For the 51st consecutive year, the World Series of Poker’s $10,000 No-Limit Hold-Em World Championship, also known as the Main Event, crowned a world champion on Jan. 3, at Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino as international champion Damian Salas of Bueno Aires, Argentina, won a head-to-head in a first-of-its-kind showdown against U.S. champion Joseph Hebert of Metairie, LA.
After 173 hands and nearly six hours of play, the final hand saw Salas call Hebert’s all-in before the flop with king-jack against ace-queen. Salas flopped a pair of kings to give him the lead, the turn card was no help to Hebert, and the river card sealed the deal with another king to solidify Salas’ victory.
“Joseph was a very hard opponent, and he played really well. In a few instances, he was about to win, it was a real fight and he never slowed down,” Salas said. “Going into the championship, I felt all the energy and support from my family and friends in Argentina tonight, and that helped me.”
Congratulations Damian Salas for winning the 2020 WSOP Main Event Heads-Up finale at the @RioVegas. He earns the title of 2020 World Champion, the Main Event bracelet plus the added $1M in prize money. pic.twitter.com/1YpV5uBLom— WSOP (@WSOP) January 4, 2021
Having placed seventh in 2017’s Main Event, Salas was focused on redemption during his 2020 run. With his eye on the ultimate prize, Salas won GGPoker’s international leg, defeating Brazil’s Brunno Botteon at King’s Resort in Rozvadov, Czech Republic.
Salas’ second time at the Final Table places him in elite company as the first Latin American champion and one of only a few players to ever make it to the final table more than once. While Salas has thrived as a poker player, he’s still passionate about his day job as a lawyer.
“Both these men are champions in their own right and were a pleasure to host for this unique match,” said Ty Stewart, Executive Director of the World Series of Poker. “We thank everyone who participated in this chapter of WSOP history and can’t wait to see you in Las Vegas later this year.