Daniel Weinman is the 2023 World Series of Poker Main Event champion. Weinman topped the record-breaking field of 10,043 entries to take home $12,100,000, the largest-ever first-place prize awarded to a WSOP Main Event champion.
On the final day of play, three players returned to action. Weinman was second in chips, sandwiched between chip leader Steven Jones and short stack Adam Walton. Weinman eventually found himself in the lead of the three-handed battle, and then he took a commanding lead into heads-up play when he busted Walton in third place with aces over eights.
Heads-up play lasted 24 hands between Weinman and Jones. On the final clash, it was a battle of both players holding top pair on a jack-high board. Weinman's kicker was best and all he needed to do was fade three outs after calling Jones' shove on the river. The river didn't connect with Jones to give Weinman the title of world champion.
The 2023 WSOP Main Event final table was played in two parts. The first part took place on Sunday, July 16, and saw nine players remaining. Daniel Weinman was in third place on the leaderboard when the final table commenced, with Steven Jones in second and Adam Walton in third. As things would turn out, those were the three players to reach the second day of the final table.
Daniel Holzner was the first player to bust, taking ninth place and winning $900,000 for his first attempt at playing the WSOP Main Event. Holzner was all in with ace-jack against the pocket tens of Jones. The tens held for Jones to send Holzner to the rail.
Next to go was Spain's Juan Maceiras. Maceiras spent some time as the chip leader entering the final table, but came into the final nine in the middle of the pack and then could never truly get anything going. On his final hand, Maceiras jammed all in with king-nine and was called by Toby Lewis with ace-ten. Lewis scooped the pot and Maceiras was off to the payout desk to collect his $1,125,000 score.
Lewis didn't go any further than reaching the final seven. He found a spot to three-bet jam over an open from Jones and a call from Adam Walton. Jones called the shove with tens to put Lewis at risk with king-jack. The tens held, leaving Lewis with a seventh-place result worth $1,425,000.
Then it was Scotland's Dean Hutchison sent to the rail. All in an at risk with pocket fives against the pocket sevens of Jan-Peter Jachtmann, Hutchison couldn't find the help he needed and was eliminated in sixth place for $1,850,000.
Ruslan Prydryk was looking to become the first Ukrainian champion of the WSOP Main Event, but his run came to an end in fifth place. On Prydryk's final hand, he took the queen-ten of clubs up against the ace-jack of Daniel Weinman. An ace and a jack flopped and Weinman held from there. Prydryk collected $2,400,000 for coming in fifth place.
Jachtmann, a German high-stakes cash game player known for battling in pot-limit Omaha games, finished in fourth place and took home $3,000,000. He three-bet jammed king-queen only to run into the pocket aces of Walton after Walton had just flatted an opening raise from Jones. The aces prevailed to send Jachtmann to the rail in fourth place and end play for the day with three players remaining.
Coming into the second day of the final table, Jones had the lead with 238,000,000. Weinman was in second with 199,000,000, and Walton was in third with 165,500,000. Each player was guaranteed a $4,000,000 payday with $12,100,000 up top.
The chips were flying to start three-handed play on Monday, July 17, and it was Walton who was involved in almost every pot from the start. Eventually, Walton picked up two eights and put all of his money in the money, only to run into the pocket aces for Weinman. On this hand, Jones started the action with a raise to 6,000,000. Walton called from the small blind, then Weinman reraised out of the big blind to 27,000,000. Jones folded, putting queen-six of diamonds in the muck, before Walton immediately four-bet ripped for 209,500,000 (84 big blinds) with pocket eights. Weinman snapped him off with pocket aces. The aces held for Weinman and all of a sudden the tournament was down to heads-up play. Walton collected $4,000,000 for his third-place finish.
The final duel saw Weinman take a stack of 443,000,000 up against Jones' stack of 159,500,000. The blinds were still 1,250,000/2,500,000 with a 2,500,000 big blind ante when heads-up play began.
Weinman and Jones exchanged some blows, but Weinman never dipped below 400,000,000 in chips. On the final hand, Jones raised to 7,000,000 on the button, Weinman called from the big blind, and the flop came down jack-five-two with two spades. Weinman check-raised Jones' bet of 6,000,000 to 18,500,000. Jones called to see a four land on the turn. Weinman put out a wager of 38,000,000. Jones went into the tank for an extended period of time before he raised all in for 146,000,000. Weinman got the count, then called with king-jack. Weinman saw that his top pair had the jack-eight of Jones outkicked and he let his rail know that he was ahead and needed to fade three outs. When an ace hit the river, it was all over. Jones was eliminated in second place for $6,500,000, leaving Weinman as the 2023 WSOP Main Event champion.
Winning the 2023 WSOP Main Event gave Weinman 2,300 points for the PGT leaderboard, and he now sits on top of that leaderboard entering the second half of the year. Weinman moving into the top spot knocked Chris Brewer into second and Isaac Haxton into third.
At the end of the 2023 PGT season, the top 40 players as ranked by the PGT leaderboard will receive entry into the season-ending PGT Championship $1,000,000 freeroll event. The 2023 PGT Championship will award a $500,000 top prize.
Head to pgt.com/leaderboard to see the full PGT leaderboard.