Joseph Hachem wins the 2005 World Series
"He didn't qualify online?"
Surviving the field of 5619 entrants into the main event of the 2005 World Series of Poker, Joseph Hachem took the bracelet along with the 7.5 million dollars. Hachem is a Lebanese-born former chiropractor who resides in Australia. He is the first Australian to ever win a WSOP event and the spectators at the final table sure knew it when the crowd repeatedly chanted, "Aussie, Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi!" whenever Hachem got into a hand.
Upon winning the event after a grueling 14 hours of poker, Hachem wrapped himself in the Australian flag and said, "Thank You, America!" to the remaining bodies in attendance who managed to wake up that early in the morning.
One of the many surprises this year is that Hachem did not qualify online to get into the main event. He is a professional player who has put in his time (over 10 years) at the table and actually put up the $10,000 himself. He would have played in the WSOP sooner but he wanted to wait until his four children were older before he flew off to Vegas.
If you think Hachem is just another "lucky punk," (last year's "lucky punk," Greg "Fossilman" Raymer, placed 25th in this years main event and 6th in the $1500 no limit holdem tournament too, so perhaps it's time we give Mr. Raymer the credit he has proved he deserves?) you should know that he also placed 10th in the $1000 no limit holdem with rebuys (event 37 this year) just three days before the start of the main event.
Hachem's heads up play with Steve Dannenmann, a bloody mary-drinking full time CPA, didn't last long.
The final hand went a little something like this:
Dannenmann raises preflop, Hachem calls. Flop comes 654, Dannenmann bets, Hachem raises, Dannenmann calls. Turn is an Ace. Back and forth raising eventually puts both players all-in. The bleary-eyed media wakes up. Dannenmann has A3 for a pair of aces with an open-ended straight draw. Hachem has 73, meaning he already made that straight. Dannenmann needs a seven to chop the pot, putting his chance of splitting at 1 in 15. The river says 4 and Hachem's flopped straight holds up. Dannenmann being short stacked at the start of the hand puts the seal on the deal: Money, fame, a gold bracelet, and a year of being the world champion of poker for Hachem.
Grats to Jospeh Hachem! Oi!, Oi!, Oi!