WPT World Championship down to Final 6; Calvin Anderson wins Prime Championship; Mikita Badziakouski banks $7.1M at Big One for One Drop


After three weeks of thrilling poker, the World Poker Tour World Championship Season XXI is coming to an end at Wynn Las Vegas with six players remaining at the World Championship. Last night also saw the conclusion of two flagship events – WPT Prime Championship and The Big One for One Drop. Here are the highlights and results.

WPT World Championship down to Final 6; last Asian contenders fall in Day 5


From a field of 3,835 entries, the $40 Million guaranteed WPT World Championship is down to the final 6! While each player is certain to pocket a substantial seven figure payout, the target is the jaw-dropping USD 5,678,000 champion’s purse. To emphasize the disparity in prize money, the difference between 1st and 2nd place is over $1.9 million, and compared to 6th place, it’s a staggering $4.4 million difference! In addition to the monstrous payout, the champion will have his victory forever memorialized in the Mike Sexton Champions Cup. 

Andrew Lichtenberger 124 bb
Chris Moorman 74 bb
Gerogios Sotiropoulos 39 bb
Ben Heath 31 bb
Daniel Sepiol 29 bb
Artur Martirosian 25 bb

Impressively the final six lineup is made up of players with  minimum seven figure earnings per Hendon Mob. The player with the highest chance of seizing the coveted title is USA’s Andrew Lichtenberger, bringing in a massive 124 bb. Lichtenberger’s closest challenger is online wizard Chris Moorman with 74 bb, which is 50 bb less than the leader. The next four down the rung are multi-decorated world champions except for USA’s Daniel Sepiol, the only player seeking his first major title.

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James Chen

The WPT World Championship is the most ambitious event of the brand which features a $40 Million guarantee. With 3,835 entries, it produced a $2.4 Million overlay. The last of the Asian players were eliminated in Day 5. China’s Ren Lin ran the deepest of 20th place for $236,300, Taiwan’s James Chen finished 30th for $159,200, and India’s Ankit Ahuja took 34th for $132,500.

Calvin Anderson wins WPT Prime Championship for $1.38 Million


USA’s Calvin Anderson emerged victorious at the WPT Prime Championship to capture his first ever WPT title and his first ever seven figure payout. Anderson’s performance was consistent from the start. According to WPT live updates these were his stats leading up to the win:

End of Day 1 Chip Count: 978,000 (14/1,309)
End of Day 2 Chip Count: 10,750,000 (1/128)
End of Day 3 Chip Count: 61,200,000 (3/9)
End of Day 4 Chip Count: 99,500,000 (2/6)

Final 6 payouts

1 Calvin Anderson USA $1,386,280
2 Aaron Pinson USA $910,000
3 Jay Lu USA $675,000
4 Jon Glendinning USA $505,000
5 Bob Buckenmayer USA $380,000
6 Valeriy Pak Uzbekistan $290,000

An impressive finish as well for runner up Aaron Pinson who, as we mentioned from our previous article, was the underdog of the final six. Pinson had the hardest climb, entering Day 2 near bottom, ranked 1,120 out of the 1,390 qualifiers. He turned his $1,100 buy in into a career high first ever six figure $910,000 payout.

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The lone Asian contender Valeriy Pak from Uzbekistan met his end in 6th place for $290,000. This was Pak’s career third six-figure payout of the year and deepest run for a field of this magnitude.

Belarus Mikita Badziakouski banks The Big One For One Drop


The first collaboration between World Poker Tour (WPT) and One Drop Foundation kicked off in July and climaxed at the Big One for One Drop on December 19-20, 2024. In an interview by WPT,

“We were honored to host the first WPT Big One for One Drop with the help of the One Drop Foundation and our casino partner Wynn Las Vegas,” said WPT CEO Adam Pliska. “The iconic event added an extraordinary level of prestige to the WPT World Championship festival.”


The mammoth $1 Million buy in drew 17 of the world’s best for a prize pool of $15,810,000. After two days of intense battle,  Belarusian star player Mikita Badziakouski defeated Austria’s Mario Mosboeck for a jaw-dropping $7,114,500 payday.

“I mean, I feel great… the tournament itself is the biggest title I’ve ever had,” said Badziakouski after his victory. “I just got lucky in a couple big coolers. That’s how it goes, one of the sides has to get lucky and that was me today.”

1 Mikita Badziakouski Belarus $7,114,500
2 Mario Mosboeck Austria $4,663,950
3 Dan Smith USA $2,806,750
4 Isaac Haxton USA $1,224,800

You can read up on the action via the Live Updates on

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*All photos by WPT


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Tricia David

Tricia David has long experience as a recreational poker player and has been covering poker events since 2010 for numerous outfits in Asia. She spent one year working part time with Poker Portal Asia then became editor and lead writer for all event coverage of the Philippine Poker Tour (PPT). Under the PPT, she overlooked content for their website, and produced live updates on all their events. In addition, she served as the live and online events website content writer for the Asian Poker Tour. Currently, she does live events reporting in Asia for online news site Somuchpoker and is also one of their news contributors.

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