Usually on Sundays here at PokerStars the largest tournament is the $1,000,000 guarantee Sunday Million and tonight’s $1,457,800.00 prize pool there would once again reign as king of the Sunday Majors. The queen who gets up a little bit earlier than the king, the $500,000 guarantee Sunday Warm-Up, usually stands out as the second largest prize pool of the night. But, tonight was a special occasion as the prince, the Sunday Storm, was celebrating his first birthday party and decided to throw a celebration to the tune of offering a $1,000,000 guarantee. No prize fund help was needed for any of the royal court this evening as the Sunday Storm would could fill Estadio Azteca in Mexico and still have enough for a medium-size town outside when 136,444 showed to play.
Tonight’s Sunday Warm-Up would draw just a few players less than the Storm, but our crowd of 3,317 was more than enough to crush the guarantee for a $663,400.00 prize pool, setting aside $104,154.70 for the champ. The champ would not be from Team PokerStars this evening despite four members of Team PokerStars pro making the top 495 places for the cash. Hungarian Richard Toth find a small profit in 410th place ($325.06), as would WPT and WCOOP champ Eugene Katchalov who took home a little more in 397th place ($325.06). Liv Boeree was trying for her second Sunday Warm-Up title but came up short in 223rd place ($497.55). But, outlasting them all was no surprise as Vicky Coren scored her second straight cash in the Sunday Warm-Up with a deep run tonight that ended in 170th place ($663.40).
Most of the time once the tournament gets near the final table the eliminations slow down to a crawl, but not tonight. With the blinds at just 30K/60K ante 6K and two tables left we would lose harrisd11, zwacke (who has a Super Tuesday title under his belt), carlitto5, Dimmkp in very short order to whittle the population of the tourney down to 15.
capotinha,who final tabled a TCOOP event in January, would be forced out in 14th place as the blinds moved up to 40K/80K ante 8K and the players still enjoyed an average chip stack of over 30 big blinds. This was good for skipjack21 who went missing in action for several hands during the level but came back right before the ninth hourly break as Sananess’ big slick K♥ A♦ got upended by luciodog’s K♥ Q♦ after the two took a king-high flop Q♥ 5♣ K♦ 6♦ 9♣ and got 7.1 million chips into the middle after the turn giving luciodog the chip lead.
S4M1(u)R’s pocket jacks J♥ J♣ would get out flipped up Mounty15’s K♥ Q♣ when a king found its way to the river 8♠ 3♣ 2♥ A♣ K♦ as the first causality of the 50K/100K ante 10K level. The second would come from the hand of sleepy skipjack21 would woke up to pocket nines 9♠ 9♣ and called the 1.8 million chip shove from goshdarnw. The golly jee whiz polite goshdarnw’s pocket sixes 6♥ 6♦ never had a chance on the J♣ 3♦ 4♥ 4♠ 8♥ board earning $3,980.40 in 11th place as hand-for-hand play would begin just before the increase in blinds to 65K/130K ante 13K.
wonderdog78 held a not-so-wonderful 1.04 million chip stack and tried to pick up the blinds from the hijack with a shove holding A♠ 6♥ as MilanRabsz made sure no one followed by re-shoving from the cutoff for 3.2 million with queens Q♦ Q♥ . Everyone abandoned ship and while no ace showed up, the three spades by the turn plus the six on the flop 6♠ 7♣ 9♠ 10♠ would make the river interesting. However, the king K♦ did not complete the flush as wonderdog78 was retired on the bubble in tenth place starting up the final table below:
Seat 1: Mounty15 (2809240 in chips)
Seat 2: bananajoe42 (1284798 in chips)
Seat 3: BatiaZ777 (2669727 in chips)
Seat 4: sosickPL (3443751 in chips)
Seat 5: caaaaamel (2215404 in chips)
Seat 6: MilanRabsz (4557901 in chips)
Seat 7: skipjack21 (3236782 in chips)
Seat 8: luciodog (8565369 in chips)
Seat 9: thomber26 (4387028 in chips)
Team Online’s Kevin “WizardOfAhhs” Thurman would welcome everyone to table and never misses a chance to make the players feel welcome as they fight for the big bucks.
luciodog would take a strong chip lead into the final table and did not take much time before taking down the first big pot. With the blinds still at 65K/130K ante 13K luciodog would min raise from the cutoff as bananajoe42 tried to pressure with a shove for 1.5 million with big slick A♠ K♦ . Plenty of chips to take a shot, the chip leader made the call with pocket fours 4♠ 4♣ and it proved to be the right one as the 5♥ 8♠ 10♠ 2♥ 4♥ board favored luciodog and bananajoe42 would take home $5,307.20 in ninth place.
“you guys in a hurry to leave now? droppin like flies” “savor the flavor a bit, c’mon!” as Thurman watched our eighth and seventh place players named back-to-back thanks to sosickPL.
With the blinds raised to 80K/160K ante 16K thomber26 would run into a predicament, watch below as sosickPL was starting to get warmed-up in the Warm-Up:
thomber26 would open shove from the cutoff with J♠ A♣ as sosickPL quickly called from the blinds holding pocket queens Q♠ Q♥ . Despite a jack on the door J♥ K♣ 3♥ 3♠ 2♦ thomber26, a TCOOP champ after taking down Event #22, was thumped in eighth place ($8,292.50).
On the very next hand, Mounty15 was able to open shove from the button for 2.4 million chips. But, sosickPL was sitting in the big blind now with over six million in chips and a king-jack J♠ K♦ to make the call. Mounty15’s pocket fives 5♠ 5♥ never had a chance as a jack came off on the door card J♦ 4♥ Q♠ 2♥ 9♥ ending the night in seventh place ($14,926.50). sosickPL would also take down the next two hand to push luciodog for the chip lead as both held over nine million chips as the rest of field looked like they were fighting for third place with no one over five million.
Two small stacks make a medium stack
As the blinds moved up to 100K/200K ante 20K and just before the tenth hourly break, caaaamel would open shove from the button with pocket fours 4♥ 4♦ . But, another short stack, skipjack21, would be sitting in big blind with just 61K less in chips making the call with pocket sixes 6♥ 6♠ . 10♣ 9♦ 5♦ 7♣ 2♠ would not turn things around for caaaamel. The next hand luciodog would claim the scraps as caaaamel took home $21,560.50 in sixth place.
Two more players catch the illness sosickPL is passing along
A back-to-back knockout by sosickPL? We have seen this before and we would see it again. The blinds would hold at 100K/200K ante 20K and sosickPL would politely but firmly decline a possible chop as skipjack21 min-raised out of the cutoff. sosickPL in the big blind made it 1.09 million as skipack21, holding 5.7 million chips, would shove holding pocket nines 9♦ 9♠ . Big slick A♥ K♦ was the choice of weapon and it proved to be a big enough mace to crush those nines after two kings came out on the flop K♣ 7♥ K♠ 3♠ 5♠ to take down the 11.6 million chip pot and eliminate skipjack21 in fifth place ($28,194.50).
On the next hand it was sosickPL’s turn to lead out with a min-raise, this time from the small blind as MilanRabsz took offense from the big blind and shoved for 3.8 million. sosickPL holding A♦ J♠ made the call as MilanRabsz was only able to produce a smaller ace A♥ 8♦ . The smaller ace was only problem until an eight showed up on the flop 8♠ 9♣ A♠ . 6♣ on the turn and MilanRabsz’s tournament life was looking to improve with the 7.7 million chip pot. But, a cruel 9♥ on the river would counterfeit MilanRabsz’s two pair as sosickPL’s stack jumped to over 20 million in chips and MilanRabsz’s bankroll would get a $38,145.50 infusion in fourth place.
“They don’t pay me to think, might hurt myself otherwise” quipped Thurman as three-handed play would safely cross the 125K/250K ante 25K and 150K/300K ante 30K levels as the stack sizes evened out a bit. The three players decided to slow down a bit and discuss a possible chop as Thurman helped out once again as the computers came up with the numbers he said they would be “somewhere between $1 and $100,000“.
sosickPL wanted too much for BatiaZ777’s liking and the cards went back into the air.
But, just before the 11th hourly break hit, most of the chips would slide to sosickPL’s stack, especially after doubling up against BatiaZ777 for a 22 million chip pot when he found pocket aces against BatiaZ777’s pocket tens.
Sent to the pound
sosickPL seems to be coming out ahead of all the big pots tonight and this one would be no different. With the blinds at 200K/400K ante 40K luciodog would shove for 4.5 million from the button as sosickPL’s middle ace A♣ 7♦ was enough to call from the big blind. Q♣ K♣ for luciodog would to connect with the board but no clubs and nothing over a nine 7♠ 4♥ 5♥ 5♦ 9♠ would appear ending luciodog’s run in third place ($54,730.50).
Last week heads-up play would last exactly one hand. sosickPL holding 28.2 million to BatiaZ777’s 4.9 million and the conditions were ripe for a repeat despite no chop in place and a $27K difference between first and second. Tonight heads-up play would last two hands which you the viewer get to react to with your best “ewwwww that’s so sick” face:
Applying big stack pressure, sosickPL would shove from the button only to get an insta-call from BatiaZ777 who found pocket jacks J♥ J♠ . sosickPL rolled over 5♠ 10♦ and watch as the board complied with all medium-sized cards to line up a straight 9♦ 7♥ 3♥ 6♥ 8♣ and win the tournament outright for $104,154.70! The Polish player can now put a Sunday Major win next to the WCOOP bracelet won last year after taking down Event #32.
$500,000 guarantee Sunday Warm-Up results (04-15-12):
1. sosickPL (Poland) $104,154.70
2. BatiaZ777 (Israel) $77,617.80
3. luciodog (United Kingdom) $54,730.50
4. MilanRabsz (Poland) $38,145.50
5. skipjack21 (Germany) $28,194.50
6. caaaaamel (Germany) $21,560.50
7. Mounty15 (Sweden) $14,926.50
8. thomber26 (Norway) $8,292.50
9. bananajoe42 (Switzerland) $5,307.20