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WSOP 2022: Espen Jørstad Tops the Second Biggest WSOP Main Event Field Ever to Win the World Championship Title & $10 Million

Espen Jorstad - 2022 WSOP Main Event Champion
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  • Attreyee Khasnabis July 17, 2022
  • 6 Minutes Read

Espen Jørstad (cover image) has won the 2022 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event, defeating the second-largest field of 8,663 entries in WSOP history to capture the championship gold bracelet and the $10 Million first-place prize. The 34-year-old is the first player from his home country of Norway to win poker’s world championship title. Australian Adrian Attenborough collected $6 Million in second place.

Jørstad, who also has a master’s degree in brewing science, spent much of the last few days of the Main Event among the top stacks. He came out of a marathon 17-hour Day 7 session in the joint chip lead with Matthew Su when ten contenders were remaining and then bagged up roughly 57% of the chips in play heading into today’s three-handed action.

The three finalists stepped into the Bally’s arena on Saturday to play down to a champion. It was a quick one, taking under two hours to complete, but in two huge tanking hands, it also took plenty of time to play the difference between winning and losing with two key hands.

Argentina’s Michael Duek was the short stack coming into play, and he lasted just 20 minutes before falling out in third place for $4,000,000.

Heads-up, the stacks had evened out, with Jørstad leading with 284.5 Million and Adrian Attenborough slightly behind with 235.5 Million. Attenborough worked his way into a marginal lead.

Attenborough tanked (long) twice during the heads-up, both times getting stuck with Jack-Four. While he could find the fold the first time, the second time, he moved all-in, bringing his Main Event run to an end in second place.

 

On June 29, Espen Jørstad won his career-first gold bracelet in Event #55: $1,000 Tag Team with Patrick Leonard. Seventeen days later, the Norwegian has been crowned the 2022 World Champion!

Patrick Leonard & Espen Jørstad
Patrick Leonard & Espen Jørstad

 

“It means a lot. It’s the biggest tournament in the world. It’s still sinking in,” Jørstad told PokerGO after winning the most prestigious title in poker.

Jørstad couldn’t help but spoil the results for his mother, who was watching from home on a delay, calling her shortly after he had closed out the win to let her know he had done it.

“She was instantly in tears,” Jørstad said. “I think she was already crying just watching it. She was so nervous, you know, way more nervous than me. It was very emotional hearing her, how happy she was.”

Jørstad’s career-best payday increased his lifetime recorded earnings to nearly $10.9 million, with millions more won online. Jørstad finished sixth in the 2021 WSOP Online event last year, earning $603,058 for his second-largest recorded score.

“My goal has been to reach into the High Roller scene and play more $25,000 tournaments and stuff like that. I’ve dipped my toes, but now I have a bigger bankroll to take some shots in those tournaments. I need to get in the lab and make sure I’m good enough to play them. And make some very sensible investments — cryptocurrencies and tech stocks, probably,” said Jørstad when asked what he intends to do with the $10 Million.

With two bracelets to his name, Jørstad has moved into a tie with the late Thor Hansen for the most bracelets won by a Norwegian player. He’s also now Norway’s All-Time Money List topper.

 

Team India’s Run in the 2022 WSOP Main Event

The WSOP Main Event is arguably the most awaited event of the year. Virtually every poker player in Las Vegas who could afford the $10,000 buy-in took a shot at winning the Main Event bracelet, including a sizable Indian contingent. Among them, 15 players qualified for Day 3.

From the 15-player Indian contingent returning on Day 3, only six survived through. Sriharsha Doddapaneni, who WSOP erroneously skipped in the end-of-Day 2ABC and start-of-Day 3 chip counts list, bagged the 127th biggest stack of the day among 1,299 survivors. Aditya Systla, Chiraag Patel, Young Gun Arsh Grover, MPL Poker Pro Siddharth Karia, and PokerGuru Ambassador Kartik Ved were the other Indian players to make Day 4.

Doddapaneni (1,025,000) was the only Indian to carry a stack to Day 5. Team India’s Main Event run ended on Day 5, with Doddapaneni’s 249th place exit, netting $46,800 (~₹37.23 Lakhs).

Sriharsha Doddapaneni
Sriharsha Doddapaneni

 

Team India’s 2022 WSOP Main Event Payouts

PlayerPositionPrize Amount
Sriharsha Doddapaneni 249th$46,800 ~₹37.23 Lakhs
Aditya Systla575th$25,500, ~₹20.27 Lakhs
Chiraag Patel869th$17,000, ~₹13.51 Lakhs
Arsh Grover803rd$19,000, ~₹15.11 Lakhs
Siddharth Karia747th$21,000, ~₹16.70 Lakhs
Kartik Ved891st$17,000, ~₹13.52 Lakhs

 

Final Day Chip Counts

  1. Espen Jørstad – 298,000,000
  2. Adrian Attenborough – 149,800,000
  3. Michael Duek – 72,100,000
Michael Duek, Espen Jorstad and Adrian Attenborough
Michael Duek, Espen Jorstad and Adrian Attenborough

 

Final Day Recap

Six hands into the final day’s play, the day’s first elimination took place. The shortest stack at the start of the day, Michael Duek, fell out in third place. His elimination hand saw Adrian Attenborough raise it up to 6 Million from the button. Duek 3-bet to 23 Million from the small blind, and Attenborough called. Both players checked the flop , leading to the on the turn. Duek fired a bet of 17 Million, and Attenborough came along to see the river. More than two minutes passed, and Duek carefully counted his remaining stack before he bet 52 Million, with just 5 Million behind. Attenborough moved all-in, and Duek muttered an expletive before calling all-in.

Michael Duek

Adrian Attenborough

Attenborough’s turned Broadway straight sent Duek to the rail.

Michael Duek
Michael Duek

 

“This was quite the experience,” Duek told Jeff Platt afterward. “Definitely a lot more amazing than I thought could ever been. Just being here I’m happy and grateful for the outcome. I’m really thankful [my family] were able to make it out here and support me. And I get to share this experience with them.”

 

After pulling off Duek’s knockout, Adrian Attenborough (235,500,000) got the much-needed boost to his stack as he entered the heads-up against Espen Jørstad (284,500,000), though the Norwegian still held a slight lead.

Adrian Attenborough
Adrian Attenborough

 

On the first hand of the heads-up, Attenborough tanked for 20 minutes on the river. Jørstad raised to 7.5 Million with and Attenborough 3-bet to 26 Million with . Jørstad called and the flop came . Attenborough continued for 16 Million, and Jørstad called. On the turn , Attenborough bet 58 Million, and Jørstad called again. The on the river completed the board. Attenborough checked it over to Jørstad, who took his time before announcing all in.

Attenborough went deep into the tank. He put his hands on his head and rubbed his eyes before counting out his stack. “I love this hand,” remarked Attenborough after two minutes, contemplating his opponent’s holdings. “If you have king-queen…”

Attenborough pondered his and his opponent’s holdings, leaning on the table with his head in his hands.

“This would be pretty cool if you called time,” said Attenborough as the clock ticked into nine minutes. “This is tough.”

“He’s going to show me…” he said, leaning back in his chair and muttering to himself. “So many combos of value,” he said after around 12 minutes.

“It’s just when I get to this river it’s like…,” he trailed off again. “You do have some kings.”

Eventually, Attenborough folded.

“You bluffed me hey? F*ck,” said Attenborough. “Nice hand. Should have called that. Nine-seven suited?”

“I’m interested to see what you had,” said Jørstad

“I just didn’t know if you jammed queen-jack off on the river,” said Attenborough.

The ‘Attenborough Tank’ did cause a bit of a Twitter debate. Here is what the poker community had to say:

 

Between hands 198 to 201, Attenborough managed to find a double-up to take the lead away from Jørstad. But by hand 210, the Norwegian was back on top. Five hands later, it was all over.

On hand 215 of the final table, in yet another limped pot to the flop, Attenborough check-raised from 4 Million to 14 Million, and Jørstad made it 32 Million after tanking for about one minute. Attenborough called relatively quickly, and the opened on the turn. Attenborough checked, and Jørstad fired a bet of 62 Million. One minute passed for Attenborough to make the call, and he quickly checked the river. With 200 Million already in the pot, Jørstad jammed all in for 131 Million. The Aussie yet again tanked for a long time.

“Can I just jam for value one time, and you tank? That would be nice,” Attenborough joked with a smirk towards his opponent after he had already been in the tank for a few minutes.

“This one could be bad guys,” the Aussie remarked as he turned around to his rail. Once, he focused back on the table and riffled the chips in agony. “You gonna be like why am I tanking with this hand, but I really wanna call this time,” the subsequent table chatter followed.

All the while, Jørstad kept his laser-focused expression staring at the board and not giving away any emotion at all.

“What a game,” Attenborough added and at some point even asked Jørstad, “Do you have your eyes closed?” without receiving any reply.

“So many fuckin combos,” the next burst of chatter followed before Attenborough started counting his chips again and talked through a few possible hand combinations, keeping a dry smile on his face.

“I really wanna call, really badly, but I have such a bad hand,” the conclusion followed before he added, “I just never know what to do … sorry guys,” he even apologized. Ultimately, more than eight minutes passed when Attenborough said “f**k it” and finally talked himself into calling with . This combination seems to be cursed for Attenborough because he would go on to lose a massive pot with Jack-Four for the second time in the heads-up. While he could find the fold previously, this time, with his tournament life on the line, it was all over for Attenborough when Jørstad flipped over for a rivered boat.

 

Attenborough settled for a consolation prize of $6 Million. “I ran really good and definitely don’t deserve to win $6,000,000,” Attenborough told Jeff Platt. “I was just along for the ride, and it sucks. Such a big mistake at the end, but it’s ok. I’m super proud.”

Meanwhile, Jørstad won his second gold bracelet of the series and will take home the top prize of $10 Million along with the bragging rights of becoming the new World Champion of Poker!

Espen Jørstad - 2022 WSOP Main Event Champion
Espen Jørstad – 2022 WSOP Main Event Champion

 

Final Table Results (USD)

  1. Espen Jørstad – $10,000,000
  2. Adrian Attenborough – $6,000,000
  3. Michael Duek – $4,000,000
  4. John Eames – $3,000,000
  5. Matija Dobric – $2,250,000
  6. Jeffrey Farnes – $1,750,000
  7. Aaron Duczak – $1,350,000
  8. Philippe Souki – $1,075,000
  9. Matthew Su – $850,675
  10. Asher Conniff – $675,000

 

Content & Images Courtesy: PokerGO, PokerNews & WSOP

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