WPT and WSOP Online Updates: Glitches, Bracelets, and History-Making Wins

July 22nd, 2020 | by Greg Shaun

Any fears about hosting a major poker championship online have been kicked into touch thanks to the WSOP and WPT. Thanks to a combination of six-figure payouts, technical glitches, and history-making wins, the masses have been captivated by the action online.

Juha Helppi

Juha Helppi has emerged as one of the biggest winners from the latest round of WSOP and WPT online action. (Image: Twitter/Master Classics of Poker)

Leading the way this week is the World Series of Poker (WSOP). The online bracelet championship made the switch to GGPoker on July 19 as the final run of events take place on WSOP.com.

The move to GGPoker means players outside of the US now have the chance to win a WSOP bracelet. Unfortunately for the organizers, the transition didn’t go to plan after technical difficulties caused two events to be postponed.

Bug Halts Play but Can’t Stop WSOP Online Championships

A “critical bug” brought two events to a halt on Sunday. Players in the $100 Opener and $1,111 COVID Relief Charity Event were shown an error message on July 19. Representatives for the site quickly took to Twitter to provide an explanation.

It later transpired that an “overwhelming number of players” crashed the server.

GGPoker is still a relative newbie in the online poker world and, thanks in part to its collaboration with the WSOP, its stock has risen dramatically over the last 12 months.

The resulting interest in the WSOP pushed its servers beyond breaking point. Having more players than they can handle is a long-term positive for GGPoker. However, in the short-term, it wasn’t an ideal start for the second leg of the WSOP Online.

The organizers appear to have resolved the issue and the two tournaments will resume at a later date. Meanwhile, players have continued to win bracelets on both sides of the Atlantic.

Kenny Huynh is $133,857 richer after winning Event #19, a $400 No Limit Hold’em showdown. WPT commentator and long-time pro Tony Dunst also picked up a bracelet on July 21.

The American was one of 849 players in the US to enter Event #21. Between the initial buy-ins and 512 re-entries, the $777 six-max event generated a prizepool worth $952,700. Dunst walked away with his second WSOP title and $168,342 after 11 hours of player on WSOP.com.

International Action Produces More Winners

Internationally, Japan’s Shoma Ishikawa and Finland’s Juha Helppi picked up wins on GGPoker. Ishikawa not only earned a place in history as the first ever WSOP bracelet winner on GGPoker, he got it done in record time.

The $525 Super Turbo Bounty No Limit Hold’em Six-Max attracted 2,214 entries but was over in just three hours. Ishikawa bagged the $117,650 top prize ($35,225 in bounties + $82,425) after beating Argentina’s Diego Ostrovich heads-up.

Helppi’s route to the title may not have been as swift but it was definitely worth the wait. The online veteran overcame more than 70 players, including Jens Kyllonen and Mike Watson, to win his second bracelet and $290,286.

Paul Tedeschi Parties After WPT Win

As Helppi was picking up a WSOP win, Paul Tedeschi was making history on Partypoker. With the WPT hosting its first World Online Championships, Tedeschi earned his place in history after a three-way chop.

The Frenchman secured the chip lead midway through the final table on July 21 and never looked back. When it came time to cut a deal with Dan Shak and Anssi Kinttala, he collected the lion’s share of the prizepool ($92,105) and, more importantly, a WPT title without a fight.

With plenty more to come from the WSOP and WPT, the next few weeks will throw up plenty of stories. Indeed, if the next round of action is as entertaining as the last, there will be no doubt online championships can become an integral part of the poker calendar.


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