13 years ago, Carlos Mortensen battled through a field of 613 players to win the 2001 WSOP Main Event and $1.5 million. Mortensen has remained the only Spaniard to win the world’s most prestigious poker tournament, but that could possibly change come this November.
That’s because Basque native Andoni Larrabe is in the 2014 November Nine this year, and he’s actually got a decent shot to win. For starters, Larrabe isn’t doing too badly in the chip count as he’s currently fourth with 22.5 million. This may place him quite a ways behind the current leader, Jorryt van Hoof (38.3 million), but it by no means puts him out of contention.
Another thing that Larrabe has going for him is that he knows what it feels like to be a winner. The 22-year-old navigated through a PokerStars Caribbean Adventure $5k side event and on towards the $218,710 prize. Along the way, he topped a 195-player field and defeated famed pro Justin Bonomo heads-up. Larrabe also lays claim to an 11th place finish in the 2012 EPT Grand Final ($92,418).
Of course, there are some things working against this young player too. For starters, Larrabe has admitted in interviews that he’s been pretty nervous during his deep run in the 2014 WSOP Main Event. And now that he’s officially on the final table, the pressure won’t get any lighter. Plus Larrabe said that he made some definite mistakes en route to his November Nine run. But then again, at least the Spaniard is aware of the mistakes that he’s making. Moreover, we can expect him to be working to fix these leaks over the next 3+ months.
Larrabe will definitely be a fun one to watch when the 9-player final table reconvenes on Novemeber 10th. The first-place prize is worth $10 million while there are several other multi-million dollar payouts available too.