Taking care of business: Joe Darcy wins Hijack Poker Festival Main Event

WA poker stalwart Joe Darcy has completed the ultimate comeback, winning the inaugural Hijack Poker Festival Main Event on Monday night.

The 71-year-old businessman, who started as the short stack going into final table at the Swan River Hotel, topped a field of 357 total entries to win $12,000 in prize money.

Darcy is no stranger to success on the felt in Western Australia, having registered deep runs in both the 2012 and 2013 ANZPT Perth Main Events, but his largest career score was back in 2019, when he won $20,000 in the Shark Poker Summer Series Main Event and before the current Community Poker Policy restrictions were introduced.

It was a fact certainly not lost on Darcy, who told PokerMedia Australia during his post-match interview that government regulations were proving counterproductive, adding to growing sentiment amongst the local community for changes to be made in order to secure the future of the state’s poker industry.

“The way I feel about it, is that these [games] are run, they’re run as a business,” Darcy said, “and the restrictions they have on [the leagues] are curtailing that. I can’t think of many businesses in WA – or even Australia – that are held back so much.”

“The casinos don’t run proper tournaments like this, but these guys do, and I’m very happy to support them.”

Darcy also praised the efforts of the Hijack Poker team over the last two weeks, as well as his heads-up opponent Jon Choong, who fell agonisingly short of going coast-to-coast after he started the final day as the overall chip leader.

HIJACK POKER FESTIVAL MAIN EVENT – FINAL TABLE RESULTS ($200 buy-in, 357 entries, 36 players paid)

PlaceNameAmount
1stJoe Darcy$12,000
2ndJon Choong$8,000
3rdC.C. Wang$5,200
4thRichard Larkin$3,800
5thMehdi Amiri$2,700
6thAshley Hunt$1,900
7thBlair Hampton$1,400
8thEren Mahsun$1,100
9thScott Roderick$850

In other major results, high-stakes crusher Blair Hampton took out the first of two Super High Roller tournaments earlier in the series for $15,000, adding to another four final table appearances – including the Main Event – to take out the Player of the Series title over Jacky Chan, who won both the $350 Pot Limit Omaha and the Closing Event.

WA rising star Kalle ‘The Kid’ Thomsen also proved a popular winner, going back-to-back in the Last Sunday of the Month title event named in his honour to clinch his own trophy and a further $6,000 to add to his previous $12K payday in January.

To date, the Hijack Poker Festival has garnered more than $260,000 in total prize pools, with Day 2 of the Super High Roller due to kick off at 6pm AWST tonight. For more information, including updates, images and results throughout the course of the series, visit the Hijack Poker Facebook page.

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