It was a two-day event that began on Sunday, September 16. After 22 levels and a very full day of poker, only 176 out of the 3,268-starting field remained, and they were given a little over 11 hours to recuperate, rest, and return to the WCOOP tables.
Event 28 began with the aforementioned 3,268 players who came together for the $1,050 NLHE action. The $3 million guarantee was surpassed by the eventual $3,268,000 prize pool, and that number produced some exciting news - a first prize of $513,076 and the top six finishers to receive six-figure payouts. Impressive, if we do say so.
Team PokerStars Pros were out in force for the event, though most fell early in Day 1. Vicky Coren and JC Alvarado just missed the money, but several cashed, like Marcel Luske (461st), Jason Mercier (441st), Maria "Maridu" Mayrinck (434th), and Darus Suharto (275th). But it was Ylon Schwartz carrying the torch for the team as the tournament headed towards the end of its first day, though his short stack finally got the best of him, and he was eliminated by mazvinsm in 186th place.
At the end of the night, it was padjes with the overall chip lead, which he took over by doubling through James "Andy "McLEOD" Obst late in the evening. Obst fell out of the top ten, while keufcoen sat comfortably in the second spot on the leaderboard. Third place was held by donnysack, and the top five was rounded out with Adolfina2 in fourth and reilly11014 in fifth.
That brought us to Monday, which began with Level 23 (2,500/5,000 blinds, 625 ante). The 176 remaining players were back in action.
As the tournament progressed, a number of recognizable names were eliminated, including Steve "muggilicious" Sung in 78th place, James "Andy McLEOD" Obst in 50th, Jeff "yellowsub86" Williams in 31st, and Steve "stevesbets" Jacobs in 28th. Also, four of the top five from the Day 1 chip count list exited - keufcoen in 81st place, donnysack in 59th, Adolfina2 in 48th, and padjes in 45th.
With three tables in play, two players - kefelnikovz and Visionary129 - leapt over the 6 million-chip mark, leaving a distance of more than 3 million between their stacks and those of others still in the game. Soon, reilly11014, who finished Day 1 in fifth place, jumped up to the top spot, and there were then three dominating chip leaders.
Many hours passed before the final table was actually in sight. Visionary129 and reilly11014 stayed at the top of the leader board, but out of seemingly nowhere came GAKingChaser. With a series of hands, including the one below, he jumped into the top spot.
A few hands later, as GAKingChaser and reilly11014 dominated the leaderboard, the final table bubble was broken when Likey, who had only 922,510 chips to start the hand, pushed all-in preflop with K♥ 6♠. Ginsash called from the big blind with A♣ 8♦. The board came J♦ T♥ T♦ 2♠ 7♥, and Likey was gone in tenth place with $19,608.
And the final table was finally set as follows:
Seat 1: Unsyatisfied (4,687,578 in chips)
Seat 2: GAKingChaser (10,080,753 in chips)
Seat 3: Ginsash (3,467,455 in chips)
Seat 4: runslikerubs (4,811,600 in chips)
Seat 5: reilly11014 (11,274,625 in chips)
Seat 6: johnnyv5000 (3,229,258 in chips)
Seat 7: goin4br0ke (4,709,336 in chips)
Seat 8: Visionary129 (5,695,603 in chips)
Seat 9: thepractice (1,063,792 in chips)
On the fourth hand of the action, Unsyatisfied doubled through reilly11014. Play slowed a bit after that hand, and though the big stacks seemed willing to move their chips around, others were not so anxious.
One of the shorter stacks at the table finally decided to move. Ginsash pushed all-in preflop with pocket jacks, and Visionary129 was there with A♠ K♣. The race was on until the flop brought a king. The entire board showed 7♣ K♦ 7♥ 6♣ 9♥, and Ginsash was shown the virtual exit with $26,144 for making it to the final table.
Struggling with a short stack for hours, thepractice finally saw the need to move with only 841,292 chips remaining. The all-in came with K♣ T♥, but runslikerubs was able to call with pocket queens from the small blind. Both watched as the cards came 4♦ 3♣ 6♥ 2♣ 9♣, allowing the queens to hold up and eliminating thepractice from the tournament in eighth place with $40,850.
The next to move the short stack was johnnyv5000, who doubled through Visionary129 on his first attempt. The second time was not so positive for the in-danger player as his pocket queens were met by the pocket kings of Visionary129. The board blanked with 2♠ 8♥ 6♥ T♦ 4♣, and johnnyv5000 was out in seventh place with $73,530.
As tournament host and Team PokerStars Pro Nuno Coelho noted in the chat box to the players, the last six remaining were all guaranteed at least $100K. For two days' work, a sweet reward.
The next big hand that went down started with runslikerubs and goin4br0ke seeing a 3♣ T♦ A♣ flop, after which runslikerubs bet, goin4br0ke check-raised, and runslikerubs retaliated with an all-in reraise. goin4br0ke called all-in for his tournament life with 8♣ 6♣ and the flush draw, but runslikerubs turned over A♥ 3♥ for two pair. The 5X♠ on the turn changed nothing, nor did the J♠ on the river, and goin4br0ke was gone in sixth place with $106,210.
Another player experiencing a rough road toward the end of the tournament was runslikerubs. One of the more vocal players at the table, the tough beats started to come his way. Unsyatisfied doubled through runslikerubs, and though he was able to come back with a double-up of his own through Visionary129, reilly11014 doubled through runslikerubs to put him in a position of wanting to move. He did it preflop with A♠ 8♠, but Visionary129 called with A♣ T♥, and the cards fell 3♥ 6♣ 5♠ T♦ 9♠. runslikerubs was eliminated in fifth place with $138,890.
Very soon after, reilly11014 got into a preflop raising war with Visionary129 that resulted in Visionary129 putting his opponent to the test with an all-in move. reilly11014 called all-in for his tournament with A♠ 4♠, and Visionary129 showed pocket threes. Off to the races, the board came 8♠ Q♣ T♥ J♠ Q♥, and the pocket pair held up to send reilly11014 out in fourth place, which was worth a substantial $187,910.
With only three players remaining, Visionary129 was running away with the chip lead. His stack of more than 29 million chips was more than both of his opponents' stacks put together. When the host chimed in with the fact that the next eliminated player would receive nearly $270K, short-stacked Unsyatisfied quickly responded, "and it aint gonna be me." Within minutes, Unsyatisfied had the chance to prove the truth in that statement:
The dynamic of the table changed further a few hands later when GAKingChaser took his pocket aces into battle with the pocket kings of Visionary129, and the aces held up to double GAKingChaser to nearly 20 million chips, while Visionary129 lost the chip lead for the first time in many rounds. Further, Visionary129 gained a few chips but went into battle with GAKingChaser again, this time with pocket queens on a 6♦ T♦ T♣ flop, but GAKingChaser had pocket sixes for the flopped full house. That left Visionary129 with little more than 1.3 million chips.
Visionary129 put the rest of his chips all-in a few hands later with Q♠ 5♠, but Unsyatisfied woke up with pocket kings. The board brought 8♦ 3♣ A♥ A♠ T♣ to eliminate Visionary129 in third place with $269,610.
Heads-up action then began with the following counts:
Seat 1: Unsyatisfied (21,799,576 in chips)
Seat 2: GAKingChaser (27,220,424 in chips)
Almost immediately, the two decided to pause the tournament to take a look at chip-chop numbers. Ultimately, however, they decided to play on instead of agreeing to any deal, so play resumed.
The first 30 to 45 minutes of heads-up consisted of GAKingChaser maintaining the lead, even extending it to nearly 2-to-1 over his opponent. But the following hand changed everything:
Quads over the full house gave Unsyatisfied the lead after some tough moments in the final battle. GAKingChaser tried but could never seem to come close to regaining his lead.
The match lasted over an hour, and though in the last minutes the duo tried to work out a financial arrangement in the chat box without pausing the tournament, no agreement was reached, and it ultimately came down to one last hand of the night/morning.
Unsyatisfied put his opponent to the test with an all-in move preflop after a series of raises between the two. GAKingChaser called all-in with pocket nines, but Unsyatisfied happened to be holding pocket jacks. The board came J♥ 3♠ 8♦ K♦ A♦, and GAKing Chaser had to settle for a second place finish and the $382,356 that went with it.
Unsyatisfied became the Event 28 champion, which came with a WCOOP bracelet and impressive $513,076 prize. Congratulations on a hard-fought victory!
2009 WCOOP Event 28 Results:
1st place: Unsyatisfied ($513,076.00)
2nd place: GAKingchaser ($382,356.00)
3rd place: Visionary129 ($269,610.00)
4th place: reilly11014 ($187,910.00)
5th place: runslikerubs ($138,890.00)
6th place: goin4br0ke ($106,210.00)
7th place: johnnyv5000 ($73,530.00)
8th place: thepractice ($40,850.00)
9th place: Ginsash ($26,144.00)
Watch WCOOP 2009: Event 28 - $1,050 NL Hold'em [2-Day] on PokerStars.tv
The 2009 WCOOP is heading into its final week, but many tournaments and millions more dollars are available for players. Check the newly launched WCOOP website for all of the information, including the list of tournaments and corresponding satellites that offer entries for as little as $1. And PokerStars.TV, as always, will have tips from the pros and tournament replays as the WCOOP progresses.