The 2017 Aussie Millions will once again reward AU$1,6 million to the winner and nonother than Jennifer Tilly leads the remaining 151 players. The poker enthusiast and Oscar-nominated actress, is followed by, amongst others, big stacks Stephen Bantick, Haoran Zhang, Marc Macdonnell and David Yan.
|Jennifer Tilly||United States||497,100|
|Stephen Bantick||United Kingdom||411,600|
Before things got underway, the Australian Poker Hall of Fame inducted a new member in 2015 Aussie Millions champion Manny Stavropoulos. Joe Hachem handed David Yan the Young Achiever Award.
As play got going with initially 372 players still in contention, some new players signed up to contribute to the prize pool and get a crisp 30,000 stack in return.
One of the new players was Fedor Holz and in true Holz fashion, he was up to 140,000 after just an hour of play. He didn't hold on to that mojo all day as he dropped down considerably halfway through, but he found a lucky double with a limp-shoved deuce-eight suited for 28 big blinds to double. He ended the day with a very healthy stack.
Jennifer Tilly soared to the top winning a huge pot where she called a bluffing neighbor with top set. She can boost her total live tournament earnings over that magical $1,000,000-mark if she finishes 24th or better.
While Tilly soared, defending champion Ari Engel was heading in the other direction. He bled away some chips to he got to the point he went with it having found pocket fours. Unfortunately for the 2016 Aussie Millions champion, his opponent had pocket aces.
Last year's runner-up, Tony Dunst, did make it through. Dunst will bring 242,600 in chips to Day 3 where the starting blinds will be 1,200/2,400 with a 400-ante. Seven levels are scheduled for Day 3. Some of the other notables to survive the day are Erik Seidel (309,100), Brian Altman (205,200), Jeff Rossiter (192,000), Cate Hall (153,100), Shane Warne (146,500) Dominik Nitsche (144,000, Matt Affleck (139,500), Ben Tollerene (126,600), Scott Davies (116,900), Nick Petrangelo (111,100) and Vojtech Ruzicka (67,000).
"We're in Australia mate! Enjoy it!" Sam Grafton said at one point in the last level of the day, sipping on a well-deserved beer with only a couple of minutes left on the clock. His huge smile en cheerful laugh just about perfectly described the atmosphere in the tournament room all day. While a lot of people met their Waterloo on Day 2 of the event, the ambiance was always as good as they could come in a poker room. There was laughter and banter everywhere, mostly instigated by that very Grafton (surviving the day with 80,700) while Mustapha Kanit (ending the day with 125,700) took care of uplifting spirits on the other end of the room.
Let's hope Day 3 will be more of the same, while there's always the chance that tensions will rise as it's going to be bubble day. With 151 players remaining and 80 in the money, the stage where Crown Melbourne will be handing out AUD$15,000+ cheques will for sure commence.
Action gets back underway at 12:30 p.m. local time so check back then for more updates from the 2017 Aussie Millions Main Event. As a bonus, Jason Somerville starts live streaming the event and we'll have those images on tap for you in our dedicated live reporting section.
Here's what's at stake:
|1||AU$1,600,000||10 - 12||AU$115,000|
|2||AU$1,000,000||13 - 18||AU$80,000|
|3||AU$620,000||19 - 24||AU$60,000|
|4||AU$440,000||25 - 30||AU$40,000|
|5||AU$335,000||31 - 36||AU$30,000|
|6||AU$270,000||37 - 48||AU$25,000|
|7||AU$210,000||49 - 64||AU$20,000|
|8 - 9||AU$155,000||65 - 80||AU$15,000|
Here's a look at the prize pools and first place prizes throughout the long and rich history of the biggest event on the Southern Hemisphere:
|Year||Entries||Prize Pool (AU$)||Winner||First Prize (AU$)|