After a losing session to start the Galfond Challenge, Phil Galfond bounced back on Day 2 to grab the overall lead. The Run it Once founder turned approximately a $45,000 profit, and now leads by around $12,000 against Chance Kornuth.
Official results haven’t been released, and it’s difficult to track progress through live-stream on WSOP.com, the poker site used for the challenge. But the estimates are close enough and Kornuth disclosed a $45,000 Day 2 loss on Twitter.
A poker player known as “ThalloPoker” has picked up the Twitch coverage for the first two days. He’s provided commentary and analysis on the heads-up pot-limit Omaha match.
During Wednesday’s first session, Kornuth grinded out a $33,000 win. That may seem like a massive victory, but it really isn’t. That’s less than two full $40,000 buy-ins. The Galfond Challenge lasts 35,000 hands at $100/$200 stakes. Each player buys in for $20,000 to each table — they play two tables at a time — and must reload any time they drop below the $20k mark.
The entire Galfond Challenge is expected to last at least a month, and likely well into November. So, we’re still early on in the contest and fans should expect massive swings both ways given the nature of pot-limit Omaha.
Better second session for Galfond
Following a slow start on Day 1, Galfond bounced back quite nicely on Day 2 (Thursday). The poker site owner, who plays on WSOP.com as “HeyGuys,” turned a $45,000 profit and now holds a slim lead with just under 34,000 hands remaining. The official number of hands played haven’t been released yet.
The Day 2 session, much like Day 1, lasted around 5 hours and 45 minutes. At that point, both players agreed to call it quits for the day. You can catch every hand of the Galfond Challenge live on Twitch, although Galfond has yet to get his Run it Once Poker Twitch stream up and running for the challenge as he’s done in the past. For the time being, “ThalloPoker” is handling the coverage.
The third Galfond Challenge hasn’t received much publicity yet. Part of that may be due to poker fans being preoccupied with other high-profile heads-up matches. Phil Hellmuth recently defeated Antonio Esfandiari heads-up for the second consecutive time. And Doug Polk is gearing up to soon face his long-time nemesis, Daniel Negreanu.
But Galfond versus Kornuth is still an intriguing match. You have arguably the greatest PLO player ever (Galfond) up against a no-limit hold’em specialist with two WSOP bracelets. Both poker pros run their own poker training sites — Run it Once for Galfond and Chip Leader Coaching for Kornuth.
Thus far, through two sessions, the swings haven’t been massive, but that will soon change. Both players appear to be just feeling each other out at this point. Neither player has grabbed a sizable overall lead.
During the first two Galfond Challenges, the early swings were much larger. Galfond trailed by nearly $1 million early against “VeniVidi1993” before rallying to win. The tides were turned in the second challenge against “ActionFreak,” where Galfond busted out to a quick lead of over $200,000. He won both matches.
Featured image source: Twitch/ThalloPoker