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"I'm gonna make this happen. Somehow, I'm gonna win one of these damn passes." After calling his shot earlier this year, Nathan Manuel has done it. He's won a PokerStars Players No-Limit Hold’em Championship Platinum Pass. Winning the Pass involved topping a field of 825 entries in the $86 buy-in Moneymaker PSPC Tour stop at Run It Up Reno. After 128 players hit the money, the field worked its way down to the final table. Manuel entered the final table with the chip lead and had to battle with a tough group of competitors, including three-time Run It Up Reno trophy winner Andrew Cha and Florida grinder Hayden Fortini, who finished in sixth and eighth places, respectively. In the end, Manuel was left to battle with Run It Up Reno regular Marty Gorenc. Manuel entered the heads-up match at a 3-1 disadvantage but ultimately prevailed. "I'm sure it has not sunk in," Manuel said 24 hours after the win. "I have not done the paperwork yet, but it'll probably feel more real once I do all of that and know what the situation looks like." Manuel has already been all over in his quest for a Platinum Pass, and knowing his opportunities were running out more and more by the day, he was prepared to jump overseas in his chase. "The thing that makes it the most real is that I was literally planning a trip to London to play two events there — a MegaStack and a £2,000 event that both had Platinum Passes, and I was trying to figure out any alternate ways that I might find to win a Pass. The fact that I'm not having to do that and go to these extra lengths to give myself more opportunities makes it feel more practically real, but I don't think the reality of accomplishing a goal has settled in yet." No matter how he won a Pass, Manuel would have felt a great success, but doing so in a Moneymaker PSPC Tour stop was something that resonated with Manuel as he drew some similarities between himself and Chris Moneymaker. "For me, poker is something that I love and something that I am passionate about," Manuel said. "I'm an everyday guy with a job, who, very much like Chris Moneymaker, lives a professional career, but this game opens up opportunities that are unique and that you can’t even anticipate. "I find myself in a place today where I have some opportunities and it's interesting to find myself in the position to play a $25K tournament that I clearly would never play based on my bankroll and based on the history I have playing poker," Manuel said. "My average tournament buy-in is sub-$1,000, so to have an opportunity to play something with the best players in the world in a field that’s going to be super unique in that it has all these people being added to it that likely are not professional players, it puts a really interesting spin on it. I do feel some relief that I’ve won a Pass because I came into this knowing that I was not a favorite to win a Pass." Now that he’s clinched a Pass and will be off to the Bahamas in January, Manuel is quick to change gears. Even though recognizes the odds weren’t in his favor to win a Platinum Pass, Manuel realizes that winning a Pass, albeit a very big accomplishment in itself, is only part of the larger goal. "All that I'm thinking about at this point is that the goal has now changed," Manuel said. "I'm not trying to win this Pass, I'm not trying to learn Japanese to win a Pass, which is something I wanted to do and I'm really excited I did, but now it's getting better at poker. Think about poker, think about poker at the highest level, think about poker at the level of $25K buy-in tournaments and the people who you’re going to be interacting with and playing with in that field, even though I know a huge percentage, probably half of the field, will be non-professionals. I hope and anticipate and expect of myself a lot. Part of that is expecting that I'll play well. Even if I don't make a deep run, that I'll play well for myself and be happy with the way that I play in that tournament for myself." You can follow Nathan Manuel on his quest to the PSPC via his Twitter account and his YouTube channel.
Over 9,000 Twitch viewers saw popular streamer and 888poker ambassador Parker 'Tonkaaa' Talbot take the silver medal in the PokerStars Sunday Million for $124,114 following a heads-up deal with eventual winner 'PokerDave476'. Talbot, who enjoyed success on the live poker felt after a sixth-place finish in the PokerStars EPT Prague Main Event last month for $203,626, agreed to a chop with 'PokerDave476' following 'Rus_us8''s exit in third place for $77,622. With $20,000 in the prize pool still to play for, the poker fans flocked to Talbot's Twitch stream to see if the Canadian could go all the way. Both players started with even chips before Talbot took a 2-1 lead, but the U.K.'s 'PokerDave476' pulled it back and was ultimately crowned victor for $144,114. Both players achieved their biggest online cashes to date in the process and added six-figures to their bankrolls. https://twitter.com/tonkaaaap/status/1087259669591150592?s=20 'Secret_M0d3' took down the PokerStars $2,100 Sunday High Roller for $48,431 after a heads-up deal with Johannes 'Greenstone25' Korsar. PokerStars Team Pro Igor Kurganov was the first player to fall from the final table of nine before his fellow Team Pro, and girlfriend Liv Boeree just missed out on a place on the podium after she finished in fourth-place for $24,182. Russia's 'Futti18' took the bronze for $45,435, before the final two agreed to a deal. 'Secret_M0d3' then got the better of Korsar during heads-up and banked $48,431, with Korsar settling for $45,435. 'Bjuran' came through a 1,005 player-field in the PokerStars $530 Bounty Builder High Roller to win over $76,000. 'DanielLUCKY' took the bronze medal for $22,243 + $7,710 in bounties and paved the way for the heads-up match. Germany's 'Tydarax' fell as runner-up for an online best score of $30,346 + $9,811, which left 'Bjuran' to be named the victor. 1,058 runners in the PokerStars $215 Sunday Warm-Up created a $211,600 prize pool and a $34,334 first-place prize. Among the players at the final table looking to take down the title were PocketFivers 'Easterdamn', 'newguy89 ', and 'LlKE A G6', but they all hit the rail before the well-known 'girafganger7' binked a bronze medal worth $17,749. 'Dabledore7' was then the unlucky final player to depart and took away $24,685 as runner-up with Russia's 'Egor699' claiming the gold medal and top prize. 'Mr.Water99' got the better of partypoker ambassador Anatoly 'NL_Profit' Filatov heads-up to take down the partypoker $1,050 Deepstack-HR. A field of 111 players created a $111,000 prize pool with 'chadi6969' taking the third-place prize worth $13,875. Filatov was looking to score another victory on his partner site, but was unable to get through the challenge from his opponent and exited as runner-up $19,425, with 'Mr.Water99' banking $27,195 as the winner. 'pockjack0' saw off the challenge of 61 opponents in the partypoker $2,600 Super Sunday High Roller to claim victory for $50,375. The prize pool was set at $155,000, and just beat the $150,000 guarantee. When the final eight came together Canadian High Roller Sam 'DeanMalenko' Greenwood was the first player to hit the rail, followed by partypoker ambassador Roberto 'Welsh_Wizard' Romanello who departed in seventh-place and eventually saw his team-mate Patrick Leonard eliminated in third-place for $22,475. 'RedDwarf9' was then the final player that 'pockjack0' needed to depart for victory, and the former fell with the silver medal for $34,000. Below are this week’s Sunday final table results: PokerStars Sunday Million ($200 + $15 NLHE) $1M Guaranteed 5,837 entrants, $1,167,400 prize pool PokerDave476 - $144,114.99* tonkaaa - $124,114.98* Rus_us8 - $77,622.29 Pseudo Fruto - $54,472.98 BuddyAces2 - $38,227.56 WhaTisL0v3 - $26,826.96 T0X16 - $18,826.42 rmullen - $13,211.93 icebearrr - $9,271.84 PokerStars $2,100 Sunday High Roller, $150k Gtd 121 entrants, $242,000 prize pool Secret_M0d3 - $48,431.57* Greenstone25 - $45,435.63* Futti18 - $31,420.09 Liv Boeree - $24,182.28 fish2013 - $18,611.73 raidalot - $14,324.41 pads1161 - $11,024.69 caecilius - $8,485.07 IgorKurganov - $6,530.49 PokerStars $530 Bounty Builder High Roller, $350k Gtd 1,005 entrants, $502,500 prize pool Bjuran - $41,401.47 + $35,099.99 (in bounties) Tydarax - $30,346.52 + $9,811.03 DanielLUCKY - $22,243.91 + $7,710.92 SwalzB - $16,304.71 + $3,224.61 NEWFlat - $11,951.30 + $6,595.72 Neanderthal4 - $8,760.28 + $7,289.06 serggorelyi7 - $6,421.27 + $4,282.22 progre69 - $4,706.76 + $1,500.00 cliff47 - $3,450.03 + $1,289.06 PokerStars $215 Sunday Warm-Up $175k Gtd 1,058 entrants, $211,600 prize pool Egor699 - $34,334.00 Dabledore7 - $24,685.91 girafganger7 - $17,749.36 LlKE A G6 - $12,761.95 newguy89 - $9,175.94 fellatiado - $6,597.60 CPUrul0r - $4,743.73 Easterdamn - $3,410.80 john220764 - $2,452.40 partypoker $1,050 Sunday High Roller $100k Gtd 114 entrants, $114,000 prize pool CASHEEEGAMEEE - $25,786.71* BuyThaPot - $22,093.30 SouthftfW - $14,250 haddoken - $9,975 DeanMalenko - $7,410 DamianLillard - $5,700 adolfnitler.ftw - $4,560 Drulitooo - $3,705 partypoker $1,050 Sunday Bounty Hunter – HR $150k 167 entrants, $170,340 prize pool SpiritDNA - $18,478.55 + $21,198.13 (in bounties) p0kchkmonsta - $13,276.50 + $7,101.25 rdcrsnn - $9,686 + $2,470 omgitsgiraf - $6,930.50 + $5,776.87 jizonhisniz - $4,843 + $1,690 spinner2255 - $3,757.50 + $1,495 VeGeTTo99 - $2,922.50 + $3,867.50 Lord_Rav3n - $2,296.25 + $1,170 partypoker $2,600 Super Sunday High Roller $150k Gtd 62 entrants, $155,000 prize pool pockjack0 - $50,375 RedDwarf9 - $34,000 Patrick_Leonard - $22,475 MOTHERSMATTERS - $13,950 chadi6969 - $10,850 eet_smakelijk - $8,525 Welsh_Wizard - $7,362.50 DeanMalenko - $7,362.50 partypoker $1,050 Deepstack-HR $100k Gtd 111 entrants, $111,000 prize pool Mr.Water99 - $27,195 NL_Profit - $19,425 chadi6969 - $13,875 AlSaherrr - $9,712.50 rafaelmoraesgm - $7,215 ABOUDIABY2 - $5,550 VolZoK_ - $4,440 chaAat - $3,607.50 888poker $215 Sunday Mega Deep 479 entrants – $100,000 prize pool Texxxas_ - $17,592.86* robbiish1 - $16,257.14* GoinInDry - $11,000 ultraviol3nt - $8,250 lasochobi - $5,700 Romeopro33 - $4,400 PokerJoe332 - $3,400 tier999111 - $2,400