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Poker Professionals and Celebrities Support amfAR in the Bahamas

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Verne Troyer and John SalleyA large collection of poker professionals and celebrities attended the PokerStars/amfAR Celebrity Charity poker tournament at the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas this past week. The invitation-only tournament attracted 58 players. The funds raised will support AIDS research. The founder of amfAR, fashion designer Kenneth Cole said, “We cannot overstate the value and important of your generosity. We believe that if we make the right investments today, we can conquer HIV in our lifetime.”

Professional golfer Sergio Garcia, former NBA star John Salley, Verne Troyer (Mini-me), Entourage star Kevin Dillon (Drama), Playmate of the Year Nicole Jayde, former LA Dodgers pitcher Chad Billingsley and former great Orel Hershiser and Ricki Lake were among the celebrity contestants. They were joined by Team PokerStars pros Bertrand Grospellier, Liv Boeree, Vanessa Selbst, world champion Jonathan Duhamel, and many other players from the poker community.

“Tonight is a really big deal. Everyone gets to do what they enjoy doing and at the same time, will be part of something very important. We are flattered PokerStars has got involved for a second year. Five thousand people die every day from AIDS but it doesn’t need to be like that,” said Cole. PokerStars donated $50,000 to the charity and has pledged to match any donations players make to amfAR during the PCA.

The tournament was won by Team PokerStars pro Anh Nguyen, who was awarded two stadium tickets to any event of his choosing. The runner up was Team PokerStars pro Martin Hruby, who took home tickets for France vs. England rugby match in London next month. The top seven players took home various prizes. Here is a look at the results:

1: Anh Nguyen
2: Martin Hruby
3: PokerStars Qualifier Andy Lowe
4: Jonathan Duhamel
5: Matt Marafioti
6: Fatima Moreira de Melo
7: Pieter de Korver

About amfAR: Founded in 1985, amfAR is dedicated to ending the global AIDS epidemic through innovative research. With the freedom and flexibility to respond quickly to emerging areas of scientific promise, amfAR plays a role in accelerating the pace of HIV/AIDS research and achieving real breakthroughs. amfAR has invested nearly $290 million in its mission and has awarded grants to more than 2,000 research teams worldwide.