Jared Jaffee Wins but Margo Costa shines at WPT Jacksonville

WPtlogoThe lengthily-titled WPT BestBet Jacksonville Fall Poker Scramble had its final table this Tuesday, with five relative unknowns squaring off against three-time WPT finalist Jared Jaffee. With the deep stack coming in as well as the experience edge, Jaffee was the clear favorite to win the event, and no upset was to be forthcoming.

Even the Pros Need Some Luck

The final hand of the tournament was a nightmare come true for 2nd place finisher Blake Purvis, as his pocket aces lost to Jaffee’s 42 suited. Jaffee had semibluffed with a flush draw on a JJ6 flop, but Purvis was going nowhere with his overpair. Nonetheless, Jaffee was bailed out by the queen of hearts on the river, sending Purvis home with $166,139, while Jaffee took $252,749, his largest score to date.

You can find the complete final table payouts, and live reporting, at the www.worldpokertour.com website.

Ironically, the first elimination at the final table had seen Jaffee holding the aces, as Johnny Price had the misfortune of running into them with his tens. Starting by winning with aces, and finishing by cracking them, Jaffee demonstrated the old wisdom that even the best players need some luck to win a tournament.

Margo Costa Makes a Splash

Although Jaffee was the big winner in terms of cash, the clear fan favorite was newcomer Margo Costa. No woman has yet won a WPT main event, but recently it seems that nearly every final table has someone there trying to be the first, and for a while it looked like Costa might just do it.

Costa was particularly exciting to watch and to root for because of her unorthodox and extremely aggressive style. Whereas all of the men except for Jaffee were playing conservatively, Costa clearly had her eye on the grand prize. She pulled off several successful bluffs as well as some unconventional moves to get value, including a 3-bet with Q7 on an AQ3 flop, and a river value bet with AQ high, which got called by a weaker A.

Although her strange lines initially took her opponents off-guard, she failed to change gears at the right moment, and the same moves that had won her success initially proved to be her undoing once the others adjusted. Though she’d managed to muscle her way into 2nd for a while, Jaffee dumped her back into the pack when he caught her trying a three-barrel bluff. Later, she busted out trying to buy a pot off of Purvis by shoving with a whiffed KT suited. He managed to call with his pocket 7s, probably precisely because her image was so loose by that time.

Unfortunately, we’ll have to continue to wait and wonder when we’ll finally see a female player take down a WPT event, but in the meantime, Costa was very entertaining to watch.

Alex Weldon is a game designer by day and poker tournament wizard by night. You can read more from Alex at www.benefactum.ca and follow him on Twitter at @benefactumgames

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