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Found 17 results

  1. The second 'Galfond Challenge' is complete and once again Phil Galfond is the winner. On Tuesday, Galfond finished his challenge against Ioannis 'ActionFreak' Kontonatsios, winning approximately €115,000 from play and a €150,000 side bet. Although Galfond lost the final session by about €123,000, it wasn't enough to overcome the lead Galfond had. Entering the final session, Galfond was up nearly €240,000. 'ActionFreak' gave it a good run on the final day but it ultimately wasn't enough. Galfond and 'ActionFreak' played 15,000 hands of €150-300 PLO. With the result, 'ActionFreak' lost a combined €265,000 to Galfond. The victory was the second Galfond Challenge match win for Galfond. He had previously defeated 'VeniVidi1993' in an epic comeback that resulted in Galfond winning €101,671.58 from 'VeniVidi1993.' Through the two complete Galfond Challenge matches, Galfond is up a total of €366,000. Galfond also has an ongoing match against Bill Perkins that is just more than 1,000 hands complete. In that competition, Galfond is up more than $90,000. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] The challenge against 'ActionFreak' played out a bit different than the one against 'VeniVidi1993.' Against 'VeniVidi1993,' Galfond was getting crushed through the first 15 sessions and it even appeared that Galfond might forfeit the match and move on. After taking an extended break, Galfond returned to battle with 'VeniVidi1993' and mounted a comeback for the ages to win that Galfond Challenge match. Against 'ActionFreak,' Galfond held the overall lead virtually from start to finish. Of the 16 sessions that were played, Galfond was only behind overall following the first two sessions. Following a win of more than €310,000 in the third session and more than €113,000 in the fourth session, Galfond never looked back. Through 10,000 hands, Galfond was up six figures. Galfond then won €165,000 and €179,000 on back-to-back days of May 21 and May 22, which pushed his lead to more than €450,000 overall. From there, Galfond held on to the finish. In the final session, 'ActionFreak' did what he could to battle back but the hole he was in proved too deep to climb out of. One aspect that likely helped Galfond maintain his lead was a feature that was added to the challenge later on. Galfond and 'ActionFreak' were aware that partypoker, where they were playing the challenge, was going to be implementing a feature that all all-in pots would be run twice in games in private rooms. The Galfond Challenge between the two was being played in a private room on partypoker. Eventually, the two had to run all of the all-in pots twice. If 'ActionFreak' was looking to gamble more and increase the variance to try and cut his deficit, a variance-reducing feature such as running it twice wouldn't be in his favor. Galfond vs. 'ActionFreak' Results Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 Day 5 (May 4) 680 ActionFreak €95,304.17 Day 6 (May 5) 734 ActionFreak €78,919.35 Day 7 (May 7) 746 Phil Galfond €26,980.36 Day 8 (May 9) 944 Phil Galfond €165,093.85 Day 9 (May 11) 721 ActionFreak €256,044 Day 10 (May 12) 776 Phil Galfond €19,003.35 Day 11 (May 14) 784 ActionFreak €23,363.64 Day 12 (May 15) 710 ActionFreak €57,580.53 Day 13 (May 16) 716 Phil Galfond €48,169.76 Day 14 (May 19) 740 ActionFreak €61,136.84 Day 15 (May 21) 832 Phil Galfond €165,417.31 Day 16 (May 22) 674 Phil Galfond €179,545.58 Day 17 (May 23) 725 ActionFreak €180,000 Day 18 (May 24) 840 Phil Galfond €135,000 Day 19 (May 25) 820 ActionFreak €168,000 Day 20 (May 26) 881 ActionFreak €123,000 - - - - Total 15,000 Phil Galfond €114,803.51 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? As mentioned, Galfond has a challenge against Perkins that has already started, so he'll be able to resume that whenever the two are able. Sessions between Galfond and Perkins have been more sporadic but will likely pick up now that Galfond's battle against 'ActionFreak' is done. Galfond could also start playing one of his other challenges as well, such as the one against Chance Kornuth.
  2. The 'Galfond Challenge' between Phil Galfond and Ioannis 'ActionFreak' Kontonatsios is coming to an end and the two could wrap it up in one final session. Heading into that final session with 886 hands left to be played, Galfond is in the lead by €237,698.66. On Thursday, May 21, the two played a session that saw Galfond come out as the winner by more than €165,000. The next day, Galfond added another €180,000 or so in a 674-hand session against 'ActionFreak.' On Saturday, the two were back at it for another 725 hands of €150-300 PLO. This time, 'ActionFreak' bounced back with a €180,000 win of his own. The battling kept up on Sunday and the two played another 840 hands. Galfond booked a win in this session, coming away €135,000 to the good. This put Galfond up €405,698.66 entering Monday's session. At the time, the two had just over 1,700 hands of their 15,000-hand challenge left to be played. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] Monday's session saw Galfond and 'ActionFreak' go back and forth for 820 hands, only the session was more in favor of 'ActionFreak.' On Monday, 'ActionFreak' booked a €168,000 win to cut his deficit by a good chunk. Now he'll head into what is expected to be the final session down less than eight buy-ins, which is still a lot but it's not the 13.5 buy-ins he was down before Monday's session. The two are playing €150-300 PLO with a €30,000 buy-in. Galfond has a nice cushion entering the next session, but the Galfond Challenge between these two could still see 'ActionFreak' come back and win. Remember, we've already seen one incredible comeback from a Galfond Challenge match. Helping 'ActionFreak' to book the win on Monday was the following €69,412.26 pot that went his way. The two have been running all-in pots twice over the past few sessions and this hand was one that saw 'ActionFreak' win both runs of the board.  'ActionFreak' started the action with a raise to €900 and then Galfond reraised to €2,700. 'ActionFreak' made it €8,100 to go and Galfond five-bet to €24,300. 'ActionFreak' called and the flop came [poker card="Qd"][poker card="7c"][poker card="4c"]. Galfond moved all in for his remaining €11,551.83 and 'ActionFreak' called off for €10,406.63. Galfond had the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="As"][poker card="7s"][poker card="3s"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Td"][poker card="9d"][poker card="8h"][poker card="6h"]. On the first run-out, the turn was the [poker card="Kd"] and the river was the [poker card="Jh"] to give 'ActionFreak' a straight to the king. On the second run-out, the turn was the [poker card="5c"] and the river was the [poker card="Qc"] to give 'ActionFreak' another straight, this time to the eight. Another one that Galfond lost was worth €67,514.32. Again, 'ActionFreak' scooped both pots after the two got the money in on the flop and the board was run twice.  With €5,399 in the middle on the [poker card="Jd"][poker card="8h"][poker card="3c"][poker card="2s"] flop, Galfond checked and 'ActionFreak' bet €2,699.50. Galfond check-raised to €13,497.50 and 'ActionFreak' shoved. Galfond called off his remaining €17,560.16. Galfond had the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Ah"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="7d"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="9d"][poker card="8d"][poker card="8s"][poker card="5d"]. On the first board, the turn was the [poker card="Qs"] and the river was the [poker card="4h"]. On the second board, the turn came the [poker card="2s"] and the river came the [poker card="Qh"]. 'ActionFreak' was able to win both boards with a set of eights and pull in the whole pot. One final highlight that we'll look at from Monday's session again involved 'ActionFreak' taking the full pot despite the two running it out twice. This time, it was only the river that was run twice because the money went in on the turn.  With €4,173.68 in the middle on the [poker card="Qs"][poker card="8d"][poker card="4s"][poker card="3c"] board, Galfond checked and 'ActionFreak' bet the full pot. Galfond raised to €16,694.72 with €19,315.94 behind and 'ActionFreak' shoved all in. Galfond called. It was a set-over-set clash with Galfond's [poker card="Js"][poker card="8s"][poker card="8h"][poker card="2c"] up against the [poker card="Qh"][poker card="Qd"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="5h"]. The first river was the [poker card="2h"] and the second river was the [poker card="5d"]. Both rivers kept 'ActionFreak' with the best hand and he won the full €76,195 pot. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 Day 5 (May 4) 680 ActionFreak €95,304.17 Day 6 (May 5) 734 ActionFreak €78,919.35 Day 7 (May 7) 746 Phil Galfond €26,980.36 Day 8 (May 9) 944 Phil Galfond €165,093.85 Day 9 (May 11) 721 ActionFreak €256,044 Day 10 (May 12) 776 Phil Galfond €19,003.35 Day 11 (May 14) 784 ActionFreak €23,363.64 Day 12 (May 15) 710 ActionFreak €57,580.53 Day 13 (May 16) 716 Phil Galfond €48,169.76 Day 14 (May 19) 740 ActionFreak €61,136.84 Day 15 (May 21) 832 Phil Galfond €165,417.31 Day 16 (May 22) 674 Phil Galfond €179,545.58 Day 17 (May 23) 725 ActionFreak €180,000 Day 18 (May 24) 840 Phil Galfond €135,000 Day 19 (May 25) 820 ActionFreak €168,000 - - - - Total 14,114 Phil Galfond €237,698.66 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? The challenge between Galfond and 'ActionFreak' has fewer than 900 hands to go and the session scheduled for Tuesday, May 26, 2020, is likely the final session between these two. The winner of the challenge (the player up money over the other player at the end of 15,000 hands) will earn an additional €150,000 side bet from his opponent.
  3. Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' played for roughly six hours on Thursday, May 21, to push their 'Galfond Challenge' match to an estimated 11,000 hands complete. The session was the 15th between the two high-stakes players and it resulted in a big win for Galfond. On Thursday, Galfond won €165,417.31 off of 'ActionFreak.' Entering the day, Galfond was in the lead by €103,341.37. With this latest win, Galfond's lead has been stretched to €271,153.08. Galfond and 'ActionFreak' are playing 15,000 hands of €150-300 PLO, so they have about 4,000 hands remaining. The matches have been playing out on partypoker. At the end of the 15,000-hand sample, the leader will earn an additional €150,000 from his opponent. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] There were plenty of big pots played on Thursday and we'll start by taking a look at the first all-in clash of the day. It resulted in a €64,452.90 pot going Galfond's way.  Galfond raised to €900 on the button, 'ActionFreak' raised to €2,700 from the big blind, and then Galfond made it €8,100 to go. 'ActionFreak' called the four-bet and the flop was [poker card="Jc"][poker card="4s"][poker card="2s"]. 'ActionFreak' checked, Galfond bet €16,199 for the full pot, and 'ActionFreak' went all in. Galfond called for €24,126.95 total. Galfond had the [poker card="As"][poker card="Ad"][poker card="9c"][poker card="4h"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Jh"][poker card="6c"][poker card="5c"]. The turn was the [poker card="8s"] and the river was the [poker card="8c"] to give Galfond the win. Things continued to go Galfond's way when he won an €87,153.98 pot thanks to hitting a full house on the river against a turned straight for 'ActionFreak.'  With €21,596 in the middle on the [poker card="Kh"][poker card="9s"][poker card="7h"][poker card="Qs"] board, 'ActionFreak' was first and bet the full pot. Galfond took his time and then shoved all in for €32,778.99. 'ActionFreak' quickly called. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Qc"][poker card="Js"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="Tc"] for a straight. Galfond had the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="9h"][poker card="5s"] for two pair and a flush draw. The river was the [poker card="Kd"] to give Galfond a full house and he won the pot. Galfond also won a €71,044.64 pot with a club flush.  On the [poker card="9d"][poker card="5c"][poker card="3c"] flop, there was €5,399 in the middle and 'ActionFreak' checked to Galfond, who bet €2,699.50. 'ActionFreak' check-raised to €13,497.50 and Galfond went all in for €32,822.82. 'ActionFreak' made the call. Galfond had the [poker card="7c"][poker card="6c"][poker card="5s"][poker card="3d"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Ah"][poker card="9c"][poker card="2d"]. The turn was the [poker card="7d"] and the river was the [poker card="Kc"]. Galfond finished with a club flush and scooped in the pot. Viewers were also treated to a rare six-bet all-in pot that took place on Thursday, resulting in a €66,995.08 pot going Galfond's way.  Galfond started the preflop action by raising to €900. After 'ActionFreak' raised to €2,700, Galfond bumped it up to €8,100. 'ActionFreak' then made it €24,300 to go with €9,197.54 behind. Galfond reraised to put 'ActionFreak' all in and 'ActionFreak' called. Galfond had the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="As"][poker card="Qs"][poker card="9s"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="9d"][poker card="8h"]. The flop, turn, and river ran out [poker card="Ah"][poker card="7c"][poker card="4h"][poker card="3d"][poker card="5d"] and Galfond pulled in the pot. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 Day 5 (May 4) 680 ActionFreak €95,304.17 Day 6 (May 5) 734 ActionFreak €78,919.35 Day 7 (May 7) 746 Phil Galfond €26,980.36 Day 8 (May 9) 944 Phil Galfond €165,093.85 Day 9 (May 11) 721 ActionFreak €256,044 Day 10 (May 12) 776 Phil Galfond €19,003.35 Day 11 (May 14) 784 ActionFreak €23,363.64 Day 12 (May 15) 710 ActionFreak €57,580.53 Day 13 (May 16) 716 Phil Galfond €48,169.76 Day 14 (May 19) 740 ActionFreak €61,136.84 Day 15 (May 21) 832 Phil Galfond €165,417.31 - - - - Total 11,054 Phil Galfond €271,153.08 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? The challenge between Galfond and 'ActionFreak' will continue on Friday, May 22, with more €150-300 PLO action. The two have 3,945 hands to go.
  4. The 'Galfond Challenge' between Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' is now 10,222 hands complete. The two played sessions on Saturday, May 16, and Tuesday, May 19, and the current standings have Galfond in the lead by €103,341.37. On Saturday, Galfond and 'ActionFreak' battled for 716 hands. From that session, Galfond picked up a €48,169.76 win to take his lead to €164,478.21. On Tuesday, the two played 740 hands and 'ActionFreak' won €61,136.84. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] The first all-in pot of Tuesday went Galfond's way to the tune of €73,910.11.  On the final board of [poker card="Jh"][poker card="9c"][poker card="5c"][poker card="Ah"][poker card="3h"], 'ActionFreak' checked and Galfond moved all in for €22,797.50. Before Galfond shoved, the pot stood at €32,394. 'ActionFreak' tanked for a bit and then called. Galfond showed the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="Th"][poker card="4d"] for a heart flush and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Qs"][poker card="Td"][poker card="7h"]. Later on in the match, 'ActionFreak' picked up the following €44,632.44 pot when he made a straight on the river.  With €14,877.48 in the middle on the [poker card="9c"][poker card="7s"][poker card="2d"][poker card="9h"][poker card="5h"] board, Galfond was first to act. He bet the full pot and 'ActionFreak' made the call. Galfond showed the [poker card="Js"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="7c"][poker card="6c"] but it was the [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Qd"][poker card="8s"][poker card="6s"] for 'ActionFreak' that won the pot. Another big one that 'ActionFreak' won was this next one we'll review, a €94,377.02 pot in which 'ActionFreak' flopped a straight.  Galfond bet €1,781.67 into a pot of €5,399 on the [poker card="Jc"][poker card="Td"][poker card="8h"] flop. 'ActionFreak' raised to €6,262.84 and Galfond called. The turn was the [poker card="6h"] and Galfond checked. 'ActionFreak' bet the pot for €17,924.68 and Galfond raised all in for €38,226.17. 'ActionFreak' called. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Kd"][poker card="Qd"][poker card="9d"] for a flopped straight and Galfond had the [poker card="Jh"][poker card="Th"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="9s"]. The river was the [poker card="5s"] and 'ActionFreak' won the pot. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 Day 5 (May 4) 680 ActionFreak €95,304.17 Day 6 (May 5) 734 ActionFreak €78,919.35 Day 7 (May 7) 746 Phil Galfond €26,980.36 Day 8 (May 9) 944 Phil Galfond €165,093.85 Day 9 (May 11) 721 ActionFreak €256,044 Day 10 (May 12) 776 Phil Galfond €19,003.35 Day 11 (May 14) 784 ActionFreak €23,363.64 Day 12 (May 15) 710 ActionFreak €57,580.53 Day 13 (May 16) 716 Phil Galfond €48,169.76 Day 14 (May 19) 740 ActionFreak €61,136.84 - - - - Total 10,222 Phil Galfond €103,341.37 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? The challenge between Galfond and 'ActionFreak' is now more than two-thirds of the way through and there are just 4,778 hands remaining. The six-figure lead that Galfond has may seem like a lot, but it's not too much more than three buy-ins of a lead. The two are scheduled to be back in action on Thursday, May 21, for more €150-300 PLO battling.
  5. Two more sessions of the 'Galfond Challenge' between Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' are in the books. The two are on the back nine of the 15,000-hand challenge. With 8,766 hands complete, Galfond is in the lead by €116,308.45. On Thursday, the two battled for 784 hands of €150-300 PLO and pushed past the halfway point in the challenge. 'ActionFreak' was the winner during that session, picking up €23,363.64 off Galfond and cutting his deficit to €173,888.98. On Friday, Galfond and 'ActionFreak' were back at it and played another 710 hands. It was again 'ActionFreak' who booked the win, taking €57,580.53 off Galfond this time. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] Helping 'ActionFreak' to pick up the winning session was the following €75,507.68 pot that went his way.  After four-bet preflop action, 'ActionFreak' and Galfond took the [poker card="4s"][poker card="4h"][poker card="3h"] flop. 'ActionFreak' checked and Galfond bet €3,995 into the pot of €16,199. 'ActionFreak' raised to €11,977.37 and Galfond reraised to put 'ActionFreak' all in. With €17,676.97 behind, 'ActionFreak' made the quick call. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Kh"][poker card="6d"][poker card="5h"][poker card="4d"] and Galfond had the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Ac"][poker card="9c"][poker card="7h"]. The turn was the [poker card="7d"] and the river was the [poker card="7s"]. 'ActionFreak' had turned a straight and held from there to win the big pot. Another four-bet pot that took place was the following one, and this time it was Galfond winning the €61,797 affair.  Galfond had made it €900 to go on the button, 'ActionFreak' reraised to €2,700, and then Galfond made it €8,100. 'ActionFreak' called. With a stack of €22,799, 'ActionFreak' checked the [poker card="Td"][poker card="9s"][poker card="3s"] flop. Galfond bet the full pot (€16,199) and 'ActionFreak' moved all in. Galfond made the call. Galfond had the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Jd"][poker card="5d"][poker card="4c"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="8c"][poker card="6c"][poker card="6s"][poker card="5s"]. The turn was the [poker card="Kd"] and the river was the [poker card="Tc"]. Galfond's hand was best and he hauled in the pot. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 Day 5 (May 4) 680 ActionFreak €95,304.17 Day 6 (May 5) 734 ActionFreak €74,625.85 Day 7 (May 7) 746 Phil Galfond €26,980.36 Day 8 (May 9) 944 Phil Galfond €165,093.85 Day 9 (May 11) 721 ActionFreak €256,044 Day 10 (May 12) 776 Phil Galfond €19,003.35 Day 11 (May 14) 784 ActionFreak €23,363.64 Day 12 (May 15) 710 ActionFreak €57,580.53 - - - - Total 8,766 Phil Galfond €116,308.45 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? Galfond and 'ActionFreak' plan to be back at the virtual tables on Saturday, May 16, and they'll battle for another four or five hours. They're past the halfway point of the challenge and there are 6,234 hands remaining. At the end of the 15,000 hands, the player who is up will win an additional €150,000 side bet from the other player.
  6. The 'Galfond Challenge' between Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' had another 776 hands played on Tuesday, May 12, pushing the match to 7,272 hands complete. When it was all said and done, Galfond was the session's winner, taking €19,003.35 off 'ActionFreak.' At 7,272 hands, the 15,000-hand challenge is now more than 48% of the way through. Overall, Galfond is in the lead by €197,252.62. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] Galfond and 'ActionFreak' are playing €150-300 Pot Limit Omaha. At the current pace, Galfond is winning €2,712.49 per 100 hands, which comes to 9.04 big blinds per 100 hands. When the 15,000 hands are complete, whoever is up will win a €150,000 side bet from the other player, which comes in addition to any money that is won on the felt. One of the big highlights from Tuesday's session was the following one that involved an all-in pot on both tables after the two saw almost identical flops.  On the right, Galfond and 'ActionFreak' had €5,399 in the middle on the [poker card="Qc"][poker card="6c"][poker card="5s"] flop. 'ActionFreak' checked, Galfond bet €2,699.50, and 'ActionFreak' raised to €13,497.50. Galfond went all in for €27,449 and 'ActionFreak' made the call. Galfond showed the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Qs"][poker card="5d"][poker card="3c"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Qd"][poker card="Td"][poker card="5c"][poker card="4c"]. The turn was the [poker card="Jh"] and the river was the [poker card="9s"]. Both players finished with two pair, queens and fives, and they chopped up the €60,297 pot. The table on the left had a different result, though. In that one, 'ActionFreak' pulled in a €59,999 pot. 'ActionFreak' check-raised Galfond's €1,223.32 bet to €4,025.44 on the [poker card="Qc"][poker card="5d"][poker card="4c"] flop. Galfond then made it €8,950.38 and 'ActionFreak' reraised to €28,650.14. Galfond shoved for a tiny bit more, €29,100 total, and 'ActionFreak' called. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Qs"][poker card="Td"][poker card="6c"][poker card="5c"] and Galfond had the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="4h"]. The turn was the [poker card="Jh"] and the river was the [poker card="5s"]. 'ActionFreak' finished with a full house and won the pot. A big one that went Galfond's way was this next one worth €79,398. He won it with a set of jacks against the lower set of fives that 'ActionFreak' held.  'ActionFreak' checked the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Jh"][poker card="5h"][poker card="8s"] board with €4,245.64 in the middle. Galfond bet the pot and 'ActionFreak' raised to €16,982.56. Galfond went all in and 'ActionFreak' called off his remaining €19,045.13. Galfond had the [poker card="Kh"][poker card="Js"][poker card="Jd"][poker card="7d"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="7c"][poker card="5c"][poker card="5s"][poker card="3h"]. The river was the [poker card="3d"] to keep Galfond in the lead and give him the pot. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 Day 5 (May 4) 680 ActionFreak €95,304.17 Day 6 (May 5) 727 ActionFreak €74,625.85 Day 7 (May 7) 746 Phil Galfond €26,980.36 Day 8 (May 9) 944 Phil Galfond €165,093.85 Day 9 (May 11) 721 ActionFreak €256,044 Day 10 (May 12) 776 Phil Galfond €19,003.35 - - - - Total 7,272 Phil Galfond €197,252.62 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? Galfond and 'ActionFreak' plan to be back in action on Thursday, May 13, 2020. We can expect another four or five hours of action and around 750 hands to be played.
  7. The 'Galfond Challenge' between Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' was back in action on Monday. It was the ninth session of €150-300 PLO between the two and 721 hands were played. At the end of the session, Galfond had lost €256,044 to 'ActionFreak.' Despite the big loss, Galfond remained in the lead overall in this Galfond Challenge. The two have played 6,496 hands of their 15,000-hand challenge and Galfond is up €178,249.27 total. Helping Galfond to maintain his overall lead was a €165,093.85 win he had on Saturday. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] With almost 6,500 hands in the books, the Galfond Challenge between Galfond and 'ActionFreak' is almost 50% of the way through. They've been averaging more than 700 hands per session (nearly 800 hands per session if you throw out the first session being cut short due to connectivity issues). That means there should be about 11 sessions left before this Galfond Challenge has a winner. At the end of the 15,000 hands, the player that is up will win €150,000 from the other player, in addition to the money that is won from playing. Monday was a tough day for Galfond, as 'ActionFreak' seemed to get the best of him left and right. That doesn't mean Galfond didn't win some big pots himself, though, and that's where we'll start. But, to win this €69,042.20 pot, Galfond had to find a saving card on the river.  Galfond bet €1,799 on the [poker card="8d"][poker card="3h"][poker card="2h"][poker card="9s"] board and 'ActionFreak' raised to €7,196. Galfond made it €23,287 with €10,234.60 behind and 'ActionFreak' shoved all in. Galfond made the call. Galfond had the [poker card="8s"][poker card="8h"][poker card="7h"][poker card="2s"] for a set of eights and a flush draw. 'ActionFreak' had a better set holding the [poker card="9c"][poker card="9d"][poker card="7s"][poker card="5c"]. The river was the [poker card="8c"] to give Galfond quads and he won the pot. The next pot we'll look at was worth €66,646.50 and it went over to 'ActionFreak' after he made a heart flush.  With €5,399 in the middle on the [poker card="Qs"][poker card="8h"][poker card="2h"] flop, 'ActionFreak' checked and Galfond bet €2,699.50. 'ActionFreak' raised to €13,497.50 and Galfond went all in for €30,623.75. 'ActionFreak' made the call. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Kh"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="8s"] and Galfond had the [poker card="Qs"][poker card="Js"][poker card="8c"][poker card="4c"]. The turn was the [poker card="9d"] and the river was the [poker card="9h"]. With that heart on the river, 'ActionFreak' made a flush and won the pot. Another big one that went over to 'ActionFreak' was this €70,330.03 one after both players made trips. The problem for Galfond was that 'ActionFreak' had the better kicker.  With €26,887.02 in the middle on the [poker card="Jc"][poker card="Th"][poker card="4s"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="6c"] board, Galfond checked and 'ActionFreak' bet the full pot. Galfond had €16,555.99 in his stack and made the call. Galfond showed the [poker card="Qc"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="8d"][poker card="2d"] for trip tens with a queen kicker. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="As"][poker card="Td"][poker card="9c"][poker card="8s"] for trip tens with an ace kicker and he scooped the pot. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 Day 5 (May 4) 680 ActionFreak €95,304.17 Day 6 (May 5) 727 ActionFreak €74,625.85 Day 7 (May 7) 746 Phil Galfond €26,980.36 Day 8 (May 9) 944 Phil Galfond €165,093.85 Day 9 (May 11) 721 ActionFreak €256,044 - - - - Total 6,496 Phil Galfond €178,249.27 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? Galfond and 'ActionFreak' plan to be back in action on Tuesday, May 12, 2020. We can expect another four or five hours of action and around 750 hands to be played.
  8. Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' returned for more €150-300 Pot Limit Omaha action on Thursday, May 7, for what was the seventh session of the 'Galfond Challenge' between the two. They played on partypoker again, with Galfond winning around €20,000 on the day. With the result, Galfond is up more than €250,000 overall. The two are just about one third of the way through the 15,000-hand challenge, but it's still anyone's game because the swings are big. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] Speaking of swings, there were several on Thursday, including the first big all-in pot of the day that saw 'ActionFreak' scoop a €64,115.50 pot.  'ActionFreak' made it €900 on the button and Galfond reraised to €2,700 from the big blind. 'ActionFreak' kicked it up to €8,100 and Galfond called. On the [poker card="9d"][poker card="5c"][poker card="4s"] flop, Galfond led with a pot-sized bet of €16,199. 'ActionFreak' went all in for €23,958.25 and Galfond made the call. Galfond had the [poker card="Jh"][poker card="Th"][poker card="9s"][poker card="6s"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Jd"][poker card="9c"][poker card="8d"]. The turn was the [poker card="Ts"] to give Galfond the lead with two pair, but the [poker card="Kh"] on the river gave 'ActionFreak' a better two pair and he won the pot. Another big one that 'ActionFreak' won involved him snap-calling Galfond on the river with quads aces, and it won him a €63,282.34 pot.  'ActionFreak' checked the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="8d"][poker card="3c"][poker card="9s"][poker card="As"] board with €26,887.02 in the middle. When he checked, 'ActionFreak' had €18,197.66 left in his stack and Galfond covered. Galfond took his time and then jammed all in. 'ActionFreak' snap-called to show Galfond the bad news. Galfond had the [poker card="Qh"][poker card="Jh"][poker card="5d"][poker card="2h"] for a whole bunch of nothing. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Ac"][poker card="7c"][poker card="3h"] for quad aces and he hauled in the pot. A third big pot that went the way of 'ActionFreak' was this next one worth €74,437.64.  With €5,399 in the middle on the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="2c"] flop, Galfond fired a pot-sized bet and 'ActionFreak' raised to €21,596. Galfond moved all in, having 'ActionFreak' covered, and 'ActionFreak' called off his remaining €12,923.32. Galfond had the [poker card="Th"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="5s"][poker card="4h"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Jc"][poker card="Jh"][poker card="4c"]. The turn was the [poker card="9c"] and the river was the [poker card="3d"]. 'ActionFreak' finished with a club flush and won the pot. Despite all of the big pots that 'ActionFreak' won, Galfond won his fair share of them, too, including this one worth more than €67,000.  On the [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="8h"][poker card="6h"][poker card="4c"] board, there was €25,042.08 in the middle and Galfond was first to act. He bet the full pot and 'ActionFreak' made the call for his remaining €17,478.46. Galfond had the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Jc"][poker card="9s"][poker card="7h"] for a straight. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Js"][poker card="Th"][poker card="2d"] and lost with two pair. Galfond also won a pot worth more than €80,000 with another straight, using the same nine and seven to make it.  Again, it was Galfond firing a pot-sized bet on the river, this time for €26,887.02 on the [poker card="Qd"][poker card="6h"][poker card="5d"][poker card="8h"][poker card="Kc"] board. 'ActionFreak' called but could only muck his hand when Galfond showed the [poker card="9s"][poker card="8s"][poker card="7c"][poker card="6s"].
  9. Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' were back in action on Tuesday, May 5, for another session of the 'Galfond Challenge.' This time, they battled for 727 hands of high-stakes PLO, with 'ActionFreak' winning €74,625.85. The two are now 4,078 hands through the 15,000-hand challenge, which is just more than 27% of the way through. Overall, Galfond is out in front by €246,512.56. The two are playing €150-300 PLO, with play going between Run It Once Poker and partypoker. Once the 15,000 hands are complete, the winner will also earn a €150,000 side bet from the other player. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] During Monday's session, it was revealed that 'ActionFreak' was Ioannis Kontonatsios. Helping 'ActionFreak' to book the win on Tuesday was winning the following €102,238.08 hand.  The final board was [poker card="Qs"][poker card="Jc"][poker card="4h"][poker card="Kc"][poker card="7d"] and there was €42,302.24 in the middle. Galfond bet the pot, which was enough to put 'ActionFreak' all in. 'ActionFreak' had €29,967.92 left and tank-called. 'ActionFreak' showed a king-high straight with the [poker card="Jd"][poker card="Jh"][poker card="Th"][poker card="9c"] and beat Galfond's [poker card="Ts"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="6d"][poker card="5s"] to win the pot. Although he did finish down almost €75,000 on the session, the beating that Galfond took wasn't that bad when you consider his loss is only two and a half buy-ins at the stakes they're playing. One of the big pots Galfond won on Tuesday was this next one, in which he hauled in a pot of €61,231.98 with a set of eights.  On the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="8h"][poker card="3d"] flop, Galfond fired a pot-sized bet of €5,399 and 'ActionFreak' raised to €21,596. Galfond went all in for €27,916.49 total and 'ActionFreak' called. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Kh"][poker card="9d"][poker card="4h"][poker card="3s"] and Galfond had the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Td"][poker card="8c"][poker card="8s"]. The turn was the [poker card="6c"] and the river was the [poker card="Jd"] to give Galfond the win. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 Day 5 (May 4) 680 ActionFreak €95,304.17 Day 6 (May 5) 727 ActionFreak €74,625.85 - - - - Total 4,078 Phil Galfond €246,512.56 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? Galfond and 'ActionFreak' will have a day off on Wednesday, but that doesn't mean there won't be some action to sweat. Galfond is having a mini challenge against Dan 'Jungleman' Cates of €100-200 PLO on Run It Once Poker and they'll play 750 hands. On Thursday, May 7, Galfond and 'ActionFreak' will be back at it.
  10. After winning more than €300,000 on Thursday, Phil Galfond returned to the 'Galfond Challenge' battlefield Friday to capture another six-figure win from his opponent, 'ActionFreak.' Friday marked the fourth session of €150-300 PLO on Run It Once Poker between the two. They went to war for 665 hands and Galfond finished up €113,377.48. Now, 2,671 hands through the 15,000-hand match, Galfond is ahead by €416,442.58. As we've come to expect from Galfond and 'ActionFreak,' the swinging started early. A few dozen hands into Friday's session, the two got all the money in and Galfond picked up a €61,321.50 pot.  Galfond started with a raise on the button to €900 and 'ActionFreak' three-bet to €2,700. Galfond four-bet to €8,100 and 'ActionFreak' made the call. On the [poker card="8h"][poker card="5d"][poker card="3c"] flop, 'ActionFreak' checked and Galfond fired a pot-sized bet of €16,199. 'ActionFreak' shoved all in for €22,561.25 and Galfond called. 'ActionFreak' had flopped top set with the [poker card="8c"][poker card="8s"][poker card="7d"][poker card="7h"]. Galfond had the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Ah"][poker card="Jc"][poker card="5c"]. The turn brought the [poker card="Kc"] and increased Galfond's chances for a backdoor flush draw and then the river completed that draw with the [poker card="7c"]. Galfond had a club flush and raked in the pot. Although that pot helped Galfond to take an early lead, 'ActionFreak' fought back to get back in front on the session. But not long after the way passed the 200-hand mark, Galfond got some big value from a full house.  There was €11,229.92 in the middle on the [poker card="Qh"][poker card="9c"][poker card="3s"][poker card="Qc"] board and 'ActionFreak' fired €3,705.87. Galfond called and the river was the [poker card="Ts"]. 'ActionFreak' checked and Galfond put out a pot-sized wager of €18,641.66. 'ActionFreak' tank-called. Galfond showed the [poker card="Qd"][poker card="Th"][poker card="6c"][poker card="2d"] for a full house, queens over tens. 'ActionFreak' couldn't beat it and mucked his hand, sending the €55,924.98 pot Galfond's way. Then, nearing the end of the session, Galfond took an interesting line with his bet sizing and scooped in a pot north of €40,000.  With €10,798 in the middle on the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Js"][poker card="8s"][poker card="Jd"] board, Galfond fired €1,500. 'ActionFreak' made the call and the river was the [poker card="6h"]. Galfond bet the full pot for €13,798 and 'ActionFreak' made the call. Galfond revealed the [poker card="As"][poker card="Ah"][poker card="Jh"][poker card="6c"] for a full house, jacks over sixes, and 'ActionFreak' mucked. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 - - - - Total 2,671 Phil Galfond €416,442.58 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? Galfond and 'ActionFreak' were originally scheduled to return to action on Saturday, May 2, but then opted to take the day off. They'll be back in action either Sunday, May 3, or Monday, May 4. With 2,671 hands in the books, this challenge is nearly 20% complete. Galfond is up €416,442.58, but keep in mind that Galfond and 'ActionFreak' are playing higher stakes at €150-300 and a buy-in of €30,000.
  11. On Monday, Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' squared off for their fifth session of the 'Galfond Challenge' between them. Galfond finished down €95,304.17 on the session. Galfond remains up overall, sitting positive by €321,138.41. The two played 680 hands on Monday and are now 3,351 hands through the 15,000-hand challenge. Reason that the exact figures aren't known for this session is that Galfond and 'ActionFreak' played Monday's session on partypoker instead of on Run It Once Poker because 'ActionFreak' was said to have a tough time moving money around. Because the match was played on partypoker, the two played with what is assumed their real names to be showing. That lets us know who 'ActionFreak' is, as his name was showing as 'I. Kontonatsios.' His Twitter profile, @crackLiNg1, says that he is from Greece, so putting those two things together gives us Ioannis Kontonatsios as the identity of 'ActionFreak.' The biggest pot of Monday was one that eclipsed €120,000 and went Galfond's way after he found a very favorable river card.  With €16,199 in the middle on the [poker card="Kh"][poker card="7s"][poker card="4d"] board, Galfond checked and 'ActionFreak' bet $10,691.34. Galfond called and the [poker card="Qs"] hit the turn with the pot at €37,581.68. Galfond had €42,223.89 left in his stack and bet the full pot. 'ActionFreak' shoved and Galfond called off the rest. Galfond had the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="9d"][poker card="6d"] and was in some trouble against the [poker card="As"][poker card="Kd"][poker card="Js"][poker card="8d"] of 'ActionFreak.' The river was the [poker card="6c"] and out of nowhere Galfond hit a winning two pair to win the €122,029.46 pot. A big one that went the way of 'ActionFreak' was this €83,121.64 one.  'ActionFreak' made it €900 on the button, Galfond reraised to €2,700 from the big blind, and 'ActionFreak' fired in a four-bet to €8,100. Galfond called and the flop came down [poker card="Kc"][poker card="3c"][poker card="2h"]. After Galfond checked, 'ActionFreak' bet €16,199 for a pot-sized bet. Galfond shoved for €33,461.32 and 'ActionFreak' called. Galfond had the [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Js"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="9c"] and was up against the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Ah"][poker card="Kh"][poker card="Jd"] of 'ActionFreak.' The turn was the [poker card="Ks"] and the river was the [poker card="6s"]. Holding trip kings with an ace kicker, 'ActionFreak' pulled in the pot. 'ActionFreak' also won a pot worth €97,182, thanks to flopping an eight-high straight.  On the [poker card="7s"][poker card="6s"][poker card="5h"][poker card="3h"][poker card="Tc"] board, there was €32,394 in the middle and 'ActionFreak' checked over to Galfond. Galfond fired a pot-sized bet and 'ActionFreak' made the call. Galfond showed a losing [poker card="Kh"][poker card="Jc"][poker card="9h"][poker card="2c"] and 'ActionFreak' won the pot with the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="8h"][poker card="7c"][poker card="4c"]. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 Day 4 (May 1) 665 Phil Galfond €113,377.48 Day 5 (May 4) 680 ActionFreak €95,304.17 - - - - Total 3,351 Phil Galfond €321,138.41 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? Galfond and 'ActionFreak' will be back action on Tuesday, May 5. It is yet to be known if they'll return to play on Run It Once Poker or if they'll stick to playing on partypoker.
  12. The third session of the 'Galfond Challenge' between Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' took place on Thursday. The session lasted 844 hands and saw Galfond score a huge €310,594.59 win. Overall, the 15,000-hand match is is now 2,006 hands complete and Galfond is up €303,065.10. At the end of 15,000 hands of €150-300 PLO on Run It Once Poker, the player who is up will win an additional €150,000 from the other. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] With Galfond having such a dominating day, let's take a look at some of the biggest pots he won on Thursday. The first big pot we'll highlight from Thursday's session was one worth €76,193 and it involved Galfond making quad aces, if you can believe it.  The pot was €8,962.34 on the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Qs"][poker card="4d"][poker card="5d"] board and Galfond checked. 'ActionFreak' fired €4,839.66 and Galfond check-raised to €23,481.32. 'ActionFreak' shoved all in for €33,615.33 and Galfond quickly called. Galfond had the [poker card="As"][poker card="Ac"][poker card="Th"][poker card="8d"] for top set of aces. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Jc"][poker card="Td"][poker card="5s"][poker card="5c"] for a set of fives and a straight draw. The river was the [poker card="Ad"] to give Galfond four-of-a-kind aces and he hauled in the pot. Later on, Galfond won another big one, this time to the tune of €99,104.96 when he turned a Broadway straight against 'ActionFreak.'  Galfond bet €2,699.50 into a pot of €5,399 on the [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="8h"] flop. 'ActionFreak' raised to €13,497.50 and Galfond came back over the top with a reraise to €45,891.50. 'ActionFreak' shoved and Galfond called off his remaining €961.48. Galfond had the [poker card="As"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="Jd"][poker card="Js"] and 'ActionFreak' showed the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Th"][poker card="8c"][poker card="2h"]. The turn was the [poker card="Ad"] and the river was the [poker card="3c"]. With that, Galfond had a Broadway straight and won the pot worth just shy of six figures. The final pot we'll highlight from Thursday involved another winning straight for Galfond, this time to take down a €70,356.28 pot.  We pick this one up with €16,197 in the middle on the [poker card="Th"][poker card="9d"][poker card="4s"][poker card="Qs"] board. 'ActionFreak' led with a pot-sized bet and Galfond made the call. The river was the [poker card="Ah"]and 'ActionFreak' shoved all in for €19,655.38, which covered the €10,882.64 that Galfond had left. Galfond made the call. Galfond had the [poker card="Jd"][poker card="Td"][poker card="8d"][poker card="6s"] for a straight to the queen. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="As"][poker card="Ad"][poker card="4h"][poker card="4c"] for a set of aces and the pot went Galfond's way. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 Day 3 (Apr. 30) 844 Phil Galfond €310,594.59 - - - - Total 2,006 Phil Galfond €303,065.10 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? Galfond and 'ActionFreak' will be back in action on Friday, May 1. Right now, Galfond is currently playing two challenges. He has this one that kicked off against 'ActionFreak' and he's also playing the one against Bill Perkins. The match against 'ActionFreak' will be played more regularly with sessions against Perkins worked in here and there. For details on all of the matches, check out PocketFives' dedicated Galfond Challenge hub.
  13. On Tuesday, the 'Galfond Challenge' between Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' continued with the second session between the two. After the first session was cut short due to connectivity issues, the second session lasted a lengthy 1,017 hands. In the end, Galfond finished up on the session by just €3,632.83, but he was up around €200,000 at times during the session. Galfond and 'ActionFreak' are scheduled to play 15,000 hands of €150-300 PLO on Run It Once Poker. After two sessions, they're 1,162 hands through and 'ActionFreak' is up €7,529.49 overall. Remember, the winner of the challenge wins a €150,000 side bet from the other player. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] Galfond jumped out to lead early in the second session and then he started to pull away. Just a few dozens hands in, when he was up €15,000-€20,000 on the day, Galfond hauled in a €76,492.50 pot with a wheel.  There was €13,389.52 in the middle on the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Ks"][poker card="4h"][poker card="8c"] board. 'ActionFreak' bet €8,837.08 and Galfond called to see the [poker card="2s"] complete the board on the river. 'ActionFreak' shoved all in for €22,714.41 and Galfond quickly called. Galfond had rivered a wheel with the [poker card="Qc"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="5s"][poker card="3c"]. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="As"][poker card="Kc"][poker card="7h"][poker card="6s"] and saw the big pot go Galfond's way. Not too long after, Galfond picked up another big one, this time with a full house to scoop a pot worth €63,895.  'ActionFreak' checked the [poker card="Kd"][poker card="9d"][poker card="9c"][poker card="6d"] board and Galfond fired a pot-sized bet of €8,098.50. 'ActionFreak' made the call and the river was the [poker card="Kh"]. After 'ActionFreak' checked, Galfond shoved all in for €19,799.75. 'ActionFreak' made the call. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="8d"][poker card="6h"][poker card="6s"] for a full house, sixes over kings. Galfond had a better full house, though, holding the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="9h"][poker card="7c"][poker card="3d"] and he won the pot. The big winning continued for Galfond shortly thereafter again, and this time it was a straight that allowed him to capture a pot of more than €80,000.  With €11,229.92 in the middle on the [poker card="Qd"][poker card="4h"][poker card="3d"][poker card="6s"] board, 'ActionFreak' checked and Galfond bet €7,636.35. 'ActionFreak' check-raised to €34,138.97, leaving himself with €1,135.83 behind, and Galfond shoved. 'ActionFreak' quickly called and the cards were revealed. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Kh"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="6d"] and Galfond had the [poker card="7c"][poker card="6h"][poker card="5s"][poker card="4s"]. The river was the [poker card="Kc"] and Galfond's seven-high straight won him the pot. Galfond was up well over the €100,000 mark when the following €59,999 pot played out that gave him even more chips.  'ActionFreak' fired a pot-sized bet of €1,799 on the [poker card="Js"][poker card="9h"][poker card="5h"][poker card="3d"] board and Galfond raised to €5,100. 'ActionFreak' fired back with a reraise to €17,099 and Galfond made the call. The [poker card="7s"] came on the river and 'ActionFreak' moved all in for €12,001. Galfond called. Galfond showed down the [poker card="Kh"][poker card="7h"][poker card="6c"][poker card="4d"] for a seven-high straight. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Jc"][poker card="Jd"][poker card="8d"][poker card="4s"] for a losing set of jacks. Eventually, 'ActionFreak' started to find some momentum and mount a comeback on the session. Again, Galfond was up around €200,000 at points during the session, but he only won €3,632.83 on the day. One of the big ones that went the way of 'ActionFreak' was this next one.  There was €26,890.34 in the middle on the [poker card="Jd"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="7c"][poker card="5h"][poker card="3d"] board. 'ActionFreak' moved all in for €19,840.17 and Galfond called. 'ActionFreak' showed the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="8h"][poker card="6s"][poker card="4s"] for a seven-high straight to beat Galfond's [poker card="As"][poker card="Ac"][poker card="Kh"][poker card="9s"] and win the €66,570.68 pot. 'ActionFreak' won another monster by making a big call on the river for his entire stack.  The final board was [poker card="Qh"][poker card="6s"][poker card="3h"][poker card="6h"][poker card="9c"] and there was €25,483.28 in the middle. Galfond bet the pot, which was enough to put 'ActionFreak' all in. 'ActionFreak' had €23,247.53 left and made the call. 'ActionFreak' had a flush with the [poker card="Qs"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="Th"][poker card="9h"] and he beat Galfond's [poker card="Kh"][poker card="9s"][poker card="8d"][poker card="5d"] to win the €71,978.34 pot. Then, 'ActionFreak' scooped an enormous pot worth €96,436.40.  Preflop, Galfond made it €900 on the button, 'ActionFreak' reraised to €2,700 from the big blind, and Galfond reraised to €8,100. 'ActionFreak' called and the flop was [poker card="7s"][poker card="4h"][poker card="2h"]. 'ActionFreak' checked and Galfond potted it for €16,199. 'ActionFreak' jammed all in for €40,118.70 and Galfond called to create a pot worth nearly €100,000. Galfond had the [poker card="Qh"][poker card="Jh"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="7c"] for top pair and a flush draw. 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Kh"][poker card="5h"][poker card="2s"] for a pair of kings and a better flush draw. The turn was the [poker card="Kc"] and the river was the [poker card="Jd"]. With that, 'ActionFreak' won the pot and took a huge chunk from Galfond. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 Day 2 (Apr. 28) 1,017 Phil Galfond €3,632.83 - - - - Total 1,162 ActionFreak €7,529.49 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? Galfond and 'ActionFreak' plan to resume action with another session on Thursday, April 30, after taking a day off. Right now, Galfond is currently playing two challenges. He has this one that kicked off against 'ActionFreak' and he's also playing the one against Bill Perkins. The match against 'ActionFreak' will be played more regularly with sessions against Perkins worked in here and there. For details on all of the matches, check out PocketFives' dedicated Galfond Challenge hub.
  14. On Monday, the 'Galfond Challenge' between Phil Galfond and 'ActionFreak' kicked off. The first session was ultimately cut short after just 145 hands were played, but there was still some big action to report as 'ActionFreak' jumped out to an early €11,162.32 lead. Galfond and 'ActionFreak' are scheduled to play 15,000 hands of €150-300 PLO on Run It Once Poker. The two put up an equal side bet of €150,000 each that will go to the match winner in addition to any money won on the virtual felt. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] Shortly into the first session, Galfond jumped out to the lead. He was up about €20,000 before he gave some back, but then Galfond was able to pick up a chunk of chips off 'ActionFreak' in the following pot.  On the [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Jc"][poker card="4c"][poker card="Th"][poker card="6s"] board, there was €1,799 in the middle. After 'ActionFreak' checked, Galfond bet €899.50. 'ActionFreak' fired back with a raise to €4,497.50, but Galfond was strong to the test and made the call. 'ActionFreak' showed the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="9c"][poker card="2d"] for just a pair of tens. Galfond had the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Jd"][poker card="8h"][poker card="4h"] for two pair, jacks and fours, and he won the pot. READ: Galfond's Five Biggest Pots Between Against 'VeniVidi1993' The first all-in pot of the session came in the form of a €59,999 pot that ended up being chopped between the two.  On the [poker card="Jh"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="5c"] flop, there was €5,399 in the middle and ActionFreak' fired a pot-sized bet. Galfond raised to €21,596 and 'ActionFreak' went all in for €27,300 total. Galfond called. Galfond had the [poker card="Jd"][poker card="9h"][poker card="8d"][poker card="7d"] and 'ActionFreak' had the [poker card="Jc"][poker card="9s"][poker card="8c"][poker card="7h"]. The turn was the [poker card="2d"] and the river was the [poker card="Kh"] and the players chopped up the pot. A big pot that helped 'ActionFreak' finish up on the session was one in which he made a hero call against Galfond to scoop a pot worth €59,999.  With €26,887.02 in the middle on the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="6h"][poker card="3h"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="2s"] board, Galfond bet all in for €16,555.99. After some thought, 'ActionFreak' made the call with the [poker card="Kh"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="4h"][poker card="4d"]. His pair of kings was good against the [poker card="9h"][poker card="7c"][poker card="6c"][poker card="5h"] of Galfond and 'ActionFreak' pulled in the pot. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Apr. 27) 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 - - - - Total 145 ActionFreak €11,162.32 What's Next for the Galfond Challenge? Galfond and 'ActionFreak' plan to resume action with another session on Tuesday, April 28. Right now, Galfond is currently playing two challenges. He has this one that kicked off against 'ActionFreak' and he's also playing the one against Bill Perkins. The match against 'ActionFreak' will be played more regularly with sessions against Perkins worked in here and there. For details on all of the matches, check out PocketFives' dedicated Galfond Challenge hub.
  15. "I'm gonna keep playing." Those were the words that Phil Galfond posted on Run It Once's website regarding the 'Galfond Challenge' against 'VeniVidi1993,' with the post coming just more than two weeks after Galfond suspended the match. That was it. Short and sweet. Although he is an extremely busy man these days, Galfond took some time to sit down with PocketFives ahead of the restart against 'VeniVidi1993,' which comes on Wednesday, March 4. "First, I spent some time with family and took a short poker break," Galfond said of what he's been doing to regroup. "For the last week or two, I've been practicing, mostly in $25-50 heads-up Zoom pools, against tough competition." [ptable zone=“GG Poker”][ptable zone=“Party Poker NJ”][ptable zone=“Global Poker Article Ad”] Galfond and 'VeniVidi1993' are slated to play 25,000 hands of heads-up €100-€200 Pot Limit Omaha on Run It Once Poker. Through 9,927 hands of play, Galfond is down more than €900,000 to his opponent. While that's an astronomical sum to many, it's a downswing that Galfond has experienced before. "In terms of absolute dollar value, it's not anywhere near my biggest [downswing], as I used to play 3-5 times these stakes regularly," Galfond told PocketFives. "In terms of buy-ins, I think it's getting up there, but to be honest I don't know. I've jumped around games and stakes so much during my career that I never kept track of a downswing in terms of buy-ins. I suppose that might mean I haven't had too many bad ones!" In the time off, Galfond has been able to do a lot of thinking on the current challenge, and he's thought about where he would like it to go. As things stand, Galfond is down more than 45 buy-ins to 'VeniVidi1993' and all signs point to him losing the additional €200,000 side bet he put up against the €100,000 of 'VeniVidi1993.' As the match goes forward, Galfond's task is focused on cutting into the deficit some now that he’s regrouped. "I'd like to end around minus €400,000," Galfond said. "Obviously, that's ambitious and there's a lot out of my control, so I'll try to focus on playing my best and keeping my mindset strong." Throughout the play against 'VeniVidi1993,' Galfond has received a ton of support from the poker community. Galfond is certainly viewed as the hero by almost everyone watching. "It has felt great, but to be honest I would much rather they support and rally behind Run It Once Poker than me!" Galfond said. "I've played poker for a decade and a half. I've been through plenty of downswings and I'm going to be just fine no matter the outcome of these challenges. What we're trying to do with Run It Once is much more important than my short-term results at the tables." Despite the hit, Galfond's bankroll has taken from battling with 'VeniVidi1993,' he said the challenge has been performing well on the promotional and marketing side as it pertains to Run It Once Poker. "It's been great for Run It Once so far," Galfond said. "We've got a lot of momentum building in these last few months and traffic has been getting better and better. I'm hopeful that with the challenge continuing, so will the trend. More traffic leads to better experiences for our players, which leads to more traffic, and so on. I'm rooting for that as much as or more than myself in these challenges." Starting with Wednesday's session, the Galfond Challenge against 'VeniVidi1993' is back on. After it's complete, Galfond has a handful of other challengers lined up, including Bill Perkins, Brandon Adams, Chance Kornuth, Dan 'Jungleman' Cates, and high-stakes online poker player 'ActionFreak.' There is even a challenge match on the table against Luke Schwartz, who has been quite vocal on social media, calling Galfond a "washed up nice guy" and saying that "it's clearly time to wave the white flag" about Galfond playing against 'VeniVidi1993.' Galfond said that he plans to play Schwartz as part of the Galfond Challenge, but that the details haven't been ironed out yet. Galfond said the match is likely to take place after the 2020 World Series of Poker. Although the challenge against 'VeniVidi1993' hasn’t gone in his favor, Galfond said that the toughness he has faced has only helped him and should put him in a better position for future challenge matches. "A difficult challenge like this to start has accelerated my learning curve, so I think that balances out the negatives (feeling less confident after losing so consistently)," Galfond said.
  16. Down more than €900,000 in his 'Galfond Challenge' match against 'VeniVidi1993,' Phil Galfond is opting to suspend his play against 'VeniVidi1993' for the time being. Galfond and 'VeniVidi1993' have battled across 15 sessions at €100-€200 PLO on Run It Once Poker, Galfond's online poker site. Through those 15 sessions, 9,927 hands were played and Galfond was down €900,240.17. The three most recent sessions have set Galfond back €419,016.77 alone. Galfond and 'VeniVidi1993' had a day off on Monday and were planned to play another session on Tuesday, but it was called off. "I was playing scared," Galfond wrote in a statement he released on Twitter. "I was expecting to lose. I simply couldn't get my brain to work properly." [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] Galfond pointed out that, contrary to what may be the common belief, the most difficult thing wasn't the money. "It's the gap between the result and your expectations," he said. Galfond said the two had six more sessions planned in February and that missing those sessions will see Galfond take a per-session penalty of about €3,000 each. Galfond and 'VeniVidi1993' were slated to play 25,000 hands, with Galfond risking €200,000 in side action to the €100,000 of 'VeniVidi1993.' In his note, Galfond said he is going to suspend playing anymore sessions against 'VeniVidi1993' until at least March 1. When March 1 rolls around, Galfond will decide if he's going to continue to battle with 'VeniVidi1993' or call it off. If Galfond does elect to call it off and accept defeat, he'll have to pay 'VeniVidi1993' the €200,000 side bet. "I hope I feel prepared to come back and put on a good show for you all, but I know that realistically, as much as I don't want to, there's a chance I'll have to just take the loss," Galfond said. The individual sessions have not been good to Galfond, who won just two of the 15 times he and 'VeniVidi1993' played. One of those winning sessions for Galfond saw him finish up just €2,615.26. Challenge Results To Date Hands Played Daily Winner Amount Won Day 1 (Jan. 22) 655 VeniVidi1993 €72,572.68 Day 2 (Jan. 23) 715 Phil Galfond €2,615.26 Day 3 (Jan. 24) 557 VeniVidi1993 €84,437.52 Day 4 (Jan. 25) 581 VeniVidi1993 €17,544.87 Day 5 (Jan. 27) 726 VeniVidi1993 €155,063.52 Day 6 (Jan. 28) 703 VeniVidi1993 €13.31 Day 7 (Jan. 30) 823 VeniVidi1993 €52,057.13 Day 8 (Jan. 31) 940 VeniVidi1993 €60,743.37 Day 9 (Feb. 1) 446 VeniVidi1993 €12,706.51 Day 10 (Feb. 3) 696 VeniVidi1993 €100,993.30 Day 11 (Feb. 4) 741 VeniVidi1993 €15,647.36 Day 12 (Feb. 6) 622 Phil Galfond €87,940.91 Day 13 (Feb. 7) 470 VeniVidi1993 €267,949.70 Day 14 (Feb. 8) 593 VeniVidi1993 €48,473.73 Day 15 (Feb. 9) 659 VeniVidi1993 €102,593.34 - - - - Total 9,927 VeniVidi1993 €900,240.17 In addition to playing against 'VeniVidi1993,' Galfond has five other competitors lined up for the Galfond Challenge. He's locked in details with Bill Perkins, Brandon Adams, Chance Kornuth, Dan 'Jungleman' Cates, and high-stakes online poker player 'ActionFreak.' Those matches have their own specific terms, stakes, and length of play, but no timetable has been set for when they will take place. In his note, Galfond did say that he had planned to start playing another match in the Galfond Challenge at the end of February and that he still hopes to make this happen.
  17. As Phil Galfond prepares to embark on an ambitious series of heads-up Pot Limit Omaha challenges against six competitors, PocketFives Managing Editor Donnie Peters talked to the three-time WSOP bracelet winner. In the second of two features, Galfond discusses the motivation behind the challenge and what it's like for him to step back into the world of high stakes online cash. Read Part 1: One Year In, Phil Galfond’s Run It Once Poker Just Getting Started Phil Galfond loves a good challenge. He built a professional poker career on challenging himself against the best players in the world at limits most of us can only dream about. After he conquered that, Galfond took on the even greater challenge of starting a brand new online poker site, Run It Once Poker, in the post-Black Friday world. Although his latest challenge is far from complete, it hasn't stopped Galfond from dusting off the high-stakes boxing gloves and getting back into the ring. Recently, Galfond challenged the poker world to high-stakes, heads-up poker. He called out coaches not part of the Run It Once team and everyone else who wanted to battle. "The idea came together in a few stages," Galfond said. "First, I noticed that my RunItOnce.com video views were dropping, and I thought to myself, 'Well, that makes sense - I don't play much anymore so they probably don't think I have much to teach them.' I felt that I still had a lot to teach people and, moreover, that the way they're being taught elsewhere can in some ways be detrimental to their development, so I came up with the idea initially to 'prove' that to them. This is when I came up with the coach challenge of 3-1 odds on a 50,000-hand match. "After running that by some of the team, a couple of things became clear. First, that it was unlikely a coach would take me up on that. Second, that this could also be a great promotion for Run It Once Poker. From there, it turned into the more open challenge that you've seen." The Challenges Galfond now has at least six matches lined up to start and plans to start this month, with the possibility of more challengers to come. The players he’ll be taking on are Bill Perkins, Brandon Adams, Chance Kornuth, Dan 'Jungleman' Cates, and two online poker players known as 'ActionFreak' and 'VeniVidi1993.' "I've missed it so, so much," Galfond said when asked if he misses playing poker as much as he used to. "I love playing, and I have absolutely been less fulfilled, professionally-speaking, since I stopped playing full-time. I can't wait to play again." All of these 'Galfond Challenges,' as they’re being called, will be played in Pot Limit Omaha, across various stakes and a set number of hands. Not only will the two sides be battling to win each other’s money, but there are side bets involved with huge sums of money on the line. Against Perkins, the two will be playing €100-€200 PLO over 50,000 hands and there is a $400,000 stop-loss in place. Galfond is laying 4-1 odds to Perkins, with his $800,000 on the line against Perkins’ $200,000. The match against Adams will be $100-$200 PLO and played in a live setting. Instead of playing a set number of hands, the two will play for 40 hours. Galfond has put up $150,000 to the $100,000 of Adams. For the duel against Kornuth, Galfond has the most side action on the line. The two will play 25,000 hands of €100-€200 PLO, with Galfond risking €1 million on the side to Kornuth’s €250,000. Against Cates, Galfond will play 7,500 hands at €100-€200 PLO, but the side action has still yet to be determined. Galfond will then play €150-€300 PLO for 15,000 hands against 'ActionFreak' and €100-€200 PLO against 'VeniVidi1993' for 25,000 hands. Against 'ActionFreak,' Galfond is wagering €150,000 to his opponent's €100,000. Against 'VeniVidi1993,' it's Galfond's €200,000 on the line against the €100,000 for 'VeniVidi1993.' "Losing to Chance or Bill Perkins and the Thirst Lounge will be the most costly, but I'd say I expect 'Jungleman' and 'ActionFreak' to be my toughest opponents," Galfond said. "I also think that a longer match is favorable to my skill set as a player, and 'Jungleman's' is the shortest, so I guess that's the one I feel I'm most likely to lose." All told, Galfond has around $2.4 million in side action on the line from these six matches already lined up. That’s in addition to whatever is at stake from playing the matches themselves. He’s giving 4-1 odds to Perkins and Kornuth, but then he’s playing for even side action against 'ActionFreak.' If he wins all of these matches, Galfond will win around $850,000 in side action. "In short, I think I laid odds appropriately for the most part," Galfond said. "Some of my challenges are at 1-1 odds - I'm less confident in those ones." Preparing for Battle Galfond told PocketFives that he had planned to study for these matches a lot but hasn’t had as much time as he had hoped. He has enlisted the help of some friends to learn how to use solvers, which he said was "long overdue for a high-stakes player like myself". But, time is running out and the challenges will be here very soon. "I'm trying to focus on areas where I'm playing the furthest from optimal and figuring out why that is - what I'm missing," Galfond said. Much like you see boxers make in-fight adjustments on the fly or in between rounds, Galfond knows there’s only so much he can do ahead of time to prepare and that he has to be willing to adapt throughout. It’s these in-game adjustments that Galfond’s views as a strength that he’ll look to lean on during the matches. "For the most part, I've always had a lot of success heads-up," he said. "I believe I do a very good job of adjusting to individual opponents, which is why I'm excited about some of the longer matches. I plan to spend a good amount of time breaking down my opponents in between sessions." He’ll also be juggling family life and work life in the middle of all of this. Galfond said he’s worked on a schedule with his wife, Farah, that should allow him to maintain a good balance. He also plans to take a step back from his Run It Once work while the challenges are running and is confident his team is well prepared to handle everything. "I'm going to try to take a step back from Run It Once work over the course of the challenges," Galfond said. "It remains to be seen if I can do that, but I think that realistically, the best thing I can do for the company is to go out there and be Phil the poker player and brand ambassador. We've got a fantastic team who can make decisions just as well as I can, but I'm the only one who can play the Galfond Challenges." The Stakes Galfond challenged the entire poker world after being away from playing full-time, he’s short on time to prepare, and there’s a lot of money on the line. Whenever someone puts him or herself out there like this, there’s going to be pressure. Additionally, the two challenges within the overall challenge present their own unique pressures. In one arena, Galfond challenged "anyone who currently makes training videos for a site other than Run It Once." As the person who built Run It Once into the premier poker training site that it is today, Galfond has, to some extent, risked the reputation of Run It Once. Is it really the best training site out there if a coach from a competitor takes down the commander-in-chief? In another arena where he challenged everyone else, Galfond has his own reputation as a poker player on the line. He joked that he was a “washed-up ex-pro” in his message to the poker world, but what if he really is washed-up? "If I had gotten more coaches to take me up on the coach challenge, I'd feel a lot more pressure,” Galfond said. "Chance is the only coach who took me up on it, and I ended up having to lay a bigger price for fewer hands. I'd say this is the only match that I feel reputational pressure to win - I'm playing on behalf of Run It Once Training. "The rest of the matches, I don't really think my result has much of an impact on RIO or my personal reputation. If I win or lose them all, sure, but if I beat Perkins, Chance, and ActionFreak and I lose to 'Jungleman,' Brandon Adams, and 'VeniVidi,' for example, I don't think people will view me much differently than they do now. "The dollar amounts are certainly high, especially in the long-odds matches. If I get swept, it's going to be very painful." It’s easy to understand how excited Galfond is about the challenges - how excited he is to get back into the ring with some very good poker players and have a lot at stake. He’s also hopeful that the challenges will lead to increased visibility for Run It Once Poker, especially once people get a peek at the fun, cutting-edge software Galfond and his team have built and are continuing to improve upon. Run It Once Poker and one of the sponsors of the challenge, MuchBetter, will be running multiple promotions throughout the challenge that give players a rooting interest in Galfond connected to their play on the site. Will the challenges lead to more traffic more Run It Once Poker? That’s "unclear," as Galfond put it. Will he be doing his damnedest to make it happen? You better believe it.
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