On Tuesday, 24-year-old Brazilian Caio Hey took home the title of PokerStars' Latin American Poker Tour (LAPT) and Brazilian Series of Poker (BSOP) Main Event champion in Sao Paulo, Brazil. His victory came at the conclusion of a five minute heads-up match against 2013 Sao Paulo LAPT champ Victor Sbrissa.
Hey battled his way to the trophy and the R$ 680,000 (approximately $310,000) top prize, surviving a record field and a challenging final table that included Team PokerStars Pro Angel Guillén.
"It’s a dream that becomes true," Hey wrote on Twitter right after his victory. "I still do not really understand what has just happened to me. I do not have words to explain what I am feeling," Hey continued.
Although players from all over the world are flocking to Las Vegas to play in the 2014 World Series of Poker, the LAPT stop in Sao Paulo managed to take the pulse of Brazil's poker scene and the potential of the country's poker market.
The R$ 4,410 (almost $2,000) buy-in main event in Sao Paulo attracted an impressive 1,167 players, making it the biggest LAPT tournament ever held since PokerStars.net launched the circuit in Rio de Janeiro in May, 2008.
Hey joined the final table with a 2,715,000 stack, which placed him in fourth position behind the chip leader Victor Sbrissa (9,325,000), Argentina's Joaquin Matias Ruiz 5,425,000 and Mexico's WSOP bracelet winner Angel Guillén (3,790.000).
Despite the poker pros and the difference in chips at the table, the 24-year-old from Porto Velho, Brazil managed to get the most out of his poker skills and navigate his way to his biggest score ever.
Remarkably, Hey also managed to kill Victor Sbrissa's hopes to make history by defending the title joining Nacho Barbero, who still stands as the only player to ever win two LAPT main event titles.
The decisive hand of the tournament, the eighth of the heads-up match, saw short-staked Brissa push all in preflop with the and chip leader Hey insta-calling with the .
The decisive hand of the tournament - the eighth of the heads-up match - saw short-stacked Brissa push all in preflop with the and chip leader Hey insta-call with the .
Unfortunately for Brissa, the board rolled out and gave Hey reason to celebrate his new title of 2014 LAPT champion.
Wrapping up an exciting week of poker at the LAPT-BSOP, players are now getting ready for the circuit's next stop in Panama City, Panama on July 23, 2014.
Lead picture courtesy of the PokerStars Blog.