The 2019 World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) is nearly a week old — and some patterns are starting to emerge. Brazil and Russia are dominating, and some old crushers are doing what they do best. Here’s the latest round-up from the WCOOP tables.
• Russian players win five titles; Brazilians four
• LATAM stars “PaDiLhA SP” and “kovalski1” win big
• Clean sweep for Russia in Omaha Hi/Lo
• First WCOOP of the year for Rui “RuiNF” Ferreira
• High volume Adam “Adamyid” Owen continues PoY form
BEHIND THE HEADLINES
Two of Brazilian poker’s most celebrated players achieved even more success last night when Pedro “PaDiLhA SP” Padilha and Fabiano “Kovalski1” Kovalski won major WCOOP titles. Padilha was the biggest tournament winner, beating a 1,296-entry field to win WCOOP-17-H $1,050 NLHE PKO. He picked up more than $100K in prize pool, and nearly equal that in bounties, for a $192,548.15 payday.
Meanwhile Kovalski won $64,911.73 for beating the $530 4-Max field, his second career WCOOP title. He has also already placed third and eighth in other $530 buy-in events during this year’s festival, winning $55K in WCOOP-04-H.
Padilha is one of Andre Akkari’s keen prodigies from Sao Paolo, whose resume speaks for itself these days: he has nearly $4 million in online earnings on PokerStars, including three SCOOP titles and (now) two WCOOP titles, as well nearly $1 million in live cashes. He won a Platinum Pass to this year’s PSPC, and finished 10th for $328,500.
But it’s the manner of his rise through the ranks that is so noteworthy: as Akkari told us at the WSOP this summer, Padilha entered Akkari’s life when he knocked on the door selling cellphones. At the time, Akkari’s house was full of online poker players — Akkari runs a training school and stable — and Padilha was immediately interested. They took him in, Padilha learned the game and now is an absolute boss. “He’s a great guy and we love him, and it’s all about poker,” Akkari said. “Poker saved him. Now he is doing what he wants to do, what gives him pleasure. He wakes up every day happy and he has money, he’s looking after his family…It’s not chance. What he has is a focus.”
Despite the fine showing from the Brazilians, Russia came roaring back into contention overnight, particularly thanks to WCOOP-18, the No Limit Omaha Hi/Lo event. Russian players won all three buy-in levels, with “PodKrepkimCh” taking $28K in the high, “Zapahzamazki” picking up $12K in the medium and “snovalshik1” adding a $3.5K in the low. That’s the first time in this WCOOP so far that players from the same country have won all tournaments in a particular event. “destroyalldr” later added to the haul with victory in the medium buy-in limit hold’em event, bringing Russia’s daily total to five titles.
Not only that, but Zapahzamazki managed to record his winning moment on Twitch:
Amid all the Russian/Brazilian joyousness, one ruthless Portuguese player went about his business with customary precision. Rui “RuiNF” Ferreira now plays from the Netherlands, but he’s a brilliant talent regardless of location. Last night he picked up the seventh ‘COOP title of his career with victory in the $1,050 limit hold’em. That represents something of a title defence: Ferreira also won the high buy-in SCOOP title in fixed limit hold’em in May this year. He won $23,896.62 this time for defeating a 97-entry field.
|WCOOP-17-L: $11 NLHE PKO||23,853||$233,759||guinHuuh||Brazil||$13,323.73†*|
|WCOOP-17-M: $109 NLHE PKO||8,416||$841,600||Krafty_lt||Lithuania||$88,290.21†|
|WCOOP-17-H: $1,050 NLHE PKO||1,296||$1,296,000||PaDiLhA SP||Brazil||$192,548.15†|
|WCOOP-18-L: $5.50 NLO8||4,881||$23,917||snovalshik1||Russia||$3,408.17|
|WCOOP-18-M: $55 NLO8||1,502||$75,100||Zapahzamazki||Russia||$11,523.03|
|WCOOP-18-H: $530 NLO8||329||$164,500||PodKrepkimCh||Russia||$28,451.85*|
|WCOOP-19-L: $5.50 NLHE 4-Max||9,345||$45,791||anelka79||Russia||$5,594.40*|
|WCOOP-19-M: $55 NLHE 4-Max||4,056||$202,800||LeoMattosAK||Brazil||$28,976.17|
|WCOOP-19-H: $530 NLHE 4-Max||767||$383,500||Kovalski1||Brazil||$64,911.73|
|WCOOP-21-L: $11 Limit Hold’em 6-Max||1,748||$17,130||YELLOWEMPIRE||Argentina||$2,591.87|
|WCOOP-21-M: $109 Limit Hold’em 6-Max||402||$40,200||destroyalldr||Russia||$7,285.73|
|WCOOP-21-H: $1,050 Limit Hold’em 6-Max||97||$100,000||RuiNF||Netherlands||$23,896.62|
Events completed: 57
Entries so far: 271,150
Prize pools so far: $21,306,793
First prizes so far: $3,222,149.75
In-the-money finishers so far: 44,929
Tournaments starting today: 9
PLAYER OF THE SERIES UPDATE
WCOOP 2019 is nearly a week old, so time to check in on the players who are making an early move in the Player of the Series standings.
The “Overall” leader board, which pays an additional $20,000 cash to its winner, is the most interesting at this stage with Canada’s “TruthBeTold7” (420 points) leading Finland’s “calvin7v” (350 points) and Russia’s “krakukra” (340 points). Though all of those players are well known tournament bosses, none have yet won a title in this year’s WCOOP, with two people who have — Rui “RuiNF” Ferreira and Adam “adamyid” Owen — lying in fourth and fifth respectively.
“TruthBeTold7” has finished fourth and second in low buy-in events, and also has a runner-up finish in the high buy-in $215+R WCOOP-10 accounting for his haul.
Stefan “mindgamer” Jedlicka has a first and a second-place finish in high buy-in tournaments already this WCOOP and that translates into a 35-point lead at the top of the high buy-in leader board. Fabiano “Kovalski1” Kovalski is in decent form and breathing down his neck.
If you’re in any doubt as to the dedication needed to win one of these leader boards, take a look at the grind Adam “Adamyid” Owen is putting in this week. He has already won one event in this WCOOP, but last night had enough tables open for about three monitors. He cashed in three events and is top three in chips in two others that are resuming today. Of course, he also whiffed in other events, missing the money most agonisingly in the $1,050 limit hold’em, when he went out on the stone bubble.
As far as we can tell, here’s how yesterday went for Owen:
Finished and cashed:
$530 4-Max Hold’em: 7th for $8,290.46
$109 Limit Hold’em: 19th for $378.68
$11 Limit Hold’em: 55th for $40.92
Ongoing (in the money):
$22 NLHE 6-Max: 3rd of 60 remaining (5,803 entrants)
$1,050 Limit Razz: 1st of 9 remaining (104 entrants)
Finished and did not cash:
$1,050 Limit Hold’em: bubbled in 12th
$1,050 PKO: 303rd – did not cash
$530 NLHE Super Tuesday: 871st – did not cash
$55 NLHE Mini Super Tuesday: 1,719th – did not cash
$11 Limit Razz: 704th – did not cash
$109 Limit Razz: 220nd – did not cash
$215 NLHE 6-Max: 302nd – did not cash
If he converts one of those decent chip positions, he will rise through the leader board standings.
This was a fairly standard spot, all things considered, but Spraggy was left crestfallen by his elimination in 40th place from WCOOP-17-L: $11 NLHE PKO. This is a feeling a lot of people will know only too well:
On the other hand, you could run like Lex:
Team Pro’s Celina Lin made her WCOOP debut this week, and got off to a flyer. But is she really suggesting she watches Jaws while playing online?
— Celina Lin (@CelinaLin) September 11, 2019
Here’s someone to watch at the WCOOP tables this week: Gerald “gtwi” Twigge won his seat in a $2 Spin & Go.
— gtwi (@GeraldTwigge) September 10, 2019
WCOOP-20: NLHE – Buy-ins: $11, $109, $1,050
WCOOP-21: Limit hold’em 6-Max – Buy-ins: $11, $109, $1,050
WCOOP-22: NLHE 8-Max Super Tuesday – Buy-ins: $55, $530, $5,200
WCOOP-23: Razz – Buy-ins: $11, $109, $1,050
WCOOP-24: NLHE 6-Max – Buy-ins: $22, $215, $2,100
COMING UP TODAY
WCOOP-25: NLHE Eight-Max – Buy-ins: $25,000, $2,100, $215
When the “low” buy-in is $215, it’s clear something is afoot. WCOOP-25 is the designated High Roller of this tournament series, with the High buy-in set at $25,000. Remember, two re-entries are possible and there’s a very good chance a handful of players will be in this for $75K. Great railbirding opportunity, at the very least. (And there are heaps of satellites running.)
WCOOP-26: Six-Max PLO with re-buys – Buy-ins: $5.50, $55, $530
Transport yourself back to the London casinos of the 1990s. PLO. And re-buys. You don’t see it very much anymore, so treasure the chance.
WCOOP-27: NLHE – Buy-ins: $11, $109, $1,050
A nice slow structure to this one, to round off Wednesday.