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Jordan Saccucci Wins 2022 EPT Prague Main Event For $958,913

The 33-Year-Old Canadian Topped A Record Field of 1,267 Entries In The €5,300 Buy-In To Secure His First Major Title

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The 2022 European Poker Tour Prague €5,300 buy-in no-limit hold’em main event attracted 1,227 entries across its two starting flights at the Hilton Hotel Prague in the Czech Republic. The impressive turnout was the largest in this event’s history, topping a 1,192-entry turnout in 2016. As a result of the record field, the prize pool swelled to $6,564,036.

In the end, the largest share of that prize money was awarded to Canada’s Jordan Saccucci. The 33-year-old from Mississauga, Ontario was awarded $958,913 and his first major live tournament title as the champion.

“It was a roller-coaster, ups and downs, but it was good. I enjoyed it, I had fun,” Saccucci told EPT commentator Joe Stapleton after coming out on top.

In addition to the trophy and the money, Saccucci also earned 1,920 Card Player Player of the Year points for the win. This was his first POY-qualified score of the year, but this massive victory alone was enough to catapult him into a four-way tie for 160th place in the 2022 POY standings sponsored by Global Poker.

The top 183 finishers made the money in this event, with plenty of big names running deep including four-time bracelet winner Adrian Mateos (144th), two-time bracelet winner Robert Cowen (138th), bracelet winner Sam Greenwood (135th), EPT and World Poekr Tour champion Mike Watson (53rd), bracelet winner Pascal LeFrancois (42nd), top online tournament player Conor Beresford (23rd), bracelet winner Timothy Adams (18th), and bracelet winner Simon Lofberg (10th).

The final table played out over the course of two days. The first began with Saccucci leading the final nine. He won a classic race with A-K against the pocket sevens Paul-Adrian Covaciu (9th ) to extend that chip advantage. 2017 Card Player Poker Toru Venetian main event winner Javier Gomez (8th – $133,035) soon followed, with his Q-J failing to overcome the A-7 suited of Luigi D’Alterio.

Petar Kalev’s run came to an end when his K-10 suited ran into the A-J of D’Alterio, which made a pair of jacks on the river to secure the pot for D’Alterio and send Kalev home with $224,858 for his seventh-place showing.

Despite scoring those two knockouts, D’Alterio was the next to be eliminated. He shoved from under the gun with pocket eights and was called by Istvan Pilhofer, who held A-K. Pilhofer flopped a king and held from there to send D’Alterio packing in sixth place ($224,858).

Parker TalbotThe first day of final-table action concluded with the elimination of PokerStars ambassador Parker Talbot. The Canadian player and online streamer known to many as ‘tonkaaaa’ got all-in with his pocket kings leading the pocket nines of Saccucci, but a nine0high flop left him in rough shape with two cards to come. The turn and river were no help and Talbot was knocked out in fifth place ($292,373). This was the largest score of his career, topping the $204,470 he earned for a sixth-place showing in this same event back in 2018.

Saccucci bagged up the chip lead after that elimination, with two-time WSOP main event final tablist Antoine Saout sitting on the next-largest stack. Jun Obara was the first to get all-in on the final day of the event. He check-raised all-in on a jack-high flop with K-J, only to receive a call from Saccucci and his pocket kings. The overpair held up and Obara was sent to the rail in fourth place ($380,048).

A battle of the blinds spelled the end of Istvan Pilhofer’s title bid. Saout shoved from the small blind with pocket deuces and Pilhofer called with A-9 suited. Saout flopped a set and turned a full house to leave Pilhofer drawing dead heading into the river. The Hungarian earned $494,025 as the third-place finisher.

With that, Saccucci took a slight lead into heads-up play with Saout. The pair made a deal that saw each lock up $840,000, leaving the title and the remaining $118,913 to play for. Saccucci was able to quickly extend his lead during the early going, taking more than a 2:1 advantage by the time the final hand was dealt.

With blinds of 25,000-250,000 and a 250,000 big blind ante, Saccucci raised to 600,000 from the button with ADiamond Suit3Club Suit. Saout three-bet to 2,000,000 with 6Heart Suit6Club Suit. Saccucci three-bet all-in and Saout called for around 11.6 million. The board ran out 4Spade Suit3Spade Suit3Heart Suit9Heart Suit9Spade Suit to give Saccucci threes full of nines for the win. Saout was eliminated in second place, earning the $840,000 he negotiated for in the deal. He now has more than $9.2 million in career earnings to his name.

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

Place Player Earnings POY Points
1 Jordan Saccucci $958,913 1920
2 Antoine Saout $840,000 1600
3 Istvan Pilhofer $494,025 1280
4 Jun Obara $380,048 960
5 Parker Talbot $292,373 800
6 Luigi D’Alterio $224,858 640
7 Petar Kalev $172,988 480
8 Javier Gomez $133,035 320
9 Paul-Adrian Covaciu $102,323 160

Photo credit: Tomas Stacha / Rational Intellectual Holdings Ltd.