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Galfond Challenge: Phil crushes Kornuth for $544,500

Author: Vargoso Published: 10.01.21

Despite the holidays break, the current Galfond Challenge between Phil and Chance Kornuth has taken a new path. After 45 sessions and 23,500 hands, Phil's profit has already reached $544,500.

Galfond Challenge: Phil crushes Kornuth for $544,500

Is Phil Galfond unstoppable?

In the middle of December last year, we already wrote about a new comeback in the Galfond Challenge. The next five sessions of the match proved it was only the beginning:

Session Winner Result
41 (17 December) Phil Galfond $73,500
42 (5 January) Chance Kornuth $33,000
43 (6 January) Chance Kornuth $46,500
44 (7 January) Phil Galfond $80,000
45 (8 January) Phil Galfond $192,000
TOTAL Phil Galfond $544,500
After 45 sessions (23,500 hands out of 35k), Chance Kornuth is already losing $544,500 to Phil Galfond.

From November 13, 2020, when Chance had the biggest advantage, to today (January 10, 2021), he has already lost $889,000 across eleven thousand hands. Until the end of this match, it remains to play about the same number of hands.

On the last stream, the Run it Once commentators said that now the Galfond Challenge must take a week break because Kornuth needs to make another deposit. He already faced the same problem in the past, because of deposit limits imposed by local regulation.

Galfond's interview

Phil doesn't tweet much about the challenge on his account but gave a short interview after the last session.

How do you rate your play in the last sessions?

F.G: I played well, but still, as a realist, I must say that there were several coolers in my favor, and I did not get into complex situations too often. But this, of course, is not a reason not to analyze this session. Even in the winning pots, I have to understand how well I got with Chance.

How much studying do you do during these matches?

F.G.: Now, really all I do is take screencaps of all the interesting hands and just go back over them. If I lock at them all the same day, then I remember the action as there are no hand histories.

Kornuth was able to purchase only $9,600 (less than 50bb) at last. Did you notice it first?

F.G.: I noticed right away, I attempt not to keep track of how I'm doing during a session; I didn't really know how much I was winning. When I saw he didn't have enough to reload, I knew that I must have been winning a lot.

I mostly ignore my emotions when I play until the session is over. I was just playing because I'm focused.

What do you see the chances of Chance continuing after today?

I would be surprised if he quit at this point. We're not super close, but we talk throughout the match, and I get the sense that he's relatively confident, and how I won today is just like cooler-cooler-flip. This is not a session that I think will really shake his confidence. I expect that he'll continue.

Many viewers said in the chat: with such a big advantage, wouldn't it be better to start playing more carefully and just try to lock up the win?

F.G.: I think sitting out at any point before, like 500 hands left, is probably out of the question. Adjusting play at some point makes sense. However, it's a mathematical question. There is a 1.25M side bet in this match; to that effect, I'm probably supposed to fold out much sooner than I would in the VeniVidi challenge.

How long do you think it's going to be before we get back to action here.

F.G.: I think we'll be okay on Tuesday.

We hope that the Galfond Challenge will be able to resume early next week.

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