There was a certain inevitability to jdtjpoker's WCOOP victory tonight. He entered the final table with a dominating chip lead. He snapped off aces with queens and flopped sets like it was nothing. That delicious combination of running well and playing well is the key to most tournament victories and jdtjpoker rode that wave tonight. His cruise to the finish line, however, was nearly derailed by EDWARDHOPPER, who was not about to go quietly. He's been in this spot before. Back in 2009, EDWARDHOPPER was heads-up for a SCOOP title and fell just short, losing to Sdouble in the $109 PLO8 event. However, despite a valiant effort and a huge display of heart, EDWARDHOPPER had to settle once again for the silver medal.
The final $1k NLHE event of the PokerStars 2011 WCOOP drew 1,013 players into the fray, creating a $1,013,000 prize pool. 117 of them walked away with a share of it with first place set to earn $182,340. Although more than two dozen members of Team PokerStars Pro and Team Online bought in, only three came away with a cash finish-- Mathew "chipstar1" Didlick (116th), Vivan Im (81st) and two-time LAPT champion Nacho Barbero (46th).
Day 1 concluded with 49 players still in the running and a little over three and a half hours into Day 2, the final table was set. With the blinds up to 5,000/10,000, DuTTiFruTTi9 moved all-in for his last 12 big blinds with A♣T♣ on the button and jdtjpoker called from the big blind with pocket threes. The threes held up, jdtjpoker winning the coinflip to send DuTTiFruTTi9 to the rail in tenth place.
Jdtjpoker already had his closest competitor outchipped by nearly 3 to 1 as the final table commenced:
Seat 1: IamBuddhaa (1,009,046 in chips)
Seat 2: mikzoan (1,015,884 in chips)
Seat 3: TicociT (193,765 in chips)
Seat 4: FeriBo (651,252 in chips)
Seat 5: jdtjpoker (2,876,453 in chips)
Seat 6: bobbypacheco (342,901 in chips)
Seat 7: EDWARDHOPPER (801,727 in chips)
Seat 8: jakoon1985 (417,779 in chips)
Seat 9: JCoghlan (288,693 in chips)
Jakoon1985 got extremely unlucky to go out in ninth place. Jdtjpoker opened for a min-raise to 20,000 from UTG and jakoon1985 smooth-called from middle position with A♦A♥. The action folded to mikzoan on the button and he made a squeeze play, three-betting to 68,999. Both blinds folded and jdtjpoker came back over the top, making it 125,420 to go. Jakoon1985 shoved for 417,529, mikzoan folded and jdtjpoker called, revealing Q♠Q♥. The K♠J♠7♠ flop took jdtjpoker's outs from two to eleven as he picked up a flush draw and although the turn card was a blank with the 5♣, the 8♠ on the river made his flush, sending jakoon1985 to the rail in ugly fashion. He earned $12,662.50 for his run.
The next level saw JCoghlan make his last stand, check-raising all-in on a J♣4♥3♣ flop holding K♥J♦ for top pair only to run into mikzoan's pocket aces. JCoglan could not catch up, the turn and river falling the 6♣ and the 5♦ to send him to the rail in eighth place. Two minutes later, third-in-chips IamBuddhaa went to war with jdtjpoker. On a8♠7♣3♣ flop, jdtjpoker check-raised IamBuddhaa's 61,112 continuation bet to 142,420 and earned a call. The turn came the 4♥ and jdtjpoker led out for 189,420. IamBuddhaa shoved for an additional 672,864 and jdtjpoker snap-called, turning over pocket eights for top set. IamBuddhaa tabled Q♣T♣, needing to see a club on the river that did not pair the board. Instead, it was the 3♥, and jdtjpoker did away with one of the biggest threats at the table, taking his stack up to 4.8 million. For his seventh-place finish, IamBuddhaa earned $30,795.20.
Short stack TicociT hung on as long as he could and was probably delighted to look down at Q♣Q♠ after EDWARDHOPPER opened for 25,200. TicociT shoved for his last 9.5 big blinds from the button and EDWARDHOPPER called with T♥T♣. TicociT was looking good through the turn, but the T♠ spiked on the river, his WCOOP run ending in a cruel two-outer. $40,925.20 for sixth place, however, should soothe the pain just a bit.
With five players remaining, jdtjpoker had a stranglehold on the final table, his 5,000,000 stack representing 65% of the chips in play. The only other player with a seven-figure count was mikzoan, who relinquished that title to EDWARDHOPPER after running Q♣Q♠ into his K♥K♠. Mikzoan fell to only 387,000 while EDWARDHOPPER moved up to 1.56 million.
Down to 20 big blinds, bobbypacheco decided to stake his tournament life on A♣T♠, three-betting to 84,000 preflop, then calling jdtjpoker's four-bet shove. Jdtjpoker continued to run hot, hitting top set on the 8♦7♦3♥ flop. Bobbypacheco was left drawing only to running cards and was dead when the K♥ hit the turn, his fifth-place finish earning him $51,055.20.
With the blinds up to 7,000/14,000, mikzoan was circling the drain with only 212,000 but managed to double up through jdtjpoker, his A♠8♦ holding up against J♦T♦. That left FeriBo as the short stack and a few hands later he open-shoved for his last 210,000 with pocket fives. Unfortunately for FeriBo, jdtjpoker picked up T♦T♥ in the small blind and called, the board running out Q♠J♥6♥7♣3♠. FeriBo hit the rail in fourth place, collecting $73,442.50.
Mikzoan scored two more double-ups through jdtpoker to put himself back in the game, his pocket kings holding up against pocket deuces and his pocket threes winning a flip against A♣J♦. Mikzoan chipped up to 1.2 million after those hands, but jdtjpoker reclaimed a large chunk of those lost chips when he flopped top pair and got three streets of value:
Shortly after that hand, play paused for the standard hourly break and when action resumed, jdtjpoker dialed up his aggression, winning 14 of the first 20 hands dealt to take his stack up to 6.2 million. During this stretch, jdtjpoker showed down more than a few good hands, taking advantage of PokerStars' new "show one card" option to advertise. Jdtjpoker had whittled mikzoan down to 526,000 and EDWARDHOPPER to 651,000 when mikzoan decided to go for broke. He opened for a min-raise to 36,000, jdtjpoker three-bet to 90,000, EDWARDHOPPER got out of the way and mikzoan shoved for another 434,000. Jdtjpoker called, his A♣K♠ dominating mikzoan's A♥Q♠. Jdtjpoker made aces and kings by the river, eliminating mikzoan in third place for a still-spectacular $98,261 score.
Jdtjpoker took a better than 10 to 1 advantage into heads-up play:
Seat 5: jdtjpoker (6,946,701 in chips)
Seat 7: EDWARDHOPPER (650,799 in chips)
This match could have been over in only a couple of hands given jdtjpoker's tremendous lead, but EDWARDHOPPER was not going down easily. A flush-over-flush hand against jdtjpoker certainly started him off on the right foot and doubled his stack to 1.54 million. Undeterred, jdtjpoker maintained his aggressive approach and had EDWARDHOPPER down to 900,000 when he doubled again, turning a Broadway straight against jdtjpoker's queens up:
"Ain't just gonna surrender," EDWARDHOPPER wrote in the chat box. "But I should thank you for making an easy 2nd place for me... at least 2nd;)"
A ninety-minute battle royale ensued. Although he was at a significant chip disadvantage, the blinds were still relatively low at 10,000/20,000, EDWARDHOPPER'S 1.7 million in chips good for 89 big blinds. EDWARDHOPPER stuck to small-pot poker, remaining patient even when jdtjpoker had him on the ropes with only 20 big blinds. EDWARDHOPPER ground his stack back up to a million, then doubled up on a key coinflip, his pocket deuces turning a set against jdtjpoker's A♦T♦. Suddenly that 10 to 1 margin was down to 2.7 to 1 and by the time this heads-up match hit the one-hour mark, EDWARDHOPPER was holding 3.23 million to jdtjpoker's 4.36 million.
A stretch of hands where jdtjpoker raked in 22 out of 25 pots helped widen the gap, but EDWARDHOPPER remained incredibly stubborn. It took a long grind for jdtjpoker to chip away at his opponent, but on the 402nd hand of heads-up play, EDWARDHOPPER finally succumbed. All the money went in before the flop, jdtjpoker's 9♥9♦ racing against EDWARDHOPPER's A♥T♠. Although EDWARDHOPPER picked up the nut flush draw on the turn, the nines held and at long last jdtjpoker had all the chips in front of him.
Congratulations to jdtjpoker on his first WCOOP bracelet and a $182,340 score! For his runner-up finish, EDWARDHOPPER earned $131,690.
2011 WCOOP Event #48 ($1,050 NLHE) results
1. jdtjpoker (Mexico) $182,340.00
2. EDWARDHOPPER (Denmark) $131,690.00
3. mikzoan (Israel) $98,261.00
4. FeriBo (Bulgaria) $73,442.50
5. bobbypacheco (Costa Rica) $51,055.20
6. TicociT (Netherlands) $40,925.20
7. IamBuddhaa (Bulgaria) $30,795.20
8. JCoghlan (Australia) $20,766.50
9. jakoon 1985 (Canada) $12,662.50
The WCOOP is in its home stretch. Do you have your Main Event seat yet? Head over to the WCOOP page for information on how to qualify. Satellites are available for every bankroll.