O’Neill Wins EPT Prague Main Event After Impressive Comeback

Padraig O’Neill, known as “Smidge,” has won the European Poker Tour (EPT) Main Event in Prague, ending Ireland’s long wait for a champion since Steve O’Dwyer’s 2013 win. O’Neill, a 34-year-old from Drumlish, outlasted a field of 1,285 entries, claiming a top prize of €1.03 million.

Starting the five-handed final table with the shortest stack, O’Neill was not the favorite, especially positioned next to the leading Jon Kyte. Yet, he defied expectations with exceptional play, impressing both commentators and fans with his strategic decisions and ability to read the game.

Reflecting on his unexpected win, O’Neill shared, “I was hoping to come fourth or third at best. I didn’t think I’d get heads up. This is surreal.” His win was far from easy, as Kyte’s lead dwindled, partly due to third-place finisher Umberto Ruggeri. The heads-up battle between O’Neill and Kyte became a memorable showdown, with the lead oscillating between the two.

The decisive moment came when Kyte, with a critically low stack, went all-in with 10♣ 5♥. O’Neill, holding K♠ 10♦, made the call. The absence of the needed miracle cards for Kyte sealed O’Neill’s victory, earning him €1,030,000, while Kyte secured €643,000 for his second-place finish.

Final Table Results European Poker Tour Prague Main Event 2023

Result Player Country Prize
1 Padraig O’Neill Ireland € 1,030,000
2 Jon Kyte Norway € 643,000
3 Umberto Ruggeri Italy € 459,240
4 Cheng Zhao China € 353,240
5 Adam Wagner Czech Republic € 271,660

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