PokerStars WCOOP 2020 Awards Nearly $100M in 75 Events

PokerStars WCOOP 2020 Awards Nearly $100M in 75 Events

The end of the PokerStars 2020 World Championship of Online Poker signals that the summer of massive online poker tournaments is almost over. And WCOOP not only did well, it surpassed its cumulative guarantee by awarding nearly $100 million.

Since the coronavirus pandemic shut down most poker options around the world for most of the summer, online poker reaped the rewards. The annual WCOOP is always a hit, but this year, the 19th iteration of the series was one for the record books.

Final Numbers for 2020 WCOOP

The basic numbers from poker tournaments tell a story. It may not be the most compelling story – players deliver that excitement – but it gauges the overall success, or lack thereof, of a poker tournament or a series.

This year’s WCOOP started on Sunday, August 30, and it wrapped this week. There were 75 official events in the series, but most of them offered three buy-in levels (low, medium, and high).

According to the official PokerStars press release, these are some of the numbers:

–Total prize money awarded:  $99,939,230 ($80 million guaranteed)

–Total entries:  1,148,057 (including reentries)

–Total players finishing in the money:  158,851

–Total tournaments:  225

PokerStars did something unique this year. It introduced the concept of a Slam Package, a prize package awarded to players who won the 15 designated tournaments. Those who won those events captured a 2021 Slam Package, which includes entries into the 2021 WCOOP Main Event, SCOOP Main Event, and Stadium Series Main Event. Fifteen players did win those prizes, which were gifts on top of the prize money and not included in the totals above.

As for country representation, Brazilian players won the most events, edging out Russia and the UK by two wins. The top countries were:

–Brazil (35)

–Russia (33)

–UK (33)

–Germany (18)

–Netherlands (12)

–Canada (9)

–Norway (8)

–Finland (7)

–Bulgaria (6)

And finally, there was the main WCOOP leaderboard competition. Rinat “Zapahzamazki” Lyapin of Russia jumped out to an early lead after the first week of action and finished on top in the end with 1,200 points. He won $25,000 in cash and a trophy.

Main Event Winners

This year, there were a number of tournaments with the Main Event title. There were three No Limit Hold’em Main Events – a low, medium, and high – and three Pot Limit Omaha Main Events.

First, the results of the PLO finales:

Event 73-L:  $109 PLO 6-Max Main Event

Total entries:  3,066 (1,920 unique players, 1,146 reentries)

Total prize pool:  $306,600 (eclipsing the $300K guarantee)

Total paid players:  416

Winner:  nilsef (Germany) $40,224.38

Event 73-M:  $1,050 PLO 6-Max Main Event

Total entries:  739 (428 unique players, 311 reentries)

Total prize pool:  $750K ($11K overlay)

Total paid players:  95

Winner:  ROFLshove (UK) $133,757.00

Event 73-H:  $10,300 PLO 6-Max Main Event

Total entries:  123 (80 unique players, 43 reentries)

Total prize pool:  $1.25 million ($20K overlay)

Total paid players:  14

Winner:  jedimaster82 (Sweden) $283,368.15

And for the NLHE Main Event action, the three tournaments were the primary draw for the most players. This is how they played out, courtesy of the PokerStars blog:

Event 72-L:  $55 NLHE 8-Max Main Event

Total entries:  38,660 (24,408 unique players, 14,252 reentries)

Total prize pool:  $1,933,000 (far beyond the $1.25M guarantee)

Total paid players:  5,463

Winner:  klimono (Poland) $186,841.09

Notable: The winner had the initial final table chip lead, eliminated the first two players to claim more than half of the chips in play. That player then ousted everyone else, taking an 11-to-1 chip lead to heads-up play before finishing the event in less than five minutes.

Event 72-M:  $530 NLHE 8-Max Main Event

Total entries:  7,105 (4,821 unique players, 2,284 reentries)

Total prize pool:  $3,552,500 (well over the $2M guarantee)

Total paid players:  863

Winner:  1mSoWeeeaK (Thailand) $504,583.85

Notable: While 1mSoWeeeaK was the initial chip leader when the final table began, Y.Zakharov eliminated the first three players and took that lead away. Heads-up play began with 1mSoWeeeaK holding a minimal chip lead and extended it rather quickly, ultimately winning the title.

Event 72-H:  $5,200 NLHE 8-Max Main Event

Total entries:  1,977 (1,436 unique players, 541 reentries)

Total prize pool:  $10M ($115K overlay)

Total paid players:  239

Winner:  Andre “PTFisherman23” Marques (Netherlands) $1,147,270.86

2nd place:  Tonio “prrrak4783” Roder (Austria) $1,082,522.50

3rd place:  Teun “tinnoemulder” Mulder (Netherlands) $1,101,527.64

Notable: Mulder was the initial chip leader, but the extensive play moved the players around on the leaderboard quite a lot. Four-handed play saw all of the players in the lead at one point until Mulder finally ousted Robin “robinho” Ylitalo in fourth place. The final three players did make a deal for the remaining prize money per their chip stacks at the time, explaining the irregular payouts listed above. There was still $100K in cash and the WCOOP title for which to play, and they did just that until Marques took it down.


About Jennifer Newell

Jennifer began writing about poker while working at the World Poker Tour in the mid-2000s. Since then, her freelance writing career has taken her from Los Angeles to Las Vegas and back to her hometown of St. Louis, where she now lives with her two dogs. She continues to follow the poker world as she also launches a new subscription box company and finishes her first novel. Jennifer has written for numerous publications including and has followed the US poker and gaming market closely for the last 15 years. Follow Jen on Twitter

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