sirpietah captures top spot in Sunday Warm-Up

sunday-warmup-promo1.jpg The Sunday Warm-Up continued the streak of exploded guarantees this week as 4,176 players created a whopping $835,200 prize pool. No overlays here, folks! The field thinned pretty quickly as well, with the last nine standing locking up their final table spots barely more than eight hours after the tournament kicked off. After a tough final table and an interesting experiment in poker globalization, sirpietah took down the title and the $121,692.93 top prize (result of a deal when heads up play commenced).
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Marwetz was the final table bubble boy when he busted in 10th place, one shy of the big table but still good for a $5,011 payday. Play at the final table kicked off slowly as players transitioned from short-handed play to the full table, but after a couple of orbits of "raise and take it" poker, we had our first big confrontation. RalsLe came into the final table as the shortest of the short stack, but picked up several pots early to move back into the thick of things. RalsLe made a stand with pocket eights after UNoWho11 went for a steal from the hijack with 9♠-8♣. RalsLe's eights held up and he moved up among the chip leaders.

All nine players made it to the first break of the final table, but their must have been a few Red Bulls consumed on break, because the players came back with more raises and three-bets than we'd seen yet. Just a few hands back from break, UNoWho11 moved all in preflop with 7♥-7♦. Plasticard moved all in over the top to isolate from the cutoff, and when everyone else folded, his pocket queens were revealed. The board ran out an unhelpful (for UNoWho11) 8♥-8♠-A♣-4♣-6♦, and UNoWho11 was the first casualty of the final table, picking up $6,681.61 for 9th place.

Whatever was in the water was still in effect a few hands later, because we had another quick all in confrontation. I_DESTROY_U limped in from the button with A♠-3♥, and sirpietah completed his small blind. Dardan0s checked the option from the big blind, and the flop came down K♠-4♦-6♣. Action checked around to I_DESTROY_U on the button, and he fired out a bet. Sirpietah got out of the way, and Dardan0s raised. I_DESTROY_U re-raised enough to put Dardan0s all in, and Dardan0s made the call with 5♠-3♦ for the up and down straight draw. I_DESTROY_U was ahead with ace-high, and when the turn and river came down 8♦-T♥, that was the end of Daradan0s, who pocketed $10,440.01 for 8th place.

Sometimes in a poker game you find yourself ahead preflop, with all the money in the middle, and then you improve on every street. It doesn't happen often, but it's sure nice when it does. That's what happened when I_DESTROY_U finally ended ralsLe's final table run in 7th place ($18,793.01).

Play slowed considerably after RalsLe's exit, with almost a full level passing before another elimination. Plasticard nursed his short stack for as long as he could before finally moving all in with J♣-J♥. Big stack lbh26 called with A♦-5♦, and an ace in the window spelled doom for plasticard. The final board read A♠-9♣-K♣-8♥-9♠, and plasticard busted in 6th place ($27,144.01). Mere seconds later the field was four-handed, as delaney_kid busted in 5th place at the hands of sirpietah, who solidified his chip lead at the expense of delaney_kid. As becomes the case late in most big tournaments, all the money went in preflop, and it was a coin toss as sirpietah showed 9♦-9♥ to delaney_kid's A♠-K♦. The flop was no help to either player as it came down 4♠-6♦-4♥, and the turn was another blank, the Q♦. Delaney_kid needed one of six outs on the river to stay alive, and the 3♣ was not one of them. His 5th-place finish was worth $35,496.01.

I_DESTROY_U certainly lived up to his moniker at the final table, but finally his run of knockouts was ended by the chip monster sirpietah. I_DESTROY_U moved all in from the button with K♠-[10c], and sirpietah called out of the small blind with A♠-7♣. The A♣ was the first card off the deck as the flop came down A♣-4♣-5♥. The T♠ on the turn was a little help for I_DESTROY_U, but the 9♦ on the river ended his tournament in 4th place ($47,188,81). All three of the remaining players had held the chip lead at some point, but davdav23 and lbh26 were both chasing sirpietah when three-handed play began.

Davdav23 and lbh26 took turns doubling through each other with pocket queens, but after going back and forth three-handed for a while, lbh26 found himself dangerously short and moving all in almost every hand. The end finally came when sirpietah raised preflop with K♥-J♦ and was called from the small blind by davdav23 holding 9♠-8♠. Lbh26 moved all in over the top with Q♠-9♥, and both of his opponents called. Sirpietah and davdav23 checked down the board of 6♣-6♦-A♠-4♣-[10c], and when the dust settled sirpietah's king-high was good enough to bust lbh26 in 3rd place ($68,904.01).

As heads up play was about to commence, the international flavor of PokerStars came into play as talks of a deal kicked off. With sirpietah holding the chip lead and speaking English, the need for a French translator came into play to translate for davdav23. After a few moments, a French-speaking host came into the chat and deal talks were able to begin. Once the language barriers were battered down, it didn't take long for a deal to be struck as sirpietah locked up $111,692.93 and davdav23 took down a guaranteed $106,634.06. That left $10,000 to play for as well as the TLB points for the winner.
As sirpietah said just before heads up play kicked off, "flipping for 10K." It was certainly true on the last hand of the tourney, when the two survivors got it all in on a classic coin flip to $10,000.

Congratulations to sirpietah, davdav23 and everyone who cashed in the Sunday Warm-Up!