The Fourth Annual World Championship of Online Poker concluded last night with the $2,500 No-Limit Hold 'Em championship event. 1,494 players won their entry or paid the full fee to have their shot at the $859,050 first prize. This was a record for the WCOOP, and the $3,735,000 prize pool was a record for online poker.
Many big names in the poker world entered this event. The top names at Team PokerStars didn't fare as well as they would have liked, as most of their front-runners were out fairly early. Evelyn Ng (evybabee) went out 604th, Chris Moneymaker (money800) fell out in 1,355th, and Greg Raymer (Fossilman) busted in 402nd. Isabelle Mercier (NoMercy) did manage a very solid performance, finishing in 63rd and winning $9,337.
Other notables who entered but did not cash were Scott Fischman (emptyseat88), Noah Boeken (Exclusive), Barry Greenstein (crazyplayer), Joe Sebok (fidallio), John D'Agostino (jdags21), Layne Flack (reloadthis), and Brett Jungblut (gank).
135 players were paid money for their efforts, the worst a player who cashed could do was $3,735. All final table participants were guaranteed at least $56,025which alone is more than 90% of online tournaments pay out altogether!
The final nine were assembled and ready to go to war for the monstrous prize money around 3:45 a.m. eastern. Top player Tony G (wraptduck) busted out on the bubble for the final table, but did manage to pocket $29,880.
Buster Love was the first to get felted, as his ace-four didn't connect against aaaaaaaa's pocket nines. Ninth was worth $56,025.
tralala became the terminator in the next few pots, eliminating lollylu with pocket aces and salas777 with ace-jack. lollylu took eighth for $85,905, and salas777 placed in seventh for $123,255.
JERRRY made a call for the last of his chips with pocket sevens, but saw Panella86 turn over pocket jacks. JERRRY didn't hit anything, obviously, as he exited the final table in sixth. For his long day of poker, JERRRY has $160,605 to ease his pain.
aaaaaaaa took the plunge next, in a mysterious all-in bluff with eight-three. Vendetta made the call with ace-jack, and eliminated aaaaaaaaa in fifth. He earned $197,955 for the finish.
Panella86 picked off PICKLED EGG with kings for fourth place. After that, they cut a deal three-handed to give Panella86 $527,342, tralala $573,735, and Vendetta $540,877. They would play for $50,000 and the gold WCOOP bracelet.
Fresh off of some interesting trash talk (as well as openly admitting he was 18 and drinking about a dozen-plus beers), Panella86 cracked tralala's pocket kings by check-raising all-in on the turn with a big draw. He made his runner-runner flush on the river and was heads-up for the title, and he isn't even old enough to buy the alcohol he was celebrating with.
It took only three hands for the young partier to eliminate Vendetta, who had held out for a while in deal negotiations. Vendetta called all-in on a six-high flop with ace-six, after he was check-raised by Pandella86. He was a huge favorite against jack-ten for no pair no draw, but the ten of spade on the turn gave Pandella86 a pair plus a flush draw. It was enough, and he became the fourth WCOOP Main Event champion.
Ed note: The European Poker Tour is in full swing. Satellites running now at Poker Stars sign up today!