PartyPoker Premier League VI: Esfandiari and Tilly Advance to Saturday's Final Table

Antonio Esfandiari

The preliminary heats have been completed. The heads-up qualifiers are in the books. And the eight-handed final table of the PartyPoker Premier League VI is set to crown a champion on Saturday evening.

Group B winner Tobias Renkemeier will take the biggest stack into the final, where one player will walk away with the $450,000 top prize. He's followed closely by Group A leader Jonathan Duhamel, who will sit down with 420,000 in chips. Each finalist will receive 10,000 in chips for every point earned during the four qualifying heats that took place earlier this week.

Here's a look at the finalists:

1Tobias Reinkemeier460,000
2Jonathan Duhamel420,000
3Dan Shak390,000
4Dan Cates340,000
5Talal Shakerchi280,000
6Sam Trickett270,000
7Antonio Esfandiari230,000
8Jennifer Tilly190,000

Reinkemeier, Duhamel, Dan Shak, Dan Cates, Talal Shakershi and Sam Trickett each finished in the top three of their respective eight-person groups and earned automatic seats at the final table. The last two two seats would be determined by a pair of heads-up matches between the fourth- and fifth-place finishers in each group. Group A's match between Antonio Esfandiari and defending champ Scott Seiver played out Friday night, and Group B's contest between Tony G and Jennifer Tilly took place Saturday afternoon.

Esfandiari and Seiver split the first two matches of their heads-up match, leaving the third rubber match to decide who would advance to the final. Esfandiari grinded Seiver down to just 26,000 in chips and used some luck to move on to the final table. Esfandiari moved all-in preflop with {3-Diamonds}{3-Spades} and Seiver called with pocket fours, leaving him in great shape to double up. The {5-Hearts}{2-Spades}{J-Clubs} flop was safe for Seiver, but Esfandiari hit gin with the {3-Hearts} on the turn. Seiver needed an ace, four or six to win, but the river was the {Q-Spades}. With Seiver gone, we're guaranteed to see a Premier League champion.

Tony G earned his seat in the heads-up qualifier by winning the final preliminary heat in Group B, but he was unable to carry that momentum through to the final. According to Premier League commentator Jesse May, Tilly "absolutely obliterated" Tony G, sweeping him 2-0 in their matches to advance to the final. In the key pot of the second match, Tony G raised to 4,000 preflop from the button with {7-Hearts}{4-Hearts} and Tilly called with {A-Clubs}{9-Spades}. Both checked the {10-Spades}{J-Hearts}{J-Spades} flop and the {2-Hearts} fell on the turn. Tony bet 6,000 and Tilly called. The dealer rolled out the {6-Spades} on the river and Tony bet 9,000. With only ace high, Tilly sniffed out Tony's bluff and called to win a big pot, leaving Tony short stacked.

A short while later Tony G moved all-in preflop for 11 big blinds with {J-Clubs}{8-Clubs} and Tilly called with {K-Clubs}{Q-Spades}. The board ran out {K-Diamonds}{3-Diamonds}{7-Diamonds}{5-Hearts}{3-Spades} and Tilly completed the sweep to advance to the final. She'll begin play with the shortest stack but she'll have plenty of room to maneuver from the start.

The final table kicks off Saturday evening and you can catch all of the action on the live stream at the PartyPoker Blog. If you miss anything, be sure to check out the full final table recap here at following the completion of play.

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