High roller tournaments have become old hat nowadays, the main reason why the all-time money list is now dominated by “younger” players. The term “high roller” can signify a range of buy-ins, from $15,000 to $25,000 to $50,000. But then there is the “Super” high roller, which uses the modifier to mean something even more, a level which only an elite few poker players can afford. Such was the case this weekend, which saw the conclusion of the 2022 World Series of Poker Event #50: $250,000 Super High Roller No-Limit Hold’em, won by Alex Foxen, who led for the entirety of the final table.
Foxen had about $22 million in lifetime live tournament earnings before this event, so he has clearly had plenty of success on the felt. But he had never won a World Series of Poker bracelet until now.
“It really means a lot to me,” Foxen told WSOP.com afterward. “It’s kind of been a monkey on the back. I’ve always wanted a bracelet. I’ve had some close spots and always been disappointed … this feels like a really special one to get my first in.”
“To me, what means the most is consistent performance at the highest stakes. This is one of those, so it feels really good.”
Naturally, because of those high stakes, the field for the Super High Roller event was quite small. Just 55 players entered the tournament (though I’m little surprised it was THAT many), with one, Daniel Negreanu, re-entering once. As Earl Burton described this weekend, Negreanu was knocked out on his second buy-in when David Peters hit a runner-runner flush, causing Negreanu to slam his vlogging gear on the table (which scattered chips) and then against the wall in a brief moment of frustration and rage.
But, with the extreme buy-in, the prize pool was $13,944,000 and Foxen’s first place purse was $4,563,700. Nine players made the money; the minimum payout was $414,815.
After Foxen eliminated Chris Hunichen in third place, he went into heads-up play against Brandon Steven with an overwhelming 9-to-1 chip lead. Sometimes the second-position player makes a run, but not this time. Foxen dispatched Steven quickly, though it did take a little bit of luck.
On the final hand, both players limped to a Q-5-2, two-heart flop. Steven had 5-2 for bottom two pair, while Foxen had Q-T for top pair. Both players had a heart (Foxen’s was obviously better). All the chips got into the middle, Steven with a solid chance to double-up. The King of Hearts on the turn gave Foxen a bunch more outs and a Ten on the river gave him the better two pair to win the hand and the bracelet.
“I never lost the chip lead, I started chipping up right away. I found a few good spots, made a couple of good hands, won a big flip, and yeah, it was about as smooth as it could be.”
2022 World Series of Poker Event #50: $250,000 Super High Roller – Final Table Results
- Alex Foxen – $4,563,700
- Brandon Steven – $2,820,581
- Chris Hunichen – $1,931,718
- Adrian Mateos – $1,367,206
- Sam Soverel – $1,001,142
- Martin Kabrhel – $759,362
- Phil Ivey – $597,381
- Dan Zack – $488,095
- Henrik Hecklen – $414,815
Image credit: PokerGO.com