SCOOP 2012: plplaya prevails in Event #35-H ($2,100 NL Omaha Hi/Lo)

SCOOP logo.gifNo-limit Omaha Hi/Lo is an odd bird. Rarely is it spotted in the wilds of the casino, only appearing occasionally in mid or high-limit mixed games. NLO8 prefers a life of captivity online, cards flying across the screen, its pots split and quartered with swift precision. At 93 players, the field for Event #35-H ($2,100 NLO8) may have been among the smallest of this year's SCOOP, but came close to doubling it's $100k guaranteed, the prize pool topping out at $186,000. 12 places were paid, with first place set to earn $51,150.00. Eight Red Spades tried their hand at high-stakes no-limit Omaha Hi/Lo, including Eugene Katchalov, George Danzer, Ville Wahlbeck, George "Jorj95" Lind III, and Anders "Donald" Berg. The only one to make the money was Martin Staszko, who advanced to the final table following a dramatic double elimination.

Two players went out on the same deal of hand-for-hand play. Following a min-raise to 1,400 from Giffordonian and a call from dagunman, shinbunshi shoved for 9,339 holding A♣2♠9♠J♥. Giffordonian reshoved for 44,608 and dagunman gave up his hand. Giffordonian showed A♠2♣Q♠K♦ and hit top two pair when the flop came down K♠7♥7♣. Although shinbunshi picked up a pair of jacks on the turn, he didn't improve any further and exited in tenth place. Meanwhile, plplaya and caprioli got into it on a J♥5♠3♦ flop, plplaya check-raising all-in for 53,576. Caprioli called off his remaining 30,000 and tabled A♣2♦J♣Q♣ for top pair and the nut low draw; plplaya showed A♥2♣4♦8♣ for a straight draw and the same low draw. Caprioli improved to jacks up when the 3♣ fell on the turn, but the 2♠ on the river made plplaya a wheel to scoop. Caprioli departed in ninth place, and an eight-handed final table took shape.

SCOOP Event 35-H FT.jpg

Final table chip counts:

Seat 1: 9Sandbagger9 (29,130 in chips)
Seat 2: WeakyLeeks (29,747 in chips)
Seat 3: dagunman (134,462 in chips)
Seat 5: M. Staszko (17,592 in chips)
Seat 6: plplaya (99,157 in chips)
Seat 7: lb6121 (22,274 in chips)
Seat 8: UhhMee (76,166 in chips)
Seat 9: Giffordonian (56,472 in chips)

9Sandbagger9 quickly moved up to the lead pack, doubling through dagunman when he flopped deuces full of queens against trip queens. Our last remaining Team Pro, however didn't fare as well. Holding A♣A♦2♠8♣, Staszko open-shoved for his remaining 11,737 from under-the-gun. WeakyLeeks reshoved for 17,342 from the small blind and revealed A♥A♠J♣T♥. Everything was pointing to a chop on the turn with the board reading T♠J♠K♦7♦, but WeakyLeeks rivered the Q♠ to make a Broadway straight. Staszko's aces were snapped off and he exited in eighth place, earning $6,510.00 for his efforts.

Team PokerStars Pro Martin Staszko, 8th place

Lb6121 was the next to fall, open-shoving for 13,588 with A♣Q♣Q♦2♠. WeakyLeeks looked him up from the big blind with A♥3♠7♦9♥ and made a wheel when the flop fell 5♠4♥2♥. WeakyLeeks needed nothing short of a miracle to even split the pot and didn't get there, the K♦ and the T♦ falling to send him home in seventh place.

Six-handed play dragged on for the better part of two levels until WeakyLeeks, 9Sandbagger9 and plplaya saw a 8♥6♣2♥ flop. 9Sandbagger9 checked to WeakyLeeks, who bet 6,000. Plplaya shoved for 122,606, having both players well-covered. While 9Sandbagger9 got out of the way, WeakyLeeks called off his remaining 19,968, revealing A♥A♦2♦3♠ for an overpair and the nut low. Plplaya tabled A♠3♥4♦7♥-- the nut low and a straight draw. The 3♣ on the turn counterfeited WeekyLeeks' low and the 5♣ on the river made plplaya an eight-high straight for high and a wheel for low. WeakyLeeks was out in sixth place, earning $9,765.00 while plplaya took the chip lead with 157,000.

UhhMee was the short stack with the blinds up to 700/1,400. Following a raise to 4,500 from dagunman and a three-bet to 99,999 from plplaya, UhhMee called off his last 9,358 from the big blind. Dagunman gave up his hand and the cards went on their backs.

plplaya 2♦3♦4♥Q♥
UhhMee A♣3♠6♠K♣

Plplaya made an ace-high flush on the A♥T♥6♥T♣J♦ board and with no qualifying low, he scooped the pot, sending UhhMee to the rail in fifth place. UhhMee collected $13,020.00 for his finish. About an hour after his bustout from this event, UhhMee went on to ship a SCOOP title in Event #35-Low ($27 NLO8), banking an additional $11,578.

With four players remaining, plplaya and 9Sandbagger9 were essentially tied for the chip lead with 205,000 and 187,000 respectively while dagunman (27,000) and Giffordonian (47,000) were more modestly stacked. When the action folded to 9Sandbagger9 in the small blind, he open-shoved with J♠J♥2♥3♥. Dagunman looked down at A♠Q♥J♥5♥ and pulled the trigged on his last 25,000. 9Sandbagger9's jacks were good on the K♣6♠5♦ flop, but his deuce-trey was even better when the 4♠ hit the turn to make him a six-high straight. The river was the T♦ and dagunman was at last out of ammo. He exited in fourth place, earning $17,670.00.

A short time later, the final three paused the action to discuss a potential deal. A little tweaking of the chip count chop numbers gave them a deal everyone was happy with, plplaya and 9Sandbagger9 locking up about $40,000 apiece while Giffordonian received $30,000. With $2,000 still on the table for the eventual winner, cards went back in the air.

Nine hands after action resumed, 9Sandbagger9 min-raised to 3,200 on the button, plplaya called from the small blind and Giffordonian put the squeeze on, moving all-in for 45,890. 9Sandbagger9 folded but plplaya called, turning up A♥4♦5♦7♠. Although Giffordonian's A♠3♠8♣Q♥ flopped the nut flush draw and turned two pair, plplaya rivered a six-high straight and a 6-4 low, the board running out T♠8♥6♠3♥2♥. Giffordonian went out in third place, leaving our two big stacks heads-up for the title.

Heads-up chip counts:

Seat 1: 9Sandbagger9 (215,634 in chips)
Seat 6: plplaya (249,366 in chips)

Over the first half-hour of heads-up play, plplaya methodically whittled 9Sandbagger9's stack down to 106,000. 9Sandbagger9 got the rest of his chips in on a Q♦9♣7♥ flop and plplaya called, turning over K♠Q♣9♠8♣ for top two pair. 9Sandbagger9 showed T♥8♥6♥5♦ for a wrap. The 5♥ on the turn made 9Sandbagger9 a nine-high straight and he doubled to 212,000, taking the chip counts back to where they were at the beginning of the match.

Six hands later, plplaya picked up a 182,000 pot without a showdown. The board reading K♠9♣6♦6♣J♥, plplaya check-raised 9Sandbagger9's 54,200 river bet to 200,000. 9Sandbagger9 couldn't pull the trigger and gave up his hand, saving his last 94,000.

It wasn't too long before those chips were in the middle again. 9Sandbagger9 opened for a min-raise to 4,000 and plplaya shoved for 394,000. 9Sandbagger9 called all-in with A♥3♠3♥9♠, but it couldn't stand up to plplaya's A♣K♣T♦2♠:

Congratulations to plplaya on capturing his first SCOOP title. He earned $41,600 for the win while 9Sandbagger9 collected $40,000.00 for his runner-up finish.

2012 SCOOP Event #35-H ($2,100 NL Omaha Hi/Lo) results

Entrants: 93
Places paid: 12

1. plplaya (United Kingdom) $41,600,00*
2. 9Sandbagger9 (Canada) $40,000.00*
3. Giffordonian (United Kingdom) $30,000.00*
4. dagunman (Ireland) $17,670.00
5. UhhMee (Canada) $13,020.00
6. WeakyLeeks (United Kingdom) $9,765.00
7. lb6121 (United Kingdom) $7,905.00
8. Team PokerStars Pro Martin Staszko (Czech Republic) $6,510.00
9. caprioli (Brazil) $5,580.00

*= reflects the results of a three-way deal that left $2,000 in play for the winner

Looking for more SCOOP reporting? Visit our special SCOOP 2012 coverage section.

Kristin Bihr
@PokerStars in SCOOP