blakjak19 outlasts Christopher Brammer and Joao Fernandes, wins 3/29/16 Super Tuesday
As this week's Super Tuesday headed toward its 12th hour, among the three players remaining were two who had won the weekly $1,050 no-limit hold'em tournament on PokerStars before. In fact, Brazil's Joao "jricardosc" Fernandes and the U.K.'s Christopher "NigDawG" Brammer had both won the tournament just last year.
Fernandes would fall short in third, however, then Brammer would strike a heads-up deal before being eliminated himself in second. That left blakjak19 of Cyprus to claim this week's title, good for a nice payday of $104,706.25 following the heads-up deal. And as if topping Brammer and Fernandes weren't enough, Philipp "philbort" Gruissem also made an appearance at this week's final table before being knocked out in eighth.
A huge turnout of 615 for the tournament meant a prize pool of $615,000, well over the $425K guarantee. It would take almost six hours for the field to be carved down to 72 players and the money bubble to burst, at which point RigasDinamo sat atop the chip counts.
About an hour-and-a-half after that they were down to 18, with RigasDinamo having tumbled from the lead early to finish in 41st ($2,767.50). Meanwhile Philipp "philbort" Gruissem had risen up into the top spot by building a stack of more than 410,000 -- at the time about a 100,000 clear of Christopher "NigDawG" Brammer in second position.
Dragon-GT200 (18th), bauruzito (17th), and EPT10 Prague Main Event champion Julian "jutrack" Track (16th) were the next players eliminated, earning $4,920 apiece.
greengrass67 (15th), ZhipOHoy (14th), and Cesar "Ce$ar$pa" Garcia (13th) were the next out, picking up $6,150 each. Then marchenkoser (12th), neverfoldQ5 (11th), and quinters (10th) were successively felted, with each taking away $7,380 from the prize pool.
They were approaching the tournament's nine-hour mark, and with Christopher "NigDawG" Brammer having moved well in front the final table was underway.
Seat 1: blakjak19 (Cyprus) -- 458,394
Seat 2: Hasseh922 (Finland) -- 368,307
Seat 3: Joao "jricardosc" Fernandes (Brazil) -- 237,268
Seat 4: Philipp "philbort" Gruissem (Malta) -- 312,396
Seat 5: Christopher "NigDawG" Brammer (United Kingdom) -- 724,902
Seat 6: Neffeltorf (Germany) -- 119,690
Seat 7: TTPlayer18 (Germany) -- 365,180
Seat 8: registr24 (Russia) -- 354,917
Seat 9: uwinho312 (Germany) -- 133,946
All nine players made it through the nine-hour break, and all nine nearly made it to the 10-hour break as well. But two hands before that next respite came the first final table elimination, then on the very next hand after that came another.
In the first it was a short-stacked uwinho312 shoving from early position for 47,272 (not quite four big blinds) and getting a caller in Hasseh922 a couple of seats over. Then TTPlayer18 reraise-pushed from the big blind for just over 140,000, and Hasseh922 called that one as well.
The board came 7♦3♦K♣3♠5♦, meaning TTPlayer18's queens were best while uwinho312 was ousted in ninth.
The next hand saw Philipp "philbort" Gruissem open-push his last 62,610 from middle position, then TTPlayer18 reraised all-in from the small blind to isolate. Gruissem had A♠T♦ and a slight edge over TTPlayer18's K♥Q♥ preflop, but the board came K♦T♥9♥Q♣7♠ to give TTPlayer18 two pair to Gruissem's one, sending the latter out in eighth.
registr24 became short-stacked soon after that but managed to survive multiple all-ins to climb out of the danger zone. But just a few hands later registr24 open-pushed a stack of 214,988 from UTG -- about 15 BBs -- and got called by blakjak19 in the next seat.
registr24 had A♠J♣ while blakjak19 had Q♦Q♣, and when the community cards came 5♥4♦6♦7♦8♦, blakjak19's flush beat the straight on the board, and registr24 was done in seventh.
Just a few minutes later a hand arose that saw blakjak19 make a raise to 32,900 from early position, then next-to-act Hasseh922 pushed all-in for 258,330 and when it folded back around blakjak19 called.
Hasseh922 had A♦J♠ and needed to improve to survive against blakjak19's 9♣9♠, but the 4♠3♣8♦2♦4♥ board brought no such help and Hasseh922 was eliminated in sixth.
Fifteen more minutes passed and the blinds had risen to 8,000/16,000 when Christopher "NigDawG" Brammer opened for 40,000 from UTG, then TTPlayer18 three-bet pushed for 271,439 from the button. Brammer called the push, showing J♠J♥ and having the edge over TTPlayer18's T♠T♥. The 2♣7♦K♥A♦5♠ runout changed nothing, and TTPlayer18's run ended in fifth.
Two hands later Brammer was open-pushing all-in from the small blind and Neffeltorf called off for 122,460 after posting the 16,000-chip big blind. Neffeltorf had K♦4♠ and hopes the hand would hold against Brammer's 8♦6♦, but the board went 6♥9♦A♠8♥T♣ to make two pair for Brammer and bust Neffeltorf in fourth.
Three-handed play began with Brammer out in front with almost 1.45 million, blakjak19 was next with about 1.17 million, and Joao "jricardosc" Fernandes third with almost 450,000.
Soon Fernandes limped in from the small blind, Brammer shoved from the big, and Fernandes called all-in with the 336,207 he had left. Fernandes had A♠K♦ and looked to be in good shape against Brammer's K♠4♠, and after the 9♣5♠3♦ flop and 5♦ turn Fernandes was still in front. But the 4♣ fell on the river to knock out the Brazilian in third, a couple of spots shy of winning another Super Tuesday as he did in January 2015.
The remaining two players played one small hand of heads-up then paused the tournament to discuss a possible deal. The stacks were practically even at that point, with blakjak19 on 1,561,652 and Christopher "NigDawG" Brammer with 1,513,348.
Figures were produced leaving $8K aside for which to play, with blakjak19 due just about $350 more. Brammer then typed "even chop with 8k to play for plz," blakjak19 agreed, and the pair were each guaranteed $96,706.25.
Play resumed and over the next half-hour blakjak19 began chipping up and extending a lead, at one point sitting with more than 2 million. Then Christopher "NigDawG" Brammer managed to get all-in with 5♣5♠ on a hand in which blakjak19 had picked up A♦A♥, and it appeared the end had come for Brammer. But a five fell on the flop to give Brammer a set, and after the hand held up he typed "ul" in recognition of blakjak19's misfortune.
Brammer had the lead and as already noted like Fernandes was gunning for yet another Super Tuesday title. He's already won multiple ones, most recently doing so in August 2015.
blakjak19 managed to chip back up, however, and before long was back up around 1.3 million. Then came another big all-in confrontation involving pocket pairs, with blakjak19 holding 9♠9♣ this time and Brammer 6♥6♠. The better hand held up on this one, and suddenly blakjak19 was up close to 2.7 million while Brammer was back down under 385,000.
Then on the very next hand Brammer pushed all-in from the button and blakjak19 was quick with a call.
Both had picked up aces, but blakjak19 had the better kicker. The board came 5♣3♠T♣, then 2♦, then 3♦, meaning those kickers played and blakjak19 had won the last pot and extra $8K on the table.
Congratulations to blakjak19 for overcoming a big field, a tough final table, and two challenging final opponents in Fernandes and Brammer at the end to win this week's Super Tuesday.
3/29/16 Super Tuesday ($1,050 No-Limit Hold'em) results
Prize pool: $615,000.00
Places paid: 72
1. blakjak19 (Cyprus) $104,706.25*
2. Christopher "NigDawG" Brammer (United Kingdom) $96,706.25*
3. Joao "jricardosc" Fernandes (Brazil) $62,730.00
4. Neffeltorf (Germany) $47,355.00
5. TTPlayer18 (Germany) $33,210.00
6. Hasseh922 (Finland) $26,137.50
7. registr24 (Russia) $19,987.50
8. Philipp "philbort" Gruissem (Malta) $13,837.50
9. uwinho312 (Germany) $9,409.50
* = denotes a two-way deal leaving $8,000 for the winner
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Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.