On Saturday, after four-day hiatus so players could participate in the 2016 Aussie Millions Main Event, the six finalists remaining in the $100,000 Challenge – a tournament that began with 41 entries (30 unique + 11 reentries) and featured a AU$4,018,000 prize pool — returned to the Crown Casino in Melbourne to play down to a winner.
After a short four hours of play, it was German high roller Fabian Quoss who defeated all others to capture the AU$1,446,480 (just over $1 million) top prize.
It marked the second-largest score of Quoss' career behind the $1.6 million he won for taking down the 2014 PCA $100,000 Super High Roller.
Quoss had come close to winning an Aussie Millions Challenge title twice before, albeit in the $250,000 Challenge. The first time he flirted with the title in that tournament was in 2013 when he finished third for AU$750,000, and then a year later he took fifth for AU$800,000. Quoss also final table the 2013 $25,000 Challenge, finishing fifth for AU$51,000.
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The first hand of the day saw Fabian Quoss double through Connor Drinan, and that set the fast pace of play. Just five hands later, Fedor Holz fell when he called off his short stack with king-queen and failed to get there against Drinan's pocket fours. Then, on Hand #12, Sam Greenwood followed him out the door after his ace-deuce fell to Drinan's queen-nine after a nine spiked on the river.
On Hand #26 of the final table, it was Drinan who fell in fourth place after getting involved in a big hand with Quoss. Holding a queen-high flush, Drinan was faced with a decision for all his chips. He used both his time extensions to contemplate the decision, and with literally a second left on the clock he called off to discover his queen-high flush was no good against Quoss' ace-high.
Three-handed play last for awhile, but eventually Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier bowed out in third place when his ace-eight failed to hold against the king-queen of Quoss, who in turn took a big chip lead into heads-up play against start-of-the-day chip leader Ben "Ben86" Tollerene.
The two jostled back and forth, with Tollerene even receiving a double. However, Quoss' chip lead proved too big to overcome and on Hand #125 of the final table, Tollerene was eliminated after his jack-ten failed to overcome the king-jack of
Tollerene had to settle for runner-up and a AU$924,140 (USD$654,634) consolation prize, which may have paled to the countless millions he's won online, but still marked the largest live score of his career.
Congratulations to Fabian Quoss, the 2016 Aussie Millions $100,000 Challenge champion!