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Santhosh Suvarna Wins World Series of Poker $250,000 Buy-In Event For $5.4 Million

Indian Businessman Tops Field of 75 Entries To Secure His Second WSOP Bracelet

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Santhosh Suvarna first picked up poker seven years ago, and only began to try his hand at tournaments in the past few years. The 43-year-old businessman from India has already accumulated more than $13.1 million in career earnings despite only recording his first cash in 2020. His most recent payday was also his largest, as Suvarna took down the 2024 World Series of Poker $250,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em event for $5,415,152 and his second career gold bracelet.

“I’m really so happy,” Suvarna told Card Player after coming out on top. “My dream has come true.”

“This is a very big tournament,” he continued. “I played a million dollar buy-in tournament, but this had bigger numbers. The main thing is that this is WSOP.

This bracelet victory came just over seven months after Suvarna’s first, which saw him take down the €50,000 buy-in high roller at the 2023 WSOP Europe for $689,000. That title run was hot off of Suvarna recording his then-highest score of $1.7 million for a third-place finish in the 2023 Triton Monte Carlo main event.

Suvarna credits his fast learning cave on the tournament scene to throwing himself into the deep end, playing super high roller events against the biggest stars in the game.

“I started with Triton only, big tournament only,” he said. “In those events, all of the players are the best in the world. So, daily, I am learning.”

In addition to the money and the hardware, this latest victory also saw Suvarna score plenty of rankings points. He was awarded 840 Card Player Player of the Year points, bringing his total to 1,404 across three final-table finishes this year. As a result, he now sits in 170th place in the 2024 POY standings presented by Global Poker.

Suvarna also earned 800 PokerGO Tour points, enough to catapult him into 15th place in that season-long points race.

This event drew a total of 75 entries, creating a prize pool of $18,675,000 that was split up amongst the top 12 finishers. Bracelet winner Brian Kim was knocked out on the $506,757 money bubble. He was soon joined on the rail by World Poker Tour champion Jonathan Jaffe (12th), 11-time bracelet winner Phil Ivey (11th), and four-time bracelet winner Adrian Mateos (10th).

Mikita BadziakouskiHigh-stakes online cash game crusher Ben Tollerene was the chip leader when the final table was set, while Suvarna sat in third chip position. Sean Winter was sent packing in ninth place when his pocket kings were cracked by the pocket queens of WPT champion Taylor von Kriegenbergh. Winter earned $550,878 as the ninth-place finisher. This pushed him over $30 million in career tournament earnings.

Bracelet winner Mikita Badziakouski Badziakouski was the next to fall. The Belarusian got all-in with A-8 facing the pocket jacks of Matthias Eibinger and was unable to come from behind. The $629,407 he earned as the eighth-place finisher was enough to grow his lifetime haul to nearly $57.8 million.

Six-time bracelet winner Jeremy Ausmus got all-in with K-Q facing the A-10 of Tollerene, who was already well out in front of the pack. Tolleren flopped a ten and held from there to send Ausmus to the rail with $754,052. The 2012 WSOP main event fifth-place finisher now has more than $21 million in total scores to his name.

The next knockout saw Tollerene river a straight against an under-represented top set for von Kriegenbergh, who had just flat-called Tollerene’s under-the-gun preflop raise with pocket kings from the button and then called the flop in position after spiking a king. Tollerene fired another barrel on the turn after improving to a gutshot straight draw with his J-10 offsuit. The river brought a queen, giving Tollerene an unbeatable king-high straight. He fired again and von Kriegenbergh raised. Tollerene moved all-in and von Kriegenbergh made the call to finish sixth for $945,219.

Tollerene then won a race with A-K against the pocket tens of Charles Hook, with the board bringing quad deuces to see Tollerene win with his ace kicker. Hook walked away with a career-best tournament score of $1,237,296 for his fifth-place finish.

Matthias Eibinger got the last of his stack in preflop with pocket deuces against the K-9 suited of Tollerene, who had really upped the aggression as he continued to pull away from the pack. Tollerene turned a straight to end Eibinger’s run in fourth place. This was the second-largest score of the Austrian pro’s career.

Chris HunichenJust three days after he took down the $100,000 buy-in for his first bracelet and more than $2.8 million, Chris Hunichen managed to finish third in this event for another $2,397,312. Hunichen got all-in with a flush draw facing the flopped two pair of Suvarna and was unable to improve from there. He now has nearly $18.4 million in career earnings after his incredible week at the WSOP.

Heads-up play began with Tollerene holding 64,000,000 to Suvarna’s 48,500,000. Suvarna worked his way into the lead, only for Tollerene to snatch it back. Then Suvarna flopped a straight against Tollerene’s top pair. Both players checked on the flop and Tollerene improved to tens and fours on the turn. He led out and called a raise from Suvarna. The river brought a brick and Tollerene checked. Suvarna moved all-in and Tollerene called, giving Suvarna a massive double-up.

Suvarna held roughly a 10:1 chip lead after that massive pot. Tollerene managed one double up, but was soon all-in again with QDiamond Suit4Club Suit (shoved from the button for six big blinds) facing the 10Heart Suit7Club Suit of Suvarna, who called from the big blind. The board ran out AHeart SuitJSpade Suit5Heart SuitASpade Suit10Spade Suit and Suvarna rivered a ten to win the pot and the title.

Tollerene earned a career-best payday of $3,537,135 as the runner-up. He now has nearly $15.6 million in lifetime tournament earnings.

Here is a look at the payouts and rankings points awarded in this event:

Place Player Earnings POY Points PGT Points
1 Santhosh Suvarna $5,415,152 840 800
2 Benjamin Tollerene $3,537,135 700 600
3 Christopher Hunichen $2,397,312 560 500
4 Matthias Eibinger $1,688,278 420 450
5 Charles Hook $1,237,296 350 400
6 Taylor von Kriegenbergh $945,219 280 284
7 Jeremy Ausmus $754,052 210 226
8 Mikita Badziakouski $629,407 140 189
9 Sean Winter $550,878 70 165

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