Former Professional Basketball Player Max Neugebauer Wins Largest-Ever WSOPE Main Event

In the last three World Series of Poker Europe editions, the €10,350 buy-in no-limit hold’em main events have consistently drawn larger crowds. The trend continued this year too, with a 7 %increase from the previous year’s763-entry field, attracting 817 players and surpassing the €5,000,000 guarantee to build a final prize pool of €7,761,500 ($8,300,148). The tournament finally concluded with the 26-year-old former professional basketball player Max Neugebauer claiming the victory.

Neugebauer’s triumph came in a gripping final hand where he made a bold decision, hero-calling a substantial bluff from Eric Tsai, with just third pair. Despite the pressure, Neugebauer’s courageous call secured him the championship, his first WSOP gold bracelet, and the top prize of $1,590,000.

This marked Neugebauer’s largest live tournament win, surpassing his $27,000 prize for finishing seventh in a $2,500 buy-in event in a Venetian DeepStack Championship Poker Series this summer.

This tournament had two starting flights and four more full days of action. The top 123 players made money, including plenty of big names such as two-time bracelet winner Daniel Dvoress (109th), two-time bracelet winner Manig Loeser (98th), recent bracelet winner Tobias Peters (93rd), two-time bracelet winner and last year’s champion of this event Omar Eljach (89th), 2020 WSOP Online main event winner Stoyan Madanzhiev (67th), bracelet winner Leon Sturm (58th), Viktor Blom (55th), two-time POY award winner Stephen Chidwick (44th), four-time bracelet winner Adrian Mateos (42nd), three-time bracelet winner Anson Tsang (36th), and poker triple crown winner Davidi Kitai (33rd).

The final day began with eight players remaining. Tsai was in the lead while Neugebauer was third in chips. Alf Martinsson was the first to fall, with his last ten blinds going in with A-3 against the pocket tens of Michele Tocci.  Ruslan Volkov’s was eliminated in seventh place ($204,580) when his pocket tens could not hold up against the A-10 of Kasparas Klezys, who spiked an ace on the turn and won.

The next two eliminations happened in rapid succession. The first came when Michael Rocco’s pocket aces held up against the A-5 of Nils Pudel who earned $270,300 as the sixth-place finisher.

The next to fall was Michael Rocco, who was then followed by Kasparas Klezys and Michele Tocci in fourth and third, respectively. The heads-up saw Neugebauer holding 64,100,000 chips to Tsai’s 17,400,000. Tsai was able to close the gap, but was still behind when the dramatic final hand arose.

On the final hand, Tsai min-raised from the button with Jd 9d. Neugebauer called the big blind with Js 8c and the flop came down Qd 8d 7h. Neugebauer checked with his second pair and Tsai bet 1,000,000 with his gutshot straight flush draw. Neugebauer called and the As landed on the turn.

Neugebauer checked and Tsai bet 6,300,000. Neugebauer called and the 4s completed the board. Neugebauer checked yet again and Tsai moved all in for 16,000,000. Neugebauer tanked for about two minutes before announcing a call. Just like that, it ended in a coveted victory for Neugebauer .

Final Table Payouts


Max Neugebauer



Eric Tsai



Michele Tocci



Kasparas Klezys



Michael Rocco



Nils Pudel



Ruslan Volkov



Alf Martinsson