The 2018 World Series of Poker champion is an Indiana resident and professional player who barely missed the cut for the final table two years ago.
John Cynn won the series’ marquee no-limit Texas Hold ’em main event Sunday in Las Vegas, surrounded by a cheering crowd that included his dad. Cynn eliminated Tony Miles on the 442th hand of the final table, after playing 199 hands just against each other with bricks of $100 bills and a gold bracelet at the table.
Cynn, 33, became $8.8 million richer after playing against Miles for more than 10 hours. He was visibly shocked, grabbed his head and momentarily crouched as the crowd roared after his win.
“Right now, I do feel pretty overwhelmed,” he said. “The money is very significant, but I do like to think that I don’t need the money to be happy, but at the same time, practically, it’s going to make things a lot easier, things I want to do in life.”
He told reporters early Sunday that the money will be “life-changing” but does not have immediate plans to spend it.
Miles, a resident of Lake Mary, Fla., took home $5 million. He hugged many of his supporters after his defeat and shed some tears off stage.
Cynn’s final king of clubs and jack of clubs was the stronger hand, beating that of Miles, who went all in with queen of clubs and eight of hearts. The community cards were king of hearts, king of diamonds, five of hearts, eight of diamonds and four of spades.
Each of the nine players who made it to the final table was guaranteed at least $1 million. They represented the U.S., Australia, France and Ukraine.
The famed tournament this year drew 7,874 players who either risked $10,000 or earned a seat through satellite competitions with lower buy-ins. The series as a whole has seen more than 120,200 entrants so far, and organizers believe the weeks-long event in its 49th year could go down as the largest ever.
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