September is definitely the month to be a micro tournament player at Full Tilt Poker! While those players with a lot of time and deep pockets can find tournament action pretty much whenever they want to, for those of us a little more on the conservative side of things, it can be pretty hard to find decent tournaments that don’t break the bank. That’s all changed this month, though, with Full Tilt hosting MiniFTOPS, offering micro tournament players a chance to risk a little and win a lot. Event 26 concluded yesterday, with the top prize going to THHIG.
For those of you new to online poker, the term FTOPS may sound a little alien. It’s something you’re definitely going to want to get used to saying, however, as the Full Tilt Online Poker Series is one of the biggest poker tournament series online, offering a whole range of events and fantastic guaranteed prize pools. The one drawback is the buy-in, but Full Tilt has thought of this too, and hosts MiniFTOPS – all the same events but at one tenth the buy-in. The prizepools tend to shrink by much less than the buy-ins, too, with this MiniFTOPS XVII guaranteeing more than $6 Million over its 34 events.
The 26th event took place yesterday, drawing a massive crowd. The tournament was a Super Stack 6max No Limit Hold’Em event. 6max tables allow, as the name suggests, only a maximum of six players at each table. This has the general effect of making games much more aggressive, as the blinds come round more quickly than in 9-handed games, meaning it’s too costly to simply sit and wait for premium hands. We all know that when the chips get flying a lot of luck can be involved, but the Super Stack element of the tournament starts each players with a very solid number of big blinds, so as to still leave room for skillful play.
$150,000 was guaranteed as the prize pool for this event, which is an insane amount of money when contrasted with the $20 + $2 buy-in. Whether by buying in outright or playing their way in through one of many satellite tournaments, 9391 players turned up on the day to spar off on the virtual felt. This giant crowd lead to a prize pool of $187,820, easily exceeding the guarantee and offering pay outs to the top 1080 players, with first receiving just over $30,000.
Each FTOPS and MiniFTOPS event has a Full Tilt Host, and for Event 26 it was Jonathan Karamalikis stepping up to the plate, bringing his experience as a tournament player to the forefront. Perhaps best known for winning the No Limit Hold’Em Bounty Event at this year’s Aussie Millions, Karamalikis was not so lucky today, eventually finishing in 5740th place. Also representing Full Tilt were a host of Red Pros, top among them Alfredo ‘Toto’ Leonidas. Winner of the 2003 US Poker Championship and owner of a World Series of Poker bracelet, Leonidas ran deep in this MiniFTOPS event, placing 76th for a prize of $225.38.
It was Norwegian player THHIG who proved victorious on the day. The great thing about poker is that anybody can rise to fame at any time, and while THHIG is a scarcely known player in the online poker world, this week he’s proven that he’s got what it takes to excel. For battling his way through ten and a half hours of poker and 9,390 fierce opponents, he walks away with the first place title and the prize of $30,239.20.
This was another great MiniFTOPS event, and it’s truly a sad thing that the series is shortly coming to a close. It’s definitely not going to be winding down and slowly fading out of existence, however, rather it’s ending with a bang. The Main Event takes place on September 19th, and has a staggering guaranteed prize pool of $1,000,000, so make sure you register and don’t miss out on your share of the cash.
The official final table results are as follows:
1. THHIG – $30,239.02
2. petegotaplan – $19,796.23
3. margaret1954 – $14,247.32
4. Kinimod99 – $9,391
5. SirBanks – $6,010.24
6. RUSLANJKE – $3,944.22