The long wait is finally over, and Damian Salas, the international leg WSOP Main Event champion now knows who he will be facing off in the heads-up match for the chance to win a bracelet and $1 million in additional prize money. The final eight players made their way to Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas for a chance to win the ultimate prize and become the US champion. After an intense night of poker, Joseph Hebert emerged victorious.
The final table was supposed to feature nine of the 705-player field. However, Upeshka De Silva tested positive for covid-19 and was disqualified. The rules stated that anyone disqualified for any reason will take ninth place. The rule applied to Upeshka, and he was rewarded with $98,813 but did not make it to the live table. The other eight players competed on Monday night, December 28.
Joseph’s victory saw him go home with $1,553,256 top prize money and the opportunity to compete for an additional $1 million and the gold bracelet against Damian Salas. The part-time waiter from Louisiana was able to secure the victory after about four hours of play. It is a great victory for a man who got in through the $300 satellite on WSOP.com
The 38-year-old stated that it was not an easy competition as all players came out ready to win. He said, “I was just really confident. I was excited to play, and it was just a battle. It was not easy, I tell you that much. The guys played great. It was just a battle the whole way through.” Also, he dedicated the win to his mother, Linda, who passed away in the summer due to pulmonary embolism. He said the last message he sent her was on how he wanted to win the bracelet one day, and she replied, saying she hopes the same and she will keep praying. Three days after that conversation, Linda passed away.
Heads-up Match Postponed
It was reported earlier on Monday, December 28, that Damian Salas was denied entry into the US. He won the international leg on the 15th in the Czech Republic and was slated to face-off with the US champion on December 30. However, all efforts to enter the US proved abortive.
He was meant to fly through Dallas but his certificate of exemption from WSOP was not recognized. He was asked to come in through Miami, but the same was the case. The sole reason being that he was in Europe within the last 15 days, even though he tested negative for covid-19.
As a result, the Argentine will face off with Joseph on January 3, at 5 p.m. PST. It is unclear when he will get into the United States, however, the latest he can get into the US is on the 2nd of January, 2021. All hands are on deck, trying to make sure he gets in as soon as possible.
The final table result is:
Position || Player || Prize Money
1st || Joseph Hebert || $1,553,256
2nd || Ron Jenkins || $1,002,340
3rd || Michael Cannon || $529,258
4th || Ryan Hagerty || $387,130
5th || Ye “Tony” Yuan || $286,963
6th || Harrison Dobin || $215,222
7th || Shawn Stroke || $163,786
8th || Gershon Distenfeld || $125,885
9th || Upeshka De Silva || $98,813