Martin Kabrhel Poker Legend and Controversial Figure in High Stakes Drama

Martin Kabrhel Poker Legend and Controversial Figure in High Stakes Drama


Martin Kabrhel is a well-known Czech poker player and the founder of the Czech esports team Entropiq. As one of the most polarizing figures in poker, Kabrhel is infamous for his incessant tanking and combative behavior. His career highlights include winning two World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelets and five WSOP Circuit rings, accumulating over $11 million in total live earnings, according to Hendon Mob. This impressive sum tops the charts in his native land.

Controversies and Accusations

In June 2023, Kabrhel participated in the World Series of Poker (WSOP), where he took third place in the $250,000 buy-in Super High Roller event, earning $2,279,038. However, the main story of the event was that Kabrhel was accused of cheating by high roller Andrew Robl and others. Robl claimed that Kabrhel was marking cards, an accusation that Kabrhel vehemently denied. The accused cheater even took to Twitter, where he threatened legal action against Robl.

Reactions from the Poker Community

Some poker players shared clips from the Super High Roller event, where they labeled Kabrhel's behavior as suspicious. These clips showed playing cards briefly sticking to Kabrhel's fingers and him standing and hovering over his opponents while deciding on his next action. Fellow high-stakes pro Chance Kornuth openly called for Kabrhel to be banned, asserting that he should be 100% banned from the WSOP and High Roller tournaments due to his incessant angle shooting during the $250,000 Super High Roller.

Poker Achievements

Kabrhel's first recorded poker cash came in 2009, when he picked up his first six-figure score by winning the European Poker Championship for €190,320 in October 2009. This marked the beginning of an impressive career filled with notable victories and high-stakes games.

He went on to claim three titles on the European Poker Tour in Vilamoura, Prague, and Deauville. In the latter city, he took home €250,000 after winning a €20,000 High Roller. This period established Kabrhel as a formidable player on the European poker scene.

Kabrhel continued to cash in tournaments around Europe during the 2010s. He won his first WSOP Circuit Ring in November 2016 and a second ring the following year. His success continued with his first bracelet in Event #3: €1,100 Super Turbo Bounty at the WSOP Europe in Rozvadov.

In 2018, Kabrhel had an incredible run during the WSOP Europe festival. After winning the Opening event for his third Circuit ring, he won another ring just a fortnight later. He then followed this up with his second bracelet less than a month later, winning Event #9: €100,000 Super High Roller for a career-best score of €2,624,340.

Poker Star Accused of Cheating in $250K Buy-In Game: ‘Your Antics Are the Worst’

An awkward moment involving Martin Kabrhel went viral on social media after several professional players defended Smith's accusations. These players were claiming that Kabrhel has a history of marking cards to gain an unfair advantage. Dan insisted that Martin should be banned, stating, "He has a history of repeatedly marking cards to cheat in high roller games, and the community knows it."

A fuming poker player, Hayley Hanna, tweeted that Martin not only cheats but also makes the experience unpleasant by being rude, yelling in people's ears nonstop, taking full time to act when he's clearly going to fold, and standing over people to see their stack, all while trying to angle. Andrew Robl, a professional poker player from Michigan, also called Kabrhel out, saying he's seen him mark cards in every tournament they've played together. "He makes any tournament no fun for anyone," Robl tweeted.

Marking cards is a cheating method in card games where a player alters cards to know what their opponent is holding. The World Series of Poker took notice of this heated incident captured on video and later issued a statement about the matter. While they didn't discuss specific security protocols used to monitor players and gaming equipment, they assured the integrity of the game remains paramount and that they are taking these allegations seriously. According to the WSOP statement in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the ongoing investigation means no further comment will be made at this time.

Kabrhel defended himself in a series of tweets, expressing that he was shocked by the cheating allegations. The 40-year-old announced he is taking legal action against Smith, Robl, and other players who allege cheating, including Chance Kornuth and Justin Bonomo, citing defamation. "On behalf of yesterday's situation, I feel it necessary to speak up," he tweeted. @Andrew_Robl posted an accusation on Twitter that I’m marking cards and cheating in poker tournaments. I was shocked by how quickly people believed it without any evidence, leading to a media blizzard where I am portrayed as a cheater."

Kabrhel, a Czech Republic veteran with two bracelets from World Series of Poker Europe tournaments, has total live earnings of $11,703,313.