WCOOP 2010: Mviper256 strikes and succeeds in capturing Event 44 victory

WCOOP 2009 logo.jpgEveryone deserves a second chance, or so they say. And Event 44 of the 2010 World Championship of Poker gave players just that via the $300 + $20 NLHE 2X Chance tournament. It wasn't exactly a typical rebuy tournament, as there were no add-ons allowed, but one rebuy was allowed for any player seeking to buy another 5,000 chips for $300. It could only be done if the original 5,000 chips disappeared within the first 90 minutes of play, but it was certainly a second life in the game.

Event 44 offered a sizeable $750K guarantee, which ended up being a good thing for the players. Out of the 1,989 players who entered the tournament, only 362 purchased the rebuy, and when PokerStars did the math, it realized that the guarantee wasn't met, so $44,700 was added to the prize pool to meet the guarantee. An overlay was a bonus for the players who sidled up to the tables today.

As the hours went by, the action finally led the last 252 players into the money, and all of them were promised a minimum payout of $675.00 for their efforts. Some of the players who cashed in those latter stages of the tournament included several Team PokerStars Pros, including Pat Pezzin in 227th place; Team Online's Diego "vgreen22" Brunelli in 219th, Anders "Donald" Hoyers Berg in 178th, and Randy "nanonoko" Lew in 83rd; Vanessa "LadyMaverick" Rousso in 65th, and Online's George "Jorj95" Lind in 52nd. And as the field was reduced to two tables well into the 11th hour of play, only Team PokerStars Online's Alvaro "VARICO" Ballesteros remained to represent the site.

Alvaro Ballesteros - Event 44.jpg

Moments before the tournament went into its 13-hour break, ImDaNuts pushed all-in preflop, and P1ngPoNgPr0 called all-in for his last chips holding A♣K♥. But ImDaNuts showed Q♠Q♣ to provide for the ultimate race. The flop of K♣2♦7♣ put P1ngPoNgPr0 ahead with the kings, but the Q♦ on the turn made the set for ImDaNuts, and that turned into a full house when the K♦ came on the river. P1ngPoNgPr0 was out in tenth place with $5,850.00 to show for it.

The final table was then set, though players took a five-minute break before action got underway. It was in Level 34, with blinds at 10,000/20,000 and a 2,500 ante, that players took their seats with the following starting stacks:

Seat 1: supergood1 (1,211,722 in chips)
Seat 2: lb6121 (1,195,481 in chips)
Seat 3: SlippedMe (1,598,117 in chips)
Seat 4: Hulios (1,261,464 in chips)
Seat 5: ebandita (1,332,112 in chips)
Seat 6: ImDaNuts (924,340 in chips)
Seat 7: mviper256 (2,346,254 in chips)
Seat 8: VARICO (548,942 in chips)
Seat 9: KongenavU (1,336,568 in chips)

Event 44 FT screen shot.JPG

The first big hand of the table found SlippedMe and ebandita in a preflop raising war that ended when ebandita pushed all-in for 1,143,612 chips with J♠J♦. SlippedMe called with A♠Q♠. The flop of 2♠K♠7♣ brought the flush draw for SlippedMe, and the 7♠ on the turn made it. The 5♠ on the river made a flush for both players, but SlippedMe had the nut flush and took the pot, leaving ebandita out in ninth place with $7,500.00.

Short-stacked VARICO ultimately couldn't hang on any longer. Going in with a short stack and unable to gain momentum, the all-in move came for his last 467,692 chips with 8♥8♦. But lb6121 easily called from the big blind with A♠A♦, and nothing about the board of T♠2♣7♠5♦3♦ changed the outcome. Team PokerStars Online's Alvaro "VARICO" Ballesteros was eliminated from the tournament in eighth place with $13,125.00.

It took quite awhile and more than a few rounds before anyone else was willing to risk it all, but it was Hulios who put his short stack of 473,065 chips at risk preflop. lb6121 made the call with A♣A♦, and Hulios was likely not happy to have to show his A♥Q♠. The board was void of queens as it came 7♠8♠T♠7♦2♥, and Hulios was ousted in seventh place with $20,250.00.

Five hands later, after supergood1 began the action with a raise, KongenavU reraised all-in for 467,818 chips with 6♥6♦, but that pair didn't compare to the K♣K♥ of supergood1. The board utterly blanked with 9♠5♦T♥3♠A♦, and KongenavU took leave of the table with $27,750.00 for the sixth place finish.

SlippedMe had a roller coaster ride at the final table and finally decided to risk it all. The action started with mviper256 raising it up preflop and SlippedMe coming in for a reraise from the small blind. Another reraise led to SlippedMe pushing all-in for 2,438,374 chips with J♥J♦, and mviper256 called with A♠K♥. The jacks held up to the 5♥4♥7♥ flop, but the A♣ hit hard on the turn to give mviper256 the advantage with a pair of aces. The 3♦ on the river allowed that pair to hold, and SlippedMe slipped out of the tournament in fifth place with $35,625.00.

Supergood1 started a run toward the top of the leaderboard with the following double-up through chipleader mviper256:

RSS readers click through to see replay

And a short time later, supergood1 took another leap closer to the lead. The hand started with lb6121 and supergood1 going to a flop of Q♦3♥J♠, and a bet from lb6121 was met with a check-call. The Q♣ on the turn brought a bet and call, and when the T♣ appeared on the river, supergood1 bet and lb6121 responded with an all-in raise. Supergood1 called with K♣9♣ for the straight, which meant that the trip queens of lb6121's A♥Q♥ hand were no good. lb6121 exited in fourth place with $49,312.50.

Two hands later, ImDaNuts battled with supergood1 preflop and ended up calling all-in for the remainder of his stack holding A♣K♥. Supergood1 turned over 4♥4♠, and when the board came 7♦5♥8♣T♣T♠, the pocket pair remained the best hand. ImDaNuts was eliminated in third place with $67,500.00.

Heads-up play then began as follows:

Seat 1: supergood1 (5,457,764 in chips)
Seat 7: mviper256 (6,297,236 in chips)

Supergood1 was aggressive yet selective, and some small but key hands allowed supergood1 to ease into the chip lead. But the two battled, and they exchanged the lead numerous times over the course of the action. However, mviper256 got the best of the bigger pots and put a sizable distance of nearly three-to-one in front of supergood1.

Finally, the two tanbled to see a flop of 9♣4♦8♥. Supergood1 made a bet, and mviper256 check-called. The J♠ on the turn prompted another bet from supergood1 but this time a check-raise from mviper256. Supergood1 responded with an all-in move for his last 2,600,758 chips, and mviper256 made the call with J♥9♠ for top two pair. Supergood1 showed T♦6♥ for the turned straight draw, but it didn't happen, as the 9♦ on the river only turned mviper256's hand into a full house. Supergood1 was eliminated in second place for $90,000.00.

Mviper256 won Event 44 and claimed $120,000 and a gold WCOOP bracelet for the hard-fought victory.

2010 WCOOP Event 44 Final Results:

1st place: mviper256 ($120,000.00)
2nd place: supergood1 ($90,000.00)
3rd place: ImDaNuts ($67,500.00)
4th place: lb6121 ($49,312.50)
5th place: SlippedMe ($35,625.00)
6th place: KongenavU ($27,750.00)
7th place: Hulios($20,250.00)
8th place: Team PokerStars Online's Alvaro "VARICO" Ballesteros ($13,125.00)
9th place: ebandita ($7,500.00)

The 2010 WCOOP is in its last week of the 62 event festival with many more millions to be awarded in guarantees alone. Don't miss your chance to get in on the WCOOP winnings! And for those tracking the series, the official WCOOP website has a plethora of information about the entire series, and PokerStars TV offers tournament highlights.

Jen Newell
@PokerStars in WCOOP