2013 Aussie Millions - $1,100 NLHE/PLO Event

Final Table Live Updates

Yosuke SekiyaYosuke Sekiya wins Event 4: $1,100 No Limit Holdem / Pot Limit Omaha ($41,200)

Japan to Australia. It’s not a short trip, but it’s all been worth it for Yosuke Sekiya as he has become the Aussie Millions Event 4: $1,100 No Limit Holdem / Pot Limit Omaha champion!

The last two days have shown us just why Sekiya is considered one of the best players in Asia. After all, he is the reigning Asia Player of the Year after a huge twelve months in Macau that included a six-figure second-place finish in the Macau Poker Cup Championship.

With 206 players partaking in this event, Sekiya emerged on top with his inaugural victory on Australian soil. As soon as Sekiya snagged the victory, he placed the Aussie Millions Gold Ring on his finger and his friends greeted him on the rail.

We would like to congratulate Sekiya on his great effort that sees him add a new title and $41,200 to his ever-growing poker resume.

Final Table Payouts

1st  Yosuke Sekiya - $41,200
2nd  Sam Higgs - $28,840
3rd  Joe Cristallo - $20,600
4th  Mike Ivin - $17,510
5th  Justin Bradshaw - $15,450
6th  George McDonald - $13,390
7th  Seanglee Ang - $11,330
8th  Nick Nicolaou - $9,270
9th  Bernard Samuel - $7,210

Sam Higgs eliminated in 2nd place ($28,840); Yosuke Sekiya wins!

Sam Higgs (pictured) was starting to get desperate with a dangerously short chip stack of around ten big blinds when he needed to find a spot to double up.  And he found it when Yosuke Sekiya open-shoved Q diamsJ spades and Higgs snap-called with a dominant A clubsJ hearts.

The flop landed 8 spades8 diams3 hearts and Higgs looked like he’d only have to fade the ladies to land a key double up. But incredibly the 9 spades turn and 10 diams river brought a backdoor straight for Sekiya for an impressive victory.

Higgs takes home $28,840 for a fine tournament as Sekiya wins the Aussie Millions title for Japan along with $41,200 in prize money!

“I thought I was value betting!”

Yosuke Sekiya opened with a min-raise from the button to 48,000 and Sam Higgs defended his big blind with a call to see a A spades6 hearts6 spades flop.

Both players checked and the turn brought the 8 diams.  Again it was check-check, before the 7 diams completed the board on the river.

Higgs slid out a stack of yellow chips for a 100,000 bet, but Sekiya made a tentative call.  Higgs proudly opened J diams8 clubs but it wasn’t enough as Sekiya showed Q spadesQ diams to take it down.

“Ha! I thought I was value betting!” chirped Higgs who is now left with only 340,000 as Sekiya commands almost 1.7 million.

Higgs loses them back

Sam Higgs was recently gaining a bit of momentum, but has now lost plenty of chips back to his opponent Yosuke Sekiya.

A recent hand saw both players commit 112,000 preflop to watch the dealer spread out a K heartsK diams9 hearts flop. Sekiya was first to act and bet 90,000. Higgs called and then both players checked the J diams turn. On the 3 diams river, Sekiya checked and Higgs quickly bet 185,000. Sekiya thought quite hard before eventually calling.

“Busted flush,” said Higgs as he tabled 6 hearts5 hearts.

Sekiya then tabled his A diamsJ hearts and raked in the pot. Higgs is now back down to around 450,000 in chips, while Sekiya is up over 1,500,000.

Level Up, Blinds 12,000-24,000 (No Limit Holdem)

Huge double up for Higgs

It took until the final hand of Pot Limit Omaha for the level, but Sam Higgs has finally managed to land a double up through Yosuke Sekiya.

Sekiya opened with a min-raise from the button and Higgs called.  The flop landed A diamsK spades3 diams and Higgs passed the action over to Sekiya who bet 80,000.  Higgs announced pot and his bet of 240,000 was pushed into the middle.  Sekiya thought briefly before moving all in and Higgs called off the last 150,000 he had behind.

Sekiya: A spades10 spades10 diams9 diams
Higgs: A clubs3 hearts2 hearts9 spades

Higgs had two pair which was in front, and it only got better when the 3 clubs appeared on the turn to give him a full house. The river was the Q spades to see Higgs double to 900,000 with Sekiya a tick over 1.1 million.

“Just in time for Holdem!” laughed Higgs.

Straight flush gives Higgs some back

Sam Higgs had the button when he limped, while Yosuke Sekiya checked out of the big blind. Both players proceeded to check the 6 spades4 spades3 spades flop and a6 diams hit the turn. Sekiya led for 30,000 here and Higgs called.

The 7 spades completed the board on the river, at which point Sekiya checked. Higgs then bet pot – 100,000 – and Sekiya decided to call. When Higgs tabled his 5 spades8 spades10 spades10 diams for a straight flush, Sekiya’s cards went into the muck and Higgs won back some much needed chips.

Sekiya moves closer to victory

Yosuke Sekiya has been having a field day during heads-up play, scooping up plenty of chips to increase his chip lead. By the time a recent had played out, the board showed K heartsQ diams2 hearts5 spades7 spades and there was 220,000 in the pot by the river. It was here that Sekiya bet 150,000 and his opponent, Sam Higgs, thought long and hard before making the call. When Sekiya turned over K diamsQ clubs5 hearts2 clubs, the two-pair was enough to see Higgs’s cards hit the muck and Sekiya win the pot.

Following the above hand, Higgs has around 400,000 in chips, while Sekiya is in control with 1,660,000.

Sekiya applies the heat

Japan’s Yosuke Sekiya is pushing his advantage here in the early stages of this heads-up battle.  Sekiya raised the button to 40,000 and Sam Higgs made the call to see a flop of 2 spades5 clubsJ spades.

Higgs check-called for 50,000, before the 9 hearts hit the turn.  Another check from Higgs brought a bet of 150,000 from Sekiya, but Higgs instantly matched the bet as a big pot was brewing.

The river brought the 9 diams and Higgs checked again to Sekiya who didn’t waste any time in announcing “pot” for a bet of 480,000.

With Sekiya sitting casually back in his chair, enjoying a drink, Higgs deliberated for a few moments before giving it up.

Sekiya extends his lead to 1.5 million chips with Higgs back to 560,000.

Heads-up begins

The two remaining players, Yosuke Sekiya and Sam Higgs, have begun their heads-up battle. Below is how they stack up!

Sekiya - 1,280,000
Higgs - 785,000

Joseph Cristallo eliminated in 3rd place ($20,600)

“I just want the ring!” said Joseph Cristallo (pictured) after he managed a much needed double up shortly after the break. Unfortunately Cristallo won’t be able to make his dream come true now, as he has made his home in 2nd place.

Cristallo’s final hand saw him and Yosuke Sekiya commit a pot-sized raise preflop from the blinds, before Cristallo moved all in on the 5 diams8 spades2 spades flop. Sekiya made the call and Cristallo was at risk.

Sekiya: A clubs10 diamsK spades4 spades
Cristallo: A hearts8 hearts7 diams6 diams

Cristallo would need to fade some cards to stay alive. When the 9 spades hit the turn, Cristallo was already shaking hands with his opponents. The 6 hearts completed the board on the river, changing nothing and seeing Cristallo home in 3rd place.

Level Up, Blinds 10,000-20,000 (Pot Limit Omaha)

Break number one

The three remaining players have been sent on their fist 10-minute break of the day.

Joseph falling

Joseph Cristallo was once the chip leader, but has now fallen to around 300,000 in chips, while his opponents are towering closer to the seven-figure mark.

Cristallo recently lost more chips when Sam Higgs opened the button to 39,000, at which point Cristallo three-bet to 100,000. Higgs called and a K hearts9 heartsJ diams flop hit the felt. Cristallo opted to check here, while Grigg bet 100,000. Too strong for Cristallo, he let his cards go and Higgs scooped up the pot.

Sekiya’s lead grows

Yosuke Sekiya has been on a bit of a tear of late, scooping up another handy pot. This hand started with Joseph Cristallo completing in the small blind, at which point Sekiya tumbled out a raise to 40,000. Cristallo made the call and the dealer flipped over a 6 diams4 hearts10 diams flop.

When both players checked the flop, the J hearts hit the turn and Cristallo check-called a bet of 50,000. An A spades completed the board on the river and this time Cristallo led for 100,000. When Sekiya snapped off the call, Cristallo flung his cards into the muck and Sekiya scooped up the pot.

Sekiya is the first player to pass 1 million in chips!

Sekiya grabs the chip lead

Sam Higgs was on the button when he raised it up to 35,000. Joseph Cristallo got out of the way in the small blind, while Yosuke Sekiya three-bet to 80,000 from the big blind. Higgs put in the extra chips to make a call and the dealer readied three cards.

On the 10 clubs9 hearts4 hearts flop, Sekiya bet 80,000 and Higgs made the call. The 10 diams turn would see Sekiya this time check and Higgs bet 135,000.  Sekiya then moved his monster stack all in and Higgs went into the tank. Higgs eventually opted to fold, sending Sekiya the pot and a big chip lead with a stack of 950,000.

Mike Ivin eliminated in 4th place ($17,510)

And then there were three!

The action has been moving at a rapid pace at the final table of Aussie Millions Event 4, with Mike Ivin the latest player to find the rail.

Ivin, who started the day with one of the shorter stacks, found himself up against Sam Higgs on the final hand of his tournament. It was on a Q diamsQ hearts2 diams flop that all the chips went in the middle.

Higgs: J diams10 diams
Ivin: K diamsK hearts

Ivin was in front with his kings, but would need to dodge some diamonds. The J hearts turn gave Higgs a few more outs, but it was the 6 diams river that would be Higgs’s money card as Ivin was sent home in 4th place.

Higgs now takes to three-handed play with a similar stack to Yosuke Sekiya and Joseph Cristallo.

Justin Bradshaw eliminated in 5th place ($15,450)

One more down! Starting the day as the short stack, Justin Bradshaw has down well to claw to life and make it to five-handed play. Bradshaw’s tournament has now come to an end though, with Yosuke Sekiya the player to deal the fatal blow to Bradshaw.

Finding the button during his final moments, Bradshaw moved all in and found a call from Sekiya in the small blind.

Sekiya: J clubsJ diams
Bradshaw: 6 hearts6 diams

Bradshaw was up on his feet as the dealer spread out a K spades7 diams7 clubs5 hearts4 hearts board and unfortunately had to make his way out of the tournament area in 5th place.

Sekiya is our new chip leader!

Higgs sharing

It’s been a bad couple of minutes for Sam Higgs after doubling up our two short stacks in consecutive hands.

First it was Justin Bradshaw who was all in for just 35,000. Higgs was in the big blind and happy to commit with any two cards.  The 6 spades2 clubs was almost as bad as it gets, but he had live cards against Bradshaw’s K hearts10 clubs.

However it was pretty much over on the flop as the board of A spades10 heartsK diams4 clubs5 hearts gave Bradshaw two pair for a much needed double up.

It was then Mike Ivin’s turn to double his stack.  Ivin open-jammed the button for 117,000 with K clubs9 clubs as Higgs found 9 diams9 spades in the small blind and made the call.

The board arrived J heartsQ hearts6 diamsK diams2 spades to give Ivin a pair of kings for the double up.  Higgs is still well-placed, but just a little frustrated, with 450,000 in chips.

George McDonald eliminated in 6th place ($13,390)George McDonald

After a slow last half of the Pot Limit Omaha orbit, we have quickly lost a player during No Limit Holdem.

Folded to George McDonald on the button, he shipped all his chips in the middle. It was around 225,000, but in the end the amount didn’t really matter to Yosuke Sekiya, who woke up with K spadesK clubs in the big blind and snapped it off.

McDonald was needing plenty of help with his K hearts10 spades, but unfortunately the 6 clubsA hearts7 diams3 hearts8 spades board brought none.

McDonald collects $13,390 for his 6th place finish.

Following McDonald's elimination, Sekiya is now one of the chip leaders, with his stack up to around 500,000 in chips.

Level Up, Blinds 8,000-16,000, Ante 2,000 (No Limit Holdem)

The blinds have gone up, and with it comes a change of games.  We've finished with Pot Limit Omaha and will now be playing No Limit Holdem.

Seanglee Ang eliminated in 7th place ($11,330)Seanglee Ang

A short-stacked Seanglee Ang (pictured) committed his last chips preflop with J heartsJ spades2 spades3 hearts but ran into the A spadesA clubs2 diams2 hearts of the giant-killing Joe Cristallo.

With Cristallo’s rail yelling support from the rail, there were high-fives when the board was spread 4 spades7 hearts10 clubsQ clubs7 diams.

Cristallo’s aces hold to climb him into the chip lead with 660,000 as Ang picks up $11,300 for 7th place.

Bradshaw battles to double

Justin Bradshaw came into the final table as the short stack and was needing to double up. That's exactly what he has just done, picking up some chips off Japan's Yosuke Sekiya.

Bradshaw was under the gun when he moved all in for 48,000. Sekiya then raised the pot on Bradshaw’s left and a flurry of cards hit the muck from all directions of the table.

Sekiya: A clubsK clubsK hearts2 clubs
Bradshaw: A diamsA spades6 diams4 spades

Bradshaw wasn’t in terrible shape and it only got better as a 9 hearts5 diamsQ clubs2 hearts6 clubs board sent the double up to Bradshaw who now has around 115,000 in chips. Despite moving up to well over 400,000 earlier, Sekiya has taken a couple of hits and now sits with only 220,000.

Nick NicolaouNick Nicolaou eliminated in 8th place ($9,270)

It was the second time this week that Nick Nicolaou (pictured) had found himself on an Aussie Millions final table, after a fourth-place finish in the $1,100 Pot Limit Omaha event a few days ago. However the gold still eludes him after bowing out today in 7th place.

The hand started with Yosuke Sekiya opening with a min-raise to 24,000 in Pot Limit Omaha.  Nick Nicolaou raised the pot, and Sekiya quickly re-raised all in.

“Ok, let’s go!” said Nicolaou as the cards were on their backs.

Nicolaou: A clubsA heartsQ spades7 spades
Sekiya: K diamsK spadesJ hearts9 diams

It was aces against kings but it was Sekiya’s other two cards which formed the winning hand as the board ran out 7 heartsQ diams10 diamsK hearts5 clubs to make a king-high straight.

Nicolaou takes home $9,270 as Sekiya is now up to 450,000 chips.

Another all in

Just a few moments after we lost our first player and there has been another all in at the final table. This time it was veteran Mike Ivin who found himself all in on a 10 spades5 spadesJ hearts against Sam Higgs. Below is how the player’s cards looked.

Ivin: K diamsQ spades10 hearts8 diams
Higgs: Q hearts4 hearts9 spades7 spades

The 3 hearts on the turn and a 5 clubs on the river didn’t change the hand, with Ivin miraculously winning with just a pair of tens.  Following that hand Higgs is down to just around 450,000, while Ivin is looking good with over 250,000.

Bernard Samuel eliminated in 9th place ($7,210)

It didn't take long for our first all in at the final table. The player in question was Bernard Samuel as he and Joseph Cristallo put in a plethora of pot raises preflop to get all the chips in. Cristallo, one of our chip leaders, had Samuel well covered as Samuel was at risk of being sent home.

Samuel: A diams9 diams8 hearts7 hearts
Cristallo: A clubsA spades6 hearts2 spades

When the dealer flipped over a 8 spades9 spadesA hearts flop, Cristallo had hit a set of aces, while Samuel hit two pair. The 5 clubs on the turn gave Samuel plenty of outs to the straight, but Cristallo had four spades. When a 6 spades landed on the river, Samuel hit his straight, but fell to the might of a flush and was sent home in 9th place.

Let the cards fly

The players have scrambled into their seats, unbagged their chips and the cards are in the air!

The blinds commence at Level 20: 6,000-12,000, with Pot Limit Omaha being first on the agenda. Levels last 60 minutes each here at the final table, and of course, the game switches between No Limit Holdem and Pot Limit Omaha between each level.

Let's do it!

A total of 206 players took to the felt of the Crown Poker Room for their shot at Aussie Millions glory in Event #4: $1,100 No Limit Holdem/Pot Limit Omaha.

20 players would finish in the money with a min-cash worth $2,000 while first place will receive the gold ring and $41,200 in prize money.

The man best-placed to take down that handsome sum is Sam Higgs who will take a commanding chip lead into the final table of nine. George McDonald is next best, 2012 Asia Player of the Year Yosuke Sekiya has reached his first Aussie Millions final table, while Nick Nicolaou has reached his second final table in just a few short days.

Event #4: $1,100 No Limit Holdem/Pot Limit Omaha Final Table Lineup

Seat 1: Yosuke Sekiya - 320,000
Seat 2: Mike Ivin - 180,500
Seat 3: Nicholas Nicolaou - 117,000
Seat 4: Sam Higgs - 585,000
Seat 5: Joseph Cristallo - 320,000
Seat 6: George Mcdonald - 337,000
Seat 7: Seanglee Ang - 80,500
Seat 8: Justin Bradshaw - 65,500
Seat 9: Bernard Samuel - 109,000

The nine players above will be fighting it out for $41,200 and of course the all-important Aussie Millions Gold Ring. Below are the payouts for the Event 4 Final Table.

1st  - $41,200
2nd  - $28,840
3rd  - $20,600
4th  - $17,510
5th - $15,450
6th - $13,390
7th - $11,330
8th  - $9,270
9th - $7,210

The Poker Asia Pacific team will be live on the floor of the Crown Poker Room in Melbourne to bring you live updates of the final table from 2:00pm on Thursday January 24th.