Previewing the upcoming Galfond Challenge against Chance Kornuth

Jon Sofen
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Posted on: September 16, 2020 5:10 pm EDT

Phil Galfond, the online poker legend, is ready to tackle another tough test in the third installment of the Galfond Challenge. His opponent this time will be poker coach Chance Kornuth, a WSOP bracelet winner and talented pro. The match is scheduled to kickoff Wednesday and will be played on Galfond’s poker site, Run it Once.

The name of the game is pot-limit Omaha, and the challenge calls for 35,000 hands at €100/€200 stakes. A winner will be determined based on the player who profits the most during the competition. At the end, after every hand is dealt, the loser must pay the winner an additional side bet.

Galfond offered up the challenge and he’s the favorite, so he laid a price, meaning he’d owe Kornuth $1 million extra, beyond the cash game losses, if he loses. But if Kornuth can’t pull off the upset, Chance will owe his opponent $250,000 for the side bet.

You can watch every hand of the Galfond Challenge live (on a short delay) on the Run it Once Poker Twitch channel. Playing 35,000 hands, even online, can take quite some time. Thus, the poker pros will multi-table, playing two hands at once. Each session will last about 6-7 hours, or about 700 hands, although that fluctuates depending on how the players are feeling each day.

Been there, done that

Galfond is no stranger to high-stakes heads-up poker challenges. He’s already competed in, and won, two Galfond Challenges this year, against online poker pros “ActionFreak” and “VeniVidi1993.”

Although he won both matches, it wasn’t easy, especially in the first contest against “VeniVidi1993.” In that match, Galfond trailed by €900,000 early on. He was able to bounce back and pulled off a miraculous rally to squeak out a win in the end, however. “Veni” only lost a few thousand over the course of the 25,000 hands, but he was forced to pay an additional €150,000 side bet.

Up next was a match against “ActionFreak,” which concluded in late May. This match went differently than the competition against “Veni,” as Galfond jumped out to a huge lead early and then coasted to a win by around €140,000.

Galfond is a 4-1 favorite against Kornuth, and not only because he’s already defeated two tough opponents. The Run it Once poker site founder is considered one of the best, if not the best, PLO players ever. More than a decade ago, Galfond, who played under the screen name “OMGClayAiken,” won millions on Full Tilt Poker, mostly in PLO cash games.

Kornuth a formidable opponent

Chance Kornuth is the founder of Chip Leader Coaching, a poker training site. He’s also one of the top poker players in the world, especially as a no-limit hold’em tournament pro.

The poker coach has over $7.4 million in lifetime live tournament cashes to go along with two WSOP bracelets. He’s had plenty of online success both in cash games and tournaments. Recently, he finished 2nd in a $500 WSOP Online Bracelet Series event on, falling just one spot shy of his third bracelet.

In 2018, however, he won an online bracelet in the $3,200 No-Limit Hold’em High Roller for $341,599. So, despite Galfond’s heavy odds to win, he isn’t exactly facing chopped liver.

Featured image source: Twitter/PokerShares