SCOOP 2015: Ankush "pistons87" Mandavia scores his second SCOOP title in Event #38-H ($2,100 NLHE 1R1A)

To the naked eye, it might seem absurd to hold a 1.5 to 1 chip lead and take an even chop heads-up. But if the guy across from you is Ankush "pistons87" Mandavia, you might want to give it some thought. Mandavia got his start as a heads-up NLHE specialist and grew into one of online poker's most decorated tournament players, taking down WCOOP and SCOOP titles as well as two trophies during EPT Season 9 where he won the €1,100 heads-up NLHE side events in Berlin and Prague. What campodellpla lacked in experience, he made up for in chips, bagging up the Day 1 lead and carrying it all the way to the final table. But when heads-up play began, these two headed straight for the negotiating table, where pistons87 reasoned his way to an even chop, despite a 400,000 chip defecit. When action resumed, pistons87 took control in short order and within twenty minutes, had every chip in front of him, locking up his second career SCOOP title.


Ankush "pistons87" Mandavia, Event #38-H champion

Event #38-H attracted 256 players and they made 84 rebuys and 115 add-ons, driving the prize pool up to $910,000.00. 36 places were paid, with $186,095.00 up top. After 22 levels of play, 21 players advanced to Day 2 with Argentina's campodellpla holding the overnight chip lead with 433,473. Notable Day 2 eliminations included Mike "SirWatts" Watson (21st), Shawn "buck21" Buchanan (20th), Dani "supernova9" Stern (18th), Amit "AMAK316" Makhija (13th), and Darren "darrenelias" Elias (11th).

Less than two hours after play restarted on Day 2, we were down to the final ten players. The blinds were 2,500/5,000 when pistons87 opened for 10,000 and pokerkluka moved all-in for 71,164. Pistons87 called, his T♥T♣ up against A♥A♦. Pokerkluka's aces held up on the Q♠4♦2♠ flop, but disaster struck as the T♠ landed on the turn, making pistons87 a set. The river was the K♥ and pokerkluka was out on the final table bubble, in very unlucky fashion.


Final table chip counts

Seat 1: €urop€an (43,016 in chips)
Seat 2: cocoojones (231,451 in chips)
Seat 3: campodellpla (456,456 in chips)
Seat 4: achen (114,739 in chips)
Seat 5: djk123 (87,191 in chips)
Seat 6: chilenocl (239,462 in chips)
Seat 7: lookoutdudes (363,005 in chips)
Seat 8: young_diam18 (261,871 in chips)
Seat 9: pistons87 (477,809 in chips)

€urop€an arrived at the final table with the smallest stack and wasted no time getting his chips in the middle. On Hand #2, he open-shoved for 42,391 with Q♣T♠ and campodellpla called with pocket nines. €urop€an missed the flop, but turned a pair of tens and doubled to 95,407. Six hands later, chilenocl opened for a min-raise to 10,000 and got two callers before €urop€an put the squeeze on and moved in for 91,657. Chilenocl quickly called with Q♦Q♠ and the other two folded. €urop€an was up against it with A♥J♥ but flopped an ace to double again, this time to 211,439.

At a final table with 11 'COOP titles, Dan "djk123" Kelly held six of them, but wouldn't capture his seventh today. With 38,566 remaining, djk123 open-shoved from middle position with A♥4♦ and chilenocl reshoved from the cutoff with A♦Q♥. Djk123's dominated hand did not improve on the T♦T♠9♠6♠K♥ board and he went out in ninth place.

The blinds were up to 3,500/7,000 when €urop€an opened for 15,470 and lookoutdudes called from the big blind. The flop came down 8♣4♥2♥ and lookoutdudes checked to €urop€an, who bet 17,500. Lookoutdudes raised to 39,900 and €urop€an called. The turn brought the T♥ and lookoutdudes fired another 47,235. €urop€an moved all-in for 107,604 and lookoutdudes called with 8♥9♥ for a flush. €urop€an turned up K♠T♠ and was drawing dead with a pair of tens. The river was the inconsequential J♣ and €urop€an departed in eighth place.

Five hands later, cocoojones three-bet shoved for 102,000 with A♦Q♥ and young_diam18 called with A♠J♣. Unfortunately for cocoojones, his dominating hand shriveled up as the flop came down J♠T♥5♣. Cocoojones didn't catch a king or queen, the turn and river falling the 5♥ and the 8♦ to send him to the rail in seventh place.

Chilenocl was below the ten big-blind threshold as the blinds rose to 4,000/8,000. He moved in for 72,371 with A♠Q♥ and young_diam18 called with J♥J♠. Chilenocl got no help from the 9♥4♠3♣8♠8♣ board and ended his run in sixth place.

As play turned five-handed, once-dominating chip leader campodellpla was now the second-shortest stack. However, he bounced back to 445,000 in chips when his 7♣7♠ held up against lookoutdudes's A♠Q♦. Not as fortunate in the coinflip department was achen, who three-bet shoved for 164,684 with K♣Q♠. Young_diam18 called with 6♣6♥ and his pair held up on the T♦8♦4♣5♠9♠ board, sending achen home in fifth place.

Three orbits went by before the largest pot of the tournament thus far unfolded. Lookoutdudes open-shoved for 163,364 from UTG, pistons87 reshoved from the small blind for 1.2 million and campodellpla called off his remaining 240,203 from the big blind.

lookoutdudes 6♣6♠
pistons87 K♣K♥
campodellpla A♦A♣

Campodellpla's aces held up on the Q♣Q♦3♥T♠8♠ board and he took down both the main and side pots, while lookoutdudes was eliminated in fourth place.

As three-handed play commenced, pistons87 was the chip leader with 955,000, campodellpla held 669,000 and young_diam18 was close behind with 651,000. After thirty minutes of trading pots, everyone agreed to pause the action and discuss a potential deal. Here's how they stacked up at the time:

campodellpla 916,070
pistons87 726,666
young_diam18 632,264

The players were provided with ICM numbers per their request and they went back and forth for half an hour trying to hammer out a deal. Despite the lengthy negotiations, they ended up quite far apart when it came to their demands. Pistons87 finally threw his hands up and suggested they restart play.

Shortly after action resumed, pistons87 flopped two pair with Q♣5♣ and got three streets of value from young_diam18. Pistons87 moved up to 983,000 and two hands later, he three-bet to 79,850 preflop and young_diam18 caled. Pistons87 led out for 75,000 on the 3♣3♥2♥ flop and young_diam18 called. Both players checked the 6♦ turn, but when the 4♠ rivered, pistons87 made it 216,000 to go. Young_diam18 gave up his hand and pistons87 moved up to 1.1 million in chips.

Down to 262,000, young_diam18 opened for 33,225 with 8♠9♥ on the button. Campodellpla three-bet to 68,000 and young_diam18 hit top pair on the 9♦7♦4♦ flop. Campodellpla bet 99,999, young_diam18 shoved and campodellpla called with A♣A♠. Young_diam18 didn't improve on the 2♣ turn or the T♠ river and ended his run in third place.

Heads-up chip counts

Seat 3: campodellpla (1,353,854 in chips)
Seat 9: pistons87 (921,146 in chips)

After a few hands heads-up, campodellpla and pistons87 agreed to take another run at making a deal. However, despite the 400,000 difference in their chip counts, pistons87 warned that he would only accept an even chop.

pistons87: even chop
campodellpla: icm
pistons87: no
pistons87: we can play if not even

It took another thirty minutes of throwing out numbers and long waits in between, but pistons87 and campodellpla finally agreed to an unusual deal where they each took a $153,000 share and left $16,595 on the table for the winner.

When action resumed, pistons87 took a slight chip lead when he turned two pair with pocket fives and rivered fives full of threes. The 647,500 pot took him up to 1.22 million in chips. However, campoellpla answered when he three-bet preflop and fired the turn and river on a A♦7♣2♣9♣5♦ board, earning a fold from pistons87. Pistons87 ground out some small pots to close the gap between their chip counts and with 1.1 million behind, opened for a min-raise to 28,000. Campodellpla three-bet to 112,000, pistons87 four-bet to 252,000 and campodellpla called. Both players checked the A♥Q♣4♣ flop. The turn came the 9♠ and campodellpla checked to pistons87, who bet 182,000. Campodellpla couldn't make the call and pistons87 raked in the 507,500 pot without a showdown.

On the next deal, campodellpla opened for 28,000 and pistons87 three-bet to 70,000. The flop came down A♠T♥5♣ and pistons87 led out for 56,000. Campodellpla called. Pistons87 check-called campodellpla's 70,000 bet when the K♦ turned and led out for 266,000 on the Q♠ river. Again, campodellpla gave up his hand and pistons87 moved up to 1.55 million.

Campodellpla was down to 719,000 when he picked up A♣9♠ and four-bet shoved preflop. Unfortunately for him, pistons87 woke up with J♣J♥ and called. Pistons87s' pocket jacks held up on the K♠8♣4♥Q♠9♣ flop and he locked up his second SCOOP title.

Congratulations to pistons87 on a hard-fought win! He banked $169,595.00 while runner-up campodellpla earned an even $153,000.00.

SCOOP 38-H: $2,100 NLHE [1R1A]
Players: 256
Prizepool: $910,000.00
Places paid 36

1. Ankush "pistons87" Mandavia (Canada) $169,595.00*
2. campodellpla (Argentina) $153,000.00*
3. Manuel "young_diam18" Blaschke (Austria) $102,830.00
4. Matt "lookoutdudes" McEwan (Mexico) $77,350.00
5. Andrew "achen" Chen (Canada) $52,780.00
6. Nicolas "chilenocl" Yunis (Chile) $40,950.00
7. cocoojones (Denmark) $31,850.00
8. €urop€an (Finland) $22,750.00
9. Dan "djk123" Kelly (Australia) $17,290.00

*= denotes a heads-up deal that left $16,595 in play for the winner

Kristin Bihr
@PokerStars in SCOOP