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The biggest poker festival of the year on Russian soil, the 2018 partypoker Live Millions Russia RUB 318,000 Main Event saw 916 entrants converge to the felts. Five days later, partypoker ambassador Anatoly Filatov (cover image) reigned supreme and lifted the trophy after defeating fellow countryman Gor Kazaryan on for a career-best RUB60 Million (~$887,000).
“Very tired, very exhausted, I don’t realize yet that I won this tournament, especially in my home country,” Filatov exclaimed, after victory, adding,“On the eighth of August it was my birthday, 30 years old, such a good beginning for this year. I am very glad.”
Just a week back in a podcast Filatov had talked about how much winning the tournament would mean to him. His resume before this win showed $2.1 Million in live cashes including two partypoker event titles.
Filatov has had an illustrious poker career dotted with wins and deep runs at some of the most prestigious international stops. He had finished runner-up in the $5,300 Finale event at the 2017 Caribbean Poker Party where he banked $165,000. In the partypoker Millions Grand Final Barcelona €10,300 High Roller (€50,000), Filatov finished 11th for $61,704.
2018 has been a good year for Filatov so far, as he has posted several exemplary runs in various events, including a runner-up finish in the WSOP Circuit Sochi RUB15,000 + 1,500 NLHE Colossus event for $96,840.
Outlasting the massive field and the 11 runners who returned on the final day wasn’t easy for Filatov, who had to outlast heavyweights like Konstantin Uspenskii, Gleb Tremzin and Viktor Khodorenko on his way to the title. When the field whittled down to the last three tables on Day 4, Filatov was dangerously close to elimination with a devastatingly short stack. However he managed to slide through by scoring a double up against Uspenskii, just before the end of play.
11 players returned on the final day to compete for the title and within the first hour, Ekaterina Fedyaeva (11th for RUB2,400,000) and Aleksand Chernikov (10th for RUB2,400,000) fell out, setting the unofficial final table in action.
Russians dominated the nine-handed table and it was Malaysian pro Chin Wei Lim (9th for RUB 3,000,000), who first lost a major pot to Khodorenko when he 4-bet all in with pocket fours and Khodorenko got it in with ace-jack. Khodorenko won the flip when he spiked a jack on the turn, sending Lim out.
Final Table Recap
Filatov started chipping up right as the final table play began. He sent Konstantin Uspenskii to the rail in eighth place in a hand where Khodorenko raised and Filatov 3-bet with king-queen before Uspenskii moved all in with ace-king from the button. Filatov made the call and turned a queen, making a superior hand.
Mikhail Galitskiy had an above-average stack but eventually faced the heat when he 3-bet all in with ace-queen and Filatov snap-called. Filatov’s pocket kings on a queen-high board ended Galitskiy’s run in seventh place.
Veteran pro Gleb Tremzin was severely short stacked and failed to spin it up despite enjoying some pay jumps. Tremzin tangled with Malyshev in a hand where he moved all in under the gun for 31 Million with and Malyshev called with from the cutoff. Khodorenko made it 3-way to the flop with a call holding from the button. On the flop, Malyshev checked and Khodorenko led in 3 Million, enough to put Malyshev all in. Malyshev called and the turn and river saw him triple up with pocket tens while Tremzin exited in sixth place.
Next, Alexey Melnikov who had lost several pots to drop down to the bottom of the counts, moved all in for 50 Million from the small blind with and found a caller in Filatov with . The board ran , bringing a pair on the river for Filatov, and Melnikov bounced off in fifth place.
After sending several top-notch players to the rail, Viktor Khodorenko was to face risk to his tournament life when Gor Kazaryan raised to 10 Million from under the gun with and Khodorenko who held , moved all in from the small blind for 82 Million. On this, big blind Filatov who looked down at re-shoved for 248 Million, prompting Kazaryan to fold. The board saw Filatovv hitting a set on the turn and Khodorenko walked out in fourth place.
In the three-handed play, Andrey Malyshev grabbed the chip lead for a while but blew his chances at the title after losing a crucial hand. Not long thereafter, his run ended when he moved all in for 77.75 Million and Filatov asked for a count from the big blind position before calling. Malyshev tabled against Filatov’s . Filatov maintained the lead on the flop and the turn, river ensured that the minor kicker advantage for Filatov eliminated Malyshev in third place.
The heads up duel between Filatov and Gor Kazaryan lasted more than an hour and the lead exchanged several times before a winner emerged. On the final hand, Kazarayan limped in with and Filatov raised to 27 Million with the . The flop had Filatov checking his option while Kazaryan bet 35 Million. Filatov called to see the turn, Filatov turned the nut straight and checked while Kazaryan bet 55 Million. Filatov jumped out of his chair to see his opponent’s stack before moving all in. Now, Kazaryan stood up and called for 271 Million. Clearly Kazaryan would lose unless a queen or nine appeared but the river was the and Kazaryan lost the heads-up math to settle in runner-up place, while Filatov was crowned the champion!
Final Table Results (USD)
1. Anatoly Filatov – $886,200
2. Gor Kazaryan – $576,030
3. Andrey Malyshev – $394,802
4. Viktor Khodorenko -$265,860
5. Alexey Melnikov – $177,240
6. Gleb Tremzin – $124,068
7. Mikhail Galitskiy – $88,620
8. Konstantin Uspenskii – $62,034