Sticking only with the last three H.O.R.S.E. games -- razz (R), seven-card stud (S), and seven-card stud eight-or-better (E) -- and spending just five minutes on each game with the stakes rapidly increasing, turbo-style, meant the three versions of Event #18 were all destined to conclude in a flash. And with the necessarily small field that would come out for the event's "High" version (with a $2,100 buy-in), that meant the tourney would be decided even more quickly.
Indeed, you could say in this case R.S.E. stood for Really Speedy Event.
It took just over two-and-a-half hours for Sebastian Ruthenberg of Team PokerStars U.K. to grab the first SCOOP watch of 2011 for Team PokerStars. In fact, to be more precise, it really only took Ruthenberg a little over an hour-and-a-half, as he was one of the very last to register before the doors closed at the one-hour mark!
Having slowed the action down enough from the breakneck blur at which it rushed past, we are now prepared to share highlights from Ruthenberg's fast and furious feat.
Shuffle Up and Deal... Congratulations! You have reached the final table
The stacks were deep enough that almost everyone made it through the first hour of play. By first-hour break, of the 48 players who had bought in only BEGEMOTIK3 was already sitting on the rail. That field created a $96,000 total prize pool (besting the tourney's $50K guarantee). Only the top five finishers would get paid, with $38,400 scheduled to go to the one finishing with all the chips.
Once they returned from the first break, many players' stacks had already reached the danger zone, and the eliminations started to come quickly. In just 30 minutes the field was trimmed to 15, with the casualties including such recognizable names as Matthew "MUSTAFABET" Ashton (44th), villepn (42nd), Fabrizio "SixthSenSe19" Gonzalez (37th), McMang (35th), red-hot Alexander "joiso" Kostritsyn (31st), ozenc (26th), Sergey "gipsy74" Rybachenko (25th), Team PokerStars Pros Jose "Nacho" Barbero (24th) and Jonathan Duhamel (19th), SCOOP #10-High winner Hernán "HN Kakaroto" Novick (18th), SCOOP #14-H winner Andrey "Kroko-dill" Zaichenko (17th), and EDWARDHOPPER (16th).
At that point, to0dey and ColoBushKa were at the top of the counts with more than 30,000 chips, with ricestud, Noah "Exclusive" Boeken of Team PokerStars Netherlands, and Mickey "mement_mori" Petersen closing in on the two leaders. Two other PS pros -- Ruthenberg (U.K.) and George Danzer (Germany) -- were still alive with below average stacks as well.
It would take less than 15 minutes for six more players to go, with Danzer going out in 10th. Then came simultaneous eliminations during razz hands on the two remaining tables, with ColoBushKa knocking out cal42688 in ninth on one and Ruthenburg knocking out bliiz in eighth on the other.
That meant there were only seven players left to read the Dealer's traditional congratulatory welcome message.
Seat 1: turataika -- 46,722
Seat 2: Team PokerStars Pro Noah "Exclusive" Boeken -- 33,275
Seat 4: ricestud -- 17,950
Seat 5: ColoBushKa -- 47,486
Seat 6: mement_mori -- 27,435
Seat 7: Team PokerStars Pro Sebastian Ruthenberg -- 30,136
Seat 8: to0dey -- 36,996
After a half-dozen hands the game had changed to stud hi/lo (3,000/6,000), when a hand developed between Ruthenberg and ricestud in which the latter led the betting throughout, finally running out of chips on fifth street.
When their down cards were shown, Ruthenberg held (3♥)(A♣)2♣J♦5♠ for a wheel draw while ricestud had (4♣)(7♣)5♣K♥7♦ for a pair of sevens. ricestud wouldn't improve, drawing 2♥T♦, but Ruthenberg picked up 6♣4♠ -- that four on the end giving him the wheel and both the high and low.
Soon the two-hour break arrived, and just six remained, with turataika the leader with over 97,000 and Noah "Exclusive" Boeken the severe short-stack with less than 6,400.
Boeken would double-up once, then survive after being all in by fourth street in a three-way pot the Dutchman described afterwards as "epic." Indeed, by seventh turataika would show 8 6 4 3 2 , ColoBushKa 7 5 4 2 A , and Boeken 6 5 4 2 A !
Mickey "memento_mori" Petersen then became the table's short stack, and himself survived an all-in situation on a stud hi/lo hand against to0dey in which neither made a low, but Petersen's aces and queens bettered to0dey's tens and fives.
Unfortunately for to0dey, he'd soon end up being the cash bubble boy. Still in stud hi/lo, to0dey was all in on third street against both Ruthenberg and Boeken. The hand got checked down to the end, where neither of the Team PokerStars Pros had made a low hand, while Ruthenberg had the best high with two pair, aces and tens. to0dey mucked, eliminated in sixth.
The remaining five fought for about 10 minutes, then the next three eliminations happened in rapid-fire fashion.
First, in a razz hand (10,000/20,000), Ruthenberg and turataika capped the betting on third with the Team Pro showing a 4 and turataika an A . Ruthenberg then led the betting on both fourth and fifth, by which point turataika was all in, showing (6 )(7 )A T 7 versus Ruthenberg's (5 )(3 )4 7 A . turataika drew two face cards on sixth and seventh -- not that he could've caught up to Ruthenberg's 7-5-low, anyway -- and was out in fifth.
Three hands later the game was stud hi/lo (12,000/24,000), and Boeken was all in by fifth street against fellow Team PokerStars Pro Ruthenberg. By the end Boeken held (4♣)(3♥)2♥J♠A♠7♣(4♥) for a pair of fours (high) and a 7-low. But Ruthenberg had (A♣)(4♠)9♣K♦3♠2♣(5♥), having hit another final table wheel to scoop and knock "Exclusive" out in fourth place.
Afterwards, Ruthenberg and Mickey "mement_mori" Petersen shared some table chat:
mement_mori: decent life :)
S.Ruthenberg: runner runner runner runner runner
"Runner" was the word of the hour for Ruthenberg, who appeared poised to run his way through this final table in short order, suddenly up over 174,000 while Petersen and ColoBushKa sat with less than 35,000 each.
On the very next hand (still stud hi/lo), Mickey "memento_mori" got into a raising war with ColoBushKa on third street, with the latter all in before the betting could be capped. After each received his seven cards, ColoBushKa ended with (5♦)(7♠)8♣3♥8♦3♦(7♦) for eights and sevens with no low hand, while Petersen drew (Q♦)(3♠)Q♥4♣A♣Q♣(9♦) for trip queens, knocking out ColoBushKa in third.
Heads-up play began with Ruthenberg still well out in front with 172,354 to mement_mori's 67,646. More table talk between the two ensued.
mement_mori: gl bro
S. Ruthenberg: u2 !
S. Ruthenberg: happy times
S. Ruthenberg: i lateregged last min
As mentioned, Ruthenberg had in fact been one of the last of the 48 to register. And now he was on the verge of binking the sucker!
A few hands later the stacks hadn't much changed when the tourney was paused to discuss a deal. While Petersen and Ruthenberg chatted about whether or not they might have played against each other in an EPT event before, the "chip chop" numbers were produced. Both immediately agreed -- a little over $34,100 for Ruthenberg, $29,200-plus for Petersen, and $1,000 and the watch left to play for -- and play quickly resumed.
After a dozen hands during which no major chip swings occurred, the final hand arrived.
It was straight stud (16,000/32,000). The pair reraised each other to cap it on third, then Petersen was all in on fourth.
S.Ruthenberg (7♦)(7♣)2♥T♣ -- a pair of sevens
mement_mori (7♠)(8♦)K♠J♣ -- overcards and backdoor draws
Ruthenberg would pick up 2♦9♦8♥ to make two pair, but mement_mori ended with just ace-high, having picked up A♥5♠4♠. Just two hours and 36 minutes after it had begun -- and not even 100 minutes after Ruthenberg had registered, the U.K. pro had won.
Congratulations to Sebastian Ruthenberg for claiming the first SCOOP watch of 2011 for Team PokerStars in Event #18-High!
SCOOP Event #18-High, $2,100 Triple Stud, Results (*reflects two-way deal):
1st: Team PokerStars Pro Sebastian Ruthenberg ($35,106.87)*
2nd: mement_mori ($29,213.13)*
3rd: ColoBushKa ($14,400)
4th: Team PokerStars Pro Noah "Exclusive" Boeken ($9,600)
5th: turataika ($7,680)
By the way, if you haven't yet seen "Inside SCOOP," the daily web-based show hosted by Joe Stapleton and Nick Wealthall, click over there right now and get yourself caught up. The show reports results, goes over interesting hands, features interviews with players, and more.
In other words, lots of info. And lots of grins, too! Check it out!