At the turn of January, Jonathan Depa asked his Twitter followers if there was a waiting list for a SureFly Octocopter, a drone-like miniature helicopter that anyone can fly if you have a spare $200,000.
After winning the $25,000 buy-in Enjoy Punta del Este Super High Roller at the partypoker MILLIONS South America in Rio De Janeiro, Depa has a plan to accumulate that spare $200,000
The $25,000 buy-in Enjoy Punta del Este Super High Roller is one of two $25,000 high rollers on the MILLIONS South America schedule, but it’s the only one where the sponsor (Enjoy Punta del Este) gave $500,000 in complimentary casino chips to the final five players.
It’s the first $25,000 High Roller of the 2019 MILLIONS season, and the numbers are lower than anything the partypoker team saw in 2018. The £25k MILLIONS UK pulled in a crowd of 51 entrants, there were 47 in Sochi and Canada, 45 & 51 in Rozvadov, and 88 & 90 at the MILLIONS Barcelona Grand Final.
The Rio event captivated the interest of 41-entrants. The field might not be the same size as its 2018 counterparts, but the game was still as ferociously contended (it’s not an event you can advertise on a passing Rio bus).
Five people would make money, meaning three of the eight who made the final table would end up with nothing but a lava lamp bubble to show for their $25,000 (plus re-entries).
Triple Crown winner, Niall Farrell, began the final table with a chip lead twice the stack of his nearest competitor. Big piles can quickly become small piles, and that’s what happened when Farrell got it in threeway with pocket queens up against the ace rag of Ben Lamb and Patrick Mahoney. There were only two aces in the deck, and one of them emerged to triple-up Mahoney, send Lamb to the rail, and put a sizeable dent into the Great Wall of Farrell.
Farrell’s misery continued when Alex Keating doubled with pocket eights beating nine-deuce, and then he ran pocket jacks into the pocket kings of Depa. The mortal wound came when Farrell lost a flip against Mahoney, and John Cynn gobbled up the Scot’s last big blind.
The demise of the once mighty chip leader led to the money bubble, and Diego Zeitler took the honour running A8 into Cynn’s QT, with the reigning World Series of Poker (WSOP), Main Event Champion, turned a ten much to the joy of the remaining five players.
Ivan Luca was the first to exit after the bubble running K7 into the AT of Mahoney, Cynn moved all-in holding T9 in the small blind only for Depa to turn up with pocket kings in the big blind to send the World Champion to the rail in fourth place. And we were heads-up for the title after Mahoney lost a flip against Keating: KT<44.
It was Keating v Depa heads-up for the title.
Keating had a 50% win rate from four heads-up matches over the years, and Depa was experiencing a miserable run that had seen him lose all four of his professional heads-up encounters in the past eight months.
The pair exchanged the chip lead over two levels until the final hand saw Keating move all-in holding K3o, and Depa calling and holding with A6o to win the first live tournament of his career.
Here are the ITM finishes.
- Jonathan Depa – $410,000 (inc. $150,000 in casino chips)
- Alex Keating – $260,495 (inc. $125,000 in casino chips)
- Patrick Mahoney – $174,175 (inc. $100,000 in casino chips)
- John Cynn – $112,702 (inc. $75,000 in casino chips)
- Ivan Luca – $61,475 (inc. $50,000 in casino chips)
The second $25,000 of the partypoker MILLIONS South America is currently underway, and we will bring you news of the result as soon as it ends.