Earning that first million is a huge accomplishment for anyone, but to do it at one of the most prestigious poker events in the world and outlasting a field of 800 players to get there, that’s truly phenomenal. At the 2018 Aussie Millions Main Event, UK’s Toby Lewis entered the official final table as the player most favored to win; 11 hours later he took it sky high and earned his first seven-digit payout of AU$1,458,198 (~US$1,178,500).
Main Event recap
For a country that was dealt a bad hand on the online front, this year’s Aussie Millions was a big winner with a record-breaking 800 players for the AU$10,600 Main Event. This, in turn, amassed a very healthy AU$8,000,000 prize pool with 88 players earning a cut. Missing that mark by one spot was Australia’s Matthew Wakeman, axed by the eventual champion, Toby Lewis. Lewis turned a nut flush to crush Wakeman’s set of jacks.
Although Lewis delivered the bubble, it was not until late into Day 4 did he pick up momentum. His first big boost was a double up through Chinese Taipei’s Chen An Lin which he followed up claiming another big pot by ousting Artur Koren (15th). The rush continued, winning a flip against Norway’s Espen Solaas with A-K besting pocket queens to slide into leadership position.
After Australian Aaron Lim went down in 14th, Lewis continued to dominate, railing Chinese Taipei’s Tu Lan in 13th place. However, with the next three eliminations credited to Solaas, which included 2016 Aussie Millions Main Event champion Ari Engel (10th), he lost the lead momentarily.
Out next was Australia’s Kahle Burns who was awarded the Australian Poker Young Achiever Award at the opening ceremony of the Main Event. Burns was recognized for his consistency throughout the year which included his deep runs in Macau and Australia. Finishing 9th at the Aussie Millions only went on to show why he deserved every bit of that award. Chen An Lin fell next in 8th place and the final table was formed. Lewis was ahead, edging Solaas by a sliver.
Final Table recap
Final table action saw the shortest stacked Johan Schumacher (7th) bounced to the rail first This left a 6-handed match that took nearly two hours before the next player exited. During that time, chips moved from player to player with Solaas and Chul-Hyon Park getting a feel of the leadership position.
After Solaas eliminated Ben Richardson in 6th place, the game began to shift to Lewis’s favor. He finished off Mike Del Vecchio in 5th then earned multiple big pots to create a huge gap between him and the other three players. Nine hours after game start, Park was eliminated in 4th place.
Before resuming, an ICM deal was discussed and reached with Lewis guaranteed to pocket AU$1,383,198, Solaas AU$1,177,103, and Stefan Huber with the shortest stack earning AU$909,699. In addition, a total of AU$75,000 and the gold bracelet was put aside for the winner. Lewis proceeded to eliminate Solaas in 3rd place and Huber in 2nd to be crowned the 2018 Aussie Millions Main Event champion and gain all of those rewards.
This victory brings Lewis to nearly US$4.4M in live tournament earnings. He moves up in the England All Time Money List ranking from 22nd to 11th.
Final Table payouts
1st Toby Lewis – UK – AU$1,458,198 (US$1,178,153) deal made
2nd Stefan Huber – Switzerland – AU$909,699 deal made
3rd Espen Solaas – Norway – AU$1,177,013 deal made
4th Chul-Hyon Park – Australia – AU$470,000
5th Michael Del Vecchio – USA – AU$370,000
6th Ben Richardson – Australia – AU$300,000
7th Johan Schumacher – Belgium – AU$235,000
Article by Triccia David