It was only fitting that a man named Moneymaker would put down $40 to enter the tournament and ultimately walk away with $2.5 million and the title of champion Saturday at the 34th annual World Series of Poker.
Chris Moneymaker, 27, of Spring Hill, Tenn., also became the first person to win the prestigious tournament by qualifying on the Internet.
Moneymaker faced Ihsan "Sam" Farha of Houston in a final round at Binion's Horseshoe Hotel & Casino.
After other players had been eliminated, $2.5 million in cash was placed on the green-felt table and the final hands were dealt.
The game was No-Limit Texas Hold'em, in which the players are dealt two cards each and share up to five additional cards that lie face up on the table.
Moneymaker drew a five and a four to Farha's jack and ten.
After the dealer laid out a jack, a four and a five on the table, Moneymaker stood holding two pairs to Farha's pair of jacks.
Farha wagered more than $1 million in chips. Moneymaker matched the bet and watched the dealer draw the final shared cards, which gave him a full house (three fives and two fours) and the victory.
Rumsfeld directs military
to cut accidents by half
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, alarmed by recent increases in military accidents, is challenging service chiefs to reduce by one-half the number of mishaps over the next two years.
"World-class organizations do not tolerate preventable accidents," Rumsfeld wrote the secretaries of the military departments. "Our accident rates have increased recently, and we need to turn this situation around."
The directive came in a memo Monday, the same day that four Marines died after their helicopter plunged into a canal in Iraq and a fifth drowned trying to save them.
Columbia experiment found
in Texas believed viable
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A group of Utah students have learned that their science experiment aboard the space shuttle Columbia was found in a Texas parking lot and still could produce useful data.
The aluminum box of salt crystals, an experiment by students from Moab, was recovered Feb. 2 in Nacogdoches, Texas, a day after the shuttle disintegrated during re-entry, killing the seven astronauts.
Lockheed Martin officials who organized the student experiments learned only last week that the experiment survived the disaster.
The salt crystal box had been placed in a temperature-controlled container in the shuttle cargo bay.
Four tiny crystals survived that could allow the students to complete their experiment.