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Accountant Wins Poker Competition

26 May 2003

LAS VEGAS – As reported by the Associated Press: "It was only fitting that an accountant named Moneymaker would put down $40 and ultimately walk away with $2.5 million and the title of champion Saturday in the 34th annual World Series of Poker.

"Known to his friends as `Money,' Chris Moneymaker, 27, also became the first person to win the prestigious tournament by qualifying on the Internet.

"…Players and experts said Moneymaker's win will revolutionize poker, solidifying the merger of the Internet and big-name casinos and boosting the game's popularity.

"…After seven other players had been eliminated, $2.5 million in cash was placed on the green-felt table and the final hands were dealt. Moneymaker, with his metallic wraparound shades, clutched a small crystal in his hand for good luck. Farha of Houston, Texas, had an unlit cigarette in one hand and a tiger figurine by his side.

"…Moneymaker, who said he only began playing poker three years ago.

"In his first `live' poker tournament, Moneymaker beat a handful of former World Series of Poker champs, including Dan Harrington, who was at the final table and finished third with $650,000.

"The tournament began Monday with a record-breaking 839 players. A surge in online gambling and a rise in the game's popularity drew dozens of unknowns and a 33 percent increase in attendance over 2002…"

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