Sunday Warm-Up: Festive time for Festivuss winning $81K, Staples fifth

"Guys! We're deep in the Sunday Warm-Up 5th out of 47 people left" - @jaimestaples on Twitter.

Yes, that would be Friend of PokerStars, Jaime Staples as his good fortune continued with three tables remaining and ratcheting his stack to the top two positions. Watching Jaime through his Twitch channel gave another dimension to watching the Sunday Warm-Up final table with Jaime running commentary while chasing the $81K up top. He would have to settle for a fifth place finish, as Festivuss took away the top honors and $81,022.69.

The final table run nearly did not happen as Staples would have some work to do. Near the end of the eighth hour Jaime would run into a little trouble with pocket fours, moving to the bottom of the pack with only 13 players remaining.

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Pocket fours taketh and pocket fours giveth. Jaime would double up with fours against goodkicker1's ace-five to boost into a 1.6 million chip stack with blinds at 40K/80K ante 8K.

Three minutes back from the break Jaime went on a tear, first picking up A♥K♥ to knock out AAgoodfold's A♠3♣ in 12th place ($3,205.00). Then on the next hand, clinging on to A♦Q♠ against goodkicker1's A♥J♥ all-in preflop after two hearts flopped 4♥ 6♥ T♣ 7♠ 8♦ to shoot all the way into first place to start hand-for-hand play. Being able to watch Jaime's excitement while cheering on his ace-queen on Twitch, was awesome and brings a new level fun to the online game.

The action on the adjacent table would send this tournament to the final table. With the blinds up to 50K/100K ante 10K Dowgh-Santos would three-bet shove 1.1 million as FourSixFour shoved for just a touch more. HealTheWorld decided to hold tight while giving up the initial raise as Dowgh-Santos 4♦4♠ squared off against FourSixFour's Q♣A♥. This time the pocket fours would not reach the river unscathed 3♥ Q♥ 9♠ 8♣ J♠. That started up the final table below:

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Seat 1: luckyluck653 (3,934,024 chips)
Seat 2: FourSixFour (2,620,027)
Seat 3: CROSA COLL (1,329,158)
Seat 4: Festivuss (3,752,386)
Seat 5: Turbofluen (1,752,930)
Seat 6: HealTheWorld (3,258,762)
Seat 7: alimounda (3,584,487)
Seat 8: joaommr (1,554,382)
Seat 9: jaimestaples (3,853,844)

This might be the first time the Sunday Warm-Up where a player's cards have been exposed before the replay. Jaime would come out firing, winning four out of the first six hands while taking over the chip lead and further firing up his Twitch followers in the process.

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With 15 minutes left in the ninth hour of play, one shortstacked player would be asked to leave. HealTheWorld would shove 2.1 million from middle position with the blinds up to 80K/160K ante 16K. Joaommr called all-in holding T♥A♣. Unfortunately, kicker problems would be the reason for joaommr's demise as HealTheWorld's A♥Q♦ won on the K♣ J♦ 5♠ 6♠ 4♦ board handing $4,358.80 to joaommr in ninth place.

A few years ago CROSA COLL was heads-up for a SCOOP title but had to settle for the runner-up check worth $15K. CROSA COLL's run at this Major would end much further away after the ultra shortstack called all-in with K♣5♠ against alimounda's K♠A♣. After too many aces on the A♥ J♥ 4♠ A♦ Q♣ board CROSA COLL took away $7,435.60 in eighth place.

Nearly twenty minutes into the tenth hour of play someone swiped the chip lead from Jaime. With the blinds up to 125K/250K ante 25K FourSixFour shoved for 2.66 million as HealTheWorld called holding A♠T♠. FourSixFour's 9♥8♥ hit two hearts on the flop, but no more. The board came 3♥ Q♣ Q♥ 7♣ 3♠. HealTheWorld claimed the temporary chip lead and FourSixFour claimed $12,050.80 in seventh place.

HealTheWorld certainly has the pedigree for success having won the Sunday 500 in April and initial running of The Weekender.

During the 125K/250K ante 25K blind level it looked like Jaime's Twitch stream would be coming to end. Doubling up both Festivuss and alimounda, his stack kept tumbling. But, finding pocket aces A♣A♠ shortly after the blind increases against luckyluck653's 9♠A♦ would right the ship. The 3.4 million chip pot knocked out luckyluck653 in sixth place ($17,178.80).

However, the uptick did not last long. Five hands later he would take K♦A♠ into battle against alimounda's pocket queens Q♣Q♥ for a 6.3 million chip pot. The flip would not go his way on a board of 5♠ J♦ 4♦ 9♣ 5♦. Still kicking with 1.1 million chips Jaime would find J♠A♣ on the next hand, going up against HealTheWorld's 6♠Q♠. The current chip leader would show no mercy, and nor would the 5♥ 6♣ Q♦ 9♠ 6♦ board ending Jaime's Sunday Warm-Up final table run in fifth place ($22,306.80).


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Eight hands later another bang-bang elimination left the table population at three. With the blinds holding at 150K/300K ante 30K Festivuss would claim a huge 9.9 million chip pot after jacks J♠J♣ shot down the J♥A♣ of Turbofluen on the Q♥ 6♣ 3♥ T♣ 3♠ board. HealTheWorld picked up Turbofluen's scraps on the next hand handing over $29,993.67 to Turbofluen in fourth place.

Five minutes later and continuing this downhill run at the title, we reached heads-up play. Festivuss started with a min-raise as HealTheWorld three-bet to 1.97 million. This was alimounda's second shot at a Sunday Warm-Up final table this year, taking fifth in March for $25K. Alimounda holding the shortest stack would shove 4.87 million with J♦A♣ as HealTheWorld made the call holding K♦A♥. Both players paired their kickers J♣ K♣ Q♥ 8♠ 9♦ as alimounda was asked to leave without a title once again in third place ($43,075.20).

HealTheWorld would start heads-up play with a decent lead (15.3 million vs. 10.2 million) but that lead would quickly evaporate. Festivuss took the chip lead on the second hand after flopping two pair and getting good value after betting the river while filling up.

After the turn over in chip counts, it only took seven more minutes for Festivuss to wrap up the Warm-Up. With the blinds up to 200K/400K ante 40K and now down 22.6 million to 2.97 million HealTheWorld tried to shove J♠5♠ past the overwhelming chip leader. But, Festivuss was not about to fold pocket eights 8♦8♠ and despite a flopped jack, the turned eight K♥ Q♠ J♣ 8♣ 2♠ earned Festivuss $81,022.69 and this week's Sunday Warm-Up title!

PokerStars Sunday Warm-Up results (11-22-2015)

Entrants: 2,564
Place paid: 378
Prize pool: $512,800.00

1. Festivuss (Mexico) $81,022.69
2. HealTheWorld (Austria) $60,510.40
3. alimounda (Greece) $43,075.20
4. Turbofluen (Denmark) $29,993.67
5. Jaime Staples (Canada) $22,306.80
6. luckyluck653 (Estonia) $17,178.80
7. FourSixFour (United Kingdom) $12,050.80
8. CROSA COLL (Uruguay) $7,435.60
9. joaommr (Malta) $4,358.80

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David Aydt
@PokerStars in Sunday Warm-Up