partypoker new VIP tier comparable to an old favorite. PokerStars lowers the amount of time players have to act. Aussie Millions Main Event will play down to a final table on Friday. Find these stories and more in the Thursday Hit and Run.

partypoker introduces new VIP tier, Diamond Club Elite

PokerStars removed the SuperNova VIP program way back in 2015, but for players who still opine for the popular rewards program there will soon be an alternative. As of February 1st, partypoker will introduce a similar program for its highest rakers called Diamond Club Elite, which will pay players the equivalent of 60% in cashback.

To participate in the partypoker Diamond Elite Club, a player must opt-in and rake the equivalent of $200,000 over a 12 month period. Players qualifying for the program will also earn $16,000 packages to the Caribbean Poker Party and a $10,300 entry into the November MILLIONS online. Don’t play high enough to reach the new tier? partypoker will continue to offer up to 40% cashback to non-Diamond Club Elite players.

In celebration of the new VIP rewards status level, partypoker is giving an extra incentive to the first two players who reach the milestone. The first two players to generate $200,000 in rake will receive 100% cashback through January 2020.

Quick hitters

– Fresh off the heels of news that PokerStars will restrict third-party pools, the top online poker room has announced it will also be reducing time banks beginning February 5th.

The news out of the last couple of days is a conscious effort by PokerStars to further cater to the site’s recreational players. As part of the new policy, the time to act during cash games will be slashed by 40% while a player’s maximum time bank will also significantly reduced. The new maximum will be 30 seconds preflop and 60 second post flop, 10% of the current time bank. A player’s time bank will begin with 15 seconds with an additional 5 seconds added every 10 hands until reaching the maximum.

– Friday marks the beginning of Day 4 of the Aussie Millions Main Event<, which will see 38 players return and play down to a final table. Mike Del Vecchio will begin the day as the chip leader with just over 2.4 million in chips, almost double that of Dingxiang Ong, who sits in 2nd with 1,402,000 in chips. Matthew Wakeman, David Wang and Andrew Hinrichsen round out the top five. High stakes pro Bryn Kenney is also still alive and will start the day with 782,000 in chips.

Abe Mosseri has joined Cole South in claiming that Eli Elezra owes him money on a Two Plus Two thread. In the post, Mosseri claims that Elezra still owes him over $853,000 from a loan over nine years ago. Elezra got ahold of Poker News to explain his side of the story while saying that Cole South will receive his money.

– From the Fake News Bin: Mother of Twitch-streaming poker professional has resorted to telling friends that her son is dead in an effort to avoid explaining what he does for a living.

– ICYMI: Rivers Casino was the most popular sportsbook in Pennsylvania during the month of December, despite being open for only half the month with an average handle of $328,327 per day.

– Thursday’s Grinderschool.com poker training video of the day is part 2 of Carroter’s series on “6 Max by Position.” This episode focuses on open raising from the cut-off position and how to handle the hand on the flop.

Notable poker videos across the internet

Andrew Neeme plays a $5/$5 meetup game in Austin, TX, which includes a hand with pocket aces that leads to a $4,000 pot.

Jaime Staples goes to an English Premier League match but not before sitting down with fellow PokerStars Team pros for a session of 6+ Hold’em.

– In his latest vlog, Brad Owen goes over his 2018 poker stats, a rare in-depth look of the actual win rate of a professional poker player:

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