SCOOP: Black88 beats tough field to win Event #32-High ($5,200 FLHE 6-max)
Fixed limit hold'em is popular with many hold'em fans, though it doesn't boast of the popularity it once did. It requires a bit of a different strategy than NLHE and offers a little more play without the ease of the automatic all-in move at one's fingertips.
Players who enjoy hold'em will often step up to nearly any hold'em opportunity, and Event 32 provided just that. It was a limit event with a prestigious SCOOP title on the line, and it certainly offered a substantial enough buy-in to attract some of the biggest high-stakes player in the world of online poker.
The high buy-in level of Event 32 offered a $100K guarantee for a $5,000 + $200 price tag. Considering the list of players whose bankrolls allow such an expensive endeavor, the field was full of some of the biggest names in poker from around the world. They relished in the opportunity to play in an event with their peers.
After the two-hour registration period closed, the final numbers were as follows:
Actual prize pool: $230,000
Paid players: 6
A solid percentage of the field consisted of players listed with the PokerStars logo. But some of them didn't last more than a few hours into the tournament with such stiff competition. The first to exit was Team PokerStars Pro Joep "Pappe_Ruk" Van Den Bijgaart in 38th place, and Ville Wahlbeck was right behind in 37th. Noah "Exclusive" Boeken left in 29th place, Lex Veldhuis in 27th, and Team Online's Anders "Donald" Hoyer Berg in 20th.
Still in contention with three tables remaining were Team PokerStars Pros Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier and Greg DeBora, the latter holding a strong spot in the top ten. Grospellier soon departed in 16th place, leaving DeBora (pictured below) as the last pro standing.
The elimination of Terrence "Unassigned" Chan in 13th place led to the final two tables of the tournament, but into the sixth hour of play, ten players still remained. Halfway through that hour, they reached the hand-for-hand portion of the tournament just after Team PokerStars Pro Greg DeBora exited in eighth place, courtesy of crocky.
Short-stacked ferocious666 moved all-in and received calls from Andy McLEOD and rompsa, and they took it all the way through the 8♣6♠7♦J♣T♥ board. Andy McLEOD's A♦K♦ couldn't beat the J♠J♥ of rompsa, and ferocious666 simply mucked. After finishing in second place in the 2011 SCOOP Event 9-H, ferocious666 bubbled this tournament and finished in seventh place.
Black88 holds initial lead at final table
The final table was set in Level 12, with blinds at 600/1,200, and the players' starting stacks were as follows:
Seat 1: ozenc (32,323 in chips)
Seat 2: K_0_S_T_Y_A (14,905 in chips)
Seat 3: BIack88 (55,348 in chips)
Seat 4: römpsä (34,520 in chips)
Seat 5: crocky (44,337 in chips)
Seat 6: Andy McLEOD (48,567 in chips)
Within ten hands, Andy McLEOD had taken over the chip lead by a slim margin, and it was clearly going to be a fight to the finish in this event.
Short-stacked K_0_S_T_Y_A had trouble from the start, with a short stack that kept decreasing. Finally from the big blind, K_0_S_T_Y_A got involved from the big blind with Andy McLEOD. Betting was capped preflop, as well as after the 3♠4♠8♦ flop. K_0_S_T_Y_A moved all-in after the 8♠ on the turn, and Andy McLEOD called with J♥J♣, which beat the 7♥7♠ of K_0_S_T_Y_A. The sixth place finish was worth $12,650.00.
Slowly and quietly, rompsa snuck up on the two chip leaders and climbed into that number one spot. Ozenc sunk to the bottom of the counts but doubled through Black88 to stay alive a bit longer; however a loss of a pot to Black88 put ozenc down under the 3K chip mark.
A double for ozenc through rompsa bought a little more time, but ozenc then got involved with Black88 again. With betting capped on the 3♣2♠A♥ flop, it was the 9♠ on the turn that put ozenc all-in with 5♥5♠. Black88 called with A♣J♠ and top pair, which stayed good through the 8♠ on the river. Ozenc, who won Event 30-H just today, had to accept fifth place and $17,250.00 in this event.
Crocky was the other very short-stacked player, and a battle with Andy McLEOD ensued. After the 2♠A♥J♣ flop, crocky pushed all-in with Q♣T♥, and Andy McLEOD called with A♦4♦. Crocky never made the draw as the 6♠ and 4♥ completed the board, and Andy McLEOD collected the pot. Crocky finished in fourth place with $23,000.00.
Final trio in play
Though Black88 had a reasonable lead to start three-handed play, the other players soon caught up and nearly evened the stacks. But rompsa was on the worse side of several hands and eventually relegated to a fairly low amount of chips, especially as compared to the other two players who both flirted with the 100K point.
Finally, rompsa went all-in preflop with K♠8♦, but Andy McLEOD had A♥8♥. The board of T♦Q♣5♥T♥9♦ brought no help for rompsa, who finished the tournament in third place with $34,500.00.
Andy McLEOD aims for another title
The final two players started their battle with the following stacks:
Seat 3: BIack88 (90,386 in chips)
Seat 6: Andy McLEOD (139,614 in chips)
Andy McLEOD immediately took charge and increased the lead over Black88, but over a series of aggressively played hands, Black88 came back with a vengeance. A sample of the action can be viewed here:
Andy McLEOD lost ground quickly and finally got involved on a hand that saw bets and raises as the Q♣J♠5♥J♦ flop and turn appeared. It was then that Andy McLEOD put the last of his chips in the pot with A♣8♥, but Black88 called with Q♠J♥ for the full house. The 9♠ on the river ended the tournament. James "Andy McLEOD" Obst, who won a WCOOP in 2008, SCOOP in 2009, and final tabled two 2011 SCOOP events this year, was denied another title. He accepted $57,500.00 for the second place finish.
Black88 won the SCOOP watch and title, along with the first place prize of $85,100.00. Congrats!
SCOOP Event #32-H Results:
1st place: Black88 ($85,100.00)
2nd place: Andy McLEOD ($57,500.00)
3rd place: rompsa ($34,500.00)
4th place: crocky ($23,000.00)
5th place: ozenc ($17,250.00)
6th place: K_0_S_T_Y_A ($12,650.00)
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