GG Spring Festival 2021 is well beyond its halfway point with 14 days of games completed. Day 11 to Day 14 contributed a combined US$ 15,882,140 in prize money to bring the cumulative festival payouts to a bulging US$ 89,852,650. Among the latest winners were Ronny Kaiser, Michele “CrossfireX” Dattani, Artur Martirosyan, Robert Heidorn, Adrian Mateos, and Morocco’s YoungNEWlegend who triumphed after an incredible comeback. A long list of players joined the multi winners club namely Finland pros Sami Kelopuro and Eelis Parssinen, Canadians Amichai Barer and Tim “BeardOilGuy” Rutherford, and several more. Rutherford became the second player to win four events. For Asia, China’s Wei Zhao finally landed his first win after having been seen in at least 8 final tables while India’s Veeramanikandan “upay4myweed” Kaliyaperumal and Natural8 Team Hot pro Kosei Ichinose were among the players that ran deep.
At the featured events, Day 1C and Day 1D of the GGSF Super MILLION$ ME-H $10,300, US$ 10M GTD, brought in a combined 341 entries with 41 advancing to Day 2. Only one starting day remains which takes place on Sunday, April 18 @ 2305 (HKT). India player “level29” currently holds the top spot. At the GGSF Headliner-M $400 NLHE, $2.5M GTD and GGSF Headliner-M $400 PLO-NL, $1M GTD, Day 1 heats are ongoing. Day 2 for all of the featured events listed gets underway on April 19 @ 405am (HKT).
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On Day 14, a special event was held, the $20K GGSF FLIP Breakthrough Event featuring Lithuania’s Daiva Byrne with DJ Kim Lee alongside entertaining players with her mix. 2,575 signed up, Canada’s “Waterman11” shipped it for US$ 2,857.56.
For those just tuning in, the GG Spring Festival 2021 is the richest event this season with a towering US$ 150,000,000 guaranteed across 336 tournaments. Since the start, several event guarantees have been boosted as much as US$ 100K. The festival opened on April 4 and will run until April 25 inclusive. 125 tournaments have yet to be claimed. Buy-ins range from US$ 5 to US$ 25,500. Join the hunt by signing up at host online platform Natural8. Exclusive promos and festival freebies are in store for all members. You can read up on those perks at the bottom of the page.
And now for our GGSF Day 11, Day 12, Day 13, and Day 14 top stories.
Ronny Kaiser wins the H-57: $25,500 Super High Roller for over US$ 500K
On Day 12, Switzerland’s Ronny Kaiser went from runt to champion at the single day US$ 25,500 Super High Roller event. This event was the fourth of its kind with Ottomar Ladva, Dario Sammartino, and Sami Kelopuro as previous winners. Running on his second bullet, Kaiser entered the final table as the shortest with just 11 big blinds, two double ups and a few good pots kept him afloat to face Belarusian pro Mikita Badziakouski at heads up. After nearly an hour, with the lead exchanged twice, Kaiser’s kicker played (hand pictured below) to ship the US$ 508,447.84 first prize. This was his second series win and his second largest known career payout.
The H-57: $25,500 Super High Roller drew 48 players with 40 re-entries to bloat the US$ 2 million guaranteed prize pool an extra US$ 200K. The money flowed at the fall of past installment champion Sami Kelopuro on the bubble. The final table was then formed upon Stephen Chidwick’s exit with Nick Petrangelo in the driver’s seat.
First to go was Pablo Silva (9th) on a bad beat against Chris Rudolph. Several busts later, at five remaining, Rudolph eliminated Russia’s Artur Martirosyan who still walked away with a profit despite buying in five times. Petrangelo followed, having been crippled down to 2 big blinds by Kaiser. At three-handed, Badziakouski collected a massive double up pot off Rudolph with winning over to take the lead. Rudolph attempted to recover but Badziakouski had his number to send the Austrian packing in 3rd place. Heads-up opened with Badziakouski up 4:1. Kaiser grinded up then landed a double with dominating . For the first time at the final table, Kaiser was ahead. From there, both players tugged at the top spot. Kaiser pulled away to a 2:1 advantage then closed it out. This was Kaiser’s second series win with his first on Day 9 at the H-45: $2,100 PLO-NL Turbo for US$ 63,721.40.
Big Bounty: MICHELE “CrossfireX” DATTANI – US$ 339,484.21
Another big winner was Portugal’s Michele “CrossfireX” Dattani who outlasted the 159 head hunters of the H-58: $10,300 Thursday Thriller Bounty to pocket the US$ 113,390.46 first prize plus a massive US$ 226,093.75 in bounty rewards. This earned Dattani a combined US$ 339,484.21 for his largest recorded payout to date.
At eight remaining, Dattani delivered a double knockout (hand pictured above) with pairing the ace to oust both Bert Stevens and Amichai Barer . He continued to dominate, carrying his big stack to heads up against Russia’s Sergei Denisov. Denisov was hunting down his second series win and hoped to stack up on a board however Dattani called the river shove with bottom pair, catching Denisov’s bluff to send him out in second place.
1st Michele Dattani – Portugal – US$ 339,484.21 2nd Sergei Denisov – Russia – US$ 157,919.64 3rd Joao Simao – Brazil – US$ 137,086.49 4th Maksim “MAMOHT_T” Mamonov – Russia – US$ 101,977.12 5th Michael Watson – Canada – US$ 93,429.40 6th Bert Stevens – USA – US$ 66,772.77 7th Amichai Barer – Canada – US$ 59,367.47 8th Eelis Parssinen – Finland – US$ 61,666.48 9th Daniel Dvoress – Canada – US$ 34,221.84
H-54: $1,050 High Roller Main Event: ARTUR MARTIROSYAN – US$ 83,530.81
Two weeks prior Russia’s Artur Martirosyan was all over the poker headlines after he shipped the 2021 EPT Sochi Main Event for RUB 24,633,000 (~US$ 325,370). Two weeks later, the young pro was on top once again, this time in the virtual arena. Martirosyan won the two-day H-54: $1,050 High Roller Main Event, besting 444 entries, which included Bulgaria’s Stoyan “UncleToni” Obreshkov at heads-up. This earned him his first series victory and US$ 83,530.81. The day after this win, Martirosyan also reached the final table of the H-57: $25,500 Super High Roller finishing in 5th place for US$ 179,591.47 however he did spend five buy-ins to bring his profit down to US$ 52K. He is currently ranked 3rd in the High Tier of the GGSF Weekly Leaderboard. As a familiar face in the GG network, Martirosyan is often seen playing big buy-in tournaments such as the weekly Super MILLION$ US$ 10,300. According to his profile, he has collected nearly US$ 14 million in winnings.
Finland players Eelis Parssinen and Sami Kelopuro
Finland players Eelis Parssinen and Sami Kelopuro were among the latest champions to join the multi winners club. Both players were also seen at more than one final table the past three days. For Kelopuro, he reached three final tables. Of those deep runs, two were victories. His largest score was at the H-68: $10,300 PLO-NL Bounty Hunter High Roller where he outlasted a field of 71 entries to pocket US$ 189,185.21. The other win was at the H-59: $ 5,250 PLO-NL where 113 signed up. Kelopuro was awarded the win after a heads-up deal with Parssinen. He now has three wins under his belt and 10 final table berths. His victory at the H-49: $25,500 Super High Roller still holds the highest payout of US$ 520,003.49. Here’s a look at his recent achievements.
For Parssinen, he reached another five final tables making that nine in total this series with two wins. His recent claim was at the H-52: $1,050 PLO-NL where he overcame 172 runners for a US$ 41,825.78 payout.
Canada’s Tim “BeardOilGuy” Rutherford has been making noise at the Medium and Low tiers. He picked up wins on Day 12 and Day 14 to join Niklas Astedt with four events shipped. Last week Rutherford finished 3rd at the Weekly Series Leaderboard Medium Tier. For this week, his recent runs has him ranked 2nd in the Medium Tier and 1st at the Low Tier.
Markus Prinz – Germany – M-62: $250 Daily Main Event & H-30: $525 Hyper [6 Max] AnonAnomaly – Ireland – L62: $25 Mini Main Event & L-28: $25 Mini Main Event Amichai Barer – M67: $525 PLO-NL & M-35: $1,050 PLO-NL Cayao_aju – M-65: $50 Asia Major and L-11: $25 Min Main Event
YoungNEWlegend overcomes the odds
At the M-70: $210 Bounty tournament, Moroccan player “YoungNEWlegend” went from below two big blinds at three-handed to champion. He landed five double ups to catch up to his opponents New Zealand’s “Rahchan” and Hungary’s “swedishdream”, then grinded to captainship. He eliminated Rahchan in 3rd place to enter heads-up with an over 2:1 chip advantage. After 25 minutes of heated exchanges, with both players tugging at the lead, YoungNEWlegend nailed it shut with over . For 3rd placer Rahchan, it was his second final table of Day 14. He closed out the H-62: $1,050 High Roller Main Event [ 2 Day Event ] for US$ 43,612.75.
Since the start of the festival we’ve only seen Taiwan’s Pete Chen and Austria’s Bryan Paris represent Natural8 Team Hot. For Chen, he has already cashed at several events with two final table appearances. His latest was at the H-53: $2,100 Bounty finishing 6th for a US$ 23,554.40 payday.
The past days, another Natural8 Team Hot pro joined the action and reached two final tables. Japan’s Kosei Ichinose finished 7th at the M-59: $525 PLO-NL event for US$ 4,902.62 and 6th at the H-63: $525 Turbo for US$ 4,045.57. He also secured his Day 2 spot at the featured GGS Headliner-M $400 PLO-NL, US$ 1M GTD event. Ichinose sold 30% of his action which was quickly snatched up by six stakers.
For Chinese pro Wei Zhao, his hunt for victory finally arrived after having been seen in at least 8 final tables. He won the H-67: $5,250 PLO-NL HR event, pocketing US$ 155,417.91. The event drew 120 entries to bump up the pot to US$ 600,000. 17 got paid with Zhao owning it on his second bullet. Zhao’s other deep runs were on Day 12 where he finished 8th at the H-61: $2,100 Bounty for US$ 11,638.09 and 3rd at the H-63: $525 Turbo for US$ 9,593.56.
In other Asia festival news, two other players flying Asian flags went the distance and several reached the final table. Below are some of those results:
Guarantee: US$ 200,000 Entries: 1,359 Prize pool: US$ 312,570 ITM: 233 places Winner: Adrian Mateos – Spain – US$ 41,414.93 *This event was given a US$50K guarantee boost
H-70: $2,100 Bounty
Guarantee: US$ 500,000 Entries: 265 Prize pool: US$ 530,000 ITM: 39 Winner: Robert Heidorn – Germany – US$ 101,600.07 2nd Chris Rudolph – Austria – US$ 48,547.20
Featured Events – underway
One of the largest guaranteed events of the festival is the US$ 10 million guaranteed GGSF Super MILLION$ ME-H with buy-in at US$ 10,300. Unlike the other highlighted events, this one only has five starting days scheduled. The first four have already concluded, one last chance to join the chase for a slice of that enormous pot. Day 1E runs on Sunday, April 18 @ 2305 (HKT). This will be followed by Day 2 five hours later at 405am HKT on Monday, April 19. India’s “level29” and Spain’s Sergio Aido ran well in Day 1C to take the top two spots in the counts.
Cumulative Entries: 610 Cumulative Day 2 qualifiers: 75 Day 2: April 19 @ 405am HKT
Day 1A chip leader: Michael Watson – Canada – 1,921,636 Day 1B chip leader: Konstantin Maslak – Russia – 1,690,980 Day 1C chip leader: level29 – India – 1,176,011 Day 1D chip leader: Alexander “ShtukShtront” Schiff – Jamaica – 1,575,478
Top 10 in chips
At the GGSF Headliner-M: US$ 400 buy-in featured events, both NLHE and PLO-NL entry days have been ongoing. Multiple heats are offered per day leading up to Day 2 on April 19. The NLHE has a US$ 2.5 million guarantee, the PLO-NL offers a one million dollar guarantee. Currently, the more popular NLHE has drawn 6,605 entries while the PLO-NL has 2,010.
Upcoming Featured Events
Dates: April 19 to 26 GGSF Main Event-H: US$ 1,500 NLHE, US$ 10,000,000 guaranteed GGSF Main Event-H: US$ 1,500 PLO-NL, US$ 2,000,000 guaranteed
Series Leaderboard Update
The festival is now into Week 2 of the Series Leaderboard. A total of 100 players will earn a share of T$ 300,000. The High Tier awards T$ 150,000 to the top 20 in points, the Medium Tier awards T$ 100,000 to the top 30 in points, and the Low Tier awards T$ 50,000 to the top 50 in points. The week ends on April 18.
Austria’s Chris Rudolph currently leads the High Tier, Uruguay’s Fabrizio Gonzalez leads the Medium Tier, and Canada’s Tim “BeardOilGuy” Rutherford leads the Low Tier. Last chance to earn Week 2 points is tonight. Gonzalez is in prime form for a back to back Medium Tier win however the hot running Rutherford is close behind and has the potential to overtake. This tier race will also depend on who wins the GGSF Headliner-M events. In the Low Tier, Rutherford has a decent lead built up.
Exclusive Natural8 Promos
For players signed up on Natural8, expect plenty of GGSF freebies. Throughout the series, Natural8 will be giving away GGSF tickets via their hourly freerolls,VIP Club Freerolls, GG Masters Freerolls, and First Deposit Freerolls. For N8 players that participate in any of the GGSF 2021 events, you gain entry to exclusive Natural8 GGSF Flipouts with each entry beefing up your stack. Flipouts happen every Saturday on April 10, 17, & 24, with one flipout for each of the three tiers. Prizes per Flipout: US$ 10,000 (High) / US$ 5,000 (Medium) / US$ 2,000 (Low).
Another exclusive promo is the US$ 50,000 GGSF LiveX Sponsorship. In order to land this special promo, you’ll need to overcome a mountain of players and win the GGSF Main Event-H: US$ 1,500 NLHE, US$ 10 million guaranteed event. The sponsorship includes:
12 months LiveX Crew Sponsorship US$ 15,000 Las Vegas Package ($10,000 to cover your buy-ins and $5,000 for expenses) US$ 35,000 for live event sponsorships over 12 months
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Stay tuned to Somuchpoker as we continue to bring you recaps on the ongoing Natural8 – GGSF festival.