World Series of Poker Player Profiles: #1 – Jonathan Duhamel
It is almost time for the biggest poker tournament in the world to play to a conclusion. After a four-month hiatus, nine men will return to Las Vegas for the final table of the World Series of Poker.
These men – known as the ‘November Nine’ – will be fighting it out for the most prestigious prize in the game, not to mention an attention-grabbing first prize of over $8.9million. Over the next few days I will give you the lowdown on all the players still in with a shot.
Jonathan Duhamel – #1 in chips with 65,975,000
A 23-year-old professional poker player from Boucherville, Quebec, Duhamel put himself among the tournament chip-leaders during day 8 (the final day’s play before the four-month break), but has needed to ride his luck to stay at the top.
He was involved in the biggest pot of the tournament with fifteen players remaining, and looked set to drop down to under 10 million in chips before his pocket jacks outdrew Matt Affleck’s pocket aces to eliminate Affleck from the tournament and catapult Duhamel to an overwhelming chip lead.
Despite playing most of his poker online, Duhamel did have some live success earlier in the summer when he cashed in two other World Series events for a combined total of over $40,000, but that is nothing compared to the minimum of $811,823 he will receive for his Main Event finish.
Many players might be overwhelmed by taking such a huge lead into the final table (Duhamel has a lead of more than 20 million chips over his nearest rival) but the French-Canadian player thinks nothing of the pressure.
“I try not to put pressure on myself,” he said in an interview ahead of the final table. “I have a big stack, and we’ll see what happens from there. The more chips I have, the happier I am. So, is that pressure? Well, if so – I’m happy about that.”
Duhamel has revealed he would be extremely proud to become the first ever Quebecois champion, and indeed the first ever Canadian champion.
He is joined at the final table by fellow Canadian player Matt Jarvis, and Duhamel’s good friend and fellow Quebec native Pascal LeFrancois just missed out on becoming part of the November Nine as he was eliminated in 11th place.
Still, despite the elimination of LeFrancois, Duhamel has still promised a large Quebecois turnout in the form of friends, family and supporters. “We are going to make a lot of noise, that is for sure,” he added.