Among the recent round of WCOOP winners were a few familiar names, one belonging to the amiable Canadian Patrick “prepstyle71” Serda who bested a 460-entry field to win Event #32-M, the $215 buy-in version of the 8-Game Mix.
We’ve known Serda for a while now here at PokerStars Blog, most memorably from his having chopped the 2016 EPT Prague High Roller with William Kassouf, walking away with the biggest share of the prize pool (a career-high €719K).
Indeed, the majority of Serda’s live tournament earnings of nearly $1.8M have come in no-limit hold’em, although he has been mixing it up of late in other variants. He cashed in an 8-game event at the most recent WSOP, and now has an 8-game title to his credit — the third WCOOP win for the Winnipeg-based pro.
“It was pretty swingy,” Serda told the PokerStars Blog when asked about his path to victory. “It started off well. I feel like I have a significant edge in the NL and PLO games, so I try to play as many hands as possible in those rounds, and obviously the deeper we are the better.”
As the field dwindled so, too, did Serda’s stack. But he persevered.
“Towards the late stages I remember being super short, but the blinds get to be quite large so a few big bets here and there and I was right back in it,” he recounts.
The final table included a number of tough opponents who frequently turn up deep in WCOOPs, among them Dmitry “Colisea” Urbanovich” and Mike “goleafsgoeh” Leah (who just won Event #38-H, the $2K Turbo).
“No key or memorable hands that I can think of,” says Serda regarding the endgame. “But obviously I caught a nice little upswing towards the end and was just trying to make the best decisions I could.”
The first prize of $17,480 might have been relatively modest compared to others Serda has collected over the years. But the satisfaction of winning was anything but.
“I’ve been putting in a decent amount of work into mix games,” Serda says. “I wanted to play more this summer, but the structures for the 1500s at WSOP got changed and required almost two full days of play to min-cash.” That caused Serda’s focus to shift toward playing more live mixed cash games, though he hasn’t begun with that endeavor just yet. “For now I’m going to continue to try and get better online where I can get lots of hands in.”
As noted, this was Serda’s third WCOOP win. How did it compare?
“As per how this ranks, it’s nice for sure,” he says. “The other two WCOOPs I’ve won we’re in PLO and NL, but also came in smaller, tougher fields. It feels nice knowing I’m on the right track though in mix games, and I want to continue to get better.”
Looking back to that EPT Prague High Roller, we were remembering reading a story about Serda’s big score on CBC soon after. There Serda talked about his job waiting tables at the Pizzeria Gusto in Winnipeg, saying he enjoyed it so much he planned to keep it despite his poker windfall.
Nearly three years and plenty more poker cashes later, is Serda still serving up those pizza pies?
“Hahaha, no,” Serda laughs. “Unfortunately I gave that up at the start of 2018 to pursue some other ventures and poker a little more full time,” he explains. “We now have a one-year-old (on October 1), so the last year has been spent traveling with the little guy and mom and playing cards.”
Serda may not be completely out of the pizza game yet, though, as he says he may end up doing some business with the restaurant’s owners at some point down the road.
“I’ll just have to win another WCOOP or SCOOP in the next year to give that a follow-up,” he says.
Congrats to Serda for grabbing himself a slice of 2019 WCOOP glory, with the fact that his win came in the 8-game being a extra nice topping.
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• Viktor “TsiTool” Kovács: Puts Hungary on the WCOOP map
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• Naoya “nkeyno” Kihara: Woken up by a kick from his 3-year-old, plays Razz and wins!
• “snovalshik1”: first-timer, who turned $5.50 into $3,408
• Rinat “Zapahzamazki” Lyapin: Won PLO while streaming live
• Alex “dynoalot” Difelice: Second win, but “I feel I have a ways to go.”
• Pedro “PaDiLhA SP” Padilha: Akkari’s acolyte, who sets the record straight
• Shaun “shaundeeb” Deeb: Seventh title, surely not the last
2019 WSOP photos via pokerphotoarchive.com.
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