Event #9 of the PokerStars World Championship of Online Poker may not have been the biggest buy-in event, or the largest field, but it may very well have been the craziest first hour of any WCOOP event to date. With over 2,000 players in the field, a certain level of abandon was employed by most players, who pushed any draw, jammed any pair and generally went nutso on their way to building a $1.3 Million prize pool.
It took almost 16 hours to get to a final table, with the frenzy of the rebuy period wearing off long before that. The massive number of chips in play gave players a chance to play with deep stacks, and the nine players at the final table were sitting behind mountains of virtual chips, but with the blinds through the roof, there were still a few short stacks.
The chip stacks to begin the final table looked like this -
Seat 1: 777NMC (928843 in chips)
Seat 2: puffinmypurp (663306 in chips)
Seat 3: OlliPolli (1641930 in chips)
Seat 4: Qcity1 (1687738 in chips)
Seat 5: kiwid10 (3515871 in chips)
Seat 6: LUHMAN (6437978 in chips)
Seat 7: Blinda74 (1333840 in chips)
Seat 8: ruthan (3375954 in chips)
Seat 9: yojje (3404540 in chips)
Puffinmypurp was on the short stack as the blinds hit 30K/60K/6K, so when ruthan stuck out a standard raise, he shoved all in with pocket eights, only to get called by ruthan's Aces. No help for puffinmypurp, and he cashed in 9th place for $11,640.64.
After doubling up with Kings, 777NMS was still the short stack. Near the beginning of the 40K/80K/8K level, he open-shoved with A-10, only to find himself heads-up against LUHMAN's A-J. LUHMAN hit a Jack on the flop, and 777NMC didn't get any help on the turn or river to send him home in 8th ($19,445.16).
With play seven-handed, the remaining players had enough chips to actually play poker on more than one street, so the battle for first place began in earnest. With more than $220K separating 1st from 7th, it was money well worth playing for. OlliPolli was the next to fall when ruthan called OlliPolli's resteal. OlliPolli's A-7 was dominated by ruthan's A-Q, and OlliPolli was eliminated in 7th place for $31,350.36.
After a short break, the players returned to the final blind level of the event, 50K/100K/10K. Blinda74 decided those blinds were high enough, and shoved with A-8s. Kiwid10 called for the coin flip with 7-7, and hit a 7 on the flop to send Blinda74 to the rail in 6th ($44,578.36).
After eliminating Blinda74, Kiwid10 went on a tear, taking a monster pot from LUHMAN when he hit the nut flush on the flop to bust LUHMAN's A-J with . A few hands later, kiwid10 sent Qcity1 home in 5th by catching perfect on the turn and river to make two pair. Qcity1 picked up $59,129.16 for his 5th-place finish.
The final four quickly cut a deal that guaranteed the following prize money (based on chip counts) while leaving $66K for the winner.
All of the remaining players were locked up for a $100K+ payday, not bad for a day's work by anyone's reckoning. Kiwid10 was crippled by ruthan a few hands after the deal was made and he exited shortly afterwards, his $144,539 payday better than the advertised second-place finish, regardless of his 4th-place bust.
Yojje was out in third when he flopped trip aces against ruthan's gutshot. The board was A-A-10-3, and yojje held A-6 to ruthan's K-J. The Q on the river gave ruthan the Broadway straight and sent yojje home in third place.
Ruthan took a 2-1 chip lead into heads-up play, but LUHMAN quickly drew even by aggressive play. As so often happens with heads-up play, the battle turned on one hand, when all the chips went in the middle with ruthan holding K-K to LUHMAN's A-10. No ace for LUHMAN, and ruthan made Jacks full of Kings by the river to claim the bracelet and the bonus $66K for first place.
Here are the final table results and payouts -
1. ruthan (Sweden) $198,126.00
2. LUHMAN (United States) $109,241.00
3. yojje (Sweden) $107,109.00
4. kiwid10 (Sweden) $144,539.00
5. Qcity1 (United States) $59,129.16
6. Blinda74 (Sweden) $44,578.36
7. OlliPolli (Finland) $31,350.36
8. 777NMC (Brazil) $19,445.16
9. puffinmypurp (United States) $11,640.64