SCOOP 2015: Endurance earns Gambler4444 a win in Event #34-M, $215 NLO/8

It's not uncommon for SCOOP final tables to breeze by. Whether because of a turbo structure, or a series of coolers at the final table, plenty of SCOOP finals play out in less time than it takes to tell you about what happened. Others prove to be as much of an endurance test as the rest of the tournament that preceded them. Such was the case tonight in Event #34-M, which saw past Sunday Million champion Gambler4444 earn a first COOP title after a final table that accounted for nearly a quarter of the entire tournament.

Play in this $215 no-limit Omaha hi/lo tournament began at 5:00 p.m. ET and late registration stayed open for the first three hours and 40 minutes of play. By the time it closed there were 680 players registered in all, with 332 remaining in their seats. The $136,000 prize pool was set to be shared among the top 90 finishers, with $25,500 scheduled for first place.

The field slowly trickled down over 10 and a half hours of poker, taking the blinds and antes to 4K/8K/1K and leaving these nine players to play for the champion's watch:

Seat 1: João Mathias "joaoMathias" Baumgarten (193,802 in chips)
Seat 2: chickensssss (450,381 in chips)
Seat 3: sentpim (319,216 in chips)
Seat 4: Donra21 (323,255 in chips)
Seat 5: FNMan (500,397 in chips)
Seat 6: Gambler4444 (236,047 in chips)
Seat 7: Mikal "mikal12345" Blomlie (264,869 in chips)
Seat 8: huiiiiiiiiii (533,946 in chips)
Seat 9: master beto (578,087 in chips)

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Two big hands came early on for huiiiiiiiiii, who was at a second final table of this SCOOP series after Event #18-L. The bigger of them was worth 946K and came on Hand #21 when the A♠ 3♣ A♦ made a full house with huiiiiiiiiii's A♣ 5♠ 3♥ 2♠; master beto called huiiiiiiiiii's all-in bet on the 9♥ turn, holding A♥ Q♣ T♣ 8♥, but couldn't catch a bigger boat on the river.

Two hands later huiiiiiiiiii opened for 20K in middle position and then called after sentpim moved in for 163K on the button. The Russian player's A♣ 9♣ 5♦ 3♦ was in a dead heat with huiiiiiiiiii's A♥ K♠ 6♠ 2♠, and both players made aces and queens on the Q♠ A♦ Q♦ flop, but a king on the river gave huiiiiiiiiii the 352K-chip pot. With that, sentpim hit the rail in 9th place ($1,917.60).

After the first break of the table and then getting quartered a few hands later in a pot where master beto was all-in, João Mathias "joaoMathias" Baumgarten ended up on the verge of elimination with just 117K. The Brazilian, making a first final table appearance in 15 cashes this series, was dealt A♦ A♣ J♠ 2♥ a few hands later and scooped for a double to 206K against Donra21's A♠ Q♠ 6♥ 3♥. Another nine hands after that joaoMathias jammed with A♠ J♥ 3♠ 2♠ over the top of huiiiiiiiiii's opening raise; huiiiiiiiiii called with K♠ 2♥ A♥ 4♦ and was on the verge of a knockout after the turn, but by the river the board read 6♣ K♥ T♠ 3♠ Q♣ and it was joaoMathias who got the 499K-chip scoop instead.

master beto and Donra21 both survived all-in situations in the hands that immediately followed. Finally huiiiiiiiiii opened the action in the small blind with an all-in raise, holding Q♦ 8♥ 5♠ 4♥, and master beto called all-in for 227K in the big blind with A♥ K♦ 9♦ 2♠. The 3♦ 2♥ 5♥ 7♦ A♣ board made aces and deuces and a 7-5 low for master beto, but huiiiiiiiiii's wheel scooped the pot and master beto was out in 8th place ($3,060).

The blinds soon rose to 7K/14K/1,750 and within a few hands there was another sizable pot. chickensssss opened for 28K under the gun and Donra21 moved all-in for 259K immediately behind. chickensssss called, building a 551K-chip pot, and was a slim underdog with A♦ K♠ 6♣ 3♠ against Donra21's A♠ A♣ J♥ 7♣. That was before making two pair on the 9♣ K♦ 6♠ flop. The 5♣ turn gave Donra21 a flush draw for a chance to chop, but the whole pot went to chickensssss after the 2♥ river made a 6-5-3-2-A low. That eliminated Donra21 in 7th place ($4,420).

Three-time WCOOP winner Mikal "mikal12345" Blomlie's quest to pick up his first SCOOP title was in jeopardy with six players left. The former WCOOP Player of the Series had a stack worth just over 10 big blinds and called it off in the big blind with A♥ J♦ 7♥ 5♠ after Gambler4444 shoved in the small blind with K♦ J♠ 6♠ 2♦. The board delivered a 6-5-4-3-A low and a heart flush, good for a double to 291K.

Three orbits later the players and situation were the same as Gambler4444 shoved for 578K in the small blind on the last hand before the break. Blomlie dipped into the time bank for a bit before finally deciding to call with A♠ T♥ 6♠ 5♥, which was a small favorite against Gambler4444's A♣ K♣ J♦ 7♥. The latter caught top pair on the K♥ 4♦ 9♥ flop, but Blomlie picked up a heart flush draw there and then an open-ended straight draw and the inside track on a low when the 7♣ came on the turn. But the K♦ river sank all those draws, giving Gambler4444 the 615K-chip scoop with trip kings and knockout out mikal12345 in 6th place ($5,780).

That brought on the second break of the final table, with these five players remaining:

Seat 1: joaoMathias (338,241 in chips)
Seat 2: chickensssss (739,935 in chips)
Seat 5: FNMan (419,397 in chips)
Seat 6: Gambler4444 (892,297 in chips)
Seat 8: huiiiiiiiiii (1,010,130 in chips)

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Gambler4444 was quartered in an 800K-chip pot on the next hand after making a wheel for the same low that huiiiiiiiiii made in addition to a full house for the high pot. Two six-figure scoops in the next eight hands got those chips back plus enough to move into a five-big-blind lead over huiiiiiiiiii, but a miscalculation a few hands later saw Gambler4444 raising all-in when FNMan had the high locked up and Gambler4444 drawing to three outs for the low. The river wasn't a deuce, giving FNMan the 744K-chip pot and dropping Gambler4444 back to second position with 842K.

joaoMathias had gone 33 hands without winning a pot now and was feeling the pressure with a stack worth just 14 big blinds. So when he picked up A♥ K♠ 7♣ 4♥ on the button and huiiiiiiiiii opened for 32K in the cutoff, he moved all-in for 224K. huiiiiiiiiii called with A♠ 3♦ 3♠ 2♠ and those threes would prove to be the difference as the board came 9♣ 6♥ Q♣ Q♥ 5♥. Queens and treys beat queens with an ace and a king, nobody hit a low, and joaoMathias was gone in 5th place ($7,140).

A half-hour of poker would pass by during which the blinds and antes advanced to 12.5K/25K/3,125 and huiiiiiiiiii pulled away from the pack by picking up more than 700K in pots against all three other players. That left chickensssss with less than six big blinds, all of which the player from Canada called off from the big blind with A♠ 7♦ 6♠ 3♥ when huiiiiiiiiii moved all-in from the small. huiiiiiiiiii's A♥ J♥ 8♥ 3♠ scooped the pot with a Broadway straight on the K♥ T♠ J♦ K♦ Q♠ board, sending chickensssss to the rail in 4th place ($10,200).

Three-handed play would last for 20 minutes and take the tournament up to another break, this one just as the blinds and antes advanced to 15K/30K/3,750. FNMan didn't make much progress during this time, picking up just a few big blinds' worth of chips. But Gambler4444 was able to double up after limping from the small blind with A♥ J♣ J♥ 2♥, calling for 659K after huiiiiiiiiii jammed in the big blind with A♠ Q♣ 7♣ 4♥, and turning a set of jacks on the Q♦ 3♠ K♥ J♠ 2♣.

That close call was worth 1.32M for Gambler4444, which became the leading stack seven hands later when FNMan's A♣ K♥ 4♥ 3♣ caught a pair of aces to top huiiiiiiiiii's T♦ 7♥ 3♦ 3♥ for a 759K-chip pot. But three hands after that came the real shocker. Gambler4444 opened on the button for 66K with A♠ A♥ J♥ 6♦ and snap-called for 1.22M total after huiiiiiiiiii moved all-in. The player from Austria had A♣ K♣ 9♦ 6♠ and never connected well ith the Q♥ 2♥ Q♦ 6♥ J♠ board, giving Gambler4444 the 2.48M-chip pot and finishing huiiiiiiiiii in 3rd place ($13,600).

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FNMan wanted to make a deal as heads-up play began, but Gambler4444 had a 66-big-blind lead and opted to play instead. The Austrian dominated play, but FNMan found a 1.33M-chip scoop with A♦ J♣ 6♠ 3♠ against A♣ Q♦ 5♠ 3♥ to make a game of it. Within a few more minutes they were essentially tied, and FNMan suggested splitting the money evenly and leaving $1,500 on the table for the winner. Gambler4444 agreed, and within minutes they were playing again.

Even with the deal in place it took another half-hour to complete the match. Finally the two players limped to see a J♣ 2♣ T♣ flop. FNMan check-called 45K there and then check-raised all-in for 865K on the 6♦ turn, showing J♦ 9♣ 8♦ 5♣ for the jack-high flush. Gambler4444's K♣ T♦ T♥ 3♣ had the king-high flush. Nearly 14 hours after it began, and three hours and 19 minutes after its final table began, the tournament was complete.

The heads-up deal might not have come with a title for FNMan, but at $21,180 it topped a previous career high of just under $4K set with a win last July. The extra cash on the table in the deal made for a $22,680 total prize for Gambler4444, not a new all-time best for the past Sunday Million champ, but a top 10 score nonetheless. And then, of course, there's the matter of that first career SCOOP championship. Congratulations to both players on a job well done.

SCOOP 34-M: $215 No-Limit Omaha Hi/Lo
Entrants: 680
Prize pool: $136,000
Places paid: 90

1. Gambler4444 (Austria) $22,680*
2. FNMan (Israel) $21,180*
3. huiiiiiiiiii (Austria) $13,600
4. chickensssss (Canada) $10,200
5. João Mathias "joaoMathias" Baumgarten (Brazil) $7,140
6. Mikal "mikal12345" Blomlie (Norway) $5,780
7. Donra21 (Argentina) $4,420
8. master beto (Costa Rica) $3,060
9. sentpim (Russia) $1,917.60
* - denotes results of a heads-up deal

Jason Kirk is a freelance contributor to PokerStars Blog.

Jason Kirk
@PokerStarsBlog in SCOOP