Araya Wins 3rd WSOP Ring at Harrah’s New Orleans, Vornicu Smashes All Records

After grueling, almost 7-hour poker play on the final table, Abraham Araya took the third WSOP gold ring in his career, claiming the $580 No-Limit Hold’em title for $27,043 at the Harrah’s New Orleans stop of the World Series of Poker. The bigger sensation, however, came in a few hours later with Valentin Vornicu who emerged victorious in the third event of the series and smashed all records by winning his 12th WSOP career ring in the early hours of Tuesday.

Following a record-setting win on Monday, San Diego-based poker pro Vornicu would be hitting the headlines in the following days and weeks. He first took down the 11th WSOP ring in his career becoming the player with the most rings ever when he won the opening event of the series. But to everyone’s surprise, most of all his own, he later claimed yet another WSOP gold ring, beating his own record. The player, born and raised in Romania, managed to achieve this feat by defeating the 348 entrants at the $365 Buy-in No-Limit Hold’em Single Day event on Monday evening. The 34-year old grinder said in a short interview after his historic win that he barely believed what he had done.

This was the third tournament of the series, currently taking place at the Harrah’s New Orleans casino. As the last stop of the World Series of Poker for the season, the festival is attracting a lot of poker pros and enthusiasts from all over the country. The $365 Buy-in No-Limit Hold’em Single Day event (Event #3) drew a strong field of 349 players and collected a total prize pool of $104,700, quite an attractive amount given the reasonable entry fee of only $365. Vornicu held the chip lead on the final table with 848,000, followed by Jerry Monroe (583,000), and Kien Tran (438,000). All finalists were guaranteed $1,831, while the winner was promised $24,084.

After several eliminations, Vornicu faced Joshua Lowing from Pensacola in the heads-up battle and managed to defeat him. For his second position, Lowing took a cash prize of $14,887, while Vornicu took home $24,084 and the 12th WSOP ring in his career.

More Exciting Events at Harrah’s New Orleans

While Valentin Vornicu won the first and the third tournaments of the poker festival at Harrah’s New Orleans, the second event was taken down by yet another poker player born outside the United States. The 41-year-old East Africa native Abraham Araya managed to survive to the final table at the $580 No-Limit Hold’em and to dominate over the other finalists to claim the title and the first place prize of $27,043.

Araya was one of the 208 entries that bought in the event with a total prize pool of $104,000 and it was not easy for him to take over. The top 21 spots finished in the money and Jeff Trudeau led the final 17 players on Monday, but soon he hit the rails in 11th position before making it to the final table. The last three players received over $10,000 and the one who busted 3rd was Nolan Burton who took home $12,061. To claim the title, Texas-based Abraham Araya defeated Bob Beck heads-up and took his third WSOP ring. This is his first win after nearly 6 years and for it, he banked $27,043 and earned a seat at the 2018 Global Casino Championship this summer.

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