Simon Wiciak triumphs in EPT Barcelona Main Event

Simon Wiciak
Haley Hintze Author Photo
Haley Hintze
Posted on: September 03, 2023 13:18 PDT

France's Simon Wiciak has emerged as the champion of the second-largest European Poker Tour Barcelona Main Event ever held, collecting a €1,134,375 winner's payday on Sunday. Wiciak's win over a 2,120-entry field followed a three-way chop late in final-table action wherein Wiciak reached a deal with Brazil's Joao Sydenstricker and the United Kingdom's Carl Shaw.

Sydenstricker earned €1,048,555 as the event's official runner-up while Shaw collected €901,070 for third. The chop's guaranteed Wiciak and Sydenstricker million-euro paydays and left a small amount to play for, though had Shaw made a comeback from the shortest stack, he also would have logged a seven-figure payday.

As it played out, Sydenstricker sent Shaw to the rail before busting himself to Wiciak, who became the EPT's 11th main-event titleist from France.

Wiciak enjoyed a dominant run in the event's later stages, bagging the chip lead at the end of Day 4 and being in or near the lead for the remainder of the tournament. After Wiciak picked off a bluff for the last of Sydenstricker's chips, the career-best payday was his.

"I have felt so many emotions. Even if I looked in control and confident in my plays, I am still a human," Wiciak told the EPT after play concluded. The mostly-online player also admitted, "And this was the first time I played an EPT Main Event." Wiciak had logged barely $100,000 in live-tournament cashes before the breakthrough win in Barcelona.

Much of the interest at the final table involved long-time PokerStars brand ambassador Andre Akkari, who battled relative short-stack status for several days before finally exiting the final in fifth. The official eight-player final table, including nationalities and prize payouts, finished as follows:

  1. Simon Wiciak (France) - €1,134,375 *
  2. Joao Sydenstricker (Brazil) €1,048,555 *
  3. Carl Shaw (United Kingdom) - €901,070 *
  4. Santiago Plante (Canada) - €511,300
  5. Andre Akkari (Brazil) - €393,300
  6. Ezequiel Waigel (Argentina) - €302,500
  7. Curtis Knight (Canada) - €232,700
  8. Robin Ylitalo (Sweden) - €179,000

* denotes three-way deal

Featured image source: Manuel Kovsca / Rational Holdings