WCOOP 2010: Xaston snares second bracelet in Event #47 ($530 Stud H/L)

wcoop2009-thumb.jpgThe $530 buy-in Stud Hi/Low event attracted a number of familiar names, particularly when it comes to WCOOPs and SCOOPs. Just about every starting table seemed to feature at least one player who'd had some success either in the 2010 WCOOP or in previous series at PokerStars. And as the field got smaller, it wasn't surprising to see those same players emerge again with impressive performances.

With late registration extended to two hours, a total of 454 players eventually put up the necessary cabbage to compete in this one, meaning the $200K guarantee was met. The total prize pool added up to $227,000, with the top 64 finishers getting paid and the winner due to receive $43,130.

The first hour of play saw Jamie "Xaston" Kaplan -- winner of Event #6 ($215 Turbo NLHE w/re-buys) -- at the top of the leaderboard. (Read a profile of Kaplan here.) Fabrizio "SixthSenSe19" Gonzalez, who just won Event #38 (the $530 NLHE heads-up event), was also in the top 10 early on. Both of those players were also in the top 15 in the WCOOP Player of the Series race at the start of today's events, and were thus both looking to add points to their overall totals.

SixthSenSe19 would end up hitting the rail shy of the money (and Player of the Series points), but Xaston had a deep run in him and would be around at night's end.

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Jamie "Xaston" Kaplan

Two hours in it was mynoli at the top of the counts, followed by hansgow, Yeshua_Won, and Jon "PearlJammer" Turner. At that point only a half-dozen players had been eliminated, among them Greg "Fossilman" Raymer.

At the four-hour mark, 255 players remained. ImaLuckSac had surged into the lead, followed by paulgees81, and goni-havuhu. There were a number of oft-seen names just behind those three, though, including Mike "gordo16" Gordon (in fifth place), James "Andy McLEOD" Obst (sixth), PearlJammer (seventh), Sensor (eighth), and Ilya "ilushan" Gorodetsky (ninth).

Of the 14 members of Team PokerStars who registered in this one, just five had made it to the four-hour break. George "Jorj95" Lind of Team PokerStars Online would hit the rail in 250th, followed soon by Andrew "KidNebraska" Goetsch, also of Team PokerStars Online, in 234th. George Danzer of Team PokerStars Germany would go out in 214th, and Lee Nelson of Team PokerStars New Zealand would last to 134th, still well shy of the money, though. Only 2008 WSOP Main Event final tablist and Team PokerStars Pro Darus Suharto would be around to represent when the field shrunk under 100.

At the six-hour mark, 81 players remained, with Xervex out in front, Sensor in second, The Prescott in third, and Suharto in 23rd.

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Team PokerStars Pro Darus Suharto (at the 2008 World Series of Poker)

At that juncture a couple more familiar names had popped up in the top 10 -- 2007 WSOP Player of the Year Tom "luvgamble" Schneider (in eighth) and teacuppoker in 10th. Schneider won himself a WCOOP bracelet before in 2008, taking down the $530 2-7 single draw (Event #24). And teacuppoker has a SCOOP bracelet to his credit, having won the $2,100 razz event (Event #27-High) this past spring. teacuppoker would begin to slide, though, going out in 49th place, while Schneider, too, would see his stack dwindle before going out in 27th.

After eight hours, Xaston had built a sizable chip lead with 24 players remaining, pushing up over 400,000 while no one else had reached 275,000. A huge pot versus ODECCUTKA had helped Xaston achieve that advantage, a hand in which Xaston began with rolled up jacks, ended with a full house, while ODECCUTKA managed to draw to a flush (and no low).

Meanwhile, Dr. Dakon was second, and Ivavasana third, with Andy McLEOD (eighth), copy (ninth), PearlJammer (10th), ilushan (11th), and DCJ311 (14th) among those still in the final table mix. Suharto was still kicking, too, though on fumes as the tourney's short stack in 24th place.

Suharto hung on, though, while others hit the rail, including gordo16 in 22nd place. Finally Suharto succumbed in 20th place in a hand versus Xervez, followed thereafter by Ilya "ilushan" Gorodetsky in 19th. Over the next hour more were eliminated, including DCJ311 in 14th, copi in 12th, and Ivavasana in 10th.

As the final two tables became short-handed, Andy McLEOD (James Obst) and PearlJammer (Jon Turner) began claiming more pots than the others, moving past Xaston into the top two spots on the chip counts. Finally Obst finished off a short-stacked Xervez, and the final eight-handed table was set:

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Seat 1: ODECCUTKA -- 469,117
Seat 2: faithless -- 300,491
Seat 3: Xaston -- 493,981
Seat 4: ImaLuckSac -- 160,740
Seat 5: Mammola -- 266,484
Seat 6: PearlJammer -- 713,759
Seat 7: AJB444 -- 285,455
Seat 8: Andy McLEOD -- 714,973

They had been at it a little over nine-and-a-half hours when the final table began, and would battle another 20 minutes or so before the first elimination came.

While ImaLuckSac hung on with the short stack, faithless got involved in a huge hand versus ODECCUTKA in which the latter took nearly all of ImaLuckSac's chips after making a seven-high straight and seven low. Down to less than 2,000, faithless managed to double up once, then triple up, but then the end finally came.

All in on third street with the K♥ showing, faithless could only watch as Andy McLEOD and Xaston raised and reraised one another all of the way to seventh. Andy McLEOD eventually showed a full house, tens full of aces, while Xaston made an 8-7-6-5-3 low. Both were better than faithless' hand, who mucked before leaving in eighth place.

With seven left, Xaston would be the first player to a million chips, while Mammola slipped to the back of the group, falling below 100,000. Then, with the stakes 25,000/50,000, a hand arose in which ImaLuckSac brought in for 7,500, PearlJammer made it 25,000 with the 7♦ up, AJB444 made it 50,000 with the A♥, and all folded but PearlJammer.

AJB444 -- who won a SCOOP bracelet in 2009 in Event #18-Low ($320 seven-card stud) -- had begun the hand with 214,810, and would end up calling bets by PearlJammer on every subsequent street, finally going all in on seventh. In the end, AJB444 held (9♦)(9♠)A♥T♥6♦3♠(5♦) for an unimproved pair of nines, while PearlJammer ended with (K♦)(2♦)7♦8♦K♥8♣(T♣) for kings and eights. AJB444 was out in seventh.

It had taken nearly an hour to lose the first two players at the final table, but the next eliminations would come much more quickly.

Just five hands after AJB444's bust, ImaLuckSac open-raised with the 8♦ showing, then Mammola reraised with the J♦. ImaLuckSac reraised again, putting himself all in, and Mammola called. The cards were dealt, and by the end ImaLuckSac held (A♥)(9♥)8♦4♣6♠J♣(J♥) for a pair of jacks and no low, not enough versus Mammola's (K♣)(K♥)J♠T♣T♦7♣(7♥), and they were down to five.

Just three hands after that it was ODECCUTKA who was all in on third street, following a raising war with PearlJammer. ODECCUTKA had 3♣ showing and PearlJammer the 6♠. The betting concluded, the cards were dealt. ODECCUTKA ended up making a pair of deuces and an 8-6 low -- (2♦)(8♥)3♣6♦2♥4♠[(T♠) -- but PearlJammer had him beat both ways, his (6♥)(A♦)6♠7♥K♠4♣[(5♣) making him a better pair and a 7-low. ODECCUTKA was out in fifth.

Seven hands after that it would be PearlJammer again knocking off another opponent, this time Mammola. After Andy McLEOD raised on third with the 9♦, both Mammola -- with the 5♠ up -- and PearlJammer -- with the 2♠ -- called. Fourth street saw Mammola betting, PearlJammer calling, and Andy McLEOD folding. Then on fifth PearlJammer bet, Mammola raised all in, and PearlJammer called. Their hole cards revealed, here's what those two had:

Mammola (3♣)(7♠)5♠3♠T♣
PearlJammer (3♦)(2♣)2♠4♦A♦

Both had started with low hands in mind, but in the end neither would make them. Mammola drew K♥4♣ to end up with just a pair of threes, while PearlJammer picked up A♣9♣ for aces and deuces. Just like that, they were down to three.

When three-handed play commenced, "PearlJammer" Turner was the leader with more 1.38 million chips, followed by "Andy McLEOD" Obst with a little over 1.18 million and "Xaston" Kaplan with almost 837,000. The stakes had risen to 30,000/60,000, and after losing a few successive pots Andy McLEOD was the first to drop into the danger zone with less than 200,000. He built back to 225,014, then lost almost all of his stack in a hand versus Turner in which he called Turner's bets all of the way down to seventh street while PearlJammer drew king after king, then folded, saving himself a mere 9,014.

It appeared Obst was hoping to make a low, and things didn't work out. Take a look:

Andy McLEOD would triple up on the next hand, but on the following hand was all in on third against both opponents, and in the end couldn't beat either PearlJammer's pair of queens or Xaston's 8-low. Another impressive showing for James "Andy McLEOD" Obst in this year's WCOOP, finishing third.

The tourney had gone for nearly 11 hours when heads-up play began between PearlJammer and Xaston. PearlJammer had a significant advantage as they began, with 2,706,804 chips to Xaston's 698,196. Xaston quickly scooped a couple of pots, however, to pull nearly even. Then came a big hand in which Xaston drew out a queen-high flush, besting whatever hand PearlJammer mucked to claim a 1.376 million-chip pot. Now Xaston had the advantage.

Play continued, and at one point Turner would briefly reclaim the advantage from Kaplan. But Kaplan soon retook the upper hand, and after 45 minutes of heads-up play had PearlJammer down to just 232,216 chips to his more than 3.17 million. With the stakes 60,000/120,000, PearlJammer was all in on third street, and it looked like a lock for Xaston when he made two pair by fourth versus PearlJammer's pair of nines. But Turner spiked a nine on seventh street, and survived.

For a couple more hands, anyway.

Back down under a quarter million chips, Turner committed half his stack on third street with a jack showing versus Xaston's eight, then got the rest in on fourth. The remaining cards were dealt. Xaston wound up with (T♦)(T♥)8♣5♥7♥2♦(K♦) for a pair of tens and no low, while Turner finished with (4♠[)(3♥)J♠A♣K♠Q♥(9♣) for a hand full of nothing. Xaston had won!

Congratulations to Jamie "Xaston" Kaplan, 2010 WCOOP Event #47 Champion! And with his second victory of this year's WCOOP, he positions himself nicely in the Player of Series standings with less than a week of events yet to go.

WCOOP Event #47 ($530 Stud H/L) results
1st place: Xaston ($43,130)
2nd: PearlJammer ($31,780)
3rd: Andy McLEOD ($23,290.20)
4th: Mammola ($17,025)
5th: ODECCUTKA ($11,350)
6th: ImaLuckSac ($7,945)
7th: AJB444 ($5,675)
8th: faithless ($4,540)

For more WCOOP, check out PokerStars.tv for recaps and reports. And look in also over at the WCOOP site for results, history, schedule info, and more on the biggest online poker tournament series in the world.

Martin Harris
@hardboiledpoker in WCOOP