As the Olympics got going in earnest this weekend in Rio de Janeiro, the weekly gathering of poker players from all over the world known as the Sunday Million played out again on PokerStars, and at the end of a long tournament a couple of South Americans were left to battle heads-up. Ultimately Brazil’s kdrAS came up a spot shy of the gold, as Vilactes of Argentina won the final hand and a $131,000 first prize following a three-handed deal.
There were 5,383 entries in this week’s Sunday Million, with players representing dozens of countries as usual. The prize pool ultimately totaled $1,076,600, beating the $1 million guarantee, with the top 764 finishers getting to split those riches.
They were well into the tournament’s 11th hour by the time just 18 remained, at which point Anton “ekziter” Astapau sat atop the counts with just over 6.5 million.
€urop€an was the next out in 18th, earning $2,876.99, then dkiichoi (17th), euklid321 (16th), nurospoker (15th), and cretzu777 (14th) were eliminated, picking up $4,128.97 apiece. They were followed to the rail by Ru11et (13th), wobetting (12th), kansasct (11th), and RUS)Timur (10th), with those four each taking away $5,925.92 from the prize pool.
With boahgerding the new chip leader with a little more than 8.55 million and kdrAS not too far behind, the final table was underway.
Seat 1: $trateGema (Germany) — 6,155,331
Seat 2: Anton “ekziter” Astapau (Belarus) — 6,940,156
Seat 3: kalaloom (Estonia) — 3,186,241
Seat 4: boahgerding (Germany) — 8,557,560
Seat 5: João Mathias “joaoMathias” Baumgarten (Brazil) — 3,813,952
Seat 6: Re8uZ (Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) — 7,119,780
Seat 7: Vilactes (Argentina) — 3,741,359
Seat 8: kdrAS (Brazil) — 8,214,539
Seat 9: scallpell (Canada) — 6,101,082
About 20 minutes into the final table the blinds were 125K/250K when Anton “ekziter” Astapau opened for 500,000 from middle position, then kalaloom reraised all-in for 2,578,241 from the next seat over. It folded around to kdrAS in the big blind who called the shove, and Astapau stepped aside.
kdrAS had J♠J♥ while kalaloom had a couple of live cards with K♦Q♦. The board arrived nine-high, though, coming 9♦9♣3♠4♣3♦, and kalaloom was done in ninth.
About five minutes later, João Mathias “joaoMathias” Baumgarten — who just won the Super Tuesday five days ago — open-pushed all-in from middle position for 2,260,952 (about four-and-a-half big blinds) and got a caller in scallpell playing from the big blind.
Baumgarten had 7♦7♥ and scallpell A♠10♣. The 6♥9♣8♠ flop kept Baumgarten in front, but the A♥ turn swung the advantage to scallpell. The river was the 4♦, and Baumgarten was out in eighth.
The tournament crossed the 12-hour mark, and after a few more minutes a huge hand developed between kdrAS and Anton “ekziter” Astapau.
It started with Astapau limping in from under the gun for 300,000, then kdrAS raised to 900,000 from the button. It folded back to Astapau who called, and the pair saw the flop come 7♣9♥10♣. Astapau checked, kdrAS bet 989,555, Astapau check-raised all-in for 9,989,156, and kdrAS called.
Astapau had J♥10♥ for top pair and a gutshot while kdrAS had flopped a set of nines with 9♣9♠. The turn then brought the 9♦ to make quads for kdrAS, making the river no matter and stopping Astapau in seventh.
A short while later Re8uz — winner of a Super Tuesday back in November — was short-stacked and pushing all in for 358,016 (just over one big blind) from middle position. Both kdrAS (small blind) and scallpell (big blind) called, then after the 3♥A♠A♥ flop, kdrAS check-folded to a min-bet from scallpell.
Re8uz had 5♣5♠ and was ahead of scallpell’s J♦3♠, but the 3♣ fell on the turn to give the latter treys full. The river was the 9♠, and Re8uz was knocked out in sixth.
Three hands later, scallpell min-raised to 700,000 from the cutoff, Vilactes reraised to 1.75 million from the big blind, scallpell shoved all-in for 9,645,816 total, and Vilactes called.
scallpell had J♠J♥ but had run into the K♠K♦ of Vilactes. The board brought five low cards — 5♣8♥3♠2♦4♦ — and scallpell was sent railward in fifth.
Just a few hands after than boahgerding open-shoved all-in for 3,130,543 from the small blind and Vilactes called right away from the big blind. boahgerding had K♠3♣ but Vilactes had woken up with a big hand again with A♦A♠. The five community cards came 10♣Q♣2♦2♣10♠, and boahgerding was downed in fourth.
Soon after that the remaining three paused the tournament to discuss a possible deal, with Vilactes ahead with almost 26.2 million, kdrAS next with just over 22 million, and $trateGema third with about 5.65 million. Both “ICM”-based numbers and “chip chop” figures were presented, leaving $20,000 for which to play in both cases.
$trateGema expressed a need for more than what was being offered in order to deal, and after some talk both of the other two offered some, but $trateGema still wanted a bit extra. Vilactes was able to give another $1K, and at last a deal was made and play resumed.
Just a few hands later — the last one before the break that came at the 13-hour mark — $trateGema limped in from the button fro 400,000, Vilactes made it 1.2 million from the small blind, $trateGema reraised all-in for 7,101,252 total, and Vilactes called.
Vilactes had A♠J♥ while $trateGema had A♥9♠. The board came 8♣K♥A♦, then 5♥, then 7♦, giving both a pair of aces — but Vilactes had the better kicker, and $trateGema was out in third.
Vilactes started heads-up play with 32,295,049 and the edge over kdrAS who had 21,534,951, and while kdrAS as able to narrow the gap initially, Vilactes never did lose the lead. Finally — almost 20 minutes into their duel — Vilactes was up over 41.4 million and kdrAS down under 12.4 million when the final hand took place.
Before the flop Vilactes limped in for 500,000, kdrAS checked, and the first three community cards came K♥8♥3♣. kdrAS checked, Vilactes bet 500,000, and kdrAS called. The turn was the 5♦, and this time both player checked.
The river then brought the Q♠ and a bet of 1.25 million from kdrAS. Vilactes responded by shoving all-in, and kdrAS called with the 10,056,132 remaining behind. kdrAS had K♣6♦ for top pair of kings, but Vilactes had K♠Q♣ for two pair and it was all over — Vilactes had won.
Congratulations to Vilactes for topping nearly 5,400 foes to take the top spot on the podium in this week’s Sunday Million and a cool $131K. And kudos as well to kdrAS and $trateGema for making it the to the three-handed deal to guarantee themselves big paydays as well for their silver and bronze performances.
8/7/16 Sunday Million ($215 No-Limit Hold’em) results
Prize pool: $1,076,600.00
Places paid: 764
1. Vilactes (Argentina) $131,000.00*
2. kdrAS (Brazil) $110,000.00*
3. $trateGema (Germany) $93,070.69*
4. boahgerding (Germany) $51,784.46
5. scallpell (Canada) $36,082.03
6. Re8uZ (Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) $25,140.97
7. Anton “ekziter” Astapau (Belarus) $17,517.68
8. João Mathias “joaoMathias” Baumgarten (Brazil) $12,205.84
9. kalaloom (Estonia) $8,504.81
*denotes three-way deal
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Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.