Stoyan Madanzhiev emerged from the 38 Day 3 starters to win the 2020 World Series of Poker Online Main Event.

For the last five days, 38 poker players have been dreaming about having the possibility of becoming the 2020 World Series of Poker Online Main Event champion.

That’s how many players were left when the tournament was paused last Monday. Bryan Piccioli was the chip leader and online crushers Benjamine Rolle, Samuel Vousden, and Jonas Lauck were all still in contention. But as the 38 players began clicking buttons on Saturday afternoon, those four players were all pushed aside to make way for Serbian Stoyan ‘Nirvana76’ Madanzhiev.

Piccioli was eliminated in 23rd place after coming out on the losing end of a massive pot with Julien Perouse before surrendering the remainder of his stack to Rolle. Lauck went out in 34th place while Vousden and Rolle went out in 12th and 11th place respectively.

The final table started with Tyler Rueger in the lead and Madanzhiev in second place.

Almost as quickly as Samuel Taylor took his seat at the final table, he was removed from it in brutal fashion. Wenling Gao raised to 1,400,000 from UTG+1 and Taylor, who started the final table with the sixth largest stack, called from middle position. The flop came 9s7h3c and Gao bet 1,750,000 and Taylor called. The turn was the Ac and Gao checked. Taylor bet 4,200,000 and Gao clicked back to 11,900,000. Taylor called. The Qs completed the board and Gao bet 8,750,000. Taylor moved all in for 9,918,268 and Gao snap-called. Taylor showed 9c9d for a flopped set but Gao showed AdAs for top set to eliminate Taylor in ninth.

It was 24 minutes before the next player was eliminated. Rueger raised to 1,400,000 from UTG+1. Tyler Cornell shoved his last 4,796,374 into the middle from Rueger’s direct left. Action folded back around to Rueger and he called and showed QdJc. Cornell tabled AdJs but the Qs9c9d flop put Rueger in control. The Kd turn and 8h river changed nothing for Cornell and he was eliminated in eighth place.

Gao found her second victim of the final table just a few moments later. Gao raised to 1,400,000 from UTG+1 before Stefan Schillhabel raised to 7,987,052. Gao re-raised to 25,606,156 and Schillhabel called off the last 2,100,000 in his stack. Gao tabled AcKh and found out she was racing against Schillhabel’s TcTs. The 7c5c4c flop gave Gao the nut flush draw to go with her two overcards. The Kc turn gave her the nut flush and Schillhabel was eliminated in seventh place as the 5s completed the board.

Rueger went back to work as the executioner just 35 minutes later. Rueger min-raised to 1,400,000 from the cutoff and Joao Santos moved all in for 9,061,138 from the big blind. Rueger called and turned over AdKh which was bad news for Santos who tabled Ah2s. The Jd3d3s flop gave Santos some chop out and the 4h turn gave him extra outs for the win. The river was the 7s to miss both players to give Rueger the pot and eliminate Santos in sixth place.

Four minutes later, Satoshi Isomae was sent to the rail. Madanzhiev raised to 1,540,000 from late position and Isomae re-raised from the small blind to 4,483,500. Madanzhiev called and the pair saw a flop of Js9s5c. Isomae bet 11,605,800 and Madanzhiev called. The turn was the 7h and both players checked to see the 6s river. Isomae moved all in for 23,411,295 and Madanzhiev called. Isomae showed AcQd for ace-high which wasn’t good enough to beat Mandazhiev who flopped top two pair with Jd9d. Isomae was eliminated in fifth.

On the very next hand, Gao was once again in charge of ending one of her foe’s tournaments. Action folded to Thomas Ward on the button and he moved all in for 9,508,960 before Gao called from the small blind. Ward tabled 6c6s and Gao was ahead with 7c7s. The board ran out QdJh8hJsKc to eliminate Ward in fourth place.

The inevitable confrontation between Gao and Rueger happened 14 minutes later. Gao raised to 1,400,000 from the button before Rueger raised to 4,395,000 from the big blind. Gao made it 9,800,000 to go and Rueger replied by moving all in for 48,697,202. Gao called and showed KdKh while Rueger tabled AhQs. Rueger whiffed on the 8d7s6c flop and got no relief via the 8c turn or 2c river and was eliminated in third place.

Madanzhiev held an eight big blind lead over Gao when heads up play began. Madanzhiever ceased control as the pair battled for a half hour. On the final hand of the tournament, Gao raised to 1,600,000 and Madanzhiev called. The flop came 5c4h3s and Madanzhiev bet 1,700,000. Gao raised to 3,944,000 and Madanzhiev called. The 8h turn got Madanzhiev to check. Gao bet 5,644,000 and Madanzhiev raised to 15,040,000. Gao moveda all in for 8X,000,000 and Madanzhiev called. Gao tabled AcAd but Madanzhiev showed 7d6h for a flopped straight that improved on the turn. The meaningless river was the 8s and Gao was eliminated in second place giving Madanzhiev the 2020 WSOP Online Main Event bracelet and just over $3.9 million.

After his victory, the Bulgarian 29-year-old was ready to celebrate.


Final Table Payouts

  1. Stoyan Madanzhiev – $3,904,686
  2. Wenling Gao – $2,748,605
  3. Tyler Rueger – $1,928,887
  4. Thomas Ward – $1,353,634
  5. Satoshi Isomae – $949,937
  6. Joao Santos – $666,637
  7. Stefan Schillhabel – $467,825
  8. Tyler Cornell – $328,305
  9. Samuel Taylor – $230,395