Ami Barer is the reigning champ here at the Aussie Millions, and after the last five hands his chances of a title defense have increased significantly. When we began watching the Canadian he was sitting with around 215,000 in chips. Here's what happened.
Hand #1 (Big Blind): Manny Stavropoulos opened the action with a raise to 3,400 from early position and Barer defended from the big blind. Both players checked the flop and then Barer check-folded to a bet of 4,500 on the turn.
Hand #2 (Small Blind): James Rann raised to 3,300 from the cutoff, the button three-bet to 10,000, and Barer folded the small blind. Rann ended up folding as well.
Hand #3 (Button): Action folded to Barer on the button and he raised to 4,000. Stavropoulos called from the big blind and then led out for 5,300 on the flop. Barer folded.
Hand #4 (Cutoff): Barer bumped it to 3,200 from the cutoff and Stavropoulos called from the small blind. Both players checked the flop, and then Stavropoulos check-called a bet of 3,600 on the turn. After Stavropoulos checked the river, Barer bet a tiny 1,600, which elicited a strange look from Stavropoulos, who literally kissed his chips goodbye before making the call. Stavropoulos was good though as Barer mucked his hand.
Hand #5 (Hijack): Rann raised to 3,500 under the gun and Barer three-bet to 11,400 from the hijack. Phares Bouya, the uncle of Van Marcus (who was inducted into the Australian Poker Hall of Fame earlier today), then four-bet to 31,400. Action folded back to Rann and he released his cards. Barer thought for a moment before making the call and then the dealer put out the flop — .
Two checks brought about the on the turn, and Barer opted to bet 24,900. Bouya didn't take too long to call and the two watched the complete the board on the river. Barer paused, used both hands to grab two towers of chips, and came out with a big bet of 116,000.
Bouya didn't act too quickly, but after about a minute he put in the chips to make the call. Barer excitedly rolled over the for the flopped flush, and Bouya slapped the table in frustration before sending his cards to the muck.
The defending champ was clearly excited to win that monster pot, and rightfully so as it has given him the chip lead!