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Five Poker Superstars Hailing From Denmark
Denmark has a long history of producing elite poker players despite its relative small population. Some 5.82 million people call Denmark home, which is on par with the population of Colorado or Wisconsin.
The top five players in the Denmark all-time money list have $34,672,528 in combined winnings! Two of those players have eight figures of earnings. Who are they? Continue reading to find out.
Peter Eastgate: The First WSOP Main Event Champ From Denmark
Peter Eastgate is the biggest live poker tournament winner hailing from Denmark. Eastgate studied economics at Aarhus University, but dropped out to play poker full time.
Eastgate mostly played cash games but delved into the world of tournament poker in 2007. He qualified for the 2008 WSOP Main Event via an online satellite, and entered alongside 6,843 opponents. The man from Denmark outlasted them all and won the tournament for $9,152,416. He put a deep run together in the 2009 WSOP Main Event, but fell in 78th place.
Eastgate continued playing poker sporadically for the next couple of years before dropping away from the scene. He stated his goal was to become financially independent and not a professional poker player. He sold his bracelet on eBay in November 2010 for $147,500, and donated the money to UNICEF. Eastgate retired with $11,131,450 in earnings.
Gus Hansen: The Man Who Put Denmark on the Poker Map
Gus Hansen lives in Monaco, but his heart is in Denmark. Hansen is known as “The Great Dane” and is second in the Danish all-time money listing with $10,278,251. Hansen is renowned for his crazy playing style, where he plays any two cards. The style seems him bust very early from MTTs or go very deep.
The Dane has a trio of World Poker Tour titles in addition to a WSOP bracelet. He won his bracelet in a £10,350 heads-up event at the 2010 WSOP Europe festival.
Hansen loves the action of cash games despite him being a mark in high-stakes games. He lost $20.7 million at the now-defunct Full Tilt Poker, making him the biggest loser in online poker history.
Many people thought Hansen played his style with pure aggression and nothing else. His “Every Hand Revealed” book shows him in a different light entirely. Hansen documented every hand he played on the way to winning the 2007 Aussie Millions Main Event.
Frederik Jensen: The Former EPT Main Event Champion
Frederik Jansen of Copenhagen, Denmark, has $4,757,201 in live winnings and another $4,905,931 from online poker. Jensen shot to fame in 2010 after finishing second in the Aussie Millions Main Event. He lost heads-up to Tyron Krost, and banked A$1,100,000 ($1,015,257).
Jensen became an EPT champion two years later in Madrid. That victory netted the Danish star €495,000 ($649,368). He stepped away from poker in 2019 and rarely plays these days. Jensen turned out for a low-stakes event in Denmark in September 2021 but disappeared again.
Henrik Hecklen: The Latest High Roller Dane
Henrik Hecklen is the new breed of player from Denmark. One who loves nothing more than playing in the highest stakes live tournaments worldwide. He has won $4,700,995 over the past ten years on the live circuit.
2019 was his breakout year. Hecklen finished second to Sam Greenwood in a $100,000 Super High Roller at the PCA. It came with $1,284,260 in prize money, giving him the bankroll to compete on the biggest stage.
Hecklen ended 2021 on a high, cashing in six high-stakes events in Las Vegas. A fifth-place finish in a $100,000 High Roller came with $434,523.
Theo Jorgsensen: The Player Who Survived a Shooting
Theo Jorgensen is another player from Denmark who no longer competes. Despite this, Jorgensen is fifth in the Danish all-time money listing with $3,804,631 in winnings. Jorgensen is as adept at live poker as he is online. He loves playing nosebleed stakes Pot-Limit Omaha, and has millions in winnings.
Armed robbers broke into Jorgensen’s Denmark home in 2012 and shot him three times. Jorgensen survived.
The Dane has a WPT and WSOP title to his name. He won the €10,000 WPT Grand Prix de Paris for €638,377 ($848,736) in 2010. That was two years after his victory in a £5,250 PLO event at the WSOP Europe.