_niño_9 would then take the last of Hrubý’s stack on the following hand, knocking him out in 3,888th ($59.21).
Finding a final table
As the tourney pushed into the eighth hour, nojnielsen had jumped out in front as the first player to 4 million, but eventually others would catch up and push ahead with nojnielsen ultimately going out in 88th place ($485.54).
During the ninth hour spider2183 became the first player to 10 million before also slipping back to the pack. Then during the 10th hour toril274 and TheKishin were leading the way with more than 20 million, then toril274 moved up further to be the first to 30 million with 80 players left.
By the 10-and-a-half-hour break just 26 remained, with spider2183 having gone out in 32nd ($793.45) but both TheKishin and toril274 still in the hunt. By then locastae led with 64,323,863, about 15 million ahead of the nearest challenger.
About 15 minutes later they were down to 18, with TheKishin out in 25th ($994.77), toril274 still with chips, and locastae remaining in front with Mau9999 then less than a million behind.
It took just 30 minutes more for nine more to fall. cobrastyle15 (18th), d.pigos (17th), and B0nehead1 (16th) earned $1,338.21 for their finishes. pmadra1 (15th), Levels18 (14th), and SmallKindB (13th) next went out to cash for $1,871.13 apiece. Then Shadowvoid (12th), Sh0otIngSt@r (11th), and sebastianelo (10th) successively hit the rail, all taking away $2,688.27 for their efforts.
With locastae still the pace-setter — then with a stack of more than 128 million — the final table was underway.
Seat 1: Ramediem (Brazil) — 21,567,280
Seat 2: MarieKen2112 (Belgium) — 63,299,242
Seat 3: Legato (Sweden) — 45,882,623
Seat 4: Mau9999 (Argentina) — 39,331,159
Seat 5: stygher (Lithuania) — 125,256,892
Seat 6: toril274 (Russia) — 52,443,064
Seat 7: S3XXYMUCK (Hungary) — 95,932,480
Seat 8: Scrach face (Argentina) — 19,986,083
Seat 9: lacostae (Colombia) — 128,431,177
Players couldn’t resist excitedly taking to the chatbox as the first hands of the final table were dealt.
Mau9999: POR LA BOMBA
Mau9999: SUERTE A TODOS.1
S3XXYMUCK: gg gents
lacostae: gl gl all very gg
Legato: gl all!
Scrach face: congratulations to all
lacostae: impressive game for all of u, congrats
Soon it was back to business, though, and on the sixth hand of the final table — the last before the 11-and-a-half-hour break — came the next elimination.
Scrach face succumbs in ninth
The blinds were 1.5m/3m (with a 375k ante) when Scrach face open-raised all in for 13,298,583 from the hijack seat, then watched as MarieKen2112 reraised all in for considerably more from the small blind and Legato stepped aside from the big blind.
Scrach face had J♥8♦ and needed a lot of help against MarieKen2112’s J♦J♠, but the board came 5♣K♦Q♣9♦6♥ and Scrach face was quickly out in ninth.
toril274 taken out in eighth
Following the break the blinds had moved up to 2m/4m when a hand arose that saw the table fold around to toril274 in the small blind who pushed all in for 43,255,564 and S3XXYMUCK called from the big blind.
toril274 had 4♥4♠ and S3XXYMUCK Q♦J♣, then the J♦2♣8♦ flop swiftly swung the advantage S3XXYMUCK’s way. The turn was the 5♥ and river the 10♠, and toril274 was done in eighth.
Mau9999 mowed down in seventh
They played on for nearly 15 minutes with the blinds moving up again to 2.5m/5m. That’s when Mau9999 open-raised all in for 16,768,659 from the hijack seat, S3XXYMUCK reraised to 23.25 million from the button, and the blinds stepped aside.
It was another battle between a small pair and two overcards, and this time the pair held up as the board came 8♦7♥4♠, then Q♠, then 3♠ to give S3XXYMUCK the hand and end Mau9999’s run in seventh.
Ramediem run out in sixth
Just a few minutes after that one Ramediem was open-raising all in from under the gun for 18,153,680 (less than four big blinds) and watching S3XXYMUCK again reraise to isolate.
Ramediem had K♣10♠ and S3XXYMUCK K♦J♠. The 3♠Q♣9♦ flop meant Ramediem had switched from hoping for a ten to hoping for a jack, but the turn was the 9♥ and river the 2♠, and they were down to five.
Legato leaves in fifth
Just a couple of minutes later the blinds were 3m/6m when Legato saw fit to open-shove for 37,570,123 from the button and S3XXYMUCK called from the big blind.
S3XXYMUCK had A♥6♦ this time while Legato held J♥10♥. The community cards came 2♠K♦8♣K♥A♦ and Legato was felted in fifth, the fourth straight knockout delivered by S3XXYMUCK.
lacostae stopped in fourth
About 10 hands later S3XXYMUCK was at it again, open-raising to 27 million from the small blind then watching lacostae reraise all in for 49,217,566 from a seat over. S3XXYMUCK called the push, showing J♠7♣ while lacostae turned over A♠8♥.
The flop was good for S3XXYMUCK and bad for lacostae, coming 6♦J♥7♥ to give S3XXYMUCK two pair. The turn and river then brought a couple of queens — coming Q♥, then Q♦ — and lacostae was out in fourth.
MarieKen2112 makes it to third
All of those eliminations had helped S3XXYMUCK move up into the chip lead with more than 348 million chips with stygher next with about 208 million and MarieKen2112 having slipped to a distant third with just under 35 million. Then a hand came up that saw MarieKen2112 pushing that stack all in from the small blind and stygher calling from the big blind.
MarieKen2112 had J♥10♣ while stygher had K♣6♦, and the K♥K♦Q♠ flop brought trips for the latter while giving MarieKen2112 some hope with an open-ended straight draw. The Q♣ on the turn killed that promise, however, making a full house for stygher. The river was the A♣, and they were down to two.
stygher sinks S3XXYMUCK
Heads-up play began with S3XXYMUCK out in front with 348,238,700 to stygher’s 243,891,300. The pair weren’t making any deals to divide the remaining prize money, meaning the winner of their duel was due to earn an extra $43K for the triumph. Some heady stakes for a $22 tourney!
The pair would ultimately battle for 37 hands total. stygher closed the gap during the first 10 hands to pull even, the pair traded the lead back-and-forth over the next dozen hands or so, then stygher grabbed the advantage to move up over 382 million to S3XXYMUCK’s 209 million when — 12 hours and 21 minutes after the tourney had started — the final hand took place.
By then the blinds were 5m/10m, and the hand began with stygher raising to 21.2 million from the button. S3XXYMUCK responded with an all-in shove for 207,895,242, and stygher called.
Aces for both, but stygher had the better kicker. The flop came 5♦2♥10♥, and S3XXYMUCK was still searching for a saving six. But the turn brought the J♦ to pair stygher’s jack, thus making the 10♠ river no matter. stygher had won!
Congratulations to stygher for winning the most coveted of all MicroMillions 5 titles, overcoming a huge field of 59,000-plus to turn just $22 into a mind-boggling $160,726.14 payday! And kudos as well to all of those making deep runs in this event to finish off their MicroMillions 5 in style by making a lot out of a little.
PokerStars MicroMillions 5 Event #98 ($22 NLHE Main Event) results
Prize pool: $1,184,260.00
Places paid: 7,920
1. stygher (Lithuania) — $160,726.14
2. S3XXYMUCK (Hungary) — $117,715.44
3. MarieKen2112 (Belgium) — $80,340.19
4. lacostae (Colombia) — $53,552.23
5. Legato (Sweden) — $34,805.40
6. Ramedium (Brazil) — $21,411.42
7. Mau9999 (Argentina) — $13,382.13
8. toril274 (Russia) — $8,041.12
9. Scrach face (Argentina) — $5,352.85
See results from all 100 events of MicroMillions 5 as well as a host of other statistics from the series over on the MicroMillions page. You can also find recaps of all 100 of those events by clicking here.
Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.