Name: Badih “Bob” Bounahra
Hometown: Belize City, Belize
Online Handle: LEB_BEL
At 49 years old, Badih Bounahra is the elder statesman of the 2011 November Nine. He’s also the first player from Belize to ever reach the final table of the World Series of Poker Main Event.
Bounahra was born in Lebanon but now makes his home in Belize City, where he runs the private poker room in the Princess Casino. He’s also a businessman and a father of three, but has still managed to find time to travel the tournament circuit and rack up some nice scores over the years.
In 2008, Bounahra won a $1,020 No Limit Hold’em Second Chance tournament during the PokerStars Latin American Poker Tour’s stop in San Jose, Costa Rica for just over $30,000. He also collected $11,000 for a 2nd place finish in a $1,000 event at the 2009 Ultimate Bet Poker Classic.
His biggest cash will come in November. A minimum payday of $782,115 is up for grabs, and the world champion will pick up $8,711,956. Bounahra sits sixth in chips with 19,700,000 entering the final table and is one of the wild cards remaining as not much is known about his game.
HOW HE GOT THERE:
Day 1: 105,375 chips
Day 2: 35,900
Day 3: 205,500
Day 4: 924,000
Day 5: 640,000
Day 6: 1,860,000
Day 7: 3,835,000
Day 8: 19,700,000
KEY HAND: Like all of his November Nine counterparts, Bounahra won several key pots late in the Main Event. But it was a hand against Phil Collins that put a short-stacked Bounahra back in contention on Day 8.
On a heads-up flop of Js-6d-5c, Bounahra fired a bet of 675,000 into Collins, who thought for a moment before moving all in. Bounahra called off his remaining 4.5 million chips and was in great shape to double up and creep into the top 10 on the leaderboard:
Bounahra’s two pair was well out in front, and the 10c turn and 4c river were no help to the online legend Collins as Badih survived. Bounahra was at risk again on the final table bubble but his pocket kings held up against the K-Q of John Hewitt, leading to Hewitt’s ultimate demise as the bubble boy of the Main Event final table.
WHY HE CAN WIN: Bounahra was never among the chip leaders of the tournament but still landed safe and sound at the final table with nearly 20 million in chips. His greatest asset going into November may be that he’s a polite, soft-spoken gentleman that didn’t bring any attention to himself during the eight-day event. That could create problems for his tablemates if they’re trying to get a read on Bounahra during a critical moment.