2018 Triton Super High Roller Series Montenegro

HKD $250,000 6-Max Event
Dias: 1
Event Info

2018 Triton Super High Roller Series Montenegro

Resultado Final
Mão Vencedora
3,046,000 HKD
Event Info
250,000 HKD
Prize Pool
8,232,000 HKD
Informações sobre o nível
10,000 / 20,000

Christner, Haxton and Leong Top the Counts in the Triton Super High Roller Six-Max Montenegro

Nível 9 : 600/1,200, 200 ante
Christian Christner leads after Day 1 of the Triton Super High Roller Six-Max Event
Christian Christner leads after Day 1 of the Triton Super High Roller Six-Max Event

The second of four big buy-in events at the Triton Super High Roller Series saw 28 players ante-up and fight it out at the poker tables of the Maestral Resort and Casino in Budva, Montenegro.

While Phil Ivey and Dan Cates were too busy playing heads-up in the Short Deck Event to take part, there were still plenty of big names and familiar faces in the mix with 28 entries (including re-entries) taking part in the action over the nine 40-minute levels of Day 1.

It was Germany's Fedor Holz who emerged victorious in this very event close to ten months prior, but the reigning champion did not make an appearance to defend his title.

With the buy-in set at HKD250,000 (~US$31,850) and the format offering unlimited re-entry until the start of level 12 on Monday, 14 May the action started off surprisingly slowly with just four players in the mix.

The early birds were the USA's Steve O'Dwyer and Isaac Haxton, Turkey's Orpen Kisacikoglu and the UK's Stephen Chidwick who played close to two full levels before Belarusian Mikita Badziakouski arrived shortly before the start of the third level.

However, the field began to fill out shortly after the first break, growing to two tables, then three with Malaysia's Beh Kok Weng the man to take the early chip lead after flopping a full house in a hand against Stephen Chidwick to decimate the UK pro's stack.

The field had swelled to 18 by this point, but it was not Chidwick who became the first casualty, but Malaysia's Ivan Leow, who ran his queen-jack offsuit into Christian Christner's pocket aces on a nine-high flop to hit the rail early.

Stephen Chidwick
Stephen Chidwick

Chidwick followed shortly afterwards departing at the hands of Winfred Yu, but the second bullet worked out extremely well for the Brit, who came back to the same seat to return the favour and send Yu to the rail. Yu got his first buy-in good with a turned straight to Chidwick's turned set of Queens, but a pair up on the river saw the Brit climb into the top three and Yu bust his first bullet.

Other early casualties included Triton co-founder Richard Yong, falling at the hands of Isaac Haxton, and Steffen Sontheimer who ran two pair into the straight of O'Dwyer to bust his first bullet.

Beh Kok Weng
Beh Kok Weng

While it was Weng who held the lead coming into the last three levels of the day, that all changed as the action played out and the tempo increased dramatically.

Sontheimer, Leow and Yu all re-entered, but only the latter two would make it though to Day 2 on their second bullet, with the Sontheimer busting close to the end of play.

Another German player who re-entered and endured a torrid time of it was 2017 Triton Super High Roller Six-Max Macau champion Stefan Schillhabel, who got the last chips of his first bullet in with ace-queen but was outflopped by the ace-ten of Chidwick, who powered up the chip ladder to finish play with a stack of 106,800, putting him fifth in the overall pecking order.

Schillhabel re-entered and immediately wished he hadn't after he ran his flopped nut straight into the middle set of Winfred Yu, who rivered quads. Both players managed to lock up a Day 2 berth however, with Schillhabel bagging up 43,000 and Yu 98,400.

Chan Wai Leong
Chan Wai Leong

Malaysia's Chan Wai Leong, who final tabled this event last year for a 5th place finish and US$407,101 payday, edged into a late lead, but a last-gasp burst of action saw Germany's Christian Christner bust Steve O'Dwyer to edge in front as the last three hands were announced.

Christner bagged up 193,900 after his elimination of O'Dwyer, just edging in front of Leong, who finished Day 1 second in the counts with a stack of 189,300.

Isaac Haxton
Isaac Haxton

Isaac Haxton dominated a great deal of the action as play wound down, sending Triton co-founder Paul Phua to the rail just before the last three hands were announced and clashing in two pots against a re-entered Ivan Leow to conclude play with a stack of 171,600. Malaysia's Beh Kok Weng rounded out the top four with a stack of 147,900.

A total of 15 players successfully circumnavigated the tournament minefield to return for Day 2, with the redraw as follows:

Six-Max Day 2 Redraw

TableSeatPlayerCountryChip CountBig Blinds
11Isaac HaxtonUnited States171,600107
12Koray AldemirGermany83,00052
13Julian ThomasGermany23,30015
14Dietrich FastGermany15,40010
21Ivan LeowMalaysia74,10046
22Beh Kok WengMalaysia147,90092
23Mikita BadziakouskiMalaysia82,40052
24Chan Wai LeongMalaysia189,300118
31Orpen KisacikogluTurkey61,40038
32Manig LoeserGermany25,40016
33Christian ChristnerGermany193,900121
34Stefan SchillhabelGermany43,00027
41Dominik NitscheGermany84,80053
42Stephen ChidwickUnited Kingdom106,80067
43Winfred YuHong Kong98,40062

Day 2 resumes on Monday, 14 May at 1pm local time and the PokerNews live reporting team will be on hand to bring you all the action as it happens so join us then.

Tags: Beh Kok WengChan Wai LeongChristian ChristnerDominik NitscheIsaac HaxtonIvan LeowKoray AldermirManie LoeserMikita BadziakouskiPaul PhuaRichard YongStefan SchillhabelSteffen SontheimerStephen ChidwickSteve O'DwyerWinfred Yu

O'Dwyer Straightens Out Sontheimer

Nível 6 : 300/600, 75 ante
Steffen Sontheimer
Steffen Sontheimer

There has been another elimination with Steve O'Dwyer the man to show Steffen Sontheimer the door. We picked up the action on the turn in a three-way pot between the aforementioned two and Isaac Haxton and the action had been checked by O'Dwyer (big blind) and Haxton (middle position) over to Sontheimer on the button with the flop spread {j-Clubs}{4-Diamonds}{8-Spades}.

The pot was not huge at this point, but quickly got that way when Sontheimer bet 3,300 and O'Dwyer check-raised to 8,200 in total. Haxton took the hint and bowed out, while Sontheimer made the call to take the action heads-up to the {q-Hearts} turn.

This saw O'Dwyer plonked down a chunky stack of yellow 5k chips for a bet of 60,000, which easily had Sontheimer covered. The German player thought it over before making the call for his tournament life.

"Straight," declared O'Dwyer, rolling over {10-Clubs}{9-Clubs}. Sontheimer flashed him {q-Diamonds}{8-Diamonds} before the {4-Hearts} river completed the hand and a call of 'player out!' echoed through the tournament area and the field was reduced by one.

Jogador Fichas Oscilação
Steve O'Dwyer ie
Steve O'Dwyer
105,000 52,000
EPT 1X Winner
Steffen Sontheimer de
Steffen Sontheimer

Tags: Steffen SontheimerSteve O'Dwyer

Leow Becomes First Casualty

Nível 5 : 250/500, 50 ante
Ivan Leow
Ivan Leow

The number of entrants has grown to 18, but there are only 17 of them currently in action with Malaysia's Ivan Leow becoming the first casualty, but with unlimited re-entry, at least until late registration closes on Day 2 on Monday, 14 May, it's a fair bet that Mr. Leow will be in the action again soon.

We missed the pre-flop action but picked things up on the {5-Clubs}{9-Spades}{4-Hearts} flop with over 25,000 in the pot with three players in action; Ivan Leow (middle position), Orpen Kisacikoglu (cutoff) and Christian Christner (button).

The action had been checked over to Christner on the button, who had led out for close to half-pot. Leow check-raised shoved for close to 30,000, Kisacikoglu folded and Christner made a speedy call.

Ivan Leow: {q-Spades}{j-Clubs}
Christian Christner: {a-Hearts}{a-Clubs}

It was not looking good for Leow, who was trailing to the best hand in poker and stayed that way when the {7-Diamonds} turn and {5-Hearts} river completed the hand. Leow headed for the rail, at least for now, and Christner stacked up to close to 80,000.

Jogador Fichas Oscilação
Christian Christner de
Christian Christner
80,000 30,000
Day 1 Chip Leader
Koray Aldemir de
Koray Aldemir
50,000 50,000
WSOP Main Event Champion
WSOP 1X Winner
Manig Loeser de
Manig Loeser
50,000 50,000
EPT 1X Winner
Ivan Leow my
Ivan Leow

Tags: Christian ChristnerIvan Leow

Catching up with Tom Dwan in Montenegro

Nível 4 : 200/400, 50 ante
Tom Dwan Interview
Tom Dwan Interview

One of the more recognizable faces in poker, at his height Tom 'Durrrr' Dwan was playing in and crushing some of the biggest games of poker ever played on the Internet.

A spot on Team Full Tilt beckoned. Fans railed his action in the online chat rooms, his every move was scrutinized under the microscope of the Two Plus Two forums and his largest online pots, each worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, were re-watched and replayed countless times.

His televised appearances on High Stakes Poker and Poker After Dark were watched with the reverence reserved for match-winning sports plays, then re-posted on YouTube, and his biggest bluffs and sickest hands redefined what many thought possible at the poker tables.

Then there was the furore surrounding the ‘Durrrr Challenge’ and one of the biggest WSOP side bets in 2010 where poker’s elite came close to dropping a ton of money should Dwan win his first bracelet, with Dwan eventually coming in second to New Zealand’s Simon Watt, much to the relief of some of the games’ more prominent players.

Then came Black Friday and the fall of Full Tilt with Dwan eventually parting ways with the online site in late 2013. The last recorded hand Dwan played (according to HighStakesDB) was in November 2013, where his online winnings still sit at US$2.17M.

The online games dried up, the Durrrr Challenge ground to a halt unfinished against Dan “Jungleman12” Cates. Rumours abounded that Dwan was bust, kidnapped by the Triads, and had lost $20 million playing in Macau – none substantiated.

Until, in early 2017, Dwan made an Ali-like return to the tournament arena and resurfaced playing in a tournament in Macau, eventually finishing in second to Belarusian Mikita Badziakouski for a US$252,153 payday.

Dwan followed this up with an appearance at the Montenegro Triton Super High Roller series, but came up short of the money and proved tough to pin down for an interview.

However, ten months later PokerNews managed to catch up with the elusive internet phenom, again in Montenegro, during an appearance in one of poker’s newest games – a short deck ante-only variant, usually played as a cash game. Was he back? What had he been up to for the last three years? What was he up to now?

Tom Dwan
Tom Dwan at the 2018 Triton Super High Roller Montenegro

“Well, the games online aren’t quite as big as they used to be, and the games in Macau are a little bigger than they used to be, so I’ve spent a lot more of my time out there when I’m playing. And then the times I’m not playing a lot of the times I’ve been in the US, and then I can’t play [online]. I’ve barely got to play online the last few years,” confirmed Dwan during a break in the HK$250,000 (~US$32,000) Sort Deck – Ante Only event at the 2018 Triton Super Series Montenegro.

Still based in the US, when he’s not flying between these new style stripped deck gigantic poker games in Macau, Manila and Las Vegas, Dwan is still very much in the thick of the action, only this action takes place behind closed doors.

“So sometime about two years ago a guy, a pretty nice guy, but he’d lost a bit of money in poker decided to take the… I think that the first time they did it they took the two, three, four, five and six out of the deck, but I don’t know. It was something like that and they ended up with the two, three, four and five out of the deck and that’s just become a very big thing in China. So, now a lot of the big games, they don’t got a two, three, four and five in the deck.”

This game is still in its infancy, and all optimal strategies have yet to be discovered and fully explored – the perfect environment then, for a skilled player with an edge to make some good money. Being as Dwan’s opponents include players of the calibre of Phil Ivey, Dan Cates and Jason Koon, that sounds like a journey of discovery with a steep learning curve.

“People have a little idea by now how to play short deck in cash games – there’s still a lot to be figured out there, but tournaments, really, there’s a lot people don’t know I think, so we’ll all probably be learning as we go along and everyone will be testing out their theories these next few days.”

Dan Cates
Jason Koon (left) and Dan Cates (right) in action at the 2018 Triton Super High Roller Montenegro

So Cates and Dwan are clearly on friendly terms, so what of the Durrrr Challenge then?

“I’d like to play it at some point. I think that now he’s (Dan Cates) playing some more games out in China and I think he sees now why I didn’t have time [to play] a lot of the time. But I think we’d both like to finish it and that’s more on me than him and hopefully, that’ll happen, but then again hopefully there’s a lot of big games so that gets put off a little bit. I don’t know, but I mean we’ll try to.”

There has always been an air of secrecy surrounding the fabled ‘Big Game’ in Macau, with Dwan seeming happy to let much of the mystery continue. With some of the larger poker games in Macau confirmed to be running at HK$10,000/$20,000 with a $40,000 straddle (~US$1,275/$2,550/$5,100) just how big is big, and where does the game take place?

“You’re asking me where the biggest game is based and you’re expecting me to answer that one? [laughs]. There’s some big ones in Macau I’ll give you that much. Sometimes they play pretty big stakes,” answered Dwan coyly.

While tight-lipped about the juicy cash action, the 31-year-old Jersey native comes across as both upbeat and relaxed and is more than happy to talk about his latest passion – traveling.

“I travel a lot. A lot of Las Vegas. Vegas more than anywhere else when I’m not playing,” said Dwan.

“So where is my favorite destination, that’s a good question. I went to the Maldives, and it was beautiful, I think that I like beach places like that, like Hawaii, I went to Hamilton Island in Australia. But then again I haven’t been to a place like that in a few months.”

And of course, any poker player not in action still gets the urge for some hustle and bustle.

“I went to Hamilton Island a few months ago, but once you’re there maybe you want to go to London and be in the hustle and bustle, or New York, or LA or Vegas. I don’t know I guess, but right now I would pick a beach place, that’s my answer.”

The luxurious Maestral Hotel and Casino fulfills quite a few of these criteria, a fact Dwan is keen to point out, and they have poker…

“Considering we’re in Montenegro and not on the Las Vegas strip, it’s pretty nice. I think that the Aman [Sveti Stefan – luxury resort on a private island] down the street is amazing,” said Dwan.

“Maybe Wynn or something looks a little fancier of course, but the main thing to me is, if I’m showing up to a casino I want a good poker games to play, and here they happen to have a few of those,” concluded Dwan, before jumping straight back into the thick of the action.

People’s interest in poker may have waned from its peak popularity, but their hunger to follow the fortunes of one of its favorite sons is still present. it’s nice to see that one of the game’s greats is still very much in action, and is still hungry for more. Who knows, maybe we’ll even get to see the Durrrr Challenge finished off this year; something to look forward to at any rate.

Tags: Dan CatesPhil IveyTom Dwan