The World Series of Poker Winter Online Circuit taking place on Natural8 – GG Network will soon come to a close with 17 rings now claimed. Latest winners were David “MyLastHand! Comeron who captured his second WSOP ring while Niklas Astedt and Samuli “BeastsSag_A” Sipila both locked up their first. Only one event left to award, that’s the festival headliner US$ 1,700 MAIN EVENT. Of the 6,395 total entries, it is now down to the final 9 players. They return to action on January 17 @230am HKT to hunt down the WSOP Winter Online Circuit championship ring and the hefty US$ 1,236,360.75 first prize. If you have a hunch on who will take it, try turning it into some cash by placing a bet on the network’s Final Table Betting option. Currently in the lead is Lithuania’s Paulis Plausinaitis. Also in the lineup are WSOP decorated champions Joseph Cheong and Alexandru Papazian. Check out our recaps below.
The World Series of Poker Winter Online Circuit got underway on December 13 with 18 rings up for grabs. 17 have now been awarded – one each for Spain, Sweden, Finland, Uruguay, USA, India, Luxembourg, Korea, Estonia, Hong Kong, Ukraine, Germany, Australia, and two each for Russia and Brazil. Also on offer was an exorbitant guarantee of 100 MILLION DOLLARS which was surpassed, US$ 36,876,008 in ring events and US$ 75,900,337 paid out in side events, for a grand total of US$ 112,776,345 in combined prize pools.
Taking a look at the WSOPC Player of the Series Leaderboard race, China’s Wei Zhao continues to hold the top spot. His latest wins were at the High Roller $2,500 Blade PLO and High Rollers $3,150 Bounty King Omaha. Zhao also finished 4th at Ring Event #4: US$ 800 Monster Stack No Limit Hold’em. Next two down the leaderboard rung are Aleksei Barkov and Amichai Barer. We will have the official results when the Main Event completes. Only the top 100 will be awarded a share of the US$ 100,000 purse with the highest in points pocketing US$ 10,000.
WSOPC #13: $10,000 Heads Up NLHE – NIKLAS ASTEDT – US$ 348,250
To the thrill of attending players, the US$ 10,000 Heads Up No Limit Hold’em that ran on January 3 was great value as it did not meet its 128 player cap. This resulted in an overlay of US$ 88,200 and was the only event that failed to meet its guarantee. The top 8 players earned a piece of the US$ 1,000,000 prize pool. Four players cashed at the quarters – Juan Pardo Dominguez, Oliver Weis, George Wolff, and Wiktor Malinowski – while the final four battled it out on January 9. Emerging victorious was online superstar Niklas Astedt who defeated Cooper Li at the semis and Mirza Muhovic at the finals. Astedt shipped the US$ 348,250 first prize and brought Sweden its first ring in this series.
Niklas Astedt is recognized as the most winning online tournament player with a staggering US$ 21 million or more in online tournament earnings. That amount has increased with consistent sick runs in the GG Network. Since his entry to the site in October 2020, Astedt has racked up over US$ 6.4 million in tournament earnings. Where he truly dominated was at the weekly Super MILLION$ High Rollers reaching the final table six times, of which three were runner up finishes, to collect over US$ 1.5 million on those events alone. Last summer, Astedt nearly clasped a WSOP bracelet, falling one spot shy at the US$ 1,500 No Limit Hold’em. Though his forte is online, he also has a commendable live tournament portfolio amounting to US$ 1.15M. He has four live titles with his largest live tournament score of US$ 380,245 earned at the 2015 EPT Barcelona High Rollers 8 Max for 4th place.
Event Details and Recap
Date: January 3 @2am HKT
Final Day: January 9 @230am HKT
Buy in: US$ 10,000
Guarantee: US$ 1,000,000
Prize pool: US$ 1,000,000
ITM: 8 places
To reach the semi finals, Astedt defeated Timothy Adams, Lucas Reeves, Guillame Nolet, and Wiktor Malinowski (quarters). For runner up Mirza Muhovic, his road to the semi finals saw him defeat Anton Morgenstern, Koray Turker, Fany Auge, Juan Carlos Vecino Duenas, and Juan Pardo Dominguez (quarters).
At the semis, both Astedt and Muhovic dominated their opponents. First to complete was Muhovic who eliminated Ian Modder on a straight flush over a straight. Muhovic even commented afterward “brutal runout”. The winning hand was to on a board pictured below. Two minutes later, Astedt disposed of Cooper Li Garcia Santos with his higher two pair improving to a full house. The all in was on the turn with Astedt showing and Cooper , river came .
At the finals, Astedt got off to a strong start that by Level 2, he had built up a big lead however Muhovic doubled up to switch places on a winning nut flush against Astedt’s Aces. Muhovic pulled further ahead to practically own Level 3. On Level 4, Astedt grinded back to chip leader then both played tug of war for the top spot. At Level 5, Astedt was ahead which he brought into Level 6. At this stage, the average stack was 62.5 BB. Muhovic was nearly at the danger zone and kept shoving for chips. Muhovic was finally called which led to a double up to 25 BB. Level 7 spelled doom for Muhovic with the average at 50 BB. Astedt continued to dominate and soon shipped it with over on a blank board.
1st Niklas Astedt – Sweden – US$ 348,250
2nd Mirza Muhovic – Luxembourg – US$ 199,000
3rd Cooper Li Garcia Santos – Malaysia – US$ 99,500
4th Ian Modder – Canada – US$ 99,500
5th Juan Pardo Dominguez – Spain – US$ 62,187.50
6th George Wolff – USA – US$ 62,187.50
7th Oliver Weis – Germany – US$ 62,187.50
8th Wiktor Malinowski – Poland – US$ 62,187.50
WSOPC #16: $3,000 Pot Limit Omaha Championship – SAMULI “BeastsSag_A” SIPILA – US$ 185,491.92
204 hungry PLO enthusiasts came out for the $3,000 Pot Limit Omaha Championship with many firing more than one bullet. At the close of late registration, an astounding 144 re-entries were added to the pot for a smashing prize pool of US$ 991,800, nearly double the guarantee. Just under ten hours of play, the chase ended with Finland’s Samuli “BeastsSag_A” Sipila defeating fellow countryman Jarkko “Long Drink” Nystrom to grab his first ever WSOPC ring and a career high score of US$ 185,491.92. This was also Finland’s first ring this series.
Recognized as a mid stakes cash game professional who specializes in Pot Limit Omaha, Sipila has had his share of wins both live and online. He has two SCOOP titles – 2017 US$ 2,100 PLO Heads Up and 2019 US$ 55+R PLO 6 Max -, three WCOOP titles, and his largest online score was for U$ 430,047 earned at the 2016 U$10,300 POWERFEST Super High Roller event on Bwin Poker. He now added a WSOP title to that list. Based on The Hendon Mob, Sipila has also had six live wins since 2012 with his largest payout of US$ 88,429 earned in 2017 at the Master Classics of Poker – PLO High Roller event – held in Amsterdam. Sipila’s live tournament earnings of US$ 775K are just a fraction of his massive online winnings.
Date: January 6 @2am HKT
Buy in: US$ 3,000
Guarantee: US$ 500,000
Prize pool: US$ 991,800
Payout distribution: 15%
ITM: 55 places
Running time: Nine hours and 40 minutes
Among the numerous re-entries, it was triple bulleted Amichai Barer who got the boot on the bubble. Others missing the mark were bracelet winners Joao Vieira and Frank “Sbma2016” Crivello, both also forking up multiple re-entries. To form the final table, Germany’s Kilian “Birdie Power” Loeffler eliminated Joseph Cheong on a board with the all in seen at the flop. Loeffler brought in the second largest stack to the final table while Sipila was chip leader.
Everyone on the virtual felt was gunning for their first ever WSOP victory. It took just over two and a half hours to complete. Finland online PLO crusher Samuli “BeastsSag_A” Sipila led the chase, trailed closely by Kilian “Birdie Power” Loeffler. With the average stack at 48 BB, numerous hands were dealt before the first bust. Arie Muller was first to double up, Benjamin “dr100percent” Juhasz was next that crippled Norway’s trubadur who eventually bowed out in 9th place to Jarkko “Long Drink” Nystrom. An hour later, big stacks Sipila and Loeffler tangled, resulting in both all in at a flop of . Loeffler had set, Sipila , the turn gave Sipila the nut flush, and with the river , out went Loeffler.
After scooping up the enormous pot, Sipila’s massive lead only extended. He proceeded to knock out Juhasz (7th), Rishmague (6th), Arie Muller (5th), and Bernardo “GGeKKo” Dias (4th), then Nystrom booted d1eg0 (3rd) for a Finland heads up match. Throughout the 36 minutes of heads up, Sipila stayed in charge. The final hand was Sipila full house over Nystrom’s two pair on a board .
Final table payouts
1st Samuli “BeastsSag_A” Sipila – Finland – US$ 185,491.92
2nd Jarkko “Long Drink” Nystrom – Finland – US$ 139,099.08
3rd d1eg0 – Israel – US$ 104,309.58
4th Bernardo “GGeKKo” Dias – Brazil – US$ 78,221.16
5th Arie Muller – Germany – US$ 58,657.63
6th Rishmague – Chile – US$ 43,986.95
7th Benjamin “dr100percent” Juhasz – Hungary – US$ 32,985.55
8th Kilian “Birdie Power” Loeffler – Germany – US$ 24,735.66
9th trubadur – Norway – US$ 18,549.15
WSOP decorated players profiting: Joseph Cheong (10th), James “ruminramen” Collopy (19th), Yuri Dzivielevski (26th), Jesse “AAGenius88” Mercado (30th), Norbert “ElCabanero” Szecsi (32nd), Jens Kyllonen (37th), Jha Helppi (41st), and Yan Shing Anson “Tara@0z” Tsang (46th).
WSOPC #17: $252 Deepstack Bounty Hunters No Limit Hold’em – DAVID “MyLastHand!” COMERON – US$ 64,389.90
The seventeenth ring event offered was the $252 Deepstack Bounty Hunters No Limit Hold’em with 2,963 turning up. This ballooned the pot to US$ 711,120 with 368 players paid. The event ran a lengthy 12 hours and 31 minutes making it the longest single day event of the series. Spain’s David “MyLastHand!” Cameron Carrasco outlasted the competition to bring home US$ 64,389.90 and his second career WSOP ring.
David Comeron Carrasco may not have a long list of live tournament cashes under his belt however he does have two rings to boast of. Prior to this win, Comeron claimed his first at the 2018/19 WSOP International Circuit in Marrakech, Morocco for his victory at the MAD $4,500 buy in Freezeout for MAD $95,900 (~US$ 10,900). In terms of cash, Comeron’s biggest payout was for € 164,000 (~US$ 180,680) at the Global Poker Million in Cyprus on an even split heads up deal with Zamorano Saez. Comeron has over US$ 200K in live tournament earnings. On the GG Network, he has US$ 572K in earnings.
Date: January 9 @8pm HKT
Buy in: US$ 252
Guarantee: US$ 500,000
Prize pool: US$ 711,120
Payout Distribution: 12%
ITM: 368 places
Running time: 12 hours and 31 minutes
The final table kicked off with Cyprus’s Grave Digg3r as chip leader, Singapore’s Ho Bao “Yummers19” Qiang carrying the largest bounty on his head, and Russia’s v_Nistelrooy on his second final table appearance this series.
The final race to glory lasted two and a half hours. First to fall was Song “xuesong” Xue to Ho Bao “Yummers19” Qiang with pocket threes holding against overcards. Qiang surged higher on a double up off then chip leader Grave Digg3r with four-of-a-kind Tens over a flush. With Grave Digg3r beaten up, he tumbled in 8th place to David “MyLastHand!” Cameron who later eliminated short stacked ThewSenior in 7th place. Chip leader Qiang earned his second bust in v_Nistelrooy (6th) with pocket Jacks holding against A4o, however, on an ensuing hand, Qiang lost most of it to Comeron with trips losing to full house on a board . Action saw Qiang shove on the river, Comeron called with less chips. This gave Comeron a massive lead which he never relinquished.
Comeron finished off Rafael Reis (5th), did the same to Qiang (4th) with pocket sevens besting overcards, then emptied out Mikhael “zyxel777” Aleksandrov in 3rd place to face Tam “LilyP” Le at heads up ahead nearly 5:1. The final hand quickly arrived with Le shoving K5o only to fall to Comeron’s Q10 clubs suited on a board that felted three clubs. In addition to the US$ 28,775.90 first prize, Comeron picked up an impressive US$ 35,614 in bounty rewards to pocket a combined US$ 64,389.90 and of course the WSOP ring.
Final table payouts
1st David “MyLastHand!” Comeron Carrasco – Spain – US$ 28,775.90 + US$ 35,614 bounties = US$ 64,389.90
2nd Tam “LilyP” Le – New Zealand – US$ 28,703.19 + US$ 3,584.06 bounties = US$ 32,387.25
3rd Mikhael “zyxel777” Aleksandrov – Russia – US$ 20,925.54 + US$ 4,420.77 bounties = US$ 25,346.31
4th Ho Bao “Yummers19” Qiang – Singapore – US$ 15,236.62 + US$ 10,740.64 bounties = US$ 25,977.26
5th Rafael Reis – Brazil – US$ 11,094.29 + US$ 1,860 bounties = US$ 12,954.29
6th v_Nistelrooy – Russia – US$ 8,078.15 + US$ 2,581.87 bounties = US$ 10,660.02
7th ThewSenior – Canada – US$ 5,881.98 + US$ 926.25 bounties = US$ 6,808.23
8th Grave Digg3r – Cyprus – US$ 4,282.88 + US$ 3,974.06 bounties = US$ 8,256.94
9th Song “xuesong” Xue – China – US$ 3,118.51 + US$ 4,696.76 bounties = US$ 7,815.27
Paused: WSOP#18: $1,700 Main Event
The final event of the series was none other than the star attraction, the US$ 1,700 buy in MAIN EVENT with an eye popping ten million dollars guaranteed. After 31 entry flights, 6,395 joined the hunt for another smashing prize pool, this one was worth US$ 10,327,925. Day 2 kicked off with 1,112 qualifiers. Two minutes shy of seven hours, the final table was formed led by Lithuania’s Paulis Plausinaitis. The final 9 players return to action on January 17 @230am HKT for the championship ring and the US$ 1,236,360.75 first prize.
Final 9 players
Paulis Plausinaitis – Lithuania – 76,004,224 – 95 BB
Artsiom “Amsterq” Prostak – Belarus – 54,179,291 – 67.7 BB
Joseph Cheong – USA – 50,700,582 – 63.4 BB
likeboy – China – 47,269,129 – 59.1 – BB
Alexandru Papazian – Romania – 25,140,091 – 31.4 BB
turkey1 – China – 21,939,160 – 27.4 BB
BetAddict – Israel – 20,263,058 – 25.3 BB
Joni Jouhkimainen – Finland – 13,814,882 – 17.3 BB
DaiMing141319 – 8,992,305 – 11.2 BB
Chip leader Paulis Plausinaitis is still seeking his first career win having gotten very close last summer at the 2020 WSOP Online US$ 25K No Limit Hold’em Poker Players Championship where he finished in 8th place for US$ 210K. To reach glory, he will have his hands full with two WSOP decorated players in the lineup, Joseph Cheong and Alexandru Papazian.
For Cheong, he is seeking his fourth ring; he also has one WSOP bracelet which he captured at the 2019 WSOP US$ 1,000 Double Stack No Limit Hold’em. Cheong will bring in the longest list of live tournament achievements amounting to over US$ 14.6 million. His largest payout was for US$ 4.1M for 3rd place at the 2014 WSOP Main Event; his second largest was for US$ 1.3 million at the 2013 APT Philippines Manila Millions Super High Roller event. For Papazian, he hopes to make his sixth bullet count. He is decorated with one bracelet at the 2018 US$ 888 Crazy Eights No Limit Hold’em 8 Handed for US$ 888,888. His largest live tournament payout was € 1,197,000 (~US$ 1.38M) for his victory at the 2016 EPT Monte Carlo € 25,750 High Roller. He currently has US$ 3.4 million in live tournament earnings. Another strong player in the roster is Finland pro Joni Jouhkimainen who hopes his third bullet is the lucky charm. Jouhkimainen is seeking his first WSOP win and first seven digit payout. He got close to a bracelet last summer where he finished 3rd at the 2020 WSOP Online COLOSSUS for his largest WSOP payout of US$ 308,905. His largest live cash was for nearly 500K at the 2012 EPT Barcelona Main Event for 3rd place.
Other players filling up the final 9 virtual seats are Artsiom “Amsterq” Prostak ranked 2nd, three players from China – likeboy, turkey1, DaiMing141319 -, and Israeli player “BetAddict” who won the 2020 WPT Asia Online Series Superstack Classic.
1st US$ 1,236,360.75
2nd US$ 923,164.95
3rd US$ 692,276.35
4th US$ 519,134.30
5th US$ 389,295.49
6th US$ 291,930.77
7th US$ 218,916.73
8th US$ 164,164.68
9th US$ 123,105.78
Starting Days: 31 total (began January 2)
Day 2: January 11 @0230am HKT
Final table: January 17 @230am HKT
Buy in: US$ 1,700
Guarantee: US$ 10,000,000
Cumulative Entries: 6,395
Prize pool: US$ 10,327,925
Payout distribution: 10%
Day 2 qualifiers: 1,112
ITM: 700 places
Day 2 running time: 6 hours and 58 minutes
Tough chase for many pros at Day 2 as many fell before reaching the money. Among them were Kristen Bicknell, Alex Kolonias, Abhinav Iyer, Wei Zhao, Fedor Holz, Nick Petrangelo, Elio Fox, Juan Pardo Dominguez, and HKPPA players Sparrow Cheung and Vincent Li to name a few. An hour and ten minutes in, Benjamin “Geraaaard” Chalot fell on the bubble to Bernard Larabi with AK unable to improve against pocket Queens.
Once the cash flowed so did a cascade of bust outs. Fifteen minutes after the bubble burst, 234 players were eliminated, among them were David Peters (517th), Peter “BIG CHI” Chien (539th), Urmo Velvelt (543rd), Ho Bao “Yummers19” Qiang (581st), Ryan Riess (601st), and Brunno Botteon (640th).
As more fell, others rose. Entering Level 6, Plausinaitis railed J-Dubya with over to zoom to the top for the first time. Two time bracelet champion / ring winner Michael Addamo also had his time up top, even seen crushing the felt at Level 11, but he eventually fell in 67th place to TheFirestarter with pairing the ten on the turn to overtake . Natural8 Team Hot pro Danny Tang ran deep as well, exiting in 24th place with running into Matthew “BTC2zero” Stone’s . WSOP decorated player Hun Wei Lee met his end on a counterfeited pair. Lee was all in preflop with , called by Jareth “Uraizeifold” East , the board ran for a full house to East. Recent ring winner Aleksey “ImLuckPads” Savenkov was stopped in 32nd place by Nicola “JuStOnETiMe_” Angelini with over . For the 2020 WPT Online Asia Mini Main Event champion Jung Chou “DragonChou” Chen, he found his way into the final two tables then bowed out in 15th place to BetAddict with dominating throughout.
One of the most impressive climbs of the day was ring winner Chi Jen “PetitFoxx” Chu who went from under 2 BB at the start of Day 2 to 31st place. Chu’s final stand was that missed on a three way against iownumind’s and big stacked Simon “FiestaPagana” Mattson’s . Jacks held.
To form the final two tables, China’s “likeboy” A5o got lucky on Idris Ambraisse’s A7s with two fives felted. At 18 remaining, DaiMing141319 denied Dorian “Gladiador20” Rios a double up (18th) with spiking a three on the flop to beat . Next shoves saw Artsiom “Amsterq” Prostak eliminate Patrick “marypoppins” Hu-A-Kam (17th) with K10o dominating Q9o, Philippe D’Auteuil was next to go followed by Jung Chou “DragonChou” Chen, then Plausinaitis grabbed the lead on a double up through turkey1 with sticking against that missed the board. Turkey1 made up the lost chips by emptying out topboi with nut flush over second nuts, China’s “likeboy” finished off Junichi “Jun@N” Nakanowatari, and Joseph Cheong helped out by sending JuStOnETiMe_ packing in 12th place. Another bad beat was delivered when Plausinaitis rivered a flush to oust Drew “BigPavelski” Soik in 11th place. The final 9 emerged at the fall of iownmind to Alex Papazian’s set on the river (pictured below).
Exclusive Natural8 Promo: WSOPC LiveX – Live Event Sponsorship
Two Natural8 players walked away not only with shiny new WSOPC rings but also with a LiveX Live Event Sponsorship. Hong Kong pro Yan Shing Anson “Tara@0z” Tsang and Australian pro Michael Addamo each earned a $5,000 LiveX Sponsorship package that includes:
• 6-month LiveX Crew Sponsorship
• $5,000 Las Vegas Package ($2,500 to cover your buy-ins and $2,500 for expenses)
Both players were the series’s holiday event champions. Tsang won the US$ 400 CHRISTMAS PLOSSUS and Addamo won the US$ 400 NEW YEAR COLOSSUS.
Stay tuned to Somuchpoker as we bring you the final recap and review of the WSOP Winter Circuit Online Series at the conclusion of the MAIN EVENT.