Two years after Finland's Jussi Nevanlinna picked up his first Aussie Millions cash in the 2017 Main Event, today he wins his first Aussie Millions ANTON Jewellery Championship ring in Event #10: A$2,500 8-Game for A$51,975.
He defeated American Andrew Kelsall heads-up at a final table that featured former A$100,000 Challenge winner David Steicke and 2019 Aussie Millions H.O.R.S.E. champion Daniel Mayoh.
Speaking after his victory, Nevanlinna told PokerNews that the victory was "so so special."
"Every time you win something, it's awesome," he said. "But winning a tournament, that doesn't happen that often, so it's so so special when it does happen."
2020 Aussie Millions A$2,500 8-Game Results
|Place||Name||Country||Payout (AUD)||Payout (USD)|
|2||Andrew Kelsall||United States||$33,075||$22,868|
The former Master Classics of Poker has a wide range of poker cashes, but this is only his second cash here in Australia.
"Finland's really cold this time of year," said Nevanlinna. "And although it takes me 22 hours to get here, I would gladly come here and not play poker at all. I just love the place so much!
"I've played a lot of 8-Game in my career, so that obviously helped a lot. I'm not saying I'm good in all of the games, but I have a lot of experience."
Nevanlinna says that he is planning to play the Main Event and "probably something else too" but is also looking to enjoy his time in Melbourne.
"I have my family here with me so I have days of no poker and days of poker. I haven't planned it yet. I'm looking forward to the Australian Open. It's a huge thing for me. I used to play when I was younger and I have a couple of friends playing there from Finland."
Despite coming into the final day with just 17,500 chips compared to chip leader David Steicke's 472,500, Siya Sha managed to survive and ladder two spots as Vasco Zapantzis and Alan Wilson exited in seventh and sixth.
Sha followed next, with Steicke still holding strong at the top of the counts.
Short-stacked Mayoh, who won the H.O.R.S.E. event at the 2019 Aussie Millions followed next before it was all change at the top of the counts.
Kelsall shot into the lead and as Steicke exited in third, he took a commanding chip lead of 1.1 million to 300,000 into heads-up.
Heads-up against Andrew Kelsall, Nevanlinna was the shorter of the two stacks for much of the contest until a pivotal hand in PLO turned the tables.
"It was a basic cooler. Sometimes you catch a bluff from your opponent or play well, but this one kind of played itself. He had a very good hand against my slightly better hand and we got almost my whole stack in. I almost doubled up in one hand that was it. I was the lucky guy on that one."
The Closing Stages
The final hand came in 2-7 Triple Draw. On the final draw, and with Kelsall all in, the short stack drew one and Nevanlinna stood pat.
Nevanlinna turned over and Kelsall was drawing live with . Kelsall peeled his final card.
"It's a four across," said Kelsall. "So it's a nine or a ten."
"Is it a spade?" asked Nevanlinna, as he held the .
"Let me look," replied Kelsall who peeled his card a bit harder. "Damn," he said tabling the to bust in second place.