The biggest buy-in event of the year (so far) kicked off at the Aussie Millions, and it hosted some of the biggest names in poker around the felt. The $100,000 buy-in tournament boasted a Who’s Who of Poker among the 25 entrants. 2007 winner Erick Lindgren was joined by Phil Ivey, Gus Hansen, Chris ‘Jesus’ Ferguson, Erik Seidel, Tony G, and eventual champion Howard Lederer, to name just a few. With all the live tournament pros, there were a few online tournament superstars that took their shot against the multiple WPT and WSOP champs in the field. Michael ‘Timex’ McDonald, Tom ‘Durrr” Dwan and Jeff ‘ActionJeff’ Garza were in the field representing the internet stars.
Each player ponied up $100,000 for entry into the event, which featured a flexible structure. The game was Pot Limit Hold ‘Em preflop, then No Limit post-flop. Once the event was heads-up, all action was No Limit. The 25 entrants built a prize pool of $2.5 Million, with $1.25 going to first place, and five places paying out.
An early confrontation between 2007 champions proved lethal for Gus Hansen. The 2007 Aussie Millions Main Event champ flopped top pair on a board and fired out. 2007 $100K tournament winner Erick Lindgren called Hansen’s flop bet, then bet out when the turn brought the . Hansen moved all in, and Lindgren called with for middle set. No help came for Hansen on the river, and he was busted early. Tony G was another early casualty, falling to Lindgren’s pocket Aces when he called Lindgren’s all in with pocket Queens on a board of . No two-outer for Tony G, and he was busted before dinner.
Other notable bustouts included Chris Ferguson, Erik Seidel, Allen Cunningham, Andy Bloch and Michael ‘Timex’ McDonald, who ran his into Eli Elezra’s . McDonald picked up a flush draw on the flop, but he went to the rail when he couldn’t catch another diamond. Erick Lindgren was the chip leader when the final table started, with chip stacks looking like this for the final eight players -
Seat 1: Michael Sampoerna - 125,000
Seat 2: Nikolaus Jedlicka - 446,000
Seat 3: Howard Lederer - 202,000
Seat 4: Erick Lindgren - 574,000
Seat 5: Jeff "ActionJeff" Garza - 496,000
Seat 6: Mark Teltscher - 171,000
Seat 7: Jeff Lisandro - 192,000
Seat 8: Tom "Durrrr" Dwan - 299,000
Tom ‘Durr’ Dwan ran into Jeff ‘ActionJeff’ Garza’s pocket Kings to bust from the final table in 8th, and Garza followed shortly behind him when Mark Teltscher’s pocket Jacks held up against Garza’s to send him home in 7th. Erick Seidel’s quest for back-to-back wins came to an end in 6th place when Michael Sampoerna turned a flush to crack Lindgren’s set of Kings and send him home on the bubble.
Niki Jedlicka felt Lindgren’s pain when he also flopped a set against Sampoerna, only to bust in 5th place ($100,000) when Sampoerna turned a straight holding on a board of . The board failed to pair on the river, and Jedlicka was busted. The remaining four players jockeyed for position for quite a while before Mark Teltscher and Jeff Lisandro got all the chips in the middle preflop. Lisandro called Teltscher’s all in raise with , and Teltscher tabled . The board ran out , and Lisandro never caught up after the King on the flop. He collected $150,000 for his 4th place finish. Teltscher took out Sampoerna next when his pocket eights held up against Sampoerna’s pocket sevens to bust him in 3rd place ($350,000).
Teltscher was at a 2-1 chip disadvantage to Howard Lederer when heads-up play began, and ‘The Professor” took less than an hour to dispatch Teltscher in 2nd place ($650,000). In the final hand, Lederer called from the button and Teltscher checked to see a flop of . Teltscher bet out, and Lederer called. Teltscher bet out again when the turn brought the , and Lederer once again made the call. The came on the river, and Teltscher moved all in. Lederer made the call, and Teltscher tabled for the flopped two pair. Lederer revealed for the rivered higher two pair, and took down the $1.25 Million first prize!
*photo courtesy of HowardLederer.com*