Russ Meilunas Finds Victory in Second PlayNow Poker Championship Final Table

Russ Meilunas PlayNow Poker Championship McPhillips Station Casino

The final day of the four-event PlayNow Poker Championship (PNPC) was Saturday, April 23, and it concluded with Russ Meilunas winning the $1,100 Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries Poker Championship and Jordan Feasey taking down the quick $400 PlayNow.com No Limit Texas Hold’em Tournament.

The beautiful McPhillips Station Casino in Winnipeg, Manitoba, has been the host for this great series and has seen four days of exciting events fill its large poker room.

Russ Meilunas Wins PNPC Event #3

When Day 2 of the $1,100 Main Event resumed at noon on Saturday, just 29 players remained of the 158 entries who registered the day before. Leading the way was Edmonton, Alberta’s Ron Lauzon with 219,000 chips.

Ron Lauzon finished sixth in the PlayNow Poker Championship Main Event.
Ron Lauzon finished sixth in the PlayNow Poker Championship Main Event.

Incredibly, this was the second weekend in the row that Lauzon had finished Day 1 of a $1,100 Main Event with the chip lead after he did the same last weekend at Deerfoot Inn & Casino’s Spring Super Stack. And, just like last week, he ultimately finished sixth.

The money bubble burst on Day 2 when James Gibson was eliminated in 17th place after he three-bet shoved his {k-Hearts}{j-Hearts} from the big blind into Russ Meilunas{5-Spades}{4-Spades}. The flop of {4-Clubs}{2-Hearts}{4-Diamonds} was huge for Meilunas, and he further improved to a full house on the {5-Clubs} turn, leaving Gibson drawing dead and eliminated on the money bubble.

That was just one of many pivotal pots that went Meilunas’ way throughout the day as he powered his way to victory. He was the chip leader as the final table was set, losing it briefly to James Boyd before regaining it. He began heads-up play with a two-to-one chip lead against Mark Golub, but lost the chip lead for a brief period then too before rebuilding his big stack.

But it was when Golub had Meilunas out-chipped by a large margin that the two agreed to a deal that secured Golub $34,000 and Meilunas $30,000. Meilunas then took over the reins of the heads-up match and ground Golub down to a short stack where he kept him desperately short for many hands before finally getting it in.

Mark Golub finished runner-up in the PlayNow Poker Championship Main Event.
Mark Golub finished runner-up in the PlayNow Poker Championship Main Event.

The two played for more than two hours before all of the chips finally went one direction. Meilunas limped his button and Golub checked to go to a flop of {6-Hearts}{9-Clubs}{3-Diamonds}. Golub checked and Meilunas made a min-bet of 30,000, which Golub called. The turn was the {5-Diamonds} and Golub quickly pushed all in. Meilunas snap-called. Golub had turned a pair with his {5-Clubs}{8-Clubs} but Meilunas had him dominated with {4-Hearts}{2-Diamonds} for a straight. Golub needed a seven on the river to pull ahead with a stronger straight, but the {4-Clubs} was the final card dealt in the tournament and Golub was eliminated as the runner-up.

Golub collected the $34,000 he had locked up earlier and Meilunas earned the extra $5,781 still in play to go with his $30,000 for a total of $35,781 as well as the PlayNow Poker Championship trophy and champion’s ring.

This result follows Meilunas’ third-place finish in the second-largest buy-in of the same series where he earned $9,686, making the PNPC a very successful event for him.

Jordan Feasey Wins PNPC Event #4

The final event of the series was the $400 PlayNow.com No Limit Texas Hold’em Tournament. Each of the 155 entries received 8,000 chip and played through quick 20-minute blind levels to determine a final winner in the series.

Jorday Feasey won the $400 PlayNow.com No Limit Hold'em Tournament.
Jorday Feasey won the $400 PlayNow.com No Limit Hold'em Tournament.

Play kicked off at 1 p.m. on Saturday while the Main Event was just reaching the money. Only nine and a half hours later, a winner was declared with Jordan Feasey picking up the PNPC trophy.

The quick structure meant that players were quite short once in the money. Once the money bubble burst with the elimination of the 17th-place finisher, it took little time to get down to a final table.

A five-handed deal was made with Sam Mehzenta locking up the largest portion. He went on to play Feasey heads up but couldn’t finish the deal, falling in second for $11,455. Feasey’s win earned him a little less at $8,455, but he collected the trophy and the title along with the cash.

That’s it for this spring’s PlayNow Poker Championship in Winnipeg. For even more details about all four events, check our live reporting page to review the hundreds of live updates PokerNews Canada posted throughout the series, full payout lists, and photo galleries.

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