Phil Ivey! The player that rewrites poker history on a regular basis has just added fresh ink to the pages. Ivey has won the Aussie Millions LK Boutique $250,000 Challenge — AU$2.205 million first-place prize — for the third time in four years, making this win a back-to-back from 2014. In 2012 he took home AU$2 Million for besting a field of 16 in the event and last year he overcame a field of 46 players to take home the AU$4 million first-place prize. The Aussie Millions $250,000 Challenge is where Ivey scored his three largest cashes.
This year's field had 25 total entries. Day 1 started with 23 players but Brian Rast's late entry and Isaac Haxton's reentry boosted the field to 25. The prize pool AU$6.105 million was reserved for the top five finishers.
$250,000 Challenge Payouts
|1||Phil Ivey||United States||$2,205,000|
|3||Doug Polk||United States||$1,041,500|
|4||Scott Seiver||United States||$735,000|
|5||Erik Seidel||United States||$551,000|
The action started with the first three hands of the day sending three players to the rail: Short-stacked Ole Schemion shoved with the but couldn't beat the of Doug "WCGRider" Polk and was the first to go. Igor Kurganov hit the rail on the next hand after putting all of his chips in with sixes against Polk's pocket sevens. Then Rast shoved with the and ran into Haxton's . Rast finished fifth in the Aussie Millions Main Event the day before and looked at three hands in the AU$250,000 buy-in.
Ninth place went to Jason Mo when his couldn't overcome Scott Seiver's and the final table was set with eight players. The bustouts continued with Dan Smith falling holding the against the of Ivey. Isaac Haxton got unlucky with the and finished in seventh place when Ivey's ironed out his kings.
Then it was bubble time in Level 11 (12,000/24,000/3,000) and Richard Yong, winner of the $100,000 Challenge for AU$1.87 million two days earlier, three-bet all-in for 307,000 over Ivey's opening bet of 55,000. Ivey called and both players opened their cards.
Ivey needed to catch to win the hand and the flop was no help but the on the turn shot Ivey into the lead. The on the river sent Yong out empty-handed in sixth place. The five remaining players were guaranteed a minimum of AU$551,000.
Erik Seidel was short-stacked and the first to go after the bubble broke when all of his chips went in with the against the Polk's . The board brought the , and Seidel, a former $250,000 Challenge champ, was gone in fifth place.
Mike "Timex" McDonald turned a flush and knocked Seiver out next. Seiver had bought in three times and by claiming the fourth-place purse, he only lost AU$15,000.
Polk was next to head for the cashier on the first hand after the dinner break. He three-bet all-in holding the and McDonald raised all-in with the . Ivey was the original raiser but folded to the raises. The flop brought the giving McDonald top pair but Polk was drawing live with a pair and a flush draw. The turned and the on the river sealed the deal.
Ivey had 3.61 million in chips to McDonald's 2.64 million when heads-up play began. Ivey went to work and chipped away at McDonald and then ended the tournament by grabbing a bit of luck when McDonald raised to 100,000; Ivey moved all-in; and McDonald snap-called for close to 1.3 million.
The flop smiled on Ivey — — and McDonald went from the best hand to needing an ace, jack, or two running tens. The turn followed by the river sent McDonald out as the runner-up – he took just under AU$1.6 million home. Ivey defended his LK Boutique $250,000 Challenge title and while doing so, moved into third place on the all-time money list which puts him ahead of Dan Colman.
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