Eli Elezra won his fifth bracelet yesterday when he took down the 2022 WSOP Event #63: $10,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship.
This victory meant much more to Elezra than just the $611,362 and the plaudits of another bracelet. His victory also carried the somber weight of a dedication to Elezra’s father, who had passed away three weeks ago.
“Going into Shabbat, I was closely following my friend Eli Elezra,” Robbie Strazynski wrote on Facebook, in a touching celebration of his friend’s success. “He was 12th of 20 players remaining in a $10,000 buy-in Pot Limit Omaha poker tournament at the World Series of Poker (WSOP). Something told me he was destined for the winner’s circle this time around… Just a feeling I had.”
Sure enough, Elezra played well cutting down his opponents at the final table one by one. Eventually, it was just him and Chino Rheem heads up for the prize.
“Eli’s father passed away a few weeks ago and I attended the funeral in Las Vegas,” wrote Strazynski. “Eli is traditional but not what most would call “observant”. Even so, it was important for him to sit shiva at his mother’s home for the full 7 days, to say kaddish… and to publicly observe the shloshim (30 days post burial period) by not shaving. Eli dedicated his victory to his father, of blessed memory. […] An incredible, beautiful, touching story. Like I always say, poker is about SO much more than just the game.”
Elezra’s battle with Rheem saw the chip lead swap back and forth before the rising blinds and a run of good cards brought the event to a close. Elezra scooped the final pot with a full house fives-over-aces (neither player held a low hand). Rheem took home $377,855 for second place.
When it came time to take his winner’s photo, Elezra brought a photo of his father up on his phone and held it next to the bracelet.
“I won did it for my father Michel who died 18 days ago,” Elezra wrote later on Twitter, adding. “love you dad.”
2022 WSOP Event #63: $10,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship complete final table results
|2nd||Chino Rheem||United States||$377,855|
|3rd||Robert Cowen||United Kingdom||$271,219|
|4th||Damjan Radanov||United States||$197,637|
|5th||Ken Aldridge||United States||$146,242|
|6th||Filippos Stavrakis||United States||$109,910|
|7th||Josh Arieh||United States||$83,920|
|8th||Charles Coultas||United States||$65,113|
|9th||Seungjin Lee||South Korea||$51,353|
Featured image source: PokerGO