Galfond Challenge: Galfond Wins Big Again Twice, Now Down €318K
Did a sustained run of dominance from Phil Galfond cause "Venividi1993" to need his own break in their ongoing €100/€200 heads-up pot-limit Omaha match on Run It Once Poker?
Only the participants themselves know for sure, but whatever the case, the two players took several days off after a sustained run of several days in the streets. That last stretch ended with Galfond booking two six-figure wins and injecting real drama into what looked like a certain clock cleaning at the hands of the mysterious player.
They returned to the tables on Thursday, and through two sessions, had completed just over two-thirds of their 25,000 hands. Galfond looked to have the momentum rolling still when he booked another €110K win, but he gave more than half of that back on Friday. However, following that, Galfond smashed Venividi again, giving rise to hope that he can still win the side bet as he's erased about two-thirds of his massive deficit in their Galfond Challenge
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The two players didn't waste time getting stacks in after the time off, as Venividi coolered Galfond right away with middle set against top two, getting up a stack with the stream barely having started. However, Galfond took it right back in a four-bet pot. Venividi check-called a shove for a little under pot on with . Galfond had him crushed with and held on the river. Galfond worked his to up €24K by break.
Galfond was up small after the second break when he dipped into the red for the first time in a bit. They got stacks in after a preflop three-bet by Venividi, on . Galfond had but was smashed by top set. No eight appeared to save him on the turn and river and he was soon stuck almost a buy-in, with half the session played.
Everything turned in Galfond's favor when he three-bet and flopped. He opted to check the wet texture and then pot it over Venividi's bet. Venividi was happy to get stacks in with for a set plus a straight flush draw. Galfond was very strong also with for the nuts plus a redraw. Galfond improved to a nine-high straight on the turn and the brick river sent him the pot.
Shortly after that, Galfond bet one-third pot on and Venividi raised to $7,030. Galfond called and a completed the board. Venividi shoved after Galfond checked, and Galfond called for €14K to create a pot of about €49K. He held quads for the stone nuts while Venividi showed for full house blockers.
Galfond was up about €55K at that point, and he finished incredibly strongly with pure river aggression. It seemed every time the players built a five-figure pot for the next 150 hands or so, Galfond potted the river and Venividi folded. He climbed upward until they quit after 539 hands with Venividi stuck six figures for the second straight session.
Hands Played: 539
Results: Phil Galfond +€110,752.58
Full session video
Galfond was the one off to an immediate one-stack lead on Friday as he outflopped Venividi, who three-bet preflop then potted and called the rest on . He had but was beaten by as Galfond's two pair turned into a full house on the river. Galfond then got it in way good with the flopped nut straight against a flush draw and a couple of overpairs, but Venividi hit his flush on the turn to get a stack back. Despite the ugly beat, Galfond worked his way to a win of €36K after 225 or so hands as they went to break.
Venividi swung way upward right afterward as Galfond bet half pot for about €3,000 on . Venividi potted and Galfond peeled for an river. With less than half the pot back, Venividi shoved in position for €16.5K. Galfond called, creating a pot of €68K, but his was inferior two pair against . Then, Galfond got in ahead with wrap, flush draw and bottom pair against top two only to see two bricks fall for another stack lost.
Another savage beat cost Galfond a stack when he bet two-thirds pot on and Venividi check-called. With half pot left on the river, Venividi check-called the rest, having hit top boat with . Much to the commentators' disgust, Galfond had tens full of sevens on the turn.
Down €112K after about 400 hands, Galfond managed to recover somewhat over the closing 250 hands. He won a €59K pot with an overpair and nut wrap against top two, then crushed Venividi with top set and a flush draw against a gutter and weaker flush draw. Venividi closed with a €76K win.
Hands Played: 645
Results: Venividi1993 +€76,026.05
Full session video
Galfond came out hot again, making the nuts when he potted turn with a gutter and bottom pair. Venividi check-raised all in on the river as a bluff with a straight blocker, sending over a stack in the opening minutes. He'd have scoop another stack moments later if not for a beat, as Venividi's prevailed against on . Galfond got in with the best of it again on after four-betting with . He held up against .
Venividi turned things around as he got lucky again. This time, Galfond three-bet preflop and potted into him on . Venividi called and then they got the rest in on the . Galfond had just about all of it: for a set with the nut flush draw. Venividi needed help with but his wrap came in on the river without bringing a spade. Despite the beats, Galfond was up about €28K at break.
Galfond went on a tear after break. He caught Venividi bet-three-bet bluffing all in on with . Galfond had trips with and held for a massive pot of €57K. After picking off another bluff at the other table, Galfond found himself up €80K. Venividi got a stack back when he won with a wrap versus a set all in on the flop, but it just didn't matter as Galfond worked his way back to a six-figure win.
He hovered around there for about 100 hands as they approached the 500-hand mark. Then, two huge pots happened in quick succession. In the first one, Venividi three-bet then potted a flop. He down-bet to €3,200 on the turn and then shoved just under pot on the . Galfond snapped it off with kings full but had the winner the whole way against . Immediately after, Galfond called a raise then check-called for €800 on . He check-called pot for €3K on the , and a completed the board. Galfond checked, Venividi potted for €9K, and Galfond shoved. Venividi had €6,500 back and tanked, firing in the "nice hand" chat before calling with fours full of threes and losing to Galfond's sixes full.
Moments later, the "good game" arrived. Galfond rated it as one of his best-played sessions yet.
Hands Played: 503
Results: Phil Galfond +€140,979.28
Full session video