Jonathan Chehanske Wins 2012-13 WSOP Circuit Harrah’s Rincon Main Event



More than 300 players entered the 2012-13 World Series of Poker Circuit Harrah’s Rincon Main Event over the weekend, and only one was left standing on Monday. Jonathan Chehanske, 32, bested a tough final table that included poker pros Soi Nguyen and David Randall to win the $107,862 top prize, a beautiful gold WSOP Circuit Ring, and an automatic bid to the WSOP National Championship in May.

Day 3 at Harrah’s Rincon began with the final nine players, and the eliminations were fast and furious from the start. The first player to go was short stack Ted Jivkov, who was the victim of the ultimate preflop cooler when his {k-Diamonds}{k-Hearts} ran into the {a-Hearts}{a-Spades} of Erik Roussakis. The board brought no miracles, and he was knocked out in ninth place.

David Randall was the next player to exit, and he, too, ran into pocket aces. This time, it was Lorenzo Bosforo who held them, and they were too much for Randall’s pocket nines. This was Randall’s second final table of the series; he finished third in the $1,000 buy-in event on the same day the Main Event kicked off.

A few hands later, James Czarnecki hit the rail. He put his tournament life at risk holding {a-Spades}{k-Clubs} and was flipping against{5-Clubs}{5-Spades}. A five came on the flop, and that spelled doom for Czarnecki, who headed to the payout desk with a seventh place ticket.

Six-handed action went on for more than two hours before Bosforo was eliminated. Bosforo four-bet shoved preflop for his last 600,000 with {k-Spades}{9-Hearts}, and Soi Nguyen made the call holding {10-Clubs}{10-Hearts}. The tens held, and Bosforo was eliminated in sixth place.

Roussakis was second in chips when he was eliminated in fifth place in what was the biggest pot of the tournament to that point. Action started with Roussakis raising to 75,000 in early position. Nguyen defended his big blind, and the two saw a flop of {4-Diamonds}{8-Spades}{2-Spades}.

Nguyen checked to Roussakis, who fired out 100,000. Nguyen grabbed some raising chips, shuffled them for a bit, then tossed in a raise to 230,000. As he has done often throughout the final table, Roussakis acted quickly and raised it to 500,000. Nguyen let out a brief sigh, and announced all in. Roussakis let out a sigh himself before making the call, and we had the biggest pot of the tournament.

Nguyen: {2-Hearts}{2-Clubs}
Roussakis: {5-Spades}{4-Spades}

Nguyen flopped bottom set but still had to sweat because Roussakis could still catch a spade to win the hand. The turn was a black king, but it was the {k-Clubs}. The river was the other black king, the {k-Spades}, and though it gave Roussakis the flush, it also gave Nguyen a full boat.

Four-handed lasted for quite some time, but then two players were eliminated on back-to-back hands after the dinner break. Edmund Liu shoved from under the gun with {a-Diamonds}{8-Hearts}, but he ran into the {9-Diamonds}{9-Spades} of Chehanske. Liu was not able to catch an ace, and he went home with $35,779 for his efforts.

On the very next hand, Chehanske played executioner again as his {a-Spades}{q-Diamonds} held against the {a-Diamonds}{7-Diamonds}of Lynda Tran, who was the first woman to reach a WSOP Circuit Main Event final table this year. Her elimination sent Chehanske into heads-up play with Soi Nguyen.

The match between the final two lasted only about 30 minutes as both players were extremely aggressive. There was a raise or three-bet on every hand, and it didn’t take long for the two to get the money in.

On the final hand of the tournament, Chehanske raised to 90,000 and Nguyen three-bet to 210,000. Chehanske made the call, and the flop came {8-Diamonds}{2-Diamonds}{a-Hearts}. The action was like rapid fire, as Nguyen bet out 310,000, Chehanske moved all in, and Nguyen snap-called.

Nguyen: {k-Diamonds}{6-Diamonds}
Chehanske: {2-Spades}{2-Clubs}

Chehanske was out in front, but Nguyen was still drawing very live as a diamond would give him a flush. The {5-Clubs} hit the turn, and Nguyen was left sweating the river card to stay alive. That card was the {a-Diamonds}, and while it did give Nguyen the flush, it also made a full house for Chehanske, who embraced his girlfriend in victory while Nguyen made his way to the payout desk, falling just short of the title.

2012-13 WSOP Circuit Harrah’s Rincon Final Table Results

Place Player Prize
1 Jonathan Chehanske $107,862
2 Soi Nguyen $66,693
3 Lynda Tran $48,438
4 Edmund Liu $35,779
5 Erik Roussakis $26,861
6 Lorenzo Bosforo $20,485
7 James Czarnecki $15,868
8 David Randall $12,476
9 Ted Jivkov $9,956

The next stop on the WSOP Circuit will be in Los Angeles in January. Stay tuned to for live updates from that event!

*Lead photo courtesy of

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