Tony Dunst was once kicked out of the country of Australia after living here for quite some time and overstaying his allowance, but he's back and on a mission to win the 2016 Aussie Millions Main Event. To help him reach that ultimate goal, Dunst amassed the most chips on Day 3 and will lead the final 40 players into Day 4 with 1.627 million.
After he finished extremely strong on Wednesday's Day 2 with a double knockout of Julius Colman and Richard Ashby, Dunst was up to his tricks again on Day 3 with another double elimination. This time it was Philipp Gruissem and Pascal Hartmann that he sent to the rail thanks to flopping an ace with ace-jack against queens and nines.
Finishing Day 3 with the second largest stack was James Obst with 1.196 million in chips. Then Samantha Abernathy (1.195 million), Alexander Lynskey (1.073 million), and Artur Koren (1.009 million) rounded out the top five.
When the day began, 150 players remained. The top 80 spots were set to reach the money, but after four levels of play, 81 still remained at the dinner break. Upon return, it didn't take long for the bubble to burst, and it was Mark Bevan falling as the last player to go home empty-handed.
Bevan was all in with the against the for Koren. The flop, turn, and river stayed clean of an ace, and Koren scored the elimination. With that, everyone left had locked up at least AU$15,000.
From there, the eliminations quickly began to mount. First, it was Liv Boeree who hit the rail in 80th place, followed by Joe Hachem in 79th. Others to finish in the money were Max Silver (72nd), Sam Cohen (61st), Nick Yunis (54th), Jared Graham (53rd), and Michael Egan (45th).
A flurry of eliminations at the end of the night saw Daniel Engels hit the rail in 44th, Sam Steindl fall in 43rd, Victor Teng finish in 42nd, and Jimmy Siu bust in 41st to close out play. In fact, it was Dunst who busted Steindl in one of the final hands to help pad his chip lead.
With Day 3 done and dusted, the surviving competitors will return at 12:30 p.m. local time to Crown Melbourne to further battle towards the top prize of AU$1.6 million. All those remaining are guaranteed at least AU$25,000, but as we all know, those left have their sights set on much, much more.
Paul Hoefer Wins the $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em
German Paul Hoefer took down Event #16: $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em title inside the Crown Poker Room early Friday morning.
Hoefer collected $106,920 in prize money for the win, along with an exclusive LK Boutique Aussie Millions championship ring.
The second day of this two-day event started with 34 players remaining from a field of 190 and German Ferenc Riech in the lead. It didn't take long to get to past the 22-player money bubble and down to the final table of ten with Reich handing the lead to Robert Nguyen when he tried, and failed, to play bluff catcher.
Nguyen's lead only got bigger when he busted Michael Tomeny in 10th. Hoefer sent Piyush Gupta to the rail in ninth place and play went seven handed when Najeem Ajez was counterfeited by Nguyen to say goodbye eighth.
Nguyen was running away with the tournament when he dispatched Karib Yustinus seventh, but Hoefer appeared interested in making it a two-horse race when he got all of Frank Williams' chips, eliminating him in sixth.
Five-handed play lasted for quite sometime before a massive hand suddenly played out between Hoefer and Nguyen, with Hoefer shoving big slick preflop and Nguyen calling off with pocket jacks. An ace on the river gave Hoefer the pot and the massive chip lead while Nguyen busted fifth soon after.
Short stacks Vic Spadavecchia and Mogens Hansen both doubled once, then busted, going out fourth and third respectively, and sending Hoefer into a heads-up match with the lead over Aussie Alex Grocott.
Within a half an hour, Hoefer whittled Grocott down to the felt and got him to commit his chips with middle pair versus trips to earn his first Aussie Millions title.
Final Table Results
The Tournament of Champions Draws 194
Event #17: $1,150 Tournament of Champions drew 194 entries Thursday, creating a $198,850 prize pool that will pay 21 spots. A minimum cash is worth $2,000 while the winner will earn $49,695 and an LK Boutique championship ring.
Plans were to play until 2 a.m. or until a final table was reached with any and all survivors returning to play down to a champion Friday.
The $2,500 Pot-Limit Omaha Draws 125
Event #18: $2,500 Pot-Limit Omaha drew 125 entries Thursday. Plans were to play until 2 a.m. or until a final table was reached.
The survivors will return to play down to a champion Friday with the final 12 paid. A minimum cash is worth $5,625 while the winner will earn $74,545 and an LK Boutique championship ring.
The 2016 Aussie Millions Poker Championship Continues
The 2016 Aussie Millions Poker Championship continues Friday, Jan. 29, 2016, with Day 4 of the $10,600 No-Limit Hold'em Main Event kicking off at 12:30 p.m.
Thursday will also see the final day of Event #17: $1,150 Tournament of Champions and Event #18: $2,500 Pot-Limit Omaha beginning at 1 p.m.
Plus, Event #19: $2,500 Shot Clock No-Limit Hold'em Six Max begins at 2:10 p.m.