WCOOP 2010: David Williams, ElkY among final 64 in Event #12, $215 Heads-up NLHE

wcoop2009-thumb.jpgAlmost exactly one year ago, it took Eugene "MyRabbiFoo" Katchalov nearly 24 straight hours of poker to capture the WCOOP heads-up title. Katchalov won 11 consecutive matches during this feat of endurance and should probably have received a medal, a stiff drink, and a new puppy along with his his bracelet for making it through the marathon session. For WCOOP 2010, however, the powers that be at PokerStars showed their players (and bloggers) some mercy and transformed Event #12, $215 Heads-up NLHE, into a two-day event. After an extremely manageable nine and a half hours of play, the 2,307-strong field was cut to the 64 runners who will return to the virtual felt tomorrow at 5:00 p.m. EDT to play down to a new WCOOP champion.

Over 30 members of Team PokerStars Pro and Team PokerStars Online came out to prove their heads-up prowess and compete for a share of the $461,400 prize pool. Among them were Barry Greenstein, Anh Van Nguyen, Thierry Van Den Berg, Anders "Donald" Berg, David Williams, Bertrand Grospellier, George Danzer, Gualter Salles, Jason Mercier, Joe Cada, George "jorg95" Lind III, J.P. Kelly, Daniel Negreanu, Marcello Del Grosso, Chris Moneymaker, Randy "nanonoko" Lew, Orel Hershiser, Steven "stevejpa" Paul, Tom McEvoy, Vicky Coren, Victor Ramdin, and Steven "stevesbets" Jacobs. 256 places paid and the 64 players who survived Day 1 were all assured a payday of at least $1,384.20. Four Team Pros finished in the money-- Marcello Del Grosso (205th), Jason Mercier (96th), Tae Joon Noh (74th), and Steven Paul (72nd)-- while David Williams and Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier will return for Day 2.


David Williams

The Red (Spade) Army

Barry Greenstein won his Round II match when starcity85 moved all-in on the turn after making tens up when the board paired fives. Greenstein called with pocket jacks and they held up to send him through to the next round. His third-round match against fydor_8 ended in a coinflip, Greenstein's pocket fours holding up against A♥8♠. However, Greenstein finished outside the money in 384th place when his ten-high straight fell to N00000ooooo's king-high straight.

Marcello Del Grosso made quick work of his Round 4 opponent, winning his match in only five hands. All the money went in before the flop, Del Grosso's 5♦5♥ trailing MCLegend's 9♦9♣. Del Grosso, though, got lucky and flopped a set. In the final hand of his Round V match, Del Grosso tried to move his opponent off top pair, shoving over Aptok's his check-raise with only A♥2♥ on a K♥3♣2♠ flop. Aptok called with K♣8♣ and made trips on the turn when the K♠ fell. The river was the T♥ and Del Grosso exited in 205th place.

Jason Mercier won a flip for all the bones in his Round II match, his K♥Q♠ rivering top pair against 1$sickDisea$e's pocket eights. In the third round, Mercier called a pre-flop raise with K♥4♦, then made trips when the flop came down 8♦4♣4♥. Mercier check-raised the flop, got a call, then got two more streets of maximum value after Nanette-1965 made top pair on the turn. Round IV saw Mercier get it in bad pre-flop, his A♦7♠ dominated by A♠J♦. However, Mercier flopped a seven and turned another one, taking down the match with trips. Winning Round V also took another stroke of luck as Mercier rivered trips against an opponent who made aces up. Check it out.

Mercier met his tournament end in the final round of Day 1, moving all-in with 7♥8♥ on a 9♥8♦2♦ flop. Xxndavisxx called with 7♣T♣, turned a straight when the 6♦ fell, then rivered a better straight with the J♣, sending Mercier to the rail in 96th place.

Steven "stevejpa" Paul was able to win five matches, but not a sixth. Paul lost most of his stack when he five-bet shoved pre-flop with A♣3♥ only to run in to GoGators86's pocket kings.

"Sigh i'm the worst," he said as the board blanked out.

Paul was eliminated on the next hand after turning top two pair only to have his opponent river a broadway straight. His run ended with a 72nd place finish.

The Texan and the Frenchman

David Williams won his Round III match when he rivered a king-high flush against SizouSayz's queen-high flush. In the fourth round, his decisive hand came when he three-bet shoved over morten85's 120-chip min-raise. Morten85 called the additional 4,002 with A♣K♦, but Williams's pocket sevens flopped a set. The last of morten85's chips went in on a 5♥Q♣K♦Q♠ board, Williams making the call. Although morten85 turned trip queens with Q♦J♥, Williams had K♥K♣ and took down the match with kings full.

The decisive hand of Williams' Round V match saw all the money go in on a Q♠2♠T♥ flop, Williams holding top two pair with Q♣T♠ while ezhik09 was in dire shape with Q♦4♣. A short time later, Williams punched his ticket to the final 64 when he called a four-bet shove with A♠A♣ and saw his hand hold up against MagicMan111's A♥Q♠.

Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier took down his third-round match when his pocket jacks held up against pocket eights. Grospellier sealed up his Round IV match when his straight draw came in against a set, then scored another KO in Round V with pocket kings against A♠Q♠. In the sixth round, ElkY had pulled out to a 4-1 chip lead when DEEZZZ_NUTS decided to make a move. DEEZZZ_NUTS led out for 120 on the J♠J♦5♥ flop, Grospellier min-raised to 240 ad DEEZZZ_NUTS shoved for 1,784. Grospellier made an easy call and he advanced to the final 64 once the 9♣ hit the turn and the 6♦ fell on the river.


Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier

The best of times, the worst of times

So, you know that sick, anxious malaise that comes over you when you've bluffed off all your chips drawing dead? Mattsim23 had to be drowning in it after he made an ill-timed move on Kevin "BeL0WaB0ve" Saul in their Round V match.

Saul, however, was eliminated in the sixth round on a wicked cooler. Innamon opened for a min-raise to 100, Saul three-bet to 325 and innamon called. Saul led out for 342 on the A♠T♣9♠ flop, and innamon called. The turn paired the board with the T♠ and Saul fired again, making it 755 to go. Innamon shoved for 4,461.

"I hate hero folding," Saul said as he called off the rest of his stack.

Both players turned over trip tens, but innamon had the better kicker with Q♥T♥ while Saul held T♦6♦. The river was the 5♦ and Saul exited in 128th place, earning $922.80.

#1 Lucky who?

Dope West was so tardy to his Round IV match that his opponent #1_Lucky_One had no choice but to allow him to be blinded off after sitting out for as long as he could.

#1_Lucky_One: used 50 secs of my clock
#1_Lucky_One: and waited max time every hand all i can do
#1_Lucky_One: stealing i clould have bsuted him already ***
1_Lucky_One: I could have blinded him out already 100%
#1_Lucky_One: I could speed hit call
#1_Lucky_One: everyhand
#1_Lucky_One: Instead of waiting max time
#1_Lucky_One: waiting seems fair
#1_Lucky_One: 64 secs left on my clock
#1_Lucky_One: giving him cachance

As #1_Lucky_One waited for dope west, the observer chat seemed to indicate that the man behind the screen name was actually 11-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth. However, since #1_Lucky_One did not confirm his identity, we cannot definitively say it was him. What we can tell you is that once dope west showed up and read some of the chatter, he was flabbergasted at the potential identity of his opponent.

dope west: what happen
dope west: he was easy on me?
#1_Lucky_One: Yes I folded anf doled
dope west: OH MAN
dope west: phil hellmuth?
dope west: seriously my idol
dope west: PHIL THANK YOU FOR INSPIRING and being a gentleman and waiting
#1_Lucky_One: whoever i am, your welcome
#1_Lucky_One: lol

Dope west ended up busting #1_Lucky_One. All the money went in before the flop, dope west with K♥K♦ and #1_Lucky_One holding A♣Q♣. Dope west flopped top set but #1_Lucky_One could not live up to his name and pull out a miracle.

Make sure to check back in at 5 p.m. EDT tomorrow for the final six rounds of play. If you have yet to get in on the WCOOP action, well what are you waiting for? Head over to the WCOOP page for more information and a complete schedule. If multimedia is your thing, make your way over to PokerStars.tv for the best of WCOOP in moving pictures.

Kristin Bihr
@PokerStars in WCOOP