The 2023 Poker Masters champion is the British poker legend Stephen Chidwick. The adopted Las Vegas resident, and tournament titan, cashed four times in ten events against some of the best players in the world to claim the $50,000 Championship Bonus to add to over a million dollars in winnings over a fantastic fortnight of poker.
Late Run Starts Second Half of Festival
While he played in the first five events of the 10 to take place at the PokerGO Studio at ARIA in Las Vegas last week, Chidwick didn’t cash until Event #6. His first cash in the series came in the final $10,000-entry No Limit Event on the schedule, as he made the final table but ultimately paid for not being higher up the leaderboard at the right time. Busting with to Justin Bonomo’s , Chidwick could have no complaints about cashing for $57,000, almost as much as the first six-buy-ins.
Event #7 saw Chidwick draw a blank in the first of three $25,000 buy-in No Limit Hold’em events to take place of the ten. It was to prove the final time he wouldn’t cash in the 2023 Poker Masters, as he began Event #8 like he started it, in total and utter dominance.
The final table of Event #8 was the most one-sided event of the entire festival. Chidwick went into play with 57% of the remaining chips with six remaining. He took apart the final table, often getting his chips in with dominating ace-high hands. He started heads-up with over 6.6 million chips to Sam Soverel’s 825,000, and when Soverel shoved on a board showing with , Chidwick called with for a turned flush. Chidwick rode out the river and claimed the trophy and $400,000 top prize. Suddenly, he had a chance to make a late charge for the line.
Podium Places Provide Purple Jacket
In Event #9, and with just two events left, Chidwick was determined to make the latter stages of the tournament. Justin Bonomo grabbed the headlines, securing victory for a title worth $333,000, a good chunk of the deficit he currently faces at the top of the all-time money list in his race to greatness against Bryn Kenney.
Chidwick, however, was no slouch in that event, coming third for $148,000, only losing when his pocket queens lost to Bonomo’s pocket kings with all the chips in the middle pre-flop. Bonoo celebrated, but Chidwick dived straight into Event #10. Come second and providing he could stop Chino Rheem and Alex Foxen from winning and he would be wearing the infamous Poker Masters Purple Jacket and $50,000 Championship Bonus.
In the final event, as the money bubble approached, Chidwick survived with ace-queen when dominated by Cary Katz, hitting a queen on the flop to score a double-up when his tournament life was on the line. Coming back from there, Chidwick outlasted Rheem in fifth and Foxen in third place, sealing an overall victory after making it to heads-up.
In the final battle for the Event #10 trophy, Chidwick got unlucky, all-in with and losing to Jonathan Jaffe’s when a three landed on the river. By then, however, Chidwick didn’t care. He was being measured up for a new velvet jacket as the reigning 2023 Poker Masters champion.
|Stephen Chidwick’s Poker Masters 2023 Results:|
|Event #||Event Details||Place||Prize||Points|
|6||$10,000 NL Hold’em||6th||$57,000||57|
|8||$25,000 NL Hold’em||1st||$400,000||240|
|9||$25,000 NL Hold’em||3rd||$148,000||89|
|10||$50,000 NL Hold’em||2nd||$504,000||302|
American Players Dominate Leaderboard But Not Top Two
Earning a massive 688 points, Stephen Chidwick eventually finished well clear of Lithuanian player Vladas Tamasauskas at the top of the 2023 Poker Masters leaderboard. Tamasauskas had 506 points from relatively early in the series, but couldn’t cash again, meaning he eventually watched the final event play out through his fingers, praying that six of the final eight who could potentially overtake would all fall at early fences. It didn’t happen and the Lithuanian’s dream will have to wait, but he completed a rare non-American one-two in the Poker Masters.
Overall, Chidwick won $1,159,000 at the 2023 Poker Masters series, including that $50,000 Championship Bonus. Chidwick’s Purple Jacket is a unique trophy, which he can add to both the 2018 U.S. Poker Open champion and 2022 PGT Player of the Year ones that he won in Las Vegas in the very same studio.
With high placings for poker legends for players such as Darren Elias, Alex Foxen and Justin Bonomo, Chidwick cashed four times, once less than both Chino Rheem and Alex Foxen. Chidwick, most importantly, was the only player to win more than $1 million in prize money across the 2023 Poker Masters.
|Poker Masters 2023 Leaderboard Top 10|
|1st||Stephen Chidwick||United Kingdom||1||4||$1,109,000||688|
|3rd||Chino Rheem||United States||1||5||$602,650||487|
|4th||Alex Foxen||United States||0||5||$663,500||460|
|5th||Jonathan Jaffe||United States||1||1||$756,000||454|
|6th||Andrew Lichtenberger||United States||1||4||$367,450||327|
|8th||Darren Elias||United States||1||3||$359,500||319|
|9th||Justin Bonomo||United States||1||2||$447,000||314|
|10th||Brian Kim||United States||0||2||$375,500||284|