As part of World Record Week here at PokerStars, several tournaments received a money injection into their guarantees. The Sunday Warm-up, normally a guaranteed $750,000, became a $1 million guarantee, and just so people would not confuse this tournament with the "Sunday Million" the marquee weekly PokerStars tournament's guarantee was bumped up to $2.5 million!
The added guarantee wasn't necessary as a record 5,836 showed up for the Sunday Warm-up to boost the prize pool to a staggering $1,167,200.
The stars of MTT's at PokerStars came out swinging as TLB regular BeL0WaB0Ve put in a valiant effort in 21st place. He led with a commanding lead during several portions of the tournament but ran into the force from down under known as Andy McLEOD who defeated BeL0WaB0Ve's K-Qs with A-To that connected a rivered two pair to overcome BeL0WaB0Ve's flopped top pair, sending him home. The Aussie has been a force on the TLB standings with Sunday Million final tables, and nearly getting Australia into the World Cup of Poker (being played next month as part of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure).
In Andy-like fashion, he ran over the table with a variety of head-turning plays, and once the table came back to their senses, he was the one standing tall with the most chips. Here's how the final table started off with aforementioned Andy McLEOD with the final table chip lead:
Seat 1: Andy McLEOD (13,573,358 in chips)
Seat 2: Hr_Herman (3,975,211 in chips)
Seat 3: zmeyer (4,242,287 in chips)
Seat 4: groengras (3,943,729 in chips)
Seat 5: Tehanu (7,989,306 in chips)
Seat 6: KKgeoroAA (2,646,560 in chips)
Seat 7: totaloser (10,787,241 in chips)
Seat 8: Iceman1278 (4,573,710 in chips)
Seat 9: 69CANA69 (6,628,598 in chips)
It took nearly 30 minutes for Andy to claim his first victim, but KKgeoroAA was short-stacked with blinds at 200,000/400,000 ante 40,000, and facing a 800,000 chip raise from Andy McLEOD while in the big blind. KKgeoroAA responded with a push for his remaining 1.2 million behind his big blind with Kh-Tc. A snap call by Andy McLEOD with Ah-Ks proved to be the right one as the aggressive player had the cards to back up the bet this time and the Jc-2d-6c-9d-8d changed nothing. 3.8 million chips to Andy, and KKgeoroAA was the first to fall in ninth place earning $8,170.40
This set off an explosion of action as on the very next hand Andy McLEOD raised from UTG+2 to 800,000 and groengras pushed for 6.8 million from the cut-off. Button and small blind folded but Iceman1278 made the call in the big blind with Ad-Ks for his remaining 4.4 million. Andy McLEOD folded and groengras' three-bet steal attempt was exposed as he turned over Qd-6s. Neither player hit the 5c-2s-5h-Th-9d board and the 11 million chip pot was shipped coolly to Iceman1278 while groengras was left with 1.9 million. Two hands later groengras tried shoving again but Andy McLEOD was waiting in the wings, dominating the Th-6c of groengras with As-Ts. Andy hit his ace on the board of Js-3h-Jh-Ah-3d sending the aggressive groengras to the rail with $14,006.40 for eighth place.
The very next hand, terminator Andy McLEOD again knocked out a rival as 69CANA69 open-shoved his remaining 2.8 million on the button and with 15 million in chips, Andy McLEOD gambled a bit and made the call with Kd-Jc. It proved to be the right thing as 69CANA69 turned over the dominated Kh-4h. Five cards later, Jd-3c-9s-7c-9d, and the 6.3 million chip pot increased his lead to 19.2 million, nearly double of Iceman1278 in second place with 10.7 million. A seventh-place finish for 69CAN69 earned him $22,176.80
Sixth place was decided in a huge 18.2 million chip pot with the blinds increasing to 250,000/500,000 ante 50,000, when a three-way, all-in preflop chip battle broke out.
Andy McLEOD: Js-Jh
Tehanu had 4.1 million and totaloser 6.7 million as Andy covered both as all three pushed all-in to see a flop of 7d-4c-Kc. Tehanu flopped the world with an open-ended straight and flush draws. The turn 2h gave the lead back to Andy McLEOD, but the cruel Qs on the river missed Tehanu's huge draw and beat Andy McLEOD for the main pot shipping 18.2 million chips totaloser's way and sending the unlucky Tehanu out in sixth place, earning $33,848.80
In fifth place, and for the first time, Andy McLEOD decided to let someone else do the deed as Hr_Herman started things off with a 1.5 million chip raise UTG and zmeyer to his immediate left three-bet his remaining six million chips. Lucky pocket sevens for Hr_Herman were good enough to make the call as the race was on against zmeyer's Kd-Qd. The jackpot flop of 3c-6h-7h hit Hr_Herman's set and left zmeyer drawing dead to a chop. The 5c provided some ooohs and ahhhs but the 8s handed $45,520.80 for fifth-place money to zmeyer.
He might lose sometimes but those sometimes are far less then the ones he wins. Andy McLEOD once again was in the eye of the storm as Iceman1278 tried to push his remaining 6.3 million chips into a 10.8 million chip pot and claim it with the board showing 5h-3c-7d. Andy sniffed out the Ad-8h bluff from Iceman1278 with ace high himself but with a better kicker as his Ah-Kd was in the lead. 2d and Td later and Andy McLEOD landed the 19 million chip pot into his lap and the Iceman1278 was a melted memory in fourth place with $57,192.80
Andy would lose many of those chips to Hr_Herman on a 30 million chip preflop all-in hand with Hr_Herman holding pocket kings (Kh-Kd) and Andy Jd-Td. The board was an enticing 7h-Th-6h-5h.... 3h. Andy McLEOD still held 11 million in chips while totaloser sat in second with 16.3 million.
Pre-flop play dominated the next 20 hands, then totaloser and Andy McLEOD got into a preflop all-in with Andy holding one million behind and the blinds moving up to 300,000/600,000 ante 60,000. Pocket sevens for totaloser and Ad-Th for Andy McLEOD, and the flop provided all the love Andy would need as the Td-4s-3s gave him the lead with top pair. 8d on the turn and an unnecessary Ac on the river for two pair sent totaloser home with an unloser-like $68,864.80 in third place.
"Chop?", asked Hr_Herman.
Andy politely declined and they played one of the quickest heads up matches seen in the Sunday Warm-up. With blinds still at 300,000/600,000 ante 60,000, and Hr_Herman holding a 35.8 million to 22.4 million chip lead, they played nine hands with the big hand coming on hand number six when Hr_Herman came in for a 1.8 million chip raise on the button and was called to see a flop of 3d-9c-Ac. The 2.4 million chip continuation bet was called by Andy McLEOD as was the 6.6 million turn bet when the 6h fell. After the 7d splashed the river, Hr_Herman splashed the pot with a push that would leave Andy with either the victory or 1.9 million in chips.
Andy got 1.9 million in chips as Hr_Herman turned over Ad-Ts for flopped top pair to overcome Andy's second pair with Jd-9s. One double up later, the two faced off for the final hand as Hr_Herman's Tc-4s overcame Andy McLEOD's Js-6h on the turn when the board played out 3h-6c-9d-Ts-Ks to become this week's Sunday Warm-up champion!
Both players scored six-figure paydays as Andy McLEOD received $101,546.40 as the runner-up and Hr_Herman got $147,067.20 for the win.
Sunday Warm-up Results 12-28-08
1. Hr_Herman $147,067.20
2. Andy McLEOD $101,546.40
3. totaloser $68,864.80
4. Iceman1278 $57,192.80
5. zmeyer $45,520.80
6. Tehanu $33,848.80
7. 69CANA69 $22,176.80
8. groengras $14,006.40
9. KKgeoroAA $8,170.40