WCOOP 2014: janik446 is a stud maestro after binking Event #15 [$320 Stud H/L]

You missed one heck of a heads-up battle between janik446 and Mr Negreanu. It was like one of those epic heavyweight fights with a grandiose nickname like the "Rumble in the Jungle." The final two in WCOOP Event #15 Stud Hi/Lo squared off in a sensational pugilistic tango that lasted almost 200 hands. The lead changed hands too many times to count. Although janik446 dominated heads-up, Mr Negreanu was like a pesky cockroach that would not die. Just when janik446 thought the end was near, Mr Negreanu always sprang back to life and extend their fracas.

After a tumultuous yet tedious bare-knuckle drag-out of a fight, a determined janik446 finally delivered the decisive knockout blow that sent Mr Negreanu tumbling to the virtual canvas. Germany's janik446 was the last one standing in Event #15 and became the newest WCOOP champion.

WCOOP Event #15 $320 Stud H/L attracted a field of 484 old-school seven-card stud hi/lo enthusiasts. The prize pool swelled to $145,200.00, which exceed the initial $100,000 guarantee. The top 64 places paid out with $27,588.00 set aside to the eventual champion.

PokerStars Team Pros in the hunt for a WCOOP crown included Chris Moneymaker, Vicky Coren, Johnathon Duhamel, Eugene Katchalov, and George Danzer. Team Online grinding their way to a potential WCOOP title included nkeyno and mement_mori.

Chris Moneymaker was cruising for most of the tournament with a big stack before he abruptly busted in 128th place when Slpis4Bgnrs scooped with a 7-5-3-2-A low and an Ace-high flush.

Team Online Naoya 'nkeyno' Kihara went on a deep run but was super short-stacked as the money bubble approached. Despite winning several key hands to stave off elimination, nkeyno was met his inevitable fate when he was knocked out in 67th place. nkeyno made a final stand with 4♦4♥7♠J♠A♥T♠9♦ but lost to raidalot who scooped with a pair of Aces and a low hand of 8-5-3-2-A. The top 64 places paid out, but Naoya 'nkeyno' Kihara busted in 67th place.


WCOOP Event #15 - Final Table Chip Counts:
Seat 1: dfunks (147,521)
Seat 2: Ibiza (407,681)
Seat 3: Mr Negreanu (231,084)
Seat 4: janik446 (396,716)
Seat 5: raidalot (196,985)
Seat 6: torowe (353,735)
Seat 7: RZA4444 (368,494)
Seat 8: TeamWispy (317,784)

The final table commenced during Level 25 with stakes at 12K/24K and a 2.4K ante. Ibiza held the lead with 407K, while dfunks was the shorty with 147K. The final table included a couple of notables: TeamWispy won a Sunday Million and raidalot was a two-time SCOOP champion.

TeamWispy eliminated in 8th place

It took two full levels before we saw our first elimination. Without a qualifying low, Mr Negreanu dragged a pot worth approximately 420K with a full house -- fours over fives -- and 6♥4♥8♥4♠8♦4♣5♠. TeamWispy got it all-in on sixth street and made a final stand with A♣Q♦A♠[6]4♦8♠K♠. TeamWispy could only muster up a pair of Aces, which was not good enough to avoid an elimination. For an eighth-place finish, TeamWispy collected $2,904.00.

Ibiza eliminated in 7th place

In a multi-way pot, Ibiza was the next player sent home. On fourth street, Mr Negreanu appeared to be way ahead of everyone with (X-X)A♣A♥ versus dfunks (X-X)4♦K♥, Ibiza's (X-X)J♦T♦, and raidalot's (X-X)6♦2♠. Mr Negreanu fired out 16,000, raidalot bumped it to 32,000, dfunks folded, Ibiza called all-in for 9,681, and Mr Negreanu called. At showdown on seventh street, Ibiza held (X-X)/J♦T♦7♣8♣/(X) and Mr Negreanu was sitting on (X-X)/A♣A♥T♣Q♦/(X). But raidalot won the main pot and side pot with 5♥3♦6♦2♠K♠Q♠4♥ and scooped with a six-high straight and a 6-5-4-3-2 low. Mr Negreanu and Ibiza both mucked their losing hands. Ibiza was knocked out in seventh place, which paid out $3,630.00.

dfunks eliminated in 6th place

Short-stacked dfunks battled Mr Negreanu for his tournament life. Betting was capped on fourth street with dfunks' (X-X)3♥8♣ up against Mr Negreanu's (X-X)2♣T♠. All the money went in on fifth street with dfunks' (X-X)3♥8♣A♠ way behind Mr Negreanu's (X-X)2♣T♠T♣. By seventh street, both players tabled:

dfunks: Q♣Q♦3♥8♣A♠4♦8♥
Mr Negreanu: 2♥T♦2♣T♠T♣K♣5♦

Although dfunks rivered two pair, but it was not good enough for a double up. Without a qualifying low, Mr Negreanu dragged the pot with a full boar -- tens full of deuces. Mexico's dfunks took home $5,082.00 for sixth place.

With five remaining, janik446 was out in front with 725K, followed raidalot's 672K. Meanwhile, torowe was the shorty with 232K.

RZA4444 eliminated in 5th place

Short-stacked RZA4444 was all-in on third street with (X-X)K♠ and Mr Negreanu took a shot at picking off a shorty with (X-X)7♥. By the river, the players tabled:

Mr Negreanu: 8♥4♥7♥4♠K♥6♥9♠
RZA4444: J♥Q♣K♠2♠A♥Q♦6♠

Without a qualifying low hand, Mr Negreanu won the pot with a King-high flush against RZA4444's pair of Queens. Canada's RZA4444 hit the virtual rail in fifth place, which paid out $7,260.00.

With four to go, janik446 chipped up to over 1M, while raidalot and Mr Negreanu held approximately 500K each. torowe was the shorty wtih 420K.

torowe eliminated in 4th place

Another short stack went up against Mr Negreanu and another short stack lost. The money went all-in on fourth street with Mr Negreanu's (X-X)Q♣Q♥ versus torowe's (X-X)T♦J♣. The boards finished up:

Mr Negreanu: 2♠Q♠Q♣Q♥8♣4♥7♥
torowe: A♣2♥T♦J♣6♥T♥2♦

There was no qualifying low. torowe's two pair was no match against Mr Negreanu's trip Queens. Norway's torowe was knocked out in fourth place, which paid out $10,890.00.

With three remaining in the hunt for a WCOOP title, janik446 still held the lead with 1.1M, followed by raidalot's 717K, and Mr Negreanu's 547K.

raidalot eliminated in 3rd place

With three to go, two dominant 1M+ stacks emerged and raidalot was the one being hunted with the shortest stack. It was only a matter of time before raidalot reached a crossroads... triple up or go home. Fireworks occurred on sixth street.

Mr Negreanu (X-X)/9♣2♥7♥A♥
janik446 (X-X)/7♣8♠7♠J♦
raidalot (X-X)/4♣A♠3♥A♦

raidalot fired out 50,000, Mr Negreanu bumped it up to 100K, janik446 bailed, raidalot called all-in for 30,245. Heads-up. The boards finished up:

Mr Negreanu: 9♥8♥9♣2♥7♥A♥3♠
raidalot: T♣5♦4♣A♠3♥A♦J♥

Mr Negreanu scooped with a 8-7-3-2-A low and an Ace-high flush versus raidalot's paltry pair of Aces. The two-time SCOOP champion busted in third place, which paid out $14,897.52.

HEADS-UP: Mr Negreanu (United Kingdom) vs. janik446 (Germany)
Seat 3: Mr Negreanu (1,358,684)
Seat 4: janik446 (1,061,316)

The final two brandished healthy 1M+ stacks with Mr Negreanu holding a slight lead. Stakes were only 25K/50K, so these two were prepped for long slog. And what a slog it was spanning nearly 200 hands.

Within the first 20 hands of heads-up, janik446 seized the lead. By the 50th hand, janik446 chipped up to over 2M and opened up a 6-1 chip advantage over Mr Negreanu.

By the 86th hand, Mr Negreanu started showing signs of life and reduced his deficit to 3-1 as janik446 slipped under 2M for the first time that level. By the 100th hand, Mr Negreanu won a 492K pot with a Broadway straight to chip up to almost 1M. janik446 lead slipped to less than 2-1. Mr Negreanu won three consecutive hands to almost pull even. By hand #108, Mr Negreanuhad re-seized the lead for the first time since early in the heads-up battle. Over the next dozen hands, the lead would flip-flop back and forth as the two played small ball.

Momentum swung back janik446's way after janik446 launched a counterattack to re-establish the lead. By hand #144, janik446 opened up a 3-1 advantage and Mr Negreanu was back on the ropes.

Just when it looked like Mr Negreanu was in deep trouble, on hand #147 Mr Negreanu doubled up with a King-high flush to level the playing field once again.

On Hand #165, janik446 scooped a 1M pot to chip up to over 2M while Negreanu slipped to under 400K. But whenever Mr Negreanu got super low, he rallied back. Like clockwork, Mr Negreanu embarked on a rush and won 10 out of the next 11 hands to get back into contention and eventually take a 1.3M to 1.1M lead.

At that juncture, janik446 decided enough was enough and he quickly gobbled up a 3-1 lead. A full boat propelled janik446 to nearly 2M in chips, which increased his edge to 4-1. With a comfortable lead secured, it would only take janik446 nine hands to finish off Mr Negreanu.

Mr Negreanu eliminated in 2nd place; janik446 ships Event #15 and wins WCOOP bracelet

On the 196th hand of heads-up, janik446 was ahead 2.2M to 160K. By fifth street, Mr Negreanu was all-in with (X-X)T♥9♣8♠ against janik446's (X-X)A♣4♥8♣. On the river, both players tabled their cards:

Mr Negreanu: K♥T♣T♥9♣8♠A♠4♠
janik446: Q♣K♣A♣4♥8♣A♥7♥

Without a qualifying low hand, janik446 won the pot with a pair of Aces versus a pair of tens.

Mr Negreanu went busto in second place. For a gutsy runner-up performance, Mr Negreanu collected $20,328.00.

Congrats to Germany's janik446 for winning WCOOP Event #15. First place pays out $27,588.00 in addition to a coveted WCOOP bracelet.

WCOOP-15: $320 Stud H/L
Entrants: 484
Prize Pool: $145,200.00
Places Paid: 64

1. janik446 (Germany) $27,588.00
2. Mr Negreanu (United Kingdom) $20,328.00
3. raidalot (United Kingdom) $14,897.52
4. torowe (Norway) $10,890.00
5. RZA4444 (Canada) $7,260.00
6. dfunks (Mexico) $5,082.00
7. Ibiza (Austria) $3,630.00
8. TeamWispy (Costa Rica) $2,904.00

For more information and a schedule of remaining events, visit the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) homepage.

Pauly McGuire is an author and freelance contributor to PokerStars Blog.

Pauly McGuire
@PokerStars in WCOOP