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WSOP: History -- 1993 Recap

Jim Bechtel Wins $1 Million


The preliminary events at the 1993 World Series of Poker were once again dominated by professional players. Three of those pros even won multiple bracelets: Phil Hellmuth won three bracelets ($1,500 no-limit hold’em, $2,500 no-limit hold’em, and $5,000 limit hold’em), Ted Forrest also won three ($1,500 razz, $1,500 Omaha eight-or-better, and $5,000 seven-card stud), while Humberto Brenes won two bracelets ($1,500 pot-limit Omaha and $2,500 limit hold’em). Also picking up preliminary bracelets were Chau Giang ($1,500 ace-to-five lowball), Hamid Dastmalchi ($2,500 pot-limit hold’em), Billy Baxter ($5,000 deuce-to-seven lowball), Erik Seidel ($2,500 Omaha eight-or-better), John Bonetti ($1,500 pot-limit hold’em), and Jack Keller ($1,500 Omaha). Fourteen of the 20 preliminary events that year were won by professional players.

The main event made a recovery in size that year, growing to 220 entries. The top 27 were paid, including the first two women ever to cash in the main event, Wendeen Eolis (20th) and Marsha Waggoner (19th). The final table that year included two former world champions from the ’90s, Brad Daugherty and Mansour Matloubi. Joining those two players at the final table were Al Korson, Thomas Kreilein, Mick Cowley, Thomas Chung, Bonetti, Glenn Cozen, and Jim Bechtel. Just missing television time that year were Daugherty (ninth), Korson (eighth), and Kreilein (seventh).

Bonetti came in with the chip lead at the final table (913,000), and even the player closest to him was far behind (Jim Bechtel, with 631,000). Those two large stacks got involved in the first major pot of the final table when Bonetti bet 20,000 on a flop of A-A-10. Bechtel made the call, and the turn was dealt 4. Both players checked, and the 7 fell on the river. Bechtel bet 120,000, and Bonetti made the call. Bechtel flipped up A 3 to win the pot and pull close to even with Bonetti. Bechtel then went on a tear and continued to build his chip lead as Cowley hit the rail in sixth place and Chung was eliminated in fifth place.

Bechtel then raised a limped pot to 100,000 preflop against Matloubi and Cozen, and only Matloubi made the call. The flop hit the table A K 8, and Bechtel bet 300,000, enough to put Matloubi all in. Matloubi turned up two jacks to grab a reaction from Bechtel and received none, but he still made the call. Bechtel showed down A Q, and Matloubi was eliminated in fourth place when no help came on the turn or river.

Jim BechtelCozen was now down very low with 50,000, and he managed to double up against Bonetti to survive. A few hands later, Bechtel bet 85,000 on a flop of K 6 4, and Bonetti raised to 180,000. Bechtel made the call, and the turn came J. Bonetti moved all in, and Bechtel made the call. Bonetti turned over A K, but Bechtel showed down pocket sixes for a set. The turn and river did not hit for Bonetti, and he exited the building in third place.

Cozen had just made $201,000 by folding the previous hand, but he was too low to have any real shot at the title. He got the last of his chips in preflop on the third hand of heads-up play, and he had pinned his hopes on 7 4. Bechtel had him covered with J 6, and after the board bricked out, he won the 1993 world championship with jack high.

1993 WSOP results

WSOP history article links:

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