A Single Table poker tournament, the most straightforward poker tournament is held at only one table. Most often, 8-10 players participate in the event, although some sites hold heads-up play with 2- seat tables.
As players lose their last chips, they are not replaced. Thus, the table becomes shorter handed.
Ultimately, one player wins all the chips. When that happens, the Single Table poker tournament ends and the prize pool is distributed among the players in accordance with the payout schedule.
Usually, the first place winner in a Single Table poker tournament gets about half of the prize pool, while the second and third place players each receive a smaller share, possibly 30% and 20%.
Brian Nelson - Poker Consultant