This week's Super Tuesday saw the turnout once again exceed the 500-player mark as 514 took part in PokerStars' weekly $1,050 no-limit hold'em tournament, thus building a $514,000 prize pool and easily crushing the $300K guarantee. Even with that large field, however, the tourney was decided in relatively quick fashion as tarantula535 of Romania was able to claim the win and first prize of $97,660 in less than 10 hours.
By the time they'd played about half that length of time and reached the five-hour break, just 70 players were left. Among the remaining players then was Team PokerStars Pro Johnny Lodden, who not long before had knocked out the only other red spade left in the counts -- Challenger Winner Stavros "IDOLLS" Kalfas -- in 78th place when a short-stacked Kalfas's A♦J♥ failed to improve versus Lodden's 9♣9♦.
Alas for Lodden, it was soon after play resumed that he'd get his stack of 35,000-plus in the middle (just under 30 big blinds) with A♥A♠ versus a.S.e High's J♥J♠, then watch the board roll out T♥9♠J♣T♣K♦ to give his opponent a full house and send the Norwegian out just two spots shy of the cash in 65th place.
It took a little while longer before gosuoposum1 fell in 64th in a three-way hand won by Johan "busto_soon" Van Til, and they were in the money.
After another two hours of poker the field had been carved down to 18. Among those cashing along the way were Rui "RuiNF" Ferreira (62nd, $2,261.60), David "MyBrimLow" Ivers (55th, $2,261.60), Bryan "bparis" Paris (47th, $2,414.80), Daniel "DazzleO" Ospina (46th, $2,415.80), Ami "UhhMee" Barer (45th, $2,570), Bjorn "kleath" Kleathersson (36th, $2,827), Grayson "gray31" Ramage (30th, $2,827), Paul "padjes" Berende (27th, $3,084), and Danny "KrazyKiddo" Bass (23rd, $3,084).
By then a.S.e High had risen up the counts to assume the top spot with more than 280,000. Then an hour-and-a-half after that they were down to nine, with tarantula535 having crawled to the top of the leaderboard by building a stack of more than 500,000.
A payout of $4,112 went to Tom "hitthehole" Middleton (18th), Frederik "Fred_Brink" Brink (17th), and Damián "pampa27" Salas (16th). NhPokah (15th), caicu (14th), and madhattersho (13th) followed them railward, each earning $5,140. chardychard -- who just finished third in the Sunday Million two days ago -- went out next in 12th, followed by Ssergeysedoy (11th) and ActionFreak (10th), with those three each picking up $6,168 for their finishes.
The final table was set.
Seat 1: tarantula535 (Romania) -- 517,388
Seat 2: KongenavU (Norway) -- 222,766
Seat 3: GrumpyNacho (Uruguay) -- 151,050
Seat 4: happyfister (Germany) -- 281,214
Seat 5: Mcpay18 (Germany) -- 165,783
Seat 6: a.S.e High (Romania) -- 473,490
Seat 7: Johan "busto_soon" Van Til (Netherlands) -- 139,448
Seat 8: David "d.quang" Quang (Canada) -- 439,545
Seat 9: Rafael "zugzwang16" Porzecanski (Uruguay) -- 179,316
Not long after the final table began, David "d.quang" Quang opened with a 2x raise to 14,400 from under the gun, then it folded around to Johan "busto_soon" Van Til in the big blind who shoved for 140,148 total and Quang called.
Van Til had 5♣5♥ and was hoping the pair would hold versus Quang's A♦K♥. The fives remained best through the 6♦9♥Q♣ flop, but the A♥ fell on the turn to give d.quang a better pair. The river was the 3♦, and busto_soon was out in ninth.
Soon the nine-hour break came and went, and a few minutes later the blinds were 4,000/8,000 when Quang opened for 16,000 from the cutoff seat. Rafael "zugzwang16" Porzecanski reraised to 37,777 from the button, and when the blinds got out d.quang shoved all in over the top and Porzecanski called with the 189,138 behind.
zugzwang16 had the preflop edge with A♦K♥ versus d.quang's A♣T♠, but the 8♦T♦T♥ flop swiftly swung the advantage to d.quang. The Q♦ on the turn gave Porzecanski a shot at a winning straight, but the river was the 4♣ and zugzwang16 was eliminated in eighth.
They played on for a few more minutes, then suddenly three eliminations came on three successive hands.
First a short-stacked GrumpyNacho open pushed from early position with 9♦7♥ for 18,718 (just a little over two big blinds) and got a single caller in tarantula535 sitting in the big blind with J♦4♦. The board ran out 3♥3♠J♠4♣A♠, and GrumpyNacho was done in seventh.
The next hand saw a.S.e High min-raising to 16,000 from the cutoff, David "d.quang" Quang making it 35,200 from the button, then a.S.e High calling. The flop came 9♠3♥K♦, and a.S.e High check-called a bet of 31,111 from Quang. The turn then brought the 8♠, and a.S.e High checked again. This time d.quang bet 112,222, and when a.S.e High check-raised all in for 242,403, d.quang called.
a.S.e High had Q♥9♥ for nines, but d.quang had K♠6♠ for kings, and after fifth street brought the 4♦, a.S.e High's run had ended in sixth.
Then on the hand after that one it was Mcpay18 raising 3x to 24,000 from UTG, Quang reraising to 48,000 from a seat over, then the table folding back to Mcpay18 who shoved for 197,966 and Quang called. Mcpay18 had picked up A♣K♥, but unfortunately had run into d.quang's A♦A♠, and after the five community cards came 2♣6♥3♠Q♦Q♥, Mcpay18 was knocked out in fifth.
That flurry left Quang the new leader with over 1.27 million, with tarantula635 next with about 751,000, KongenavU third with just over 312,000, and happyfister fourth with a little less than 230,000.
The four players battled for another 10 minutes, then with the blinds up to 4,500/9,000 a hand arose in which tarantula535 raised to 18,000 from the small blind and KongenavU called from the BB. The flop came 4♣6♥K♦, and when tarantula535 led for 27,000 KongenavU called. The turn then brought the 3♠ and a check from tarantula535. KongenavU took that as an invitation to bet 45,000, then tarantula535 check-raised to 99,000 and KongenavU called.
The river was the T♦, and this time tarantula535 bet 99,000 and KongenavU called with the 87,090 left. KongenavU had flopped top pair with K♥9♣, but tarantula535 had two pair with K♦6♥ and KongenavU hit the rail in fourth.
Three-handed play would last almost half an hour, with tarantula535 assuming the lead during that period. Then with the blinds at 6,000/12,000 it was happyfister opening for 25,200 from the button, David "d.quang" Quang reraising to 60,000 from the small blind, then tarantula535 four-betting to 288,000 from the big blind. happyfister stepped aside, but Quang pushed all in for 394,663 total and tarantula535 called.
The flop came 8♣T♠J♥ to give Quang an open-ended straight draw, then the 2♠ fell on fourth street. The river then brought the Q♠, pairing Quang but filling a Broadway straight for tarantula535, and they were down to two.
Heads-up play began with tarantula535 enjoying about a 3-to-1 chip lead over happyfister with 1,923,615 to the latter's 646,385. They played one small hand, then as they were still wishing each other "gl" it was happyfister raising 2x to 24,000 from the button, tarantula535 reraising to 60,000, and happyfister calling.
The flop came T♣T♦3♠ and tarantula535 led for 84,000, with happyfister calling. The turn was the A♣, and again tarantula535 bet -- 144,000 this time -- and once more happyfister called.
The river brought the 5♣. tarantula535 fired yet again, this time for 360,000, and happyfister called one last time, leaving but 4,385 chips behind. tarantula535 then turned over Q♣9♣ for a backdoor club flush, and happyfister mucked.
Down to less than a small blind, happyfister was all in automatically on the next hand with 8♠5♦ versus tarantula535's A♠9♥. The board rolled out T♠7♥Q♠4♥K♣, improving neither player, and tarantula535's ace was good enough to win the tourney's final hand and first prize.
Congratulations to tarantula535 for making relatively short work of another large Super Tuesday field to capture a $97,660 payday!
6/11/13 Super Tuesday ($1,050 No-Limit Hold'em) results
Total prize pool: $514,000.00
Places paid: 63
1. tarantula535 (Romania) $97,660.00
2. happyfister (Germany) $71,960.00
3. David "d.quang" Quang (Canada) $52,685.00
4. KongenavU (Norway) $40,092.00
5. Mcpay18 (Germany) $28,270.00
6. a.S.e High (Romania) $21,845.00
7. GrumpyNacho (Uruguay) $16,705.00
8. Rafael "zugzwang16" Porzecanski (Uruguay) $16,705.00
9. Johan "busto_soon" Van Til (Netherlands) $8,532.40
The 100,000,000,000th hand is just about to happen on PokerStars. Read all about how the site is celebrating the milestone here.
Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.