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Poker Pro David Williams Falls Short On 'MasterChef'

Bracelet Winner Stumbles In Final Entree


World Series of Poker bracelet winner David Williams made the final three of season seven of “MasterChef,” but he missed out on the $250,000 grand prize and a cookbook deal in the finale that aired Wednesday night.

Williams was facing off against Kentucky school teacher Brandi Mudd and Las Vegas DJ Shaun O’Neale. The show began this spring with 20 contestants.

For his appetizer in the finale, Williams went with cured salmon, and it worked out well. However, his main course with guinea hen as the meat didn’t work out so well.

The dish was considered risky compared to his competitors’ choices of duck and venison.

For Williams, his guinea hen was undercooked and received criticism from the judges, and it put him behind in the final cooking challenge going into the dessert round.

The Texas native decided to go with stuffed cherries, and though it received praise, it wasn’t enough to overcome his short stack at that stage of the cooking tournament. O’Neale, who went with a tart for his dessert, was selected as the winner.

“They got it right,” Williams said on Twitter. “He was the best on day 1.The best throughout the show and the best in the finale. Congrats.”

“Thank you Gordon Ramsay,” he added. “It was an honor to cook for you and Christina Tosi and all the guest judges.”

Williams, the winner of $8.5 million in poker tournaments, was cheered on by a lot of the poker community during his run. “The poker community has been amazing,” Williams told Card Player this summer. “Most people want to ask me how I did, but they don’t realize I’m not allowed to say. So I haven’t told anyone obviously. A lot of people watch and talk about it, which is cool.”

Williams said “the pressure of poker dwarfs the pressure of MasterChef.”

His finish on the reality TV show follows poker pro Vanessa Rousso’s third-place finish on CBS’ “Big Brother” last fall. Rousso received nothing for her deep run.