The 2023 PGT Championship, with an unheard-of $1 million freeroll, is finished. German Daniel Smiljkovic defeated Hollywood actress Arden Cho after some heads-up play to win the trophy and the $500,000 champion's prize.

The PGT Championship was open to the top 40 players in the PGT rankings, plus 14 Dream Seat winners who also got a shot at the massive freeroll.

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How Day 1 Started and the $1 Million Freeroll Ended

Day 1 began with 50 of the 54 players and ended with six winners. The final table started with Smiljkovic in the lead, with about 40% of the chips in play. Despite being the favorite, he doubled up several players, including losing a triple all-in that eliminated Darren Elias in sixth place (paying out $40,000).

Artur Martirosyan was next to leave in fifth place, receiving $60,000 from one of the largest freeroll the world has ever seen. Leon Sturm had the biggest stack when 4-handed started.

Darren Elias giving his opponent no chance to pick up tells from his mouth

Reigning WSOP Main Event champion Daniel Weinman fell in fourth place, taking home $80,000. He called down with bottom pair on a very dicey board and fell to the trip tens of Smiljkovic.

Daniel Weinman hero calls, but isn't right this time.

Cho then took the chip lead and used ICM pressure very well to put Smiljkovic in difficult situations.

Before long, Sturm became the short stack. With not many options left, he chose the Doyle Brunson ( ) to push, but he was called by Smiljkovic's slightly better . The board didn't help Sturm and he was felted in third place. Don't feel too bad for him; collecting $120,000 from a freeroll is already lucrative, plus, Sturm sits at over $5 million in total live earnings in his early twenties.

Heads-up, Cho started with 4,990,000 chips (83 bbs) against 1,875,000 (31 bbs) for Smiljkovic. In the first heads-up hand, both players made trip fives on the turn, but three diamonds on the flop saved Smiljkovic, who lost almost half his stack. With a 5-to-1 advantage, victory seemed to be almost secured for the Texan actress, singer, Taekwondo black belt, and poker player.

However, Smiljkovic doubled twice, first with against when one appeared on the flop. Then again, after connecting well on the board with , Smiljkovic called Cho's all-in on the turn. She had for a low equity semi-bluff. The river was a .

Arden Cho

The lead still returned to the hands of the American, who once again opened up an almost 5-to-1 advantage. Smiljkovic again doubled all-in preflop with x , the board gave him a straight and the pot.

The two had practically the same number of chips until one hand that practically decided the tournament.

With blinds of 50k/100k and a big blind ante of 100k, Daniel Smiljkovic limped in and Cho checked. The flop came . Cho checked, and Smiljkovic bet 125,000. The American called. The turn was a . Cho checked, the German bet 500,000, and Cho shoved all-in. Smiljkovic paid immediately and showed , for the nuts. The American was drawing dead with .

With just 1.75 big blinds left, Cho moved all-in from the button with – actually, quite a fortunate hand for any short-stacked MTT player to see. Smiljkovic called with and the dealer showed to give him the title and prize of $500,000. Cho took second place and $200,000.

Final Results of the PGT $1 Million Freeroll

  1. Daniel Smiljkovic (Germany) – $500,000
  2. Arden Cho (USA) – $200,000
  3. Leon Sturm (Germany) – $120,000
  4. Daniel Weinmann (EUA) – $80,000
  5. Artur Martirosyan (Russia) – $60,000
  6. Darren Elias (USA) – $40,000

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PGT Last Chance Champions

PGT Last Chance was the last stop on the PokerGo Tour and featured six tournaments, which took place from January 2nd to 7th. Isaac Haxton, who finished at the top of the overall ranking, won a $50,000 prize.

Check out all the PGT Last Chance champions:

$10,000 + 100 No Limit Hold'em – PGT Last Chance #1

Entries: 91

Prize pool: $910,000

Champion: Daniel Negreanu (Canada) – $218,400

$10,000 + 100 No Limit Hold'em – PGT Last Chance #2

Entries: 88

Prize pool: $880,000

Champion: Artur Martirosyan (Russia) – $211,200

$10,000 + 100 No Limit Hold'em – PGT Last Chance #3

Entries: 82

Prize pool: $820,000

Champion: Samuel Laskowitz (United States) – $205,000

$10,000 + 100 No Limit Hold'em – PGT Last Chance #4

Entries: 78

Prize pool: $780,000

Champion: Dylan DeStefano (United States) – $195,000

$10,000 + 100 No Limit Hold'em – PGT Last Chance #5

Entries: 79

Prize pool: $790,000

Champion: Artur Martirosyan (Russia) – $197,500

$10,000 + 100 No Limit Hold'em – PGT Last Chance #6

Entries: 79

Prize pool: $790,000

Champion: Nick Schulman (United States) – $161,500