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Ever since PokerBaazi took over the live poker room operations at Casino Pride 2 and re-branded the poker room to PokerBaazi LIVE, the brand has not hesitated to experiment with the concept of hosting online-live hybrid tournaments!
PokerBaazi has hosted several such tournaments in the past, more notably for its PokerBaazi Premier League (PPL) and Baazi Poker Tour (BPT) Online stops. It more recently extended the hybrid format to the PokerBaazi Monthly Value Series (PMVS). The monthly series had made its debut run in December last year, but it was at the follow-up series that took place earlier this month that the live format was brought to life. The PMVS Main Event final table was convened on February 8, with the final table playing out six days later on Saturday, February 15 in Goa.
The PVMS had logged in 703 entries (385 unique and 318 re-entries) generating a guarantee-crushing ₹35.15 Lakhs prize pool, and the top 81 places were paid. All starting flight survivors had played down to the final table on February 8. All the finalists who reconvened on Saturday at the PokerBaazi LIVE poker room were assured to take home at least ₹65,027, but everyone was chasing the ₹6.49 Lakhs up top.
Trumping the competition was none other than PokerBaazi Team pro Abhishek ’AbhishekRathod’ Rathod, who defeated Aman ‘alwaysriver’ Kejriwal after a marathon two-hour-long heads-up match to walk away with the title and ₹6.49 Lakhs in prize money.
There were two PokerGuru Ambassadors on the final table with Gokul ‘Nygma’ Raj (4th for ₹2.16 Lakhs) and Vishal ‘Vishzz’ Bajaj (8th for ₹86,469), both doing the PokerGuru Staking stable proud. Bajaj had entered the final table with the biggest stack of 2.1 Million, but he lost several pots early on and made an early exit. Raj, on the other hand, started the final table, placed sixth in chips, and eventually settled for a fourth-place finish.
Other notables like Rajesh ‘intervntion’ Shukla and Prashant ‘prashant32’ Jain Bhutoria only added to the talent pool on the stacked final table.
Final Table Chip Counts
Watch the final table action below.
Final Table Recap
The first report-worthy hand saw Abhishek Rathod opening for 50K with . Rajesh Shukla 3-bet to 150,000 with pocket jacks. Gaurav ‘kira1545’ Kaul called with , and PokerGuru Ambassador Gokul Raj woke up with pocket aces and shoved all-in. The rest of the table folded, and Raj’s squeeze won him a decent-sized pot!
Not long after that, we saw the Kolkata-based Prashant Jain Bhutoria doubling up! The hand in question saw Aman Kejriwal opening to 60K with pocket sevens from UTG + 1 and action folded to the short-stacked Prashant Bhutoria on the button who picked up and shoved all-in. Rathod from the big blind moved all-in over the top holding , and that was enough to get Kejriwal out of the way. The board ran and Bhutoria doubled up with his one card nut flush.
Almost 45 mins into the play, the first elimination was seen, and it was Prashant Bhutoria who fell out in ninth place. Bhutoria’s turned flush was busted by Raj’s rivered full house!
Half an hour later, Amev ‘Amev05’ Burman opened with pocket jacks from the hi-jack seat and Abhishek Rathod from the button 3-bet jammed with his pocket kings. Burman called and lost the pot as Rathod hit a set on the turn and took down the pot.
Almost two hours into the play, Unnikrishnan ‘TigerGemini1974’ Nair opened with from the cut-off seat and Gaurav ‘kira1545’ Kaul looked him up . The flop was checked around, and on the turn, Nair shoved with his flush draw. Kaul went into a deep tank and eventually folded the best hand!
Next up, PokerGuru Ambassador Vishal Bajaj, who had entered the final table in the chip lead, exited. Bajaj open-shoved from the button and action folded to Rajesh Shukla in the big blind who called tabling . Shukla flopped a full house on the runout and raked in the pot relegating Bajaj to the rail in eighth place.
After trading chips for a few hands, Kaul limped from the hijack seat holding , Abhishek Rathod raised to 180K holding pocket aces and next to act Shukla called with . Kaul decided to shove, and Rathod called while Shukla folded. Rathod’s aces got cracked as Kaul hit a straight on the rundown for a massive double up.
Despite the spin up, Gaurav Kaul’s run ended next when Kejriwal picked up pocket aces in early position and opened to 160,000. Kaul shoved with pocket tens from the cut-off seat. Gokul Raj woke up with pocket kings on the button and asked for a count and re-shoved for 2.1 Million. Kejriwal called and took down the pot on the rundown to score a colossal triple up while Kaul got busted in seventh place. The cooler costed Raj.
Rathod kept playing aggressively and soon jammed from the button with . Shukla looked him up with pocket nines. The board ran and Rathod hit a three-of-a-kind on the river to score a double up!
The next elimination hand saw Unnikrishnan Nair falling out in sixth place. Raj opened the pot for 225K holding pocket jacks, and the action folded to Nair in the big blind who put his tournament life on the line by shoving with . Raj made the easy call and busted Nair after the board blanked out.
After a few hands, the short-stacked Amev Burman picked up pocket queens and jammed from the small blind. Next to act, Rathod called and tabled . Rathod got lucky and rivered three-of-a-kind jacks on the board , eliminating Burman in fifth place.
Gokul Raj then started changing gears and took down a series of pots but incidentally, became the next casualty in fourth place. Raj open-shoved UTG with pocket fours, and Shukla re-popped in from the small blind holding pocket queens. Failing to catch any help from the community cards, Raj hit the rail.
A few small pots later, Rathod doubled up through Shukla. The hand in question saw Rathod moving all-in holding from the small blind, and Shukla made the call from the big blind with . A king appeared on the flop, and Rathod`s better kicker eventually won him the pot!
On the very next hand, Rajesh Shukla shoved with , and Kejriwal woke up with to make the call. The board ran eliminating Shukla in third place.
Coming into the heads-up play, Rathod held a decent lead over Kejriwal, and the swingy finale saw the chip lead exchanging hands more than a few times. The back and forth continued for more than an hour before Rathod held over 90% of chips in play. On the final hand, Kejriwal’s lost out to Rathod’s as the community cards opened . And just like that, Rathod claimed the title, pocketing ₹6.49 Lakhs in prize money!
Final Table Results