According to reports from not only the poker world but the mainstream press, U. K. poker pro Sam Trickett was attacked and beaten following one of the brightest moments of his poker career.
The stunning attack was first revealed by Trickett over his Twitter account late last night with accompanying pictures. “Was having a great day until 6 guys did this to me,” Trickett chirped to his fans, adding in a picture of his bruised and cut face to show the damage. “Is this what happens if (you’re) successful?”
The attack apparently occurred following Trickett’s participation at the final table of “The Big One For One Drop,” the million dollar buy in event that he performed well at. Trickett would work his way to heads up action against Antonio Esfandiari but could never get past Esfandiari, settling for second place and a $10.112 million payday for his runner up finish.
Once that tournament had completed, a naturally elated Trickett wanted to celebrate. “Time to go drink until my organs hurt,” he Tweeted as he and girlfriend Natasha Sandhu headed out with friends to revel in the achievement. It was apparently during this celebration that the six men not only attacked Trickett but also spat in the face of Sandhu. PokerNews UK stated that the ignition for the incident might have been due to verbal harassment of Sandhu and that Trickett was defending his lady’s honor, calling her berators and his attackers “cowards.”
Although it has been stated that Trickett’s newfound money wasn’t the cause of the attack, there has been plenty of speculation that it might have. No reports state that Trickett had any of the $10-plus million on him to celebrate with and he himself hasn’t stated if he was carrying a large amount of cash on him.
This attack comes on the heels of former World Champion Jonathan Duhamel’s beating around Christmas 2011. In that incident, Duhamel’s home was violated by two men who stole his WSOP Championship Event bracelet, a watch awarded to him for his WSOP win by his sponsor PokerStars, and tens of thousands in cash, both in dollars and Euros. It was quickly discovered that a former girlfriend was the ringleader of the robbery and her and her accomplices are still awaiting trial in a Canadian court after their arrest in January.
In 2010, a group of poker players were attacked outside a nightclub in Barcelona, Spain, while they were playing in the European Poker Tour stop in that country. Carter Phillips, William Reynolds, Kevin Stani and Kayvan Payman were enjoying a night on the town when Payman was pickpocketed by three men after leaving a club. The foursome attempted to get the money back but, once one of the assailants started swinging a machete, they decided that discretion was the better part of valor and backed off.
Other former World Champions have also had their issues with potential thieves. Greg Raymer famously fought off two men at the Bellagio in 2004 who attempted to steal approximately $150,000 in chips off of him (they were later convicted and are now serving time in the Nevada prison system), and Doyle Brunson detailed in his autobiography several robberies throughout his career.
A former football (soccer) player in excellent shape, Trickett seems to be in good health following the attack, other than the cuts and bruises associated with the beating, and is using the help of friends and Sandhu to get over the incident and prepare for the upcoming WSOP Championship Event, which begins on Saturday. “Sam is fine,” Sandhu tweeted after Trickett had talked about the incident on his own Twitter feed. “Gonna spend some quality time together now.”*