SCOOP: ags104 zigzags way to Event No. 2-High win

SCOOP logo.gifThose who play in these two-day events -- and who make it to the second day together -- tend to exhibit a kind of camaraderie as fellow warriors bound by the shared experience of a lengthy, arduous battle. At the end of play yesterday, lots of congratulations were passed back and forth among the 33 players who'd survived the day, the last standing from the original field of 1,077 in this SCOOP event No. 2-H, a $2,100 buy-in NLHE event. Check out that Day 1 recap here, which ends with Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin wishing his competitors a good night as they signed off for about an 11-hour respite.

Those well wishes continued as play resumed Monday afternoon. Indeed, as far as Ramdin was concerned, he was additionally regaled with good vibes from the rail courtesy of fellow PS team members Chris Moneymaker and Andre Akkari:

Money800 (Observer): GO VICTOR GO
Money800 (Observer): thats my boy
VictorRamdin: yah man tyty
aakkari (Observer): Avamoooooooo
VictorRamdin: vamoo

Jason "Xaston" Kaplan enjoyed the chip lead at the restart, though during the first couple of hours of play, Marccus85 and urmomislag charged out ahead of the field, moving to the top of the leaderboard with well over a million chips each while Kaplan slid back toward the middle of the pack. And as the field shrunk to the less than 20 players, Ramdin remained right there in the middle as well with an average stack of around 580,000.

Ramdin continued to maintain his middle-of-the-pack status as more players hit the rail. Meanwhile, Xaston picked up some momentum again, and when he knocked out urmomislag in 11th, that boosted his stack back up over 2.6 million, putting him in with ags104 at the top of the counts with 10 players left.

Hand-for-hand play at the two five-handed tables lasted about dozen hands. Finally Beldar C. -- with the grin-producing, Dan Aykroyd-conehead avatar -- couldn't catch up with A♦8♥ versus cal42688's A♣Q♠, and the final table was set:


Seat 1: 810ofclubs -- 299,696
Seat 2: ags104 -- 2,579,099
Seat 3: roi kin23 -- 707,970
Seat 4: Xaston -- 2,681,182
Seat 5: Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin -- 1,313,478
Seat 6: cal42688 -- 867,566
Seat 7: zidovo -- 719,501
Seat 8: devinr12 -- 892,805
Seat 9: Marccus85 -- 708,703

Overnight chip leader Xaston was in front once again, followed closely by ags104, with both having about twice the stack of Victor Ramdin in third.

It took about 30 hands for the first elimination of the final table. Down to 292,201 chips, 810ofclubs open-shoved from middle position and got one caller in Ramdin from the small blind. 810ofclubs showed a couple of face cards -- K♠J♦ -- but was in tough shape versus Ramdin's A♣K♥. The flop came A♥2♦K♦, making things even worse for 810ofclubs. The 7♣ on the turn sealed it, and 810ofclubs was out in ninth.

Some time later, Marccus85 was crippled in a huge hand versus ags104, leaving him with just 11,655 which he was forced to put all in from the small blind. Ramdin limped from middle position, and ags104 checked from the BB. The flop came K♥7♠2♣, and following an ags104 check Ramdin bet 25,000 which ags104 called. Both checked the 5♠ turn, and when ags104 bet the Q♥ river, Ramdin folded. ags104 showed T♥T♣, better than Marccus85's 7♣6♥, and the latter hit the rail in eighth.

Just two hands later, zidovo open-pushed all in from middle position for 285,140, and devinr12 called behind. zidovo showed A♠Q♥ and devinr12 K♥K♣, a hand that went particularly well with the subsequent 2♦2♠K♦ flop. The turn was the 5♠, meaning no river card could save zidovo. Six players remained.

About five-and-a-half hours into the second day's play, cal42688 was next to push a short stack all in, moving 270,941 into the middle with K♦5♦. But devinr12 was there again with a big pair -- Q♥Q♦. He reraised to isolate, prompting all to fold, and after the board came 8♥9♣2♦5♠9♦, cal42688 was out in sixth.

By then ags104 had charged into the lead with 4.45 million. Those knockout hands plus a few others had allowed devinr12 to move into second place with 2.85 million, followed by Xaston with 1.91 million, then Ramdin with 866,123 and roi kin23 with 680,856. devinr12 continued to run especially well, scoring two more KOs in rapid succession.

In the first, Ramdin opened from UTG with a raise to 63,212 (a little over 2x) and devinr12, sitting to his left, made the call. The flop came 5♥5♦7♣ and Ramdin continued for 120,000. devinr12 made the call. The turn was the 3♦, and Ramdin pushed all in for his last 679,161. devinr12 quickly called, showing 3♣3♠ for the turned full house. Ramdin showed T♣T♦, and after the A♥ river the Team PokerStars Pro was out in fifth place.

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Much as the day had begun for Ramdin, it ended with good thoughts from fellow players as well, with both devinr12 and Xaston commiserating over the Guyana-born, New York-based pro's bad fortune. Ramdin responded with a "gg gl all" from the rail as the final four continued play.


Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin

Shortly afterward, it was Xaston raising preflop from UTG to 75,000 (2.5x) and again devinr12, now sitting to Xaston's left, was the lone caller. The flop came 7♣2♠Q♠ and Xaston continued for 110,000. devinr12 called. The turn was the 8♣, and again devinr12 called Xaston's bet, 230,000 this time. The river brought the A♠. Xaston bet 562,000, and devinr12 promptly shoved all in his entire stack of 3-plus million. Xaston had just 1,291,224 left, and took some time to make a decision.

Earlier in the evening, Xaston had asked the table if anyone present had read the book Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. It's a gripping tale, probably mostly fact-based, about a bank robber who escapes from Australian prison. devinr12 knew the book, and the two had had a brief conversation about it.

Now Xaston found himself in a bit of a trap, wondering if he could escape. Finally he decided he had to make the call, showing 2♣A♣ for two pair, but to his dismay devinr12 had rivered the flush with J♠8♠. After leading overnight and at several times throughout Day 2, Jason "Xaston" Kaplan was out in fourth.

Now devinr12 had taken the chip lead with 5.75 million, followed by ags104 with almost 4.4 million and roi kin23 with just over 680,000. "This should pay for my beauty school," chimed devinr12 in the chat box. Indeed, after four straight eliminations -- all large pots -- devinr12 was definitely sitting pretty.

roi kin23 hung on for a few dozen hands, but then end finally arrived in the form of an all-in confrontation versus ags104. With the blinds 17,500/35,000, devinr12 had folded from the button when ags104 raised to 84,000 from the BB. roi kin23 reraised to 210,000, ags104 shoved, and roi kin23 called with the 769,170 he had left. ags104 showed K♠A♦ and roi kin23 Q♦Q♠. The flop came 8♦7♣5♣, preserving roi kin23's advantage. But the turn was the A♠ and the river the K♥, giving ags104 two better pair and sending roi kin23 out in third.

Heads-up play began with the remaining two players nearly even in chips. ags104 had 5,557,075, and devinr12 was just behind with 5,212,925. After a half-hour of back-and-forthing, devinr12 had taken the advantage, although no big shifts of chips were occurring.

As the pair played, the chatty devinr12 made repeated attempts to engage his opponent in banter in the chatbox, though ags104 was having none of it. Among the several subjects of devinr12's monologue were whip its, the Chatroulette website, Mike's Lemonade, and Darude's 90s trance single "Sandstorm." It didn't appear, however, that heads-up was going to be a time for anymore of that camaraderie with which the evening began.

Gradually the silent ags104 began to retake control, bobbing and weaving his way to claim a series of small-to-medium pots, eventually chipping up to a 2-to-1 advantage over devinr12. Finally, after nearly an hour of heads-up play and more than 130 hands between them, the end arrived.

The last hand began with ags104 limping from the small blind/button for 25,000, devinr12 raising to 150,000, and ags104 making the call. The flop came 3♦3♥4♥. devinr12 continued for 200,000, and after pausing for several beats ags104 raised to 444,444. devinr12 went into his time bank for a bit, then repopped it to 999,999. ags104 quickly shoved, and devinr12 didn't waste much time calling.

devinr12 showed 7♥6♥ for a flush and straight draw, but couldn't have liked seeing ags104's K♥5♥. The 9♥ on the turn was an even sadder sight for devinr12, as it ensured ags104 the hand and the title.

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SCOOP Event #2-High No-Limit Hold'em results:
1st place: ags104 ($387,720)
2nd place: devinr12 ($276,358.20)
3rd place: roi kin23 ($206,784)
4th place: Xaston ($155,088)
5th place: Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin ($107,700)
6th place: cal42688 ($86,160)
7th place: zidovo ($64,620)
8th place: Marcuss85 ($43,080)
9th place: 810ofclubs ($25,848)

Congratulations to ags104 for outlasting 1,076 other competitors over the course of 20 hours of play spread over two days. Check the SCOOP site for more details on this and the other 113 events that will be playing out over the next two weeks.

Martin Harris
@hardboiledpoker in SCOOP