Battle of the Planets: Four K for all, nine-way deal highlights September final table

Pride can get in the way of rational thinking at times. $3,995.56 is more than fourth place money and slightly less than $500 off of third place at the final table of the $50,000.00 monthly Battle of the Planets freeroll. Most of the time, pride jumps into the chatbox after the nine final table players take their seats and an even split of the money becomes a distant and sometimes costly memory after a player or two believes (sometimes correctly) that they have a big enough edge on the table for the risk of going home with much less. Tonight however our final nine showed a different kind of pride, not one driven by money but rather accomplishment as dzedyn (Ukraine), ScreemStyle (Ukraine), TDKSTAR (Germany), Don Pajata (Brazil), ZOUZOUNI1998 (Greece), Verca737 (Czech Republic), yyy LLIeroJI (Russia), bigbetsking (Canada), and Ischmaaa (Germany) all took home an even $3,995.56 split of the cash but some decided being named the monthly champion was worth playing it out despite no further monetary rewards remained. TDKSTAR would claim the win after a small heads-up battle against dzedyn.

A single Red Spade invaded today's $50,000 freeroll as PokerStars Challenger winner Stavros 'IDOLLS' Kalfas compiled enough points to win an entry. The Greek pro was not able to advance beyond the first round as Buschapa would take down Kalfas' table to claim the assured $195.00 for advancing to the second round.

Twenty minutes later QuadVQuadMe and RuudjeErreur would be heads-up for the final seat to the round of 81. Late in the match QuadVQuadMe would use a big rush of cards and aggression to claim the final nine hands. Then with the blinds at 150/300 ante 25 and RuudjeErreur down to 794 chips after paying the big blind called all-in holding 8♠9♣. QuadVQuadMe turned up the better kicker 9♠Q♠ as both players missed the 5♣ T♣ 6♥ T♠ K♦ board completely to start up the next round of play.

In what may be a record time for securing a final table seat in this Battle of the Planets freeroll, Verca737 showed no mercy on Table 7 while locking up the first seat by eliminating all eight players in around 50 minutes. As a comparison, no other table had less than four players remaining.

Stephen "Stevie444" Chidwick claimed his WCOOP bracelet in Badugi earlier this week and was looking to add a BOTP title as well just for kicks. Despite playing in the WCOOP Main Event and the $10K 8-Game event, he was deep here for a seat at the final table. Unfortunately, the UK rounder fell just short of another big final table this month placing 24th today.


Stephen "Stevie444" Chidwick - 24th place

Thirty minutes later the tournament was down to just messier111, who took home the runner-up check of $7,500.00 here in April and dzedyn. With the blinds up to 150/300 ante 25 and dzedyn holding a 9,201 to 4,299 chip lead, the chip leader would min-raise from the button as messier111 made the call to see a A♥5♦8♥ flop. messier111 checked as dzedyn bet 640. Holding a flush draw 9♥Q♥, messier111 shoved which elicited a call from dzedyn's flopped top pair A♠7♠. Carefully avoiding the heart on the 3♦ turn and K♦ river, dzedyn joined the other eight players at the final table below:


Seat 1: Don Pajata (1500 in chips)
Seat 2: yyy LLIeroJI (1500 in chips)
Seat 3: dzedyn (1500 in chips)
Seat 4: TDKSTAR (1500 in chips)
Seat 5: bigbetsking (1500 in chips)
Seat 6: ZOUZOUNI1998 (1500 in chips)
Seat 7: Verca737 (1500 in chips)
Seat 8: Ischmaaa (1500 in chips)
Seat 9: ScreemStyle (1500 in chips)

Immediately Verca737 tried to rally the troops for a quick nine-way deal of the final table money which would come out to slightly below $4K. Despite the moderator dropping by to explain the unanimous vote needed to the five players that expressed interest, play and chatting about the deal would continue through the initial 10/20 blind level.

Host Tyler would help get the ball rolling by pausing the final table long enough to hash out the details of a nine-way split. Verca737 with the loudest bullhorn in the chatbox started to knock down more detractors as one by one each player saw the advantages of locking up the dough.

After eight players hopped into the deal it was down to Germany's TDKSTAR needing to type just six letters in the correct order to finalize the agreement. Ischmaaa helped out with Deutsch translation for the fellow countryperson and... it's a deal!

The players tried to play through a few "regular" hands, perhaps a little dazed from making four grand after winning two sit and gos and Ischmaaa would be the first to leave the table after the shove-a-thon should have started.

yyy LLlerojl tried to prod the table into what should have been a quick end to the now free chip tournament by shoving every hand but only bigbetsking seemed to get the memo finishing eighth place despite the tournament lobby clearly stating $3,995.56 behind the first two out. Pride of being named the monthly champion was still on the line after the blinds moved up to 15/30 as yyy LLIeroJI finally lost out in seventh.

One by one they finally started to fall as chop coordinator Verca737 took sixth and ZOUZOUNI1998, who already had BOTP final table experience taking third in May of 2012, claimed fifth place.

Down to dzedyn and TDKSTAR playing for the honorary title of champion with the blinds up to 75/150 TDKSTAR would limp in from the button as dzedyn shoved for 4,928 chips. Covering the bet, TDKSTAR made the call holding Q♣8♥. Slightly behind dzedyn's 7♠K♣ TDKSTAR would take down this month's title with an eight on the 5♦ 4♣ A♠ 8♣ 3♥ turn.

PokerStars Battle of the Planets $50,000 freeroll results (09/29/13):

(* denotes all players involved in nine-way deal)

Players entered: 623
Places paid: 81
Prizepool (freeroll): $50,000.00

1. TDKSTAR (Germany) *$3,995.56
2. dzedyn (Ukraine) *$3,995.56
3. ScreemStyle (Ukraine) *$3,995.56
4. Don Pajata (Brazil) *$3,995.56
5. ZOUZOUNI1998 (Greece) *$3,995.56
6. Verca737 (Czech Republic) *$3,995.52
7. yyy LLIeroJI (Russia) *$3,995.56
8. bigbetsking (Canada) *$3,995.56
9. Ischmaaa (Germany) *$3,995.56

David Aydt is a freelance contributor

David Aydt
@PokerStars in Battle of the Planets