chrjs2k thunders through field of 116,400, wins 10th Anniversary Sunday Storm

10th-ann-thumb.JPG When the "Sunday Storm" debuted on PokerStars earlier this year, the $11 buy-in tournament swiftly became one of the more popular tourneys on the weekly calendar. Typically the Storm has little trouble smashing its usual $200K guarantee -- for example, last week 39,815 came out, creating a prize pool of $398,150.

But with PokerStars celebrating its 10th anniversary, this week's Storm needed some extra thunder.

So the guarantee was upped to $1 million. Boom!

And first prize was guaranteed to be at least $150,000. Crack!

And to make things even more fun, $100 bounties for anyone knocking out a PokerStars pro along the way. That's a lot of extra cash raining down!

The Gathering Storm: 116,400 Entrants

When the first hands were dealt the total number of entrants had already climbed past 85,000 and would continue to rise throughout the two hours of late registration. A half-hour later the field had pushed past the 100,000-player mark, thus ensuring the guarantee would be met.

As the overall field grew, players began to fall, among them Team PokerStars Pro Liv Boeree. Down to 1,527 chips at the start of the second hour, Boeree shoved over a GUST1931956 limp, then saw Martonio reraise all in from one seat over. It folded back to GUST1931956 who thought a bit -- he had Boeree covered, but not Martonio -- and finally he called.

Boeree had 4♣4♦, but both of her opponents had drawn pocket fives, as GUST1931956 held 5♠5♣ and Martonio 5♦5♥. The board then came 8♦9♦7♦A♦A♣, giving Martonio the flush and two knockouts, plus $100 for having ousted Boeree.


Team PokerStars Pro Liv Boeree

Among other bounties collected during the early afternoon, Gabden77 knocked out Humberto Brenes, 5AULIU5 knocked out 2011 WSOP Main Event runner-up Martin Staszko, ProffiKid eliminated Eugene Katchalov, and cc128 sent Jan Heitmann railward.

When registration finally closed, 116,400 players altogether had jumped into the Storm, creating a $1,164,000 prize pool. The top 15,166 finishers would make the money, with a minimum-cash equaling $23.28. All of those making the final table would earn at least five-figure paydays, with first prize a huge $157,140! (Barring any final table deals, that is.)

Storming Through: From 100,000 to 10,000

A few more bounties were collected as the field shrunk below 40,000. A short-stacked Sebastian Ruthenberg shoved with 8♦8♠ and was called by R£Ch_HaRd waiting in the big blind with A♦A♠. That was bad for the Team PokerStars Pro, but the A♣A♥6♣ flop made it even worse, and soon R£Ch_HaRd had all of Ruthenberg's chips and a $100 bounty.

Shortly after that, the blinds were 400/800 when Juan Manuel Pastor shoved his last 5,800 from UTG with 5♥5♦ and TIME250 decided to take a shot at the bounty by calling from the button with 9♦2♥. The board came A♠T♦J♦6♠... 9♥, that river rewarding TIME250 with the pot and an extra hundy.

And clucker28 collected Angel Guillen's bounty when he spiked a river queen with A♦Q♠ against Guillen's A♥K♥ and SVGoogle's pocket eights.

By the three-hour mark the field had been trimmed under 20,000 players. At that point k33nz0 and mextrex were setting the pace with more than 200,000, with MD IACONI, ligra80, Yvon-King not far behind.

The cash bubble was still nearly 5,000 eliminations away, but it wouldn't take long to get there -- just 20 minutes, in fact. Along the way, more bounties were collected by skaza777 (Martin "AABenjaminAA" Hruby), KOSEC510 (Marcel Luske), and AKSU-47 (Richard "Tzen1" Veenman).

A half-hour later 10,000 players were left, with forAwhiteguy setting the pace, nearing the 500,000-chip mark. sergey963 was his nearest challenger with about 379,000, with maro61058 in third with just over 337,000.

More PokerStars Pros Caught in the Storm: From 10,000 to 1,000

With the eliminations of Dale "DaleRoxxu" Philip of Team Online (12,105th, $23.28), and Ana Marquez of Team PokerStars Spain (11,444th, $23.28), that left just five more representatives of Team PokerStars among the survivors, and thus five more potential bounties to be claimed: Nacho Barbero, Ivan Demidov, Jonathan Duhamel, Alex Kravchenko, and Pierre "Zoutechamp" Neuville.

Barbero was the first of the five to fall when his Q♦J♠ failed him against Kaketka550's K♠T♣, knocking out the Argentinian in 8,576th ($23.28).
Duhamel followed him soon thereafter in a three-way hand in which $wish$lots$ successfully ousted the 2010 WSOP Main Event champ in 7,049th ($34.92).

A little later the blinds were 3,000/6,000 when gabtom13 limped in from late position, then Kravchenko shoved all in for 78,171 from the small blind. gabtom13 thought for several seconds, then called with 5♠5♣. It was a good call, as his Russian foe had but 2♠2♣, and five cards later Kravchenko was out in 5,023rd ($34.92)

With 5,000 players left, Remmi was in first position with more than 683,000 while bemessinger and bunicul177 were the only other players with more than 600,000.

Another 999 players ran out of chips, then Ivan Demidov reraised all in for 114,192 (about 16 big blinds) and Pestilential called. Demidov had K♠J♦ and Pestilential A♠J♣, and after the board came ten-high Demidov was gone in 4,001st, giving him $34.92 and $100 for Pestilential.

"I think you got the last bounty pro here gl," typed Pierre "Zoutechamp" Neuville at his table a while later.


Team PokerStars Pro Pierre "Zoutechamp" Neuville

Some time after that Neuville became short-stacked, then folded down until he had but 664 chips remaining at which point he pushed his last chips in the middle.

Five opponents limped along for 20,000 each to see if they could earn the final bounty, and in the end it was Luk1985 whose K♠5♣ gave him a pair of fives, good enough to win the pot and $100 as Neuville hit the rail in 1,562nd ($58.20).

Lightning Strikes: From 1,000 to 100

The tourney was a little over five-and-a-half hours old when 1,000 players remained. They'd outlasted over 115,000 opponents, but the forecast was for the Storm to last quite a bit longer.

By then Efimike had pushed in front with just over 3.23 million, with cover_point next with about 3.12 million and lennie-g22 hovering at 2.7 million.

Over the next hour the field shrunk to less than 300 players, during which period tiriesto steadily rose to the top of the leaderboard and close to the 10 million-chip mark. Then came a huge three way-all in between tiriesto with A♦Q♠, KRANTY with T♣T♠, and kid_world with Q♦9♦.

After the 2♣5♥8♥ flop and 9♠ turn it looked as though KRANTY would be claiming the 6 million-plus chip pot. But the A♥ struck on the river like a bolt of lightning, sending out both kid_world (242nd, $116.40) and KRANTY (241st, $116.40) and pushing tiriesto up close to 13.3 million chips -- at the time about five million more than second-place collins82.

tiriesto kept adding to his leading stack, and a half-hour later would be the first to cross 20 million. Then lightning would strike for tiriesto again in another big three-way all-in in which he held ace-queen.

In this one, the blinds were up to 120,000/240,000 when Vlad_Russia raised to 1,571,618, leaving himself just a single chip behind. tiriesto reraised to 2,903,236 from the button, then Felsss shoved all in for 5,159,748 from the small blind. Vlad_Russia tossed in his last chip and tiriesto called as well.

As mentioned, tiriesto had A♣Q♦, better than Vlad_Russia's A♠9♦ but way behind Felsss' A♦A♥. But the flop came Q♥2♠Q♠, giving tiriesto trips, and two cards later his hand had held. Vlad_Russia was out in 105th ($430.68) and Felsss out in 104th (also $430.68).

Meanwhile, as three more fell and the field shrunk to 100 players, tiriesto was up over 29.5 million, a full 10 million ahead of second-place Puigmal.

In the Eye of the Storm: From 100 to 9

As they crossed the eight-hour mark, tiriesto continued to maintain the lead, moving out further past 35 million. Eliminations were now resulting in $500-plus paydays for players, a nice return on an $11 investment. But all continued to eye those $10K-plus prizes at the final table, including the $157,140 awaiting the winner.

By the time 50 were left, tiriesto was holding steady at 35.3 million, with Eldasensei next with 28.4 million and sebstop, dim1388, and Orekhov59 all around the 25 million-chip mark.

Puigmal would rush past them all, however, to be the first to 40 million, then 45 million. As tiriesto's run good finally slowed down to knock him back a few spots, Eldasensei would likewise move over 40 million, then past the 50 million-mark with just 30 players left. Then Eldasensei took a bite from tiriesto's stack to go over 60 million in a hand in which he rivered a spade flush and got paid.

After nine hours and 40 minutes of play there were 20 left, by which point the average stack was a whopping 29.1 million. Eldasensei was still in front with more than 62 million, Kutscher83 in second with about 56.6 million, and Kuzjayo in third with a little less than 47.4 million.

Soon after tiriesto's run came to an end, knocked by Kuzjayo in 20th ($2,106.84). He was followed to the rail by zbaur (19th, $2,106.84), avasimp (18th, $3,154.44), siinovedad (17th, $3,154.44), dandanaini (16th, $3,154.44), BartezJB (15th, $4,737.48), and stefanoy (14th, $4,737.48), during which stretch Eldasensei became the first to 100 million.

Next out was tianmojing85 (13th, $4,737.48), followed by (12th, $6,855.96) and lennie-g22 (11th, $6,855.96), the latter at the hands of sebstop. That hand catapulted sebstop up over 125 million and into the chip lead, followed by Eldasensei who'd slipped back around 75 million, and Kutscher83 with about 72 million.

The final ten played hand-for-hand through the 10-and-a-half-hour break. sebstop would actually build his stack up over 150 million at one point before falling back, then losing a huge one to Eldasensei in which the pair got all of the latter's chips in the middle on a 5♥T♠5♣ flop with sebstop holding Q♣T♥ and Eldasensei K♥T♣. Eldasensei's hand held, shooting him back to the top of the counts and sending sebstop down near the bottom.

Finally Orekhov59 was eliminated in 10th ($6,855.96) when his A♦A♠ got cracked by chrjs2k's T♣9♣. All in for 10.7 million before the flop, Orekhov59 saw three clubs fall right away to strike him down one spot shy of the final table.

Just nine remained.


Seat 1: Speedyy1986 -- 32,375,057
Seat 2: Kuzjayo -- 89,951,381
Seat 3: Puigmal -- 63,489,246
Seat 4: Eldasensei -- 121,958,132
Seat 5: chrjs2k -- 90,916,497
Seat 6: Kutscher83 -- 20,904,505
Seat 7: sebstop -- 30,623,896
Seat 8: Timjonsen -- 20,894,258
Seat 9: emaestrodobi -- 110,887,028

Some deep stacks with nine left, although the blinds had reached 900k/1.8m, meaning Kutscher83 and Timjonsen were sitting on just about 11 big blinds each to start the final table.

Storming Out of the Gate: From 9 to 6

Timjonsen would waste little time getting his stack in the middle, open-shoving from late position for 19,274,258 and getting a caller in emaestrodobi from a seat over. Speedyy1986 then reraised all in for nearly 29 million from the blinds, and emaestrodobi called that as well.

Speedyy1986: K♣K♠
Timjonsen: K♦J♥
emaaestrodobi: 9♥9♣

The board rolled out T♣A♦7♥A♣5♥, giving Speedyy1986 both the main and side pots and sending Timjonsen out in ninth.

The other short stack Kutscher83 would be all in shortly thereafter, open-shoving from the small blind for 13,524,505 with A♣3♦ and getting called quickly by sebstop in the BB with A♣J♣. The flop paired Kutscher83, coming 3♣2♦Q♣, but the J♦ fell on the turn to give sebstop the better pair. The river was the 7♦ and they were down to seven.

The remaining players then began to discuss possibly making a deal, but sebstop said he wasn't interested and play continued. And as often seems to happen in these spots, it was the one averse to the deal-making who'd be the next to go.

The blinds had reached 1m/2m by the time sebstop's end arrived. Speedyy1986 opened with a raise to 4.38 million from UTG and it folded around to sebstop who made it 9.3 million from the small blind. The BB folded and Speedyy1986 called.

The flop came 7♠T♥Q♣. sebstop checked, Speedyy1986 bet 7,825,899, then sebstop check-raised to 20 million even. Speedyy1986 made it 32,174,101, sebstop reraised again all in for 67,784,255 total, and Speedyy1986 speedily called.

sebstop had but 3♥3♠ while Speedyy1986 had a set with T♠T♣. The 9♦ on the turn sealed it, and sebstop was out in seventh.

RSS readers click through to see replay

Thunderous Applause for the Six Who Made a Deal

The remaining six players then agreed to talk chop, and after a while the tourney was paused. At that point Speeddy1986 had the lead with about 157 million, Eldasensei was next with just over 108 million, Kuzjayo was third with almost 95.5 million, chrjs2k was fourth with almost 91 million, Puigmal was fifth with about 67.5 million, and emaestrodobi last with about 62.5 million.

"Chip chop" numbers were provided -- leaving $20,000 for which to play -- and all agreed except for the short-stack emaestrodobi who wanted at least $55,000 rather than the $51,127.83 being proposed for him. But that presented a problem for Puigmal who was ahead of emaestrodobi in the counts but was only due to receive $53,113.39.

The others agreed to give emaestrodobi more and let Puigmal keep what was due to him via the "chip chop," and while it took some encouraging Puigmal finally agreed. (See payouts below.) Then came a bit of jubilation.

Puigmal: It's a BIG BIG RESULLT!!!!
Puigmal: FOR ALL
chrjs2k: yes
Speeddy1986: it is for all
chrjs2k: Amen
Puigmal: ang now play for 20,000!!!!!

And so -- after congratulating each other a bit more -- they did.

Riders on the Storm: From 6 to 2

They'd been back at it a short while, and the blinds had crept to 1.25m/2.5m when Kuzjayo opened for 7.5 million from the button, then Eldasensei reraised to 17.5 million from the big blind. Kuzjayo called the reraise, and both saw the flop come 2♠9♦5♠. Eldasensei led for 32.5 million, Kuzjayo raised all in for 78,131,381, and Eldasensei called with the 37,272,932 he had left.

Eldasensei showed Q♥Q♦ for queens while Kuzjayo had A♣9♥ for nines. The turn was the T♠ and Eldasensei was still ahead, but the river brought the A♣, giving Kuzjayo a second pair and sending Eldasensei out in sixth.

About 15 minutes later, leader Speedyy1986 would lose a huge preflop all-in versus Kuzjayo in which the latter caught an ace with A♣K♠ to outdraw Speedyy1986's 6♣6♠. That 215 million-plus pot sent Kuzjayo into the chip lead with five left and momentarily made Speedyy1986 the short stack.

Then came a huge three-way all in pitting Kuzjayo's Q♦Q♠ against emaestrodobi's J♥J♠ and Puigmal's 7♦7♠. The flop paired no one, but the turn and river both brought sevens to give Puigmal quads and send emaestrodobi out in fifth. Take a look:

RSS readers click through to see replay

Five hands later the blinds were 2m/4m when Speedyy1986 open-pushed for 57,608,138 from the button with Q♠J♥ and got one caller in Kuzjayo in the small blind with A♠8♠. The community cards came 7♠T♠6♥9♦4♦, giving Kuzjayo a straight. Speedyy1986 was out in fourth, although was assured the biggest payday of the tourney thanks to the earlier deal.

The blinds moved to 2.5m/5m, and Kuzjayo opened for 10 million from the small blind. Puigmal pushed all in from the big blind for 68,611,031, and Kuzjayo called. Puigmal had A♣2♥ but needed help versus Kuzjayo's A♠T♥. The board came A♥J♥3♥K♣4♠, and Puigmal's run ended in third place.

Weathering the Storm: Heads-Up

Kuzjayo began heads-up play with the chip advantage, his massive stack of 354,714,782 ahead of chrjs2k's 227,285,218.

On the 11th hand of heads-up, chrjs2k scored a big double-up when his A♦K♣ managed to outrace Kuzjayo's 2♣2♠, hitting a king on the flop. Then five hands later -- just about 12-and-a-half-hours after the tourney began -- the final hand took place.

With the blinds still 2.5m/5m, chrjs2k raised to 15 million from the button, Kuzjayo shoved for 128,429,564, and chrjs2k called. This time chrjs2k had the black deuces and was hoping 2♠2♣ would work out better for him than it had for Kuzjayo who here held A♦6♣.

The flop was very good for chrjs2k, coming K♦2♦3♠ to give him a set. The turn was the K♣, improving him to a full house and making the river 8♣ no matter. chrjs2k had won!

RSS readers click through to see replay

Congratulations to chrjs2k for besting a field of 116,400 to win the 10th Anniversary Sunday Storm! And also congrats to Speedyy1986 who netted the biggest payday thanks to the six-way chop. Some nice returns on those $11 buy-ins!

10th Anniversary Sunday Storm results for 12/11/11 (*reflects six-way deal):
1st: chrjs2k ($81,604.01)*
2nd: Kuzjayo ($63,462.39)*
3rd: Puigmal ($53,113.39)*
4th: Speedyy1986 ($87.437.94)*
5th: emaestrodobi ($55,127.83)*
6th: Eldasensei ($68,458.64)*
7th: sebstop ($20,952)
8th: Kutscher83 ($15,783.84)
9th: Timjonsen ($10,557.48)

Martin Harris
@hardboiledpoker in News