Holy crap were there some suckouts at the long form tourney. I can't count how many times folks were all in with the odds stacked 6-1 against them and they pulled it out. Every flush draw, straight draw or runner-runner seemed to come through for big money. Some serious drama ensued....
There was some grumbling about the tournament structure beforehand, with some people wanting to drop antes all-together, some wanting to move the antes to after the rebuy period and some wanting to keep the structure the same. Well, with no clear concensus, I went with keeping it real and seeing how it went. In hindsight, I will move the antes to after the rebuy period next time to extend the tourney just a little bit, but overall the structure was excellent, providing lots of early action in the rebuy period and ensuring that stacks could move forward without needing too many pushes in later rounds. W kept complaining about the 'M' but it wouldn't be a tourney without some complaints from W!
Newsflash for the haters: In a single table tourney, you're never going to have more than a few orbits before you have to start making some decisions. Deal with it.
Some of the more memorable hands of the night:
'No River' Brown pushes all in with QJ and gets called by two slightly smaller stacks. PP, with KT and Zenia (pronounced "Sen Ya" as in "I'm gonna Sen Ya home broke") with QQ. The flop comes AKT! PP flops two pair, Zenia is drawing to an OESD and 'No River' flopped the joint! The flopped Broadway held up and two players were sent to the rail.
W, in full out complaining mode, pushes all in against Liezl, who has been bullying the table all night. Liezl calls and W flips over AJ, fully expecting to be ahead. Liezl, though, has a hand this time. AK. But a J flops and W doubles through to become the new chip leader. W would eventually make the money on the strength of this suckout but could still be heard complaining about how she has no luck!
Liezl pulls off the suckout of the night. Shortly after W's AJ suckout, Liezl and Stephen are in a hand together. The flop comes A67 rainbow. Stephen bets out a moderate amount and Liezl pulls off her patented 'all-in'. In most cases, it would take a monster hand to call her all in because she slightly outchipped Stephen, but he had a monster this time. He called instantly with A6 for the flopped two pair. Uh-oh. Liezl shows K8 for the complete bluff. W calls out, "she can still make a straight" and just like that Stephen's fate was sealed. A 4 came on the turn and a slow-rolled 5 came on the river! Stephen, who would have had half the chips in play if he had won, busted out with a $0 finish and stormed out in justified rage and frustration. Sometimes you can win and still lose. Poker is a fickle bitch that way.
Jordan, W, Liezl and 'No River' eventually made it to 4 way action and a deal was made to make a fourth place prize. W sucked both Jordan and Liezl into a pot with AA, but Liezl, with 9T and 89 on the flop, hit the 6 on the river to bust both players. Well played, W! Just wasn't your night.
Liezl and 'No River' went heads up with the lead changing hands twice before Liezl's Q8 finally busted 'No River's' A5 when a Q hit on the turn. Good job Liezl and nice payday! Final payout for first place: $550.