On Monday, Vanessa Selbst, the winner of the 2013 PCA High Roller, had an incredible chance to defend her title as she had the chip lead with only 14 players remaining in the 2014 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure High Roller ($25,000 buy-in, 247 entries).
Things went really well at first, and after she had sent Mustapha Kanit packing in 4th place with pocket aces against pocket jacks (all-in preflop) things looked even better as she had about 5.5 million chips - slightly behind the chip leader, Jake Schindler, and well ahead of Greg Merson, the winner of the 2012 WSOP Main Event.
Things can change rather quick in the game of NL Hold'em though - and that's something the Team PokerStars Pro got to experience yesterday. After she had lost two all-ins against the short stack, she decided to shove her remaining chips with A9 and Schindler called with AT. Both players hit an ace on the flop but, after the turn and river cards had been dealt, Schindler's kicker card won him the pot and Selbst hit the rail in 3rd place for $607,580.
After a short break, in which a deal was discussed, heads up play begun. A deal was agreed upon instantly (Jake Schindler $992,624 and Greg Merson $948,996) and now there was "only" $200,000 left to play for.
The game loosened up a lot after the deal had been made and Greg Merson even stopped looking at his cards for some time. After Merson had moved all in 4 times and didn't get any action, he and Schindler agreed to move all in the following hand and let the poker gods take care of the rest.
The board ran out 83TA4 and Schindler had Merson covered by at least a million chips, which meant that he had won the additional $200,000, a trophy and a Slyde Steel and Rose Gold watch worth €12,800! According to a live poker database, Schindler now has $1.7 million in lifetime earnings. According to pokerstars blog, Merson became the 21st player in history to have won more than $10 million in live tournaments.
PCA 2014 High Roller
Date: 10-13 January 2014
Game: NLHE 8-handed re-entry
Prize pool: $6,051,500
1. Jake Schindler, USA, $1,192,624
2. Greg Merson, USA, $948,996
3. Vanessa Selbst, USA, Team PokerStars Pro, $607,580
4. Mustapha Kanit, $492,600
5. Robert Mizrachi, USA, $389,720
6. Aleksandr Denisov, $295,920
7. Ole Schemion, Germany, $216,040
8. Joao Viera, $157,960