WCOOP 2015: David "Mrdawwe" Sonelin seizes the day in Event #53, $2,100 NLHE (Super Tuesday SE)

This week's WCOOP Super Tuesday Special Edition had a huge prize pool, a final table lineup full of regulars with past success battling for hours, savvy dealmaking, and a 139-hand heads-up duel between two past WCOOP finalists. You probably couldn't do much better than WCOOP 2015's Event #53 if you were ever somehow tasked with putting together an epic WCOOP final table under the one condition that you couldn't populate it with names that TV watchers would know well. Perhaps that's a statement that's up for debate, but new WCOOP champion David "Mrdawwe" Sonelin will surely agree that the tournament's final result was right on the money.

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WCOOP 2015 Event #53 champ David "Mrdawwe" Sonelin

This special edition featured a $2,100 buy-in and a $1.5 million guaranteed prize pool. Even at twice the normal price, that enticed a field of 1,062 players, about double the turnout for most Super Tuesdays, to turn up. Together they built a $2,124,000 prize pool to be split among the top 126 finishers. Day 1 wrapped up after 30 levels of play with most of those players having already claimed their payouts, including Team Pro Jason "jcarverpoker" Somerville, who finished 85th for $4,672.80.

Leading the way overnight was SCOOP 2013 & 2014, WCOOP 2014, and Sunday Million finalist Cesar "Ce$ar$pa" Garcia with 658,784 chips. That was good for a bit more than 100 big blinds on the 3,200/6,400/800 level, enough of a cushion to carry Garcia to the final table in third place. Three other players from the Day 1 Top 10 - Mrdawwe, gifted08, and Barrrii - would also go on to the final. So would two of the three smallest stacks: Israel's dodavi started Day 2 36th of 38 and scraped into the final table as the short stack, while MicroMillions III winner Amit "bblacklegend" Jain went from 35th of 38 to second of nine:

Together with a lineup of other players with past appearances in major PokerStars tourneys, they would play four and a half hours of poker en route to Sonelin's victory.

Seat 1: Anjeyyy (2,562,509 in chips)
Seat 2: Rui "sousinha23" Sousa (753,129 in chips)
Seat 3: fishbones11 (1,228,342 in chips)
Seat 4: gifted08 (1,003,794 in chips)
Seat 5: Cesar "Ce$ar$pa" Garcia (1,727,627 in chips)
Seat 6: Barrrii (325,360 in chips)
Seat 7: dodavi (265,281 in chips)
Seat 8: Amit "bblacklegend" Jain (1,945,964 in chips)
Seat 9: David "Mrdawwe" Sonelin (807,994 in chips)

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Though Ce$ar$pa came in third in chips, he would end up being the first player to collect a final table payout. He took a 500K-chip hit early on in a blind-versus-blind hand where 2014 SCOOP finalist Barrrii flopped a set of sixes, called bets on the flop and turn, and then bet small for value on the river. That still left 1.3M chips for Ce$ar$pa to work with, but then next orbit's small blind started with a three-bet of gifted08's button raise. It ended with a bet and fold to gifted08's re-raise, dropping Ce$ar$pa's stack to 901K.

After bluffing off a few more chips in the big blind the orbit after that, stabbing at a pot on the river against fishbones11, Ce$ar$pa had 682K left. A few hands later he picked up A♣ K♠ and wound up four-betting all-in after opening for 77K and having Mrdawwe re-raise to 175K in the small blind. Mrdawwe called with J♣ J♠, the pair held on the Q♦ T♦ 2♠ 9♠ 7♠ board, and Cesar Garcia's day ended in 9th place ($25,488).

One orbit later, short-stacked dodavi, a Sunday Million finalist back in January, picked up J♦ J♠ and outran Rui "sousinha23" Sousa's straight draw with Q♥ J♥ for the double to 422K. Another nine hands went by before dodavi picked up Q♦ Q♥ and doubled up again, this time to 748K through fishbones11's A♠ Q♣.

sousinha23, a past Sunday Warm-Up and SCOOP 2014 finalist who hadn't won a pot in 20 hands since the loss to dodavi, eventually picked up A♠ Q♥ and moved in for 287K after Mrdawwe opened for barely more than a minimum raise to 88K. Mrdawwe folded, but only after gifted08 had already called 9♣ 9♦. A full house on the 9♥ J♦ J♠ flop left sousinha23 in need of running aces or queens for a bigger boat, but the 2♣ and 4♦ came instead and sousinha23 left in 8th place ($42,480).

dodavi's magic streak continued with a double in the next orbit, to 980K with A♦ 8♥ against Mrdawwe's A♣ 2♥. That left Mrdawwe with a slim lead over bblacklegend, 2.26M to 2.14M, but on the next hand bblacklegend defended the big blind with A♦ 7♥, made top pair on the A♠ 6♣ 2♦, and called down Anjeyyy's bets to win a 1M-chip pot and take the lead with 2.72M.

gifted08 was able to close in on that territory and stake a claim to third place three hands later after being dealt A♦ A♥ under the gun, having fishbones11 call in the big blind with A♣ J♥, and watching the flop come jack-high. fishbones11 was all-in by the turn and drawing to the last two jacks in the deck, but the 5♣ on the river gave gifted08 the 1.95M-chip pot and left fishbones11 with a stack worth slightly more than one ante. After being forced all-in on the next hand with 7♠ 3♣, fishbones11 departed in 7th place ($63,720).

dodavi had been hanging on by a thread throughout Day 2, but it finally snapped with the tournament six-handed. The Israeli player opened the hand with a 675K-chip stack and raised to 90K in the cutoff with Q♥ J♦. Anjeyyy called in the big blind with K♣ Q♣ and then check-called dodavi's all-in bet as an 86-percent favorite to win the hand. That improved to 100 percent when the T♦ turn and T♣ river came down, and dodavi's magic ride ended in 6th place ($84,960).

No deal

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With blinds and antes now at 22,500/45,000/5,625, there wasn't a lot of separation between the five remaining players:

Seat 1: Anjeyyy (1,819,470 in chips)
Seat 4: gifted08 (1,847,322 in chips)
Seat 6: Barrrii (1,930,536 in chips)
Seat 8: bblacklegend (2,469,499 in chips)
Seat 9: Mrdawwe (2,553,173 in chips)

Talk of a potential deal came up. After 15 minutes play resumed, though, as Mrdawwe wanted the chip chop numbers ("i like my situation here") and nobody else was willing to stray from ICM.

Within minutes Mrdawwe would actually be the first player to survive an all-in situation, having folded on the river when gifted08 raised all-in with a potential flush on the board and then doubled back to 2.63M on the next hand with A♦ Q♦ against Barrrii's 9♦ 9♣. Losing that coin flip left Barrrii with only 118K, all of which went in the middle in a four-way pot two hands later. Mrdawwe won that one, showing down K♥ T♠ for a pair of kings on the 2♠ J♥ K♦ 5♦ Q♣ board, and Barrrii mucked, leaving in 5th place ($107,049.60).

Deal talk came up again but Mrdawwe, back in the lead with 3.49M chips, wasn't interested. A combination of consistent aggression with the bigger stack and hitting a few hands just good enough to win when a bigger pot developed had Mrdawwe up to 4.59M while all three other players were sitting between 1.91M and 2.07M. That eventually became 5.6M without the rest of the table improving, which is where it was when gifted08 moved all-in for 720K on the button. Mrdawwe called with A♠ K♦, which dominated gifted08's K♠ 2♠, and when neither hand improved, gifted08's day concluded in 4th place ($153,990).

Mrdawwe's streak continued seven hands later after bblacklegend opened for 120K on the button. Mrdawwe re-raised to 286K in the small blind with 8♥ 8♠ and then called when bblacklegend jammed for 1.91M on a bluff with 9♦ 7♠. Three nines and a few backdoor draws were all bblacklegend had on the 5♦ 4♦ T♣ flop, and the draws dried up on the A♥ turn. The 6♠ hit the river, and bblacklegend hit the rail in 3rd place ($206,028).

Long-time player, first-time WCOOP winner

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Seat 1: Anjeyyy (2,395,582 in chips)
Seat 9: Mrdawwe (8,224,418 in chips)

It had already been nearly three and a half hours since the beginning of the final table when Mrdawwe's and Anjeyyy's heads-up match began. Both players had previously made WCOOP final tables without winning a title - Mrdawwe took 5th in WCOOP 2014 Event #40, and Anjeyyy was a finalist in WCOOP 2013 Event #45 - but only one could earn the bracelet today.

The leader applied pressure consistently but lost a chance to seal up first place early when Anjeyyy's K♠ Q♥ rivered a king-high straight to beat Mrdawwe's A♣ 8♠. Another double-up 10 minutes later with T♠ T♦ against Mrdawwe's A♥ J♦ gave Anjeyyy 4.33M, and when the Ukrainian player suggested looking at a deal, Mrdawwe was game. Within seven minutes they had struck one, leaving $30,000 on the table for the winner, and play resumed with Mrdawwe still in the lead.

Anjeyyy actually managed to take the lead for a short while after that, thanks to a series of smaller pots over a stretch, but then Mrdawwe picked up 8♣ 8♥ on the button, bet all three streets for value, and took a 3.07M-chip pot at showdown with the board reading 5♠ 3♦ 7♠ 3♣ J♦.

The match went on another 15 minutes after that and the pattern of mostly small pots continued to play out until a surprise ending. The 139th and final hand of heads-up play saw Mrdawwe open for 160K on the button and call Anjeyyy's re-raise to 440K to see the A♦ 2♥ Q♥ flop. Anjeyyy led out for 350K there, 880K on the K♦ turn, and all-in for 2.54M on the 6♣ river, and Mrdawwe called every bet without too much hesitation. Anjeyyy had been barreling with J♠ 2♦ for a lowly pair of twos the whole way, and Mrdawwe ended the proceedings four hours and 29 minutes after the final table had begun by showing A♥ 4♥ for a pair of aces.

Anjeyyy's runner-up share of the deal came to $309,744.85. With the winner's $30K, David "Mrdawwe" Sonelin earned a total of $348,695.15. Congratulations to both players on their hard-earned paydays!

WCOOP 2015: Event #53, $2,100 No-Limit Hold'em (Super Tuesday SE)
Entrants: 1,062
Prize pool: $2,124,000
Places paid: 126
1. David "Mrdawwe" Sonelin (Sweden) $348,695.15*
2. Anjeyyy (Ukraine) $309,744.85*
3. Amit "bblacklegend" Jain (India) $206,028
4. gifted08 (United Kingdom) $153,990
5. Barrrii (Belgium) $107,049.60
6. dodavi (Israel) $84,960
7. fishbones11 (Canada) $63,720
8. Rui "sousinha23" Sousa (Hungary) $42,480
9. Cesar "Ce$ar$pa" Garcia (United Kingdom) $25,488
* - denotes results of a heads-up deal

Jason Kirk is a freelance contributor to PokerStars Blog.

Jason Kirk
@PokerStarsBlog in WCOOP