The Galfond Challenge was created to help boost publicity for Phil Galfond’s new poker site “Run it Once”. Phil Galfond, a former professional poker player, has a huge reputation in the high stakes poker community. He is one of the most successful online Pot Limit Omaha players ever.
The challenge is a series of high stakes poker battles between Galfond and other challengers. The competition is set up to favour the challenger in the sense that he/she gets a larger cash prize if they are ahead at the end of the challenge. For instance, if you challenge Galfond and you’re ahead after 25,000 hands, you will get €200,000, while Galfond will get €100,000 if he’s ahead.
The challengers since the competition started are Bill Perkins, Brandon Adams, and Daniel Cates. However, this year’s challenge is quite different as Galfond’s first challenger is a somewhat mysterious man known as VeniVidi1993, which is all we know about the challenger. The Galfond Challenge matches are set to feature stakes of a minimum of €100/€200, and they are played as Pot Limit Omaha poker variation.
Phil Galfond lost big in the beginning
The 10 days of the challenge wasn’t favorable to the former poker pro, it has sent him into a loss of well over €500,000. Galfond lost in 9 out of the first 10 sessions to the mystery high-stakes pro VeniVidi1993. Day 5 of the challenge was easily the worst performance for Galfond where he lost over €150,000 in more than 720 hands. The only day he came out ahead was Day 2 where he won a bit over €2000.
Although the first sessions of the challenge have been largely unfavorable to Galfond, he was never ready to throw in towel. In a post on Twitter (link to: ), he talked about his mindset and how motivated he is going forward. After the match against VeniVidi1993, Phil still has to battle five more challengers.
Back to Winning Ways
After taking a break from the challenge in February, Phil returned to his match against VeniVidi1993 in early March with a deficit of almost €1 million. It seemed like an impossible task that even Phil admitted in his tweet earlier, which states that “attempting to get even is attempting to get lucky”. However, since the match restarted Phil has started to dominate his opponent. In March, from game 16 to 31, Galfond won 12 times compared to VeniVidi1993’s 4 times, as reported by bastacasinobonus.se. The huge lead shrunk to almost $150.000.
Galfond takes the overall lead for the first time
In one of the recent matches, with over 3000 fans watching, Galfond was able to take the lead in the challenge for the very first time. Currently, he has an overall profit of about €46,484. The two players have now played over 22,500 hands in 35 sessions.
VeniVidi1993 can of course still overturn the lead since it is a high stakes game and the swings in the games are huge. But it does seem that Galfond has figured something out and currently has the mental edge.
What to Expect Going Forward
VidiVeni1993 is trailing by only four buy-ins, and with several hands still left to play it is impossible to write him off just yet. Judging by the way the competition has played out, we can only expect continuous excitement going forward. To add to that, Galfond still has to battle other opponents, and as a result, we can be sure that there is still a lot of activities and excitement to expect in the Galfond Competition.
To sum up, the Galfond competition has been exciting so far with a lot of talking points, and it can only get better from here. After VidiVeni1993, Galfond’s next opponent is Bill Perkins, and they will be playing the same Omaha Pot Limit for 50,000 hands or until someone loses €400,000. Afterwards, he is to play Chance Kornuth and then, Dan “Jungleman” Cates before facing “Action Freak.” Finally, he will play Brandon Adams in a 40-hour Live €100/€200 Omaha Pot Limit.