SCOOP 2013: wadzon, we presume, is Event 24-M champ ($109 Mixed NLHE / PLO)
I'm no detective. If you present me with a locked room mystery, I'm likely to make a few polite inquiries and then, stymied by the apparent unsolvable nature of the mystery and the incomplete information in front of me, throw my hands up in the air and say, "The butler did it," even though the butler never, ever does it.
Crack the code, solve the puzzle, save the day. Isn't that the way detective fiction goes?
Seems to be just as true for tournament poker. Whoever cracks the code of the other players first stands the best chance of being anointed the champion at the end of the tournament. In SCOOP 2013 Event 24-M, that honor went to wadzon.
Long before the final table began, however, Team PokerStars Pro Eugene Katchalov showed off his mixed game mystery-solving skills in Event 24-M. He made a spirited run through the field before bowing out in 43rd place, good for $502.88. He was joined on the money side of the results list by Team Online player Caio Pessagno, who finished in 187th place.
The double elimination of Yoo4 and ridziarz in a PLO hand on the final table bubble meant that only eight players took seats at the final table instead of the usual nine.
Seat 2: flodopoker (1715074 in chips)
Seat 3: Fishtripp (161686 in chips)
Seat 5: henri72 (1107965 in chips)
Seat 6: wadzon (438500 in chips)
Seat 7: teckidtq (825324 in chips)
Seat 8: anusgutten (2179820 in chips)
Seat 9: xhiti_b (2184429 in chips)
Level 32: PLO, blinds 15k-30k
Average: 998k (33 BBs)
As the final table started, both Fishtripp (5.5 BBs) and Mikleler (12 BBs) were in danger of busting out. At the other end of the spectrum, anugutten and xhiti_b were neck-and-neck for the chip lead. anusgutten got out of the gate first by taking 240,000 chips off of xhiti_b on the second hand of the final table.
Short-stacked Fishtripp never made it out of the gate at all. Fishtripp was put out to the proverbial pasture in 8th place by xhiti_b. Fishtripp opened pre-flop for pot to 105k, then called all in on a 9♠J♦4♣ flop for 56k more. At that point, Fishtripp's A♥Q♥J♣5♣ had the lead with a pair of jacks, but xhiti_b's 6♠K♥T♦3♥ turned a king-high straight and then ducked Fishtripp's river outs to a full house.
xhiti_b was involved again just before the 11pm break when Mikleler caught an unlucky river card to exit in 7th place. The chips were all in pre-flop - all 277k of them for Mikleler. xhiti_b's single-suited queens Q♣Q♣7♦5♠, didn't look like they'd hold against Mikleler's A♣J♥T♠8♥ after the board developed 7♠T♦6♣9♦ by the turn, giving Mikleler a straight. But the river 2♦ improved xhiti_b to a diamond flush to send Mikleler crashing to the rail.
Despite these eliminations, xhiti_b wasn't building much of a chip lead. With 6 players left and blinds at 20k-40k NLHE, anusgutten and xhiti_b both had about 2.4 million in chips. flodpoker and henri72 were virtually tied with about 1.4 million each, and wadzon and teckidtq were the short stacks.
anusgutten staked a claim to the chip lead for a second time, first by taking another 500,000 chips from xhiti_b in a pot that went to showdown and then by knocking out teckidtq in 6th place. teckidtq tried open-shoving for 533k from the cutoff, but anusgutten had been dealt A♠Q♠ and got right in there. teckidtq showed two 8s but couldn't fade anusgutten's overcards, as an "ace from space" hit the river to improve anusgutten to the winning hand.
Deal off, game on
When the game switched to 25k-50k PLO, flodopoker inquired, "anybody interested in a deal?" Nobody responded. The band marched on, with anusgutten again falling back to the pack and henri72 taking over the chip lead for the first time. It got worse for anusgutten when anusgutten got on the wrong side of set over set against wadzon to drop all the way to 4th in chips out of the remaining 5 players.
henri72 made a huge stride forward in the counts by eliminating flodpoker in 5th place. flodopoker tried to shove a draw but the draw didn't come in:
When henri72 tacked on a few more small pots to crest the 5-million chip mark, it seemed that the other three players, who all had stacks of roughly 1.2 million in chips, were in a race to see which one would meet henri72 heads up. wadzon knocked anusgutten out in 4th place during the 30k-60k NLHE round on a flip when pocket 4s held against A♣Q♥ pre-flop. Two hands after that, xhiti_b opened to 120k pre-flop, then called all in for 1.25 million more after wadzon shoved A♣9♣. xhiti_b's K♦9♦ never overtook wadzon.
Like that, only two player remained. henri72 started with a 5-to-4 chip lead.
wadzon: deal 50/50?
henri72: 50/50 when it is equal, not yet
On the 2nd hand of heads-up play it became very unequal. henri72 was dealt pocket kings; wadzon caught pocket aces. All the chips went in pre-flop and aces held to reverse the chip advantage in favor of wadzon, 8-to-1.
After the 12am break, pocket queens worked out a bit better for henri72 against wadzon's A♣T♠. henri72 secured a full double-up to cut the chip deficit down to 7-to-2. henri72 bounced down to about 1.2 million again, then double up to 2.4 million. The stacks bounced in that range for a while.
The final blow came in the 40k-80k PLO round. Sitting with the button, henri72 opened for the minimum to 160k. wadzon called, then checked a queen-high flop, Q♥3♦8♣. henri72 continued for 320k, then got a million more all in after wadzon check-raised. wadzon showed down bottom two pair with A♣K♣8♠3♠ and was up against naked aces, A♦A♠4♥Q♣. The turn 7♠ and river 8♦ sent henri72 to the rail as the runner-up and made wadzon a new SCOOP champion.
SCOOP 2013 Event 24-M $109 Mixed NLHE / PLO results
Places paid: 234
1. wadzon (Russia) - $28,736.00
2. henri72 (Estonia) - $21,552.00
3. xhiti_b (Switzerland) - $16,164.00
4. anusgutten (Norway) - $11,808.70
5. flodopoker (Austria) - $8,531.00
6. teckidtq (Canada) - $6,645.20
7. Mikleler (Russia) - $4,849.20
8. Fishtripp (Finland) - $3,143.00
9. ridziarz (Poland) - $1,796.00
There are still plenty of events left before the 2013 edition of SCOOP comes to an end. Find a schedule of the remaining tournaments and qualifiers to them, along with results and leaderboards, at the SCOOP home page.
Dave Behr is a freelance contributor to the PokerStars Blog.