2006 WCOOP: Event #5 Final Table Report

The icon poised above the five seat just looked too familiar. I knew I had seen the face before. What's more, the name kwob20 rang a bell so close to my brain that I had to go in search of his true identity. Turns out, I'd actually met the guy before.

It's been a little more than a month since Kyle "kwob20" Bowker took 37th place in the 2006 World Series of Poker and won an impressive $247,399. Indeed,, Bowker has been having a pretty good year. He started playing on PokerStars in March.

"I started playing the major tournaments on PokerStars," he said. "No other site really compares. I have the most success on PokerStars. [It has] the most players, good competition, and good structure."

With this year's heater in full effect, Bowker took a shot at WCOOP event in which he had very little experience.

"This was actually my first limit Omaha hi-lo tournament," he confessed.

As it turned out, poker is poker and when Event #5 was down to four tables, Bowker knew he had a shot at winning the whole thing. By the time he reached the final table, he had a commanding chip lead.

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Seat 1: dgang (23430 in chips)
Seat 2: NoPotForYou! (228663 in chips)
Seat 4: Just*AA*Pair (375156 in chips)
Seat 5: kwob20 (833690 in chips)
Seat 6: pollar (69893 in chips)
Seat 7: Flippin Aces (554274 in chips)
Seat 8: n47j25s (212146 in chips)
Seat 9: nimag (85248 in chips)

With ten players remaining, two players were eliminated on the same hand. The final table started eight-handed and Bowker went to work. In short order, he eliminated pollar when his KsAs7sJc held up against pollar's 3sJdTc2h. For eighth place, pollar earned $10,959.50.

For a long while, it appeared Canada's Just*AA*Pair would be Bowker's toughest battle. Just*AA*Pair came into the final table third in chips and ready to make a run. Shortly after pollar's exit, Just*AA*Pair went on the attack. In a hand with NoPotForYou! Just*AA*Pair flopped a set to NoPotForYou!'s two pair. The board paired on the turn, giving NoPotForYou! a full house, but giving Just*AA*Pair a bigger boat and the eventual win. NoPotForYou! won $15,248.00 for seventh place.

Not too be outdone, Bowker went back to work. After flopping open-ended in a hand with dgang, Bowker rivered his straight to outrun dgang's pair of kings. Dgang left in sixth place, earning $19,774.75.

It was around that time something odd started to happen. Both nimag and n47j25s had been on the ropes for a while and it seemed likely they would both be out soon. Instead, n47j25s went on a run that started with nimag's elimination and rocketed n47j25s in the direction of a championship. While nimag earned $24,539.75, n47j25s looked to make much more.

After Bowker amassed around half the chips in play, Flippin Aces luck a turn for the worse. After getting rivered once in a huge pot and then losing a subsequent pot for just as much money, Flippin Aces was on the ropes. Bowker put Flippin Aces out of his misery, making two pair against Flippin Aces pair of queens. Flippin Aces won $29,781.25 for his fourth place finish.

On the final table webcast, Dan Goldman and Greg Raymer couldn't help but be astonished at n47j25s's comeback. At one point, the guy had fewer than 50,000 chips. Suddenly, he was a force with which to be reckoned. Just*AA*Pair didn't reckon soon enough and lost a huge pot when n47j25s made a full house on the turn to best Just*AA*Pair's two pair. Bowker finished the job a few hands later when he turned a straight to bust Just*AA*Pair's set of queens. Just*AA*Pair took home $40,502.50 for third place.

As good as n47j25s's comeback was, there's very little someone can do against a 20-1 chip lead. While n47j25s made a laudable effort (and added a little comedy by offering 50/50 chop), in the end he couldn't make a miracle happen. He finished in second place, earning $63,851.00.

As for Kyle Bowker, he won more than $103,000 and booked an important first place finish.

"It was awesome, I have been finishing deep in many tournaments on PokerStars recently, but just haven't pulled through," he said. "My finish at the World Series was good, but also disappointing to get that far and not get to the end."

Bowker, 23, has now been playing professionally for two years and recently married his high school sweetheart.

"I bought a house with my money from the World Series," he said. "There are some things I would like to improve on the house. Part of the [WCOOP] money will go to that."

Set firmly in the middle of a serious rush, Bowker has no plans to take a break, despite not having a casino near his New York home.

"Turning Stone casino is about two hours away. That is the closest thing I have for live poker," he said. "I play online and then try to travel to the tournaments. I'm going to the Trump Taj Majal for the USPC. Hopefully, I can win my main event seat on PokerStars."

Congrats, Kyle. (Oh, and good to see you again).

For full Event #5 results, look at the WCOOP Limit Omaha High-Low results page. Final table results can be found below.

PokerStars WCOOP Event #5 Final Table Results
(Final table began eight-handed due to two players exiting on the same hand)

1. kwob20 (United States) $103,162.25
2. n47j25s (United States) $63,851.00
3. Just*AA*Pair (Canada) $40,502.50
4. Flippin Aces (United States) $29,781.25
5. nimag (United States) $24,539.75
6. dgang (United States) $19,774.75
7. NoPotForYou! (United States) $15,248.00
8. pollar (Russian Federation) $10,959.50

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in