WCOOP 2014: bianka15 owns final table in Event #59 win ($215 NL Omaha Hi-Lo)
Handling the bankroll and tournament swings of NL Omaha Hi-Lo takes an iron stomach that's able to digest the putrid runner-runner beats and quarterings that this variation of Omaha can sometimes dish out. Tonight's WCOOP 2014 Event #59 featured players who gutted out these gastric blows for over 13 hours in search of their first bracelet. Team Online and noted Omaha specialist Roy Bhasin would come up short in his quest for some WCOOP hardware after making it to the final table as a late push by Ecuador's bianka15 scooped enough big pots to take down the bracelet and earn $35,856.00.
Two players with the iconic Red Spade would climb into the 126 paying spots tonight. Team PokerStars Pro Eugene Katchalov already owns two WCOOP bracelets, his first in 2009, and the second in the 2012 series playing Stud Hi-Lo, Katchalov would not add another piece of wrist jewelry tonight but did manage to cash in 78th place ($478.08).
That left Team Online's Roy "GodlikeRoy" Bhasin, who just happens to enjoy playing four-card poker (especially PLO), to continue the climb towards the final table hoping to exceed his runner-up finish in the $2,100 buy-in 2010 SCOOP NL Omaha Hi-Lo.
Bhasin's roll towards the final table continued after EPT 2011 San Remo champion Andrey "ThePateychuk" Pateychuk's exit in 19th place opened up the final two tables. The shrinking of the tables would put "GodlikeRoy" just two seats over from "RunGodlike" leaving the question who will the celestial bodies favor more tonight? Both players would make it into the 11th hour of play along with 12 other rounders, including AJSuited16 who nearly claimed the Event #11 crown last year.
AJSuited16's 11th hour of play was shorter than an Olympic 400 meter race finishing the tournament in 14th place ($1,593.60). AnyTwoCanDo forgot for a moment how many cards are dealt in Omaha and ended up taking 13th place cash ($1,593.60) as Bhasin continued to spin up a decent stack while "RunGodlike" failed to run past Lehrstunde ending the tournament in 12th place ($1,992.00).
Rolling up to hand-for-hand play with the blinds at 6K/12K ante 1.5K Trizeratops made a small blind shove for 252,365 chips holding a rather nice 3♠T♦A♦A♠ as slinkyshop in the big blind held a little bit less but also holding a decent hand 6♥Q♣2♠A♥ while making the call all-in for 208,718 chips. No low and no hearts on the K♦ 9♣ 3♣ K♠ 6♣ board sent slinkyshop down the steps quietly as the final table below fired up:
Seat 1: TheAvengedAs (798909 in chips)
Seat 2: gieras (187759 in chips)
Seat 3: tatta (263892 in chips)
Seat 4: GodlikeRoy (414847 in chips)
Seat 5: Lehrstunde (1186172 in chips)
Seat 6: Nikolo5 (364551 in chips)
Seat 7: nemisoi (596440 in chips)
Seat 8: bianka15 (686847 in chips)
Seat 9: Trizeratops (480583 in chips)
Ta-ta for now
Despite the volatility of NL Omaha Hi-Lo all nine players at the final table would get at least one hour under the spotlight. As the blinds moved up to 10K/20K ante 2.5K however two quick eliminations thinned the field. nemisoi would min-raise from middle position as gieras called on the button and tatta shoved for 251,392 from the small blind. nemisoi re-shoved for over a million as gieras gave it up. nemisoi's J♣ A♠ 8♠ 3♠ held the higher spade draw than tatta's A♥ 5♠ K♠ 6♠ but it would be a turned jack T♥ 6♦ T♣ J♥ 5♣ to send tatta home in ninth place ($2,390.40).
Team Online's Roy Bhasin eliminated in eighth place
Just two hands later "GodlikeRoy" needed to find a double up as his chips slowly bled into the middle over the final table's first hour. Folded around to Bhasin in the cutoff, he would shove for 282,907 chips holding A♦ 3♥ Q♦ 9♣. Holding over a million and second place in chips, Lehrstunde on the button would make the call with the slightly better A♠ K♥ 2♥ 9♠. Despite flopping a nut low draw to halve the pot 2♦ 6♣ 6♠ T♣ J♠ Bhasin's run at a WCOOP title ended in eighth place ($3,984.00).
Dinosaurs may have been wiped from this earth for millions of years but one lived through an online avatar through almost 13 intense hours of WCOOP play. With the blinds moving up to 12.5K/25K ante 3,125 nemisoi would min raise from the button as Trizeratops went for broke and shoved from the big blind for 544,809 chips. Holding 3♥ 9♥ J♠ A♣ nemisoi covered and made the call facing Trizeratops' 8♥ A♠ K♥ 3♠. A fist full of clubs appeared on the J♣ Q♣ 9♣ 5♣ 7♣ board but neither player could claim a flush as nemisoi's flopped two pair was enough to send Trizeratops to the tar pit in seventh place ($5,976.00).
nemisoi gets dirty again
Further along in the 12.5K/25K ante 3,125 blind level nemisoi would lead with a min-raise as it folded around to Nikolo5 in the big blind looked at 3♣ 3♠ 6♠ A♣ in the big blind. With just 274,225 chips left Nikolo5 would shove as nemisoi, with nearly a million chips to start the hand, called holding 2♣Q♣A♠6♣. Despite flopping a flush draw, Nikolo5 watched two non-spade jacks hit the turn and river 9♠ T♥ K♠ J♦ J♣ to complete nemisoi's straight and end Nikolo5's night in sixth place ($7,968.00).
bianka15 takes over
After leaping into the chip lead holding almost half the chips in play, bianka15 went looking for more. As the blinds moved up to 15K/30K ante 3,750 TheAvengedAs would min-raise from the hijack seat it folded around to the chip leader. bianka15 made the call to see a 5♠9♣J♥ flop which neither player decided it was worth their time to bet at. However, after the 2♥ turn, bianka15 applied pressure by shoving all 2.2 million chips into the middle as TheAvengedAs made the call for 671,276 holding a pair, nut flush draw, plus a wrap wheel draw 3♦ A♥ 9♥ 4♦. bianka15 needed something high and not a heart for the flopped two pair 9♠5♥K♠7♣ to hold. The river K♣ fit that bill as bianka15 collected 1.49 million chips and TheAvengedAs collected $10,039.68 in fifth place.
Eight hands later as the blinds moved up to 37.5K/75K ante 4,375 nemisoi would limp in from the small blind as bianka15 was having none of that and shoved for 2.75 million. nemisoi liked the low wrap hand 3♠ A♠ 4♠ 6♦ and made the call for 426,403 chips. bianka15's A♦ J♥ 6♠ 3♣ jack kicker would make the difference as both players would whiff on the Q♣ Q♠ K♠ K♥ 7♦ double paired board sending nemisoi out in fourth place ($14,442.00).
Definitely not chopping now
Ten minutes later with bianka15 now holding 3.4 million to Lehrstunde's 911K and gieras' 623K some chat formulated for a possible chop but the chip leader was not too keen in stopping play just yet. And after this hand, bianka15 would laugh off a heads-up request to stop the tournament clock for a money discussion. bianka15 would start the hand with a min-raise from the button as Lehrstunde three-bet to 210,000 in the big blind. bianka15 took matters preflop by shoving as Lehrstunde called with pocket kings K♣ K♦ 6♠ 7♣. The ace magnets attracted two of them as bianka15 showed 2♦A♣9♦A♠ and rode the aces into the 1.8 million chip pot after the 7♠ 4♦ 9♣ 4♥ J♥ board ran dry. Lehrstunde would pick up $19,322.40 in third place as bianka15 started heads-up play holding a 4.3 million to 601K chip advantage.
That's all it took for bianka15's overwhelming chip lead to claim the final prize. With the blinds holding at 17.5K/35K ante 4,375 bianka15 would grind gieras down to 308,778 chips nearly forcing gieras to shove from the big blind after a min-raise by bianka15. bianka15 was happy to call the smallish bet with 5♥2♥4♦A♣ as gieras showed K♣4♣J♦3♠. But, gieras looked poised to grab a double up after hitting trips on the flop 6♣K♠K♦. That poise crumbled quickly after the 7♣ turn and 8♦ river gave bianka15 a straight plus the nut low to claim the WCOOP 2014 Event #59 title and $35,856.00!
WCOOP-59 $215 NL Omaha Hi-Lo
Places Paid: 126
Prize Pool: $199,200.00
1. bianka15 (Ecuador) $35,856.00
2. gieras (Poland) $25,896.00
3. Lehrstunde (Germany) $19,322.40
4. nemisoi (Russia) $14,442.00
5. TheAvengedAs (Malta) $10,039.68
6. Nikolo5 (Russia) $7,968.00
7. Trizeratops (Germany) $5,976.00
8. Team Online Roy "GodlikeRoy" Bhasin (Australia) $3,984.00
9. tatta (Costa Rica) $2,390.40
Excited for the big finish of the 2014 WCOOP series? Be sure to check back early and often for PokerStarsBlog's around the clock coverage as the $10 million guarantee Main Event starts in one day and 10 hours from now.
David Aydt is a freelance contributor