Hometown Hero Smashes Aussie Millions Final

Oliver Speidel
Oliver Speidel

Oliver Speidel put in a dominant performance to win the 2012 Aussie Millions for $1.6 million on Sunday.

“Words can’t describe it,” said an ecstatic Speidel. “It’s amazing to win it all. I don’t know what to say, to be honest.”

Speidel finished the tournament in style picking up pocket aces in the final hand to bust heads-up opponent Ken Wong.

The Melbourne local started playing poker five years ago and the Crown Casino is the first place he ever played live poker.

Speidel has been on quite a run at the Aussie Millions as he made two final tables in the preliminary events. 

“I had a great week,” said Speidel. “To win this is just ridiculous. I’m really happy.”

The 26-year-old entered the seven-player final table second in chips and from the first hand seemed destined to win the event.

He busted five of his six opponents at a rapid-fire final table that took less than six hours of play to find a winner.

Hong Kong-native Bjorn Li entered the final table as the chip leader and one of the favorites considering his significant experience in online poker.

Instead Li never really got anything going and ended up crashing out in sixth place when he lost a coin flip against Mohamad Kowssarie.

Kowssarie, who used to play online as Fast_Freddie and TerrorOfSweden, entered the final table as the short stack but was one of the more dangerous players at the final table eventually finishing in fourth place with A-3 to Speidel’s pocket kings.

The other well-known online player Yann Dion, who plays online as yadio, was actually the first player to bust when he shoved with pocket sevens and got called down by Speidel with pocket queens.

The dynamic of the 2012 Aussie Millions changed dramatically yesterday when world-renowned poker player Phil Ivey busted in 10th place.

When one of the world’s best poker players busts, most players are relieved but Speidel admitted he was slightly disappointed by the professional’s absence.

“It would have been cool to have him at the final table,” he said. “He’s an amazing poker player and it was great to play against him. I was a bit relieved though, because he is really damn good.”

Speidel is the fourth consecutive player from Australia to win the Aussie Millions and will be keeping the trophy in Melbourne.

Here’s a complete look at the final table payouts:

1. Oliver Speidel – $1,600,000
2. Kenneth Wong – $1,000,000
3. Mile Krstanoski – $610,000
4. Mohamad Kowssarie – $405,000
5. Patrick Healy – $300,000
6. Bjorn Li – $230,000
7. Yann Dion – $170,000

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About Arthur Crowson

Arthur has been involved exclusively with the poker industry since the 2006 World Series of Poker where he still claims to have captured the first interview with a then-unknown player named Jamie Gold on one of the days leading up to the Main Event final table. Since then Arthur has been working full-time for PokerListings.com writing news stories, covering poker tournaments, interviewing players and snapping photos.

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