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Mario Prats Garcia Wins 2018 WSOP $1,000 Big Blind Ante Turbo No-Limit Hold'em

Spanish Poker Pro Overcomes Field of 1,712 In Just Two Days of Play To Win His First Bracelet and $258,255


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The 2018 World Series of Poker $1,000 big blind ante no-limit hold’em (30-minute levels) event was not officially dubbed a turbo, but it is hard to call this event anything else. The tournament drew a field of 1,712 entries to build a $1,540,800 prize pool and then narrowed that down to a champion in just two days of play. In the end Spain’s Mario Prats Garcia finished the event off in a fitting manner, scoring the final five knockouts needed to secure the title in the span of just 13 hands. Prats Garcia earned his first WSOP gold bracelet and $258,255 as the last player standing.

“I’m super excited, I’m super happy,” Prats Garcia told WSOP reporters after coming out on top. “I finished second last year in one event and I thought I could never get back here. The final table was hard. I sucked out on a couple guys and I got all the chips. I’m super excited and I’m nervous.”

In addition to the money and the bracelet, Prats Garcia was also awarded 1,080 Card Player Player of the Year points for this win. This was his second final table of the year and it catapulted him into 99th place in the 2018 POY rankings.

Prats Gracia came into the second and final day of this event tied for eighth chip position with 41 players remaining. The fast-paced action saw that number narrowed down to a final table of nine in just four hours. A number of big names made day 2, and the money, but failed to survive to the final table, including Manig Loeser (33rd – $6,505) Esther Taylor (21st – $7,967), Joseph Cheong (19th – $7,967), Kathy Liebert (18th – $9,877), Athanasios Polychronopoulos (11th – $15,730) and Jonathan Tamayo (10th -$15,730).

The first elimination of the final table for Prats Garcia saw him send 2011 WSOP main event runner-up finisher Martin Staszko to the rail in eighth place ($26,245). DJ MacKinnon was the next to go when shoved his last two blinds with the KHeart Suit7Heart Suit only to run into the pocket sevens of Matthew Hunt. MacKinnon did not improve and was knocked out in seventh place ($34,486).

That would be the last knockout in this event made by anybody other than Prats Garcia. On the 74th hand of the final table he busted Gregory Worner in sixth place ($45,828). two hands later he finished off Mark Schluter in fifth place ($61,580). WSOP bracelet winner Michael Wang got all-in in a coinflip situation with pocket threes against Prats Garcia’s AHeart SuitKHeart Suit. A king on the flop saw Wang sent home in fourth place ($83,663).

Matthew HuntThe very next hand saw Sebastian Dornbracht fall to Prats Garcia in third place, earning $114,909. With that Matthew Hunt made it to heads-up play, although he had a 7.5-to-1 chip disadvantage to try to overcome. The battle lasted only three hands. Hunt did manage to double up once to close the gap a bit.

In the end Hunt ended up moving all-in over the top of a 400,000 river bet from Prats Garcia after with the board showing 7Diamond Suit5Club Suit4Spade Suit9Diamond Suit8Diamond Suit. Prats Garcia made the call with the QDiamond Suit6Diamond Suit for a flush, beating Hunt’s 10Club Suit6Spade Suit for a ten-high straight. With that Prats Garcia took down the final pot and sent Hunt to the rail with $159,532.

Here is a look at the payouts and POY points awarded at the final table:

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points
1 Mario Prats Garcia $258,255 1080
2 Matthew Hunt $159,532 900
3 Sebastian Dornbracht $114,909 720
4 Michael Wang $83,663 540
5 Mark Schluter $61,580 450
6 Gregory Worner $45,828 360
7 DJ MacKinnon $34,486 270
8 Martin Staszko $26,245 180
9 Lander Lijo $20,202 90

For more coverage from the summer series, visit the 2018 WSOP landing page complete with a full schedule, news, player interviews and event recaps.