It has been more than a year since Tom Durrrr Dwan issued his heads-up challenge to the world, and at its current pace, we might see the second-coming before Patrik Antonius and Dwan finish their 50,000 hand battle. There have been a lot of different excuses for why the challenge has taken so long to finish. The biggest obstacle came in the form of players like Martonas and Isildur1 who fed a lot of money into the high-stakes games during times where it seemed Dwan and Antonius were online. Both players have seemed frustrated over the length of the challenge, yet neither seems to be pressuring their opponent to finish. Over the past few days both players have been back on FullTilt and some strong action has commenced.
Here’s a quick refresher course on the challenge for those who might have forgotten its parameters over the past few months. Looking to improve his heads-up play against the best in the world, Dwan issued a “challenge” to anyone not named Phil Galfond (known as Jman28 or OMGClayAiken) at $200/$400 No-Limit Hold’em and/or Pot-Limit Omaha. To sweeten the pot, Dwan put up $1,500,000 of his own money were his opponent to defeat him over the course of 50,000 hands and asked only $500,000 in return were he to come out on top. The final stipulation was the match had to be played on a minimum of four tables at all time. At first, most of the poker world inferred Dwan felt he had an advantage over players like Ivey and Antonius due to their tendencies to only play 1-2 tables at a time. However, Durrrr later stated in an interview he felt playing four or more tables allowed him to learn and adjust to his opponent’s game in a shorter time frame, which is why he started the challenge in the first place.
The past 48 hours have seen the 30,000 hand mark finally eclipsed as Patrik took a “small” $150,000 bite into Dwan’s lead. Durrrr had won nearly $1,000,000 before the two started playing the other day, which may seem like a huge lead but it certainly is not. To put his lead into perspective, there have already been more than five million-dollar swings in the challenge, including a near $2,000,000 upswing by Dwan (followed by a $1,500,000 downswing) around the 15,000-20,000 hand mark. For those unfamiliar with Pot-Limit Omaha, it is a much crazier game than No-Limit Hold’em. Players tend to gamble much more (correctly so) which can create both huge pots and large stacks. There have already been two pots over $400,000 (10+ buy-ins) and another eight over the $250,000 mark. All it takes is a few of these monster pots to go Patrik’s way and he could retake the lead.
The two have now played 31,020 hands and Durrrr holds an $878,490 advantage. Hopefully the past few days are signs of things to come, as with the Aussie Millions finishing the two may be done traveling for some time. There is no telling when the two will play so you’ll just have to keep the FullTilt client open. To find the “Durrrr Challenge” tables log in to FullTilt and select the Omaha tab at the top of the screen. From there be sure to have the “High” section check-marked and scroll down to find all eight challenge tables. Be careful, if you keep the “show full tables” option unchecked you may miss out on the action!