It wasn’t just any other Tuesday yesterday; it was the final day for all three WPT Mix-Max Championships on partypoker.
The $3,200 buy-in Main Event had the poker world’s eyes as partypoker live-streamed the final table with hole cards on a delay on their Twitch channel. Maria Ho, Matt Savage, Tony Dunst, and Shaun Deeb took their seat in the commentary booth as the poker community saw Andrey Kotelnikov triumph. We have an extensive recap of the action ready for you in case you missed it.
Event #06 – Main: $3,200 Mix-Max Championship ($3M GTD)
Oleg Vasylchenko started as the chip leader with seven players remaining. As the only player with a WPT champion title under his belt, one might assume he had an advantage over his competition. But while the other players at the final table might not be household names for the casual poker fan, they all had a ton of experience at the highest stage.
Vasylchenko lost some of his chips early on to his neighbor Andrey Kotelnikov when he four-bet ace-deuce suited. Kotelnikov five-bet shoved with queens, and Vasylchenko gave up.
Almost an hour and a half into play, the first casualty of the night hit the rail. Maciej Gasior opened the hijack with ace-seven suited before Jerry Wong shoved his last 20 big blinds to the middle with ace-ten off. Unfortunately for Wong, his neighbor Stuart Guite woke up with pocket queens on the button and reshoved for 27 big blinds. Kotelnikov folded ace-queen suited in the big blind, and initial raiser Guite gave up as well. Wong had only three clean outs with his ace-ten and wouldn’t find one of them on what would end up being a double paired board with deuces and sevens. Wong was the first one to exit, a score worth $69,300.
As Kotelnikov took over the lead, winning a sizable hand with top-pair against Joakim Andersson’s flopped flush draw, things weren’t looking so prosperous for Dimitar Danchev. Already down to just 19 big blinds, he lost most of his stack when he open pushed ace-six from the small blind. Andersson found aces in the big blind and doubled through his neighbor.
Minutes later, Danchev parted ways with the remainder of his chips. With king-queen, he went for it and three-bet against a Vasylchenko open. Vasylchenko shoved, and Danchev called with ace-four for fewer than four big blinds total. Vasylchenko won with a turned ace against Danchev’s flopped queen. Danchev hit the rail in sixth place for $89,016.
Minutes later, the tournament would go from five-handed to four-handed as Maciej Gasior busted. Again, Kotelnikov did the dirty work, raising with pocket eights and calling Gasior’s shove. Gasior tabled pocket threes and failed to improve on a board full of bricks. Gasior cashed for $124,500.
Vasylchenko had retaken the chip lead at this time but would be the next to go regardless. He first lost half of his chips in a pre-flop all-in against Stuart Guite, where he four-bet pushed with eights against Guite’s ace-king. A king on the flop helped Guite, and the latter even rivered Broadway to double. Down to eighteen big blinds, he open pushed king-queen from the small blind and Kotelnikov in the big blind called with ace-queen. The board came no higher than a nine, and Vasylchenko busted in fourth place, good for $190,500.
Things didn’t slow down from there as the next bust out was right around the corner. Kotelnikov shoved from the small blind with queen-jack to put the pressure on short stack Joakim Andersson. Andersson called for sixteen big blinds with ace-nine off. On the turn, he was drawing dead as Kotelnikov flopped and turned a queen to bust Andersson in third place for $271,903.
Kotelnikov started the heads up with 115 big blinds against Stuart Guite’s fifty big blinds. With $366,604 locked up, there was still a lot to play for. Not only would the winner grab another $121,904, but he would also get his name engraved into the Mike Sexton Cup and get a goodie bag worth thousands of dollars and a ticket for the Tournament of Champions next season.
A big cooler would turn the tables between Kotelnikov and Guite. Guite flopped a straight with eight-six on four-five-seven against Kotelnikov’s six-four. Both players checked, but things got even more interesting on the turn as a four hit, and Kotelnikov made trips to accompany his open-ended. Some chips went in on the turn, and some more were committed on the ace river to see Guite take down the 33 million pot and take the lead.
Kotelnikov doubled back into the lead with ace-king versus ace-jack, but Guite retook it in a hand both players made a pair of kings, but Guite’s two pair triumphed. They were about even when Kotelnikov won a sizable hand on a bluff, getting Guite to fold third pair on the river.
In the last hand of the tournament, Guite opened the button with jack-four, and Kotelnikov called with six-three off. Those two hands, in any other stage of the tournament most likely unplayable, flopped big on the four-five-jack flop. A continuation bet and call was all that followed, but things got a lot more interesting on the deuce turn. Kotelnikov check-raised with his turned straight, and Guite called with his flopped two pair. The river came a meaningless offsuit king, and Kotelnikov shoved. Guite couldn’t get away from his two pair and called only to get the bad news. Guite had to settle for runner up, good for $366,604.
Kotelnikov triumphed for $488,508 and gets his name etched into the Mike Sexton Cup!
Event #06 – Mini: $320 Mix-Max Championship ($1M GTD)
With fifteen players remaining, the Mini Mix-Max Championship’s final day got underway, with all players guaranteed $6,000.
Warren Russel from Canada, Ctoяh Hahkob from Russia, and Milaim Tafaj from Norway had to settle for that; they busted in fifteenth, fourteenth, and thirteenth place.
Things moved quickly, and before you knew it, a final table was formed. partypoker pro Philipp Gruissem hit the rail in sixth place, earning $19,670. John Gonzalez, who started the day second in chips, finished fourth for $53,230.
As Marc Pronilow from Germany busted in third for $72,410, it was a heads up battle for the title between Anton Suarez from Sweden and Conor O’driscoll from Ireland. Suarez, the start of day chip leader, eventually busted in second place, making $93,880 for his deep run. Conor O’driscoll took down the event for $121,980.
Event #06 – Micro: $33 Mix-Max Championship ($300K GTD GTD)
A surviving field of 1,259 entries was cut down to 49 on Day 2 of the event, with Brazil’s Guilherme Ramos Siewert firm in the lead going into Day 3.
Already guaranteed $427, the start-of-day chip leader couldn’t leverage his stack into a final table position. Instead, the Brazilian busted in 25th place, good for $690. Justin Lapointe, who started the day third in chips, did two spots better: busting in 23rd place for $877.
Erhan Constantin from Romania, who started the final day second in chips, did a lot better. He made it to the final table and eventually succumbed in fourth place, good for $14,426.
After Colin Horgan from Ireland busted in third place for $19,863, the deciding heads up took place between Sean Donovan from the United Kingdom and Ronni Ravnholt Borg from Denmark. The two remaining gladiators were guaranteed $25,940 with $33,850 for first. While the stakes were massive for a $33 buy-in tournament, no deal was negotiated, and they played straight up for the cash and glory. Borg eventually triumphed, taking home the $33,850 first-place prize!
WPT 8-Max Knockout ($50K GTD)
Besides all the Mix-Max action, there was a one-day mix-max knockout event on the docket. With a buy-in of $109, 10-minute levels, and a 100,000 starting stack, this was as good an event to play as any.
With a single reentry available for the first nine levels, 587 entries were collected. The $50,000 guaranteed prize pool was easily met as $58,700 was up for distribution. Half of that, though, went on people’s heads as a bounty.
The top 80 hit the money with Martin Mulsow stone bubbling in 81st place. He didn’t knock out any players either so he went home truly empty-handed on the event.
Steven van Zadelhoff made a run but ultimately finished in 60th for $240 ($128 + $212) place. Andres Ojeda made it to eight place, good for $752 ($534 + $218).
German high roller Fabio Sperling, playing from the United Kingdom, battled heads-up for the title but eventually had to leave the honors to Janis Zeiburlins. Sperling took home $5,724 ($4,205 + $1,519) while Zeiburlins triumphed for $8,848 ($4,212 + $4,636).