Ronaldo gets Double Bluffed by Bebeto, Kevin Boudreau Continues Remarkable Road to Recovery

Boudreau (left) on the comeback trail

Both the magic and the anguish behind online poker is often that you’re never quite sure who you’re up against; it could be a young budding Phil Ivey, it could be your Dad sneaking in a few hands on the toilet, or it could even be one of your country’s greatest sporting icons.

Well, unlikely as it is, the latter came true for a very lucky selection of the Brazilian public over the weekend as passers-by in Sao Paolo were invited to try out a couple hands of heads up NL Hold’em in a specially designated booth.

Participants found themselves battling it out with a mystery opponent – who was sat behind a curtain – using the PokerStars mobile app, before the curtain was dramatically withdrawn to reveal none other than Brazilian footballing icon and PokerStars Ambassador Ronaldo.

Of course, there were plenty of surprised faces and a lot of fun was had by all involved, but there was a special twist in the tale at the expensive of Ronaldo, as his last opponent of the day turned out to be old team mate and fellow Brazilian World Cup winning striker Bebeto!

The two stars then exchanged jokes before staying behind after the event to chat a bit with PokerStars, both revealing an interest in the game at opposite ends of the spectrum:

Ronaldo: “I play poker almost daily. I have been travelling the world playing poker, visiting lots of countries and taking part in some important tournaments.”

Bebeto: “He [his son who recently graduated having written his thesis on poker] tells me that it’s a sport based not on luck but on a lot of strategic thinking, so it makes me curious to understand the game more and see if he [Ronaldo] is as good as he says he is!”


By far the worst story that emerged from the 2013 WSOP was that of Kevin Boudreau’s tragic collapse following a sudden bleed on his brain during the dinner break of an event, but as this year’s series rolls around, what was a year ago a grim prognosis now hints at a much happier conclusion.

At the back end of last month, Kevin’s father Jim kindly spoke to PokerNews to provide a progress update for the community and revealed that his son had begun to move almost the entirety of his body, read, communicate with speech and of course, play online poker!

While just yesterday his close friend and fellow poker pro Peter Jetten – who had been one of the first to break the horrible news almost a year ago – went to visit Boudreau and posted a picture (right) of them enjoying breakfast together.

Jetten: “Had a great visit with @KevinPhwap. Really amazing how much progress he has made.”

Boudreau was previously one of the ‘Ship it Holla Ballas’ crew and amassed almost $500,000 in live tournament cashes – along with his online winnings – across 13 WSOP cashes and one final table finish. Here’s to hoping he can add to that sometime in the not too distant future.


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