I know what you're thinking. "3x-Turbo? Has PokerStars completely lost their minds?" While I cannot speak directly to the mental faculties of the PokerStars tournament designers, I can tell you that a 3x-Turbo doesn't run three times faster than a regular turbo. Instead, it offers a rebuy period three times as long as a typical turbo tournament. Your run-of-the-mill turbo rebuy on Stars has a 30-minute late registration/rebuy period. This one gave players a full hour and a half to rebuy to their heart's content-- all the way up to Level 17, when a 3,000-chip single rebuy amounted to only one big blind. Couple that with 6-max PLO and you have a recipe for some serious action.
4,453 players wanted a taste of it and ended up making a staggering 24,589 rebuys at $10 a pop, while 1,921 of them threw in another ten-spot for a super-sized 30,000-chip add-on. $100,000 guarantee? Try a $309,630 prize pool that was set to pay out $47,221.15 to first place. More than a dozen Team PokerStars Pros decided to try their luck in Event #30, but Team Online's Shane "shaniac" Schleger was the only Red Spade to cash, finishing in 286th place.
The money bubble burst after two and a half hours of play and 75 minutes after that, seven players remained. With the blinds up to 1,000,000/2,000,000, the 12.44 million average stack represented only six and a half big blinds. A shove from jonyctt sent us to the final table, his 7♠7♣8♥9♠ falling to foyz555's K♥J♦J♥T♥ when a third jack hit the turn.
Final table chip counts:
Seat 1: driedubbel (27,559,220 in chips)
Seat 2: foyz555 (52,909,006 in chips)
Seat 3: Rounder63 (25,918,942 in chips)
Seat 4: sushini2 (18,236,248 in chips)
Seat 5: Tulkaz (11,092,726 in chips)
Seat 6: ok72 (9,039,858 in chips)
Six hands in, the final table's first elimination came in a three-way all-in. Ok72 open-shoved for his last 5.54 million, chip leader foyz555 three-bet to 8.07 million, and Tulkaz shoved for 10.1 million from the big blind. Foyz555 called the additional 2 million and the cards went on their backs.
Tulkaz kept his lead when he hit top set on the A♦T♠9♥ flop, while ok72 flopped top two pair and foyz555 picked up an open-ended straight draw. The set held up through the turn and river, the 5♠ and the 6♠ falling to give all 27.2 million in the pot to Tulkaz. Foyz555 took a small hit, but retained the chip lead and ok72 hit the rail in sixth place, earning $5,263.71.
Moments later, the final five agreed to discuss a deal. When the action was paused foyz555 was still in the lead with 35.3 million Rounder63 was right behind him with 33.4 million and driedubbel, Tulkaz, and sushini2 all sported stacks between 24 and 26 million. Within seconds of final table host Tyler "frosty012" Frost posting the chip count chop numbers, everyone agreed to the deal, leaving $2,000 in play for the eventual winner.
From there on out, it was nonstop all-ins. Driedubbel cracked foyz555's K♣K♠8♥4♠ with K♦Q♣Q♦4♣ when the board ran out J♣9♥3♦9♦2♦-- driedubbel catching a runner-runner flush. Driedubbel went on to pull the same move when Tulkaz got the rest of his chips in preflop. Despite holding similar hands-- Tulkaz turned over K♠Q♠J♥2♥ while driedubbel showed K♥Q♦J♦9♠, driedubbel caught running diamonds on the Q♣5♣2♦7♦4♦ board to send Tulkaz home in fifth place. His share of the five-way deal totaled $24,046.24.
That hand made driedubble the dominant chip leader with 69.8 million-- if you could call anything dominant with the blinds up this high. Over then next ten minutes the chip lead changed with nearly every hand and once the blinds rolled up to 2.5M/5M, no player held more than ten big blinds. Table short stack sushini2 decided to go for it after foyz555 opened for 17.5 million from under-the-gun. He called all-in for 6.16 million only to have driedubbel reraise to 50 million, setting foyz555 all-in. Foyz555 called off his remaining 18.3 million, and with more than half the chips in play in this pot, the cards were revealed.
Sushini2 hit bottom two pair on the 7♦5♦4♣ flop, snapping off driedubbel's aces for the 25.9M main pot. The 5♣ on the turn improved him further to a full house while driedubbel made aces up to lock up the 54.2M side pot. The river was the T♠ and foyz555 was eliminated in fourth place, while sushini2 tripled up.
Four hands later, sushini2 picked up A♣A♠9♠4♥ and opened for 17.5 million, driedubbel responding with a reraise to 57.5 million. Sushini2 called off his remaining 8.48 million, no doubt delighted to see driedubble's K♣K♠8♥4♠. Although sushini2 kept the lead on the T♣8♠7♦ flop, the K♦ spiked on the turn to make driedubbel top set. The river blanked out with the J♥ and sushini2's run came to an end in third place for a $23,192.04 payday.
Heads-up chip counts:
Seat 1: driedubbel (104,308,084 in chips)
Seat 3: Rounder63 (40,447,916 in chips)
Although driedubbel brought a 2.5 to 1 chip advantage into heads-up play, Rounder63 scored a double-up on the first hand. Driedubbel opened for 15 million holding J♣J♠7♠2♥, Rounder63 found A♦Q♠4♥3♥ and shoved for 40.44 million, and driedubbel made the call. Rounder63 flopped a queen, turned an ace, and rivered another queen to make a full house against driedubbel's queens and jacks to move into the chip lead with 80.9 million.
It was all over on the next hand, all the marbles going in preflop before Rounder63 turned the winning two pair:
Congratulations to Rounder63 for snagging the TCOOP title and the largest share of the prizepool at $30,459.69. For his runner-up finish, driedubbel earned $24,237.78.
TCOOP 2012 Event #30 ($11+R PLO 6-Max, 3x-Turbo) results:
1. Rounder63 (Mexico) $30,459.69*
2. driedubbel (Netherlands) $24,237.78*
3. sushini2 (Greece) $23,192.04*
4. foyz555 (United Kingdom) $29,548.10*
5. Tulkaz (Denmark) $24,046.24*
6. ok72 (Turkey) $5,263.71
*= reflects the results of a five-way deal that left an additional $2,000 for the winner
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