Champion Luc Greenwood!

The Triton Super High Roller Series’ second trip to London kicked off with a bang tonight, crowning Luc Greenwood as the festival’s first champion and awarding the Canadian $897,000. He is the winner of the $25,000 buy-in GG Million$ Live event, which started a two-week festival at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House.

Poker fans around the world have grown accustomed to seeing the name “Greenwood” etched on major trophies, but it’s more commonly preceded with a “Sam”. However tonight Luc added his name to the roll-call of Triton champions, matching Sam’s achievement, and the pair become the first brothers to claim titles on this exceptional series.

More than that: Sam and Luc, 34, are identical twins, and their images side-by-side on the Triton winners’ banners is going to leave many observers very confused indeed. But Luc tonight proves that not all the poker talent belongs on his brother’s side of the divide.

It was an emotional moment for Luc, who described a difficult few years since he last appeared on the Triton Series, here in London in 2019. The Greenwoods’ father passed away in 2020 and Luc paid tribute to the people who had kept him going.

“There are some things that are more important than poker, and obviously I miss my dad a lot,” Greenwood said. “But I’m very grateful to have so many friends and family cheering me on. My mum and my brother at home. And my brother Sam and my girlfriend. I’ve had a very blessed life and the blessings continue here in London.”

Luc Greenwood is joined by brother Sam and girlfriend Montana Skuoka

He added that he had not been expecting this superb triumph.

“It feels amazing,” he said. “I remember when I walked in here with my girlfriend and I saw all the faces on the wall, I thought, ‘I’m not up there yet.’ I didn’t think it would happen this fast. But obviously it’s amazing. Normally I feel that these things don’t happen to me. But it actually happened. It’s pretty amazing.”

Luc has returned in some style and claims a victory that sets him up for the long festival to come.

Greenwood prevailed from a record-setting field of 162 entries in this tournament, defeating Germany’s Manuel Zapf heads up. Zapf won his way into this event as part of a $100K package offered to online streamers by the online cardroom ACR Poker.

After Mark Rubbathan won a tournament in Vietnam after earning his trip as an ACR Stormer, Zapf was in great shape to follow his lead. Zapf was the dominant force through almost all of the second and final day here, but lost a titanic heads up duel against Greenwood.

The final hand came when both Greenwood and Zapf flopped top pair on a board of 6s4c9h. Greenwood had 9s5s and his kicker played against Zapf’s 9c3c. Money went in on both the flop and then after the 2d turn. And the 9d river only sealed it in Greenwood’s favour.

Zapf still took $605,500, which is the biggest score of his life. That said, Greenwood’s haul was the biggest of his career as well. The Triton Series tends to offer that.

Manuel Zapf became another ACR Stormer to win big


After 15 levels of play on Day 1, there were 33 players remaining when play resumed today, with only 27 players due to be paid.

It meant the first bubble of the festival came around 90 minutes into the day. With a handful of shorter stacks scattered around the room, Jonathan Jaffe wasn’t under the most extreme pressure with his 10 big binds. However, when he found AhQd it was plenty good enough to get his chips in. The only problem was that the larger-stacked Manuel Zapf had AdKd and made the call behind him.

Jaffe wasn’t stone dead on the QcTdJd flop, but he wasn’t far off. The 3d turn made it certain and Jaffe was flushed away. The remaining 27 were in the money and the race began to reach the final table.

Jonathan Jaffe burst the first bubble of Triton London 2023

Zapf was now in pole position, and he remained there pretty much without contest for the next seven or eight hours. That was the period during which the field shrank quickly and luminaries including Webster Lim, Dan Smith, Danny Tang, Matthias Eibinger, Nick Petrangelo and Christoph Vogelsang hit the rail.

Poker’s form player Chris Brewer departed in 11th, followed swiftly by Bruno Volkmann in 10th. It meant the assortment of players around the final table mirrored the complexion of the field as a whole: some Triton stalwarts and multiple champions alongside some first-timers.

Nick Petrangelo was among those to hit the rail before the final

Zapf, firmly in the latter category, led the way.


Manuel Zapf – 90 BBs
Luc Greenwood – 48 BBs
Sam Grafton – 44 BBs
Pablo Brito – 31 BBs
Henrik Hecklen – 25 BBs
Oliver Bithell – 24 BBs
Kiat Lee – 23 BBs
Aleks Ponakovs – 21 BBs
Juan Pardo – 20 BBs

Event 1 final table (clockwise from top left): Juan Pardo, Manuel Zapf, Oliver Bithell, Henrik Hecklen, Luc Greenwood, Sam Grafton, Pablo Brito, Aleks Ponakovs, Kiat Lee.

By Triton standards, 20 big blinds is absolutely plenty, and so there was no furious rush to the door. Zapf and Luc Greenwood remained ahead, while the other seven players exchanged chips and the prospect of a nine-handed table for the dinner break became a reality. However, Sam Grafton’s food would have tasted more bitter than the others’ thanks to the final hand before the break. Grafton lost a huge flip with pocket jacks to Henrik Hecklen’s AhQh, doubling Hecklen and leaving Grafton short.

When they returned from dinner, Grafton became the first player out from the final table. He couldn’t get pocket fours to hold against Zapf’s AdJh. Grafton left with $91,000 for ninth.

Sam Grafton couldn’t recover from losing a flip to Hecklen

Juan Pardo had all but tripled up on the hand that sent Volkmann to the rail in tenth, when his pocket aces beat his countryman Volkmann, as well as Zapf’s pocket sixes, in a significant pot for him. He then also scored two relatively early doubles at the final table, first through Kiat Lee and then out-racing Hecklen’s over-cards with pocket sevens.

However the Spanish player could only tread water from thereon, and never built what could be called a dominant stack. He found himself in trouble and got his chips in with As5s. Zapf was lurking with pocket jacks, however, and Pardo’s day was done. He took $109,800.

Juan Pardo’s run ended in eighth

There is a strong Brazilian contingent here in London, and even though Volkmann departed before the final, Pablo Brito was still involved deep into the night. He was another player who largely kept out of danger in the early stages of the final table, but then found his first significant pot to be his last.

He was yet another victim of Zapf, getting his chips in with AsKd but failing to out-run Zapf’s pocket eights. Brito, who first appeared on the Triton Series in Vietnam earlier this year, improved on his two small cashes there with a $151,500 score for seventh.

Pablo Brito was the last Brazilian in the field

Aleks Ponakovs had already picked up five Triton Series cashes since his debut in Madrid last year, but has not yet got deeper than fourth place despite four final tables. Although Ponakovs’ day will surely come, this was to be another frustrating finish for the Latvian, who perished in sixth from this one.

It all looked very rosy for Ponakovs when he picked up pocket aces and doubled through Hecklen, whose jacks were dominated. But on the very next hand, Ponakovs open-shoved from the small blind, hoping to pinch Greenwood’s big blind. However Greenwood found a hand — pocket tens — and beat Ponakovs’ KdTd.

Ponakovs won $208,200 for sixth.

Aleksejs Ponakovs still looking for a first title

The skirmish with Ponakovs had put Hecklen on the ropes and the two-time champion couldn’t recover. Only a few minutes after his previous nemesis departed, Hecklen followed Ponakovs out the door. And it was Greenwood again who did the damage.

This time, Greenwood had AhKh and it was an easy four-bet shove over Hecklen’s three-bet. Hecklen had pocket sixes but lost this race. There was a king on the flop and another on the turn. Hecklen departed in fifth for $271,000.

No three-time for Henrik Hecklen

Greenwood was now on a roll and Kiat Lee became the next person under the steamroller. Lee was Player of the Series in Vietnam after six cashes from eight events, but he is another player still looking for a maiden title. He kicked off here in London with yet another deep run, but had to settle for fourth and $339,800.

Lee’s chip stack remained healthy for long periods of the final, but he was eventually caught up by the blinds. He got his final nine bigs in with Ac6d, but Greenwood snapped him off with AhTd. (Lee found a six on the flop, but the ten on the river crushed him.)

Kiat Lee

Although a relative unknown on the live circuit, the UK’s Oliver Bithell has already known the joy of a six-figure score. He picked that up in 2019, when a great run in the World Series Main Event notched him $324,650 for 27th. This was a step up, however: a first appearance on the Triton Series.

Bithell was absolutely loving it, and was near the top of the counts through almost all of the first day and a half. It was only when play got short handed that he found himself under pressure — and he too hit the rail when he first made a real stand.

On the hand immediately after Lee’s bust-out, Bithell, with 16 big blinds, open pushed Ah5h. Zapf called with As8c and hit an eight. Bithell’s brilliant run earned him a career best $416,700.

Bad news for Oliver Bithell

That brought them down to the final two, Greenwood versus Zapf. Between them, they had knocked out all others at the final and they both had decent stacks. Zapf’s 82 BBs was ahead of Greenwood’s 53. But there was every reason to expect a long one.

There seemed to be some kind of discussion about potentially looking at the numbers, but the idea never took hold. They sat down and prepared to play for all of it.

Heads up between Manuel Zapf and Luc Greenwood

As ever, the best way to learn all the twists and turns of a tumultuous heads-up is to seek out the replay of the live stream on the Triton Poker Plus app. But the general gist is that Greenwood surged into the lead, Zapf hauled it back, but then Greenwood’s later charge was unstoppable. Greenwood also made an exceptionally disciplined fold, letting top pair go when Zapf went big and had him beaten.

Greenwood rebuilt from there and he was in a dominant position when that heads-up cooler came. It was the last hand for both of them.

Hats off then to the Greenwoods. The family mantlepiece is now symmetrical at last.

Champion Luc Greenwood and girlfriend Montana Skuoka

Event #1 – $25,000 GG Million$ Live
Dates: July 27-28, 2023
Entries: 162 (inc 55 re-entries)
Prize pool: $4,050,000

1 – Luc Greenwood, Canada – $897,000
2 – Manuel Zapf, Germany – $605,500
3 – Oliver Bithell, UK – $416,700
4 – Kiat Lee, Malaysia – $339,800
5 – Henrik Hecklen, Denmark – $271,000
6 – Aleks Ponakovs, Latvia – $208,200
7 – Pablo Brito, Brazil – $151,500
8 – Juan Pardo, Spain – $109,800
9 – Sam Grafton, UK – $91,000

10 – Bruno Volkmann, Brazil – $77,000
11 – Chris Brewer, USA – $77,000
12 – Jean Noel Thorel, France – $66,800
13 – David Yan, New Zealand – $66,800
14 – Kannapong Thanarattrakul, Thailand – $60,700
15 – Drew Gonzalez, USA – $60,700
16 – Thai Thinh Chu, Vietnam – $54,600
17 – Christoph Vogelsang, Germany – $54,600
18 – Nick Petrangelo, USA – $48,600
19 – Roberto Gomez, Spain – $48,600
20 – Matthias Eibinger, Austria – $48,600
21 – Danny Tang, Hong Kong – $44,500
22 – Alex Peffly, UK – $44,500
23 – Dan Smith, USA – $44,500
24 – Jack Germaine, UK – $40,500
25 – Alexandre Pruneau, Canada – $40,500
26 – Webster Lim, Malaysia – $40,500
27 – Andriy Lyubovetskiy, Ukraine – $40,500

Photography by Joe Giron/Poker Photo Archive