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Ben Maya Wins 2017 World Series of Poker $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em Shootout

Israeli Realtor Outlasts Field of 1,025 Players To Capture His First Gold Bracelet and $257,764

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Ben Maya is the latest champion at the 2017 World Series of Poker, having defeated a field of 1,025 players to win the $1,500 no-limit hold’em shootout event for his first bracelet and $257,764. If you are wondering why you haven’t heard that name before, it is because the 34-year-old realtor from Israel isn’t much of a regular on the international tournament scene.

“Actually, I don’t play tournaments at all,” said Maya. " played one tournament this year. Tournaments are so exhausting for me. I play tournaments so many hours, I get so tired."

Maya is a family man who owns his own business in the Israeli town of Rehovot. Poker just isn’t that big of a part of his life, so it’s no surprise that this event was his first ever cash at the WSOP.

“I had a feeling from the first day… I had a picture of me taking the bracelet, but I didn’t believe in myself. I don’t know why; I’m not such a good player, that I can tell you. After I won the second day, I knew it, that’s it,” he told WSOP reporters after emerging victorious.

In a shootout format players have to win each table they are assigned to in order to advance, making it somewhat like a series of winner-take-all sit’n’gos. Coming into the final day there were actually two six-handle tables worth of players left to play down to a champion, a result of the awkward 1,025 number of entries which saw 120 players advance to day 2. Among the final 12 were plenty of big names including two-time World Poker Tour main event winner Jonathan Little (9th – $21,360), Alex Rocha (5th – $62,602) and Tim West (3rd – $115,297).

In the end it came down to a heads-up battle between Maya and Belgium’s Thomas Boivin. Maya began with just under 4.3 million in chips to Boivin’s 3.4 million. The two played over 50 hands heads-up, with Maya holding the lead the whole way. In the end limped in from the button for 40,000 and Maya raised to 280,000. Boivin moved all in and Maya quickly called with the KSpade SuitKDiamond Suit. Boivin held the ASpade Suit10Heart Suit and found no help with a runout of KClub Suit6Spade Suit5Club Suit9Heart Suit5Heart Suit giving him a fullhouse to secure the pot and the title. Biovin earned $159,273 for his second place showing.

Here is a look at the payouts and POY points awarded at this final table:

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points
1 Ben Maya $257,764 960
2 Thomas Boivin $159,273 800
3 Tim West $115,297 640
4 Phachara Wongwichit $84,453 480
5 Alexander Rocha $62,602 400
6 Steve Foutty $46,969 320
7 Joe Cook $35,673 240
8 Paul Michaelis $27,431 160
9 Jonathan Little $21,360 80

For more coverage from the summer series, visit the 2017 WSOP landing page complete with a full schedule, news, player interviews and event recaps.

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