It has once again been a busy weekend on the GGPoker Network (GGPN) with the Battle of Malta Online Main Event concluding, as well as the usual High Rollers schedule awarding hundreds of thousands in cash prizes. The first of three starting days of the $10,000 WSOP Main Event also kicked off.
The lion’s share of the $4,592,252.50 prize pool was up for grabs on Saturday when the final table of the $550 Battle of Malta Main Event determined a champion. Out of a field of 8,789 total entries, only nine players remained, including Patrick “Egption” Tardif.
San Marino’s “JJ-is-Back” was the first casualty of the final table, followed by Joseph Cheong ($45,131.71). Tardif then lost a flip with eights to bow out in 7th place for $65,868.61. The Canadian then did commentary until a winner was crowned, and witnessed the departures of “Sum Dum Gai”, “Tr1derr” and Fabrizio “UknowWhoIam” Gonzalez (4th place for $204,753.13) to set up the podium.
Croatia’s “svererii” earned $298,822.96, leaving start-of-day chip leader Mikolaj “HORN3T” Zawadzki to face Rodrigo “Eureka!!” Selouan in heads-up. Both had locked up plenty of money for Christmas presents, but it was Brazil’s Selouan that claimed the top prize of $636,477.70 without a deal. Zawadzki had to settle for the consolation prize of $436,110.97.
Brazil almost got there again with another victory in a flagship event on the GGPN, as two contenders reached the podium in the popular $210 Beat the Pros. This time, 1,339 entries attracted a prize pool of $267,800. Most of that was up for grabs on the final table, thanks to the progressive knockout format.
Notable finalists included Gaby “kidrurim” Livshitz (6 bullets, 6th place for $5,538.76) and Aram “Pusha T” Zobian (5th place for $8,898.21). Alexandre “MindBlindado” Bez ($10,968.29) and Allison Eleres ($14,616.84) missed out on victory, as Hungary’s “Bela Luhar” held all the chips and eventually claimed the top prize of $24,802.09.
It took nearly eight-and-a-half hours to whittle down 108 players to a winner in the $840 High Rollers Marathon. Andrey Pateychuk, Russian casino streamer “danludan” and Brock Wilson were some names to reach the final table. In the end, Vladislav “imjuniar” Mezheritsky ($16,788.37) cut a deal with Duy Thanh “endlesslove” Dang ($18,889.59).
The $400 Forty Stack attracted a field of 166 entries, with notable finalists including Shyngis “somebodyelse” Satubayev, Rainer Kempe and Manuel “robocup” Ruivo. Fausto “Fantastik55” Tantillo was the only one to collect a five-figure payday and padded his bankroll with $12,566.79.
Morocco resident Idris Ambraisse reached yet another final table on the GGPN, and finished 3rd in the $525 Bounty Hunters High Roller for $5,118.55. Only Kunlong “jack chan” Yu ($6,779.79) and Vyacheslav “SpaceInside” Zaslavsky ($10,683.77) earned bigger paydays than the Frenchman.
Out of 89 entries in the $1,050 High Rollers Main Event, it was Pedro “WhyNotChili” Ivars that earned the top prize of $21,092.16 after defeating the likes of “danludan”, Juha Helppi, and Jargo “bungakat” Alavali on the final table. Vlad “CheckEtoFold” Martynenko fired five entries and finished as the runner-up for $15,973.62.
Another three High Rollers events played to a winner during the late part of Saturday, and it was an Argentinian heads-up for victory in the $1,260 Bounty Six Shooter. Martin Pineiro collected $11,097.62 while Leandro Bianchini cashed for $19,939.63, of which more than 62% came from progressive bounty prizes.
The CN¥588 Zodiac MILLION$ awarded CN¥1,028,905.92 in cash prizes, with 256 hopefuls surviving their starting flights to return for the final day. Four players from China made the final table; “Twinshot” went the furthest in 3rd place for CN¥97,162.77. Uruguay’s “elchiniyo” bowed out in 2nd place for CN¥141,802.06, while Sumit “rung00se” Sapra emerged as the champion for CN¥206,951.40.
On the final day of the $108 Global MILLION$, 1,484 players returned for their share of the $1,092,600 prize pool. It took more than nine-and-a-half hours to crown a champion. The tournament finally ended with a three-way deal including Udi “wassa” Harush ($89,032.42), Mauricio “AgrEu5sagro” De Farias ($97,678.40) and Luis “THEfaryboy” Faria ($123,583.72).
The $525 High Roller MILLION$ also surpassed its guarantee and paid out $1,659,500 in prizes. Canada’s “cbkme” and Seth Davies reached the final table, while Pedro “donkey” Garagnani earned $138,073.88 for his 3rd place finish. Poker commentator Henry “SolverJail” Kilbane then cut a deal with Chris Moorman to earn $243,769.50 in 2nd place. Moorman was crowned the champion for $251,828.71.
Both GGMasters editions also managed to surpass their guarantees, including the popular $150 Classic as well as the $1,050 High Rollers.
The $150 Freezeout attracted a total of 4,364 entries, and it was a long night for the likes of Timur “Avocado Love” Margolin (6th place for $14,107.94) and eventual winner Laszlo Molnar ($85,906.16) as the event took nearly twelve-and-a-half hours to conclude.
In the $1,050 buy-in, 1,019 entries emerged. Alex “im_doo” Greenblatt ($134,486.25) earned the most in a three-way deal with “grebnrets” ($122,168.23) and “TokioTom” ($119,513.76). The tournament clocked in at eleven-and-a-half hours, with Jiachen “Transurfing” Gong (4th place for $63,829.03) and Manuel “caaaaarlos” Fritz (6th place for $33,614.87) also reaching the final table.
Canadian poker prodigy Kristen Bicknell overcame the likes of Artur Martirosian, Ramiro “OnTheFlow” Petrone and Ole Schemion in heads-up to win the $840 Sunday High Rollers Bounty Special for $27,445.58. In the $210 Bounty Hunters Main Event, it was once again a Canadian flag that waved from the top spot as Curtis “Knighter” Knight claimed $42,001.14 after overcoming a field of 2,016 entries.
The Sunday High Rollers continued with 394 entries in the $840 Marathon. It was Leandro Bianchini that earned a second victory on the weekend for $57,123.80.
In the $5,250 Blade Opener, 41 entries took part and the top five spots were paid, including Niklas Astedt ($12,885.70), Artur Martirosian (20,471.56), Joakim Andersson (32,523.25) and Ami Barer (51,669.79). Hungary’s David Szep earned the top prize of $87,449.70 in just under five-and-a-half hours.
Bianchini, Pineiro and Martirosian also reached the final table in the $525 Bounty Hunters High Roller, which saw Dan Colpoys finish in 3rd place for $10,246.15. Mikhail “playforfan” Galitckiy ($25,109.25) defeated Olli “JeffBloss” Ikonen ($14,519.23) in heads-up.
The $2,100 PLO Bounty drew a field of 75 entries and paid out $150,000 in prizes. The biggest winner by far in the tournament was Portuguese poker pro Rui Ferreira who won $46,634.55, which was nearly three times as much as Andrii “Brahman33” Novak in 2nd place ($16,963.24) and “huangdandan” in 5th place ($16,260.91).
Novak then finished 3rd in the $1,050 PLO Main Event soon after, adding another $14,153.75 in cashes. Sean Winter took it down in a field of 109 entries to collect $24,964.19, while Shyngis “somebodyelse” Satubayev finished as the runner-up for $18,797.23.
Arie Muller ($43,784.82) and Daniel “BaccaratKing” Neilson ($44,172.17) cut a deal to take the lion’s share in the $1,050 High Rollers Main Event. Daan “DaanOss” Mulders ($27,997.37) and Ami Barer ($20,868.14) were right behind.
In the $5,250 Blade Prime, the top eight out of 60 entries were paid. A field filled with notables included George Wolff ($44,381.73), Byron Kaverman ($58,663.29) and Fabrizio “UknowWhoIam” Gonzalez ($93,217.23) on the podium.
The same price tag was attached to the Blade Mulligan which drew 69 entries. Only the top nine cashed, and Artur Martirosian bubbled after firing four bullets. Darren Elias needed as many entries but came first for $94,878.97 after prevailing against Aleksei “JokerFace” Barkov, aforementioned Gonzalez, Fedoz Holz, David Peters, Daniel Dvoress, Stephen Chidwick, and Nick Petrangelo.
Last but not least, the $5,250 Blade Closer clocked in at a duration of five hours and attracted a field of 58 entries. Daniel Hindin bubbled and the next paydays went to Anatoly Filatov, Stephen Chidwick, Alexandros Kolonias and Daniel Dvoress. Russian streamer “danludan” collected $44,324.26 and Seth Davies ($61,399.64) finished runner-up to Dario Sammartino ($100,466.70).
The weekly flagship High Roller Event also took place on Sunday. The $10,300 Super MILLION$ attracted a field of 182 entries this time, and the $1.82 million in prize money was split among the top 20 finishers.
Austria’s Thomas Muehloecker was the bubble boy and min cashes worth $23,532.05 were awarded to Laurynas Levinskas, Justin Bonomo, Aleksei “JokerFace” Barkov, Arsenii Malinov, Matthias Eibinger, Ami Barer and Brunno Botteon. Another four players cashed before the nine-handed final table was set, including Andras Nemeth and Daniel Hindin ($34,345.94 each) as well as Guillaume Nolet and Matthew “Nator” Hyman ($50,129.17 each).
All remaining hopefuls have at least $61,837.77 locked up and each pay jump becomes more significant. Julian Stuer, Rui Ferreira and Pascal Hartmann are the three shortest stacks, while Artur Martirosian and Niklas Astedt – who has reached the final table in this event for the sixth time – are in the middle of the pack.
Christian “CharlieD23” Jeppsson sits in 3rd place with 32.4 big blinds at his disposal, while Joakim Andersson is second in chips with 47.8 big blinds. Nearly two times as many chips belong to Koray Aldemir, who is in prime position to claim the top prize of $331,553.67.
And for the first time, poker enthusiasts from all over the world have an additional sweat for this final table as GGPN has partnered up with PokerShares to provide final table betting on the winner. That option becomes available once the final table is set and until the restart of the live-streamed showdown.