Dan Sepiol Outlasts Formidable Final Table to Win the WPT World Championship
Last Updated: January 25, 2024
After a full week of play, the WPT World Championship has crowned its champion. His name is Dan Sepiol, and he will be taking home $5,678,000 and the prestigious title that he seized having outlasted a truly stacked final table.
Sepiol’s victory shows just how fickle tournaments can be. He started the day as the second-shortest stack, and, judging by the results, he was the least experienced player in the crowd. Odds were certainly not stacked in his favor.
Andrew Lichtenberger and Chris Moorman, two tournament crushers, started the day as one and two in chips, and Lichtenberger had a significant lead over the rest of the field.
It looked like very little could prevent him from seizing the title, but poker gods had other plans for the grand finale of the WPT World Championship today.
No Quick Eliminations
The final table started at 4 pm local time today, and it was looking like it could be a long one. The shortest stack, Artur Martirosian, had 25 big blinds to start, and considering the stakes, it was clear it would take some play (or a few serious coolers) before players started to hit the rail.
It took over 50 hands for the first elimination. It was the official short stack to start the day, Artur Martirosian, who was sent packing first, despite managing to claw back some chips.
In a blind vs. blind confrontation, Martirosian moved in with pocket fives against Sepiol’s small blind raise. Sepiol took some time before eventually calling with pocket sevens to put Martirosian at risk.
The turn brought a sweat, as it gave pocket fives a flush draw, but the river bricked, and the final table saw its first casualty. Despite everything, it was still great day for Martirosian, as he takes home $1,207,000 for his efforts over the past several days.
The next to go was Ben Heath. Heath was nursing a short stack for a while, before eventually moving in with Q♥J♦ and getting called by A♣7♣ of Georgios Sotiropoulos. The best hand held up, and Heath was eliminated in fifth, good for $1,583,100.
Dan Sepiol on a Heater
Over the course of the first few dozen poker hands, Sepiol managed to build up his stack to catch up with and even overtake Lichtenberger for the cheap lead. The two exchanged number one position, but Sepiol was putting on a poker performance of his life.
He was also the one behind the next elimination. Sepiol moved all-in on the short-stacked Chris Moorman, who, after some deliberation, made a call with [invalid notations]. He was out-pipped, though, as Sepiol was holding K♣Q♦.
The board ran clean, and Chris Moorman was ousted in third place, banking $2,095,300. At the same time, Sepiol added to his stack, to bring him neck to neck with Lichtenberger yet again.
The two big stacks clashed some hands later, as Lichtenberger found A♣K♦ and Sepiol lookd down at J♥J♦.
Chips quickly found their way to the middle, and it was Lichtenberger at risk. This time around, ‘LuckyChewy’ wasn’t so lucky, as the board failed to produce any help, and he was eliminated in third spot for $2,798,700.
Sepiol Closes the Deal
After winning that massive pot, Dan Sepiol was sitting on the stack of 310,500,000 against 72,600,000 of Georgios Sotiropoulos and was in a great position to win the whole thing.
Interestingly enough, the two men looking at each other across the table and playing for the huge title were actually two shortest stacks and arguably two least experienced, at least when it comes to playing for huge amounts of money.
But that didn’t prevent them from holding their own, picking their spots, and getting lucky when necessary (as is mandatory to win tournaments).
The heads-up battle wasn’t smooth sailing for Sepiol, as Sotriopoulos managed to double up twice, significantly closing the gap and coming right back into the game.
And then, he managed to win another big pot to take the chip lead and turn the tables on Sepiol! It was looking like Sotiropoulos was making a dream comeback while Sepiol was struggling as things simply weren’t going his way.
However, he wouldn’t let that influence his play. Sepiol took the beats with a calm head and waited for the opportunity to retake the chip lead. That opportunity came about when Sotiropoulos turned his top pair into a bluff on a river on a very connected board.
Sepiol took a while, but eventually made the right call, putting his tournament on the line with top and bottom.
This marked the beginning of the end. On the very next hand, Sepiol jammed over Sotiropoulos’ open. Georgios made the call and was well ahead with K♥Q♣ against Sepiol’s K♣3♥.
The flop was safe, and it was looking like another double-up in the making. However, the 3♦ on the turn paired up Sepiol, and when river blanked, it was all over.
Dan Sepiol is officially the latest WPT World Champion, taking home the prestigious trophy and the $5,282,954 first prize (after the heads up deal). The runner-up Georgios Sotiropoulos earned $4,167,246 for his amazing run in this huge tournament.
WPT World Championship Final Six Payouts