Benjamin “frenchsniperrr” Chalot won the 2019 MILLIONS Online event for a massive $2,259,113, by far his largest score. Instead of taking some time away from the felt, Chalot has kept his foot firmly on the gas and is currently grinding live tournaments in Prague, Czech Republic!
We caught up with Chalot in picturesque Prague and quizzed him about becoming the 2019 MILLIONS Online champion.
“Well, as you might expect, it wasn’t the worst feeling,” joked Chalot when we asked him how it felt to win such a gigantic poker tournament. “I feel super grateful to win with my two best friends getting crazy in the other room at every pay jump! I’ve been chasing a six-figure score for quite some time, so it was also a big relief,” he added.
It is impossible to go through a tournament of such magnitude without some key hands cropping up. One hand, in particular, stood out from the crowd for our champion.
“One specific hand happened when I was in the zone and playing my A-game. The hijack opened from a 35 big blind stack, the cutoff called from a 30 big blind stack and I decided to overcall with pocket eights from a 20 big blind stack instead of shoving. We checked it down to the J-9-3-Q-5 river and the cutoff bet half-pot. I called with fourth pair despite having made a losing call against the same player earlier. He showed me ace-four.”
Being Known Did Not Alter Chalot’s Strategy
Our recent alias changes, part of the FairPlay initiative, meant the identities of most Day 3 players were shrouded in mystery. Chalot, however, was mentioned on PokerNews France as being “frenchsniperrr” thus outing him. Did being known alter Chalot’s strategy?
“Not really. I have been railed many times by the French community Poker Academie when I reached the final table of other major tournaments. I usually don’t like to know I’m being railed, but for some reason, I have been feeling more relaxed and outcome independent recently. This is probably because I’ve been meditating more lately. Also, I slept crazy good in the last three days, like 12-hours every night, so I was feeling at the best of my abilities.”
Two of Chalot’s MILLIONS Online final day opponents who were already known to the poker community were Team partypoker’s Isaac Haxton and partypoker LIVE President John Duthie. High stakes players often divulge their identities to each other, was this the case with Chalot?
“I asked my online friends who was who. I knew Michael Addamo was “CocaineKiller”. He is fearless and puts you in the toughest spots, so I was excited to learn from his lines. I learned who “Rank 1 Global” and “Lucio” were on Day 3. There were some French players playing on Day 2, but they didn’t make it.”
Deal or No Deal?
Rank 1 Global eventually fell in fourth-place for $1,107,225 with Lucio being Chalot’s heads-up opponent who he struck a deal with. Speaking of deals, “nomeansyes” turned one down when three-handed only to bust in third-place a few hands later.
“I wasn’t frustrated and didn’t really feel pressured,” said Chalot. “First, because as soon as we hit fourth place the seven-figure score was locked. Any extra pay jump was just a bonus. Also, the figures in the final table didn’t seem real, it felt like I was playing a video game!”
“Secondly, I run a staking stable and there is a running joke among us: never turn down a deal, at least look at the numbers otherwise karma gets back to you, and it didn’t fail this time, hahaha.”
MILLIONS Online Should be a $25K Buy-in
Obviously, Chalot is a big fan of the MILLIONS Online tournament having won it, but he was full of praise for the blind structure and is a fan of the higher buy-in.
“Overall, it was an amazing tournament. Even with so much stalling at the end of the tournament, the average stack was around 40 big blinds. Also, I liked it better as a $10K and not $5K because the $10K gets less runners and gives you a higher chance of a bink! I wouldn’t change much, maybe turn it into a $25K so it wouldn’t be as hard to win back-to-back titles!”
As for his immediate poker plans, Chalot isn’t changing much about his life, although he will play higher stakes.
“My life is not really going to change, but it does get me closer to the ultimate goals: battling $100Ks with Stephen Chidwick and the likes!”
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