Wednesday July 17, 2019 at 9:18 am
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The 2019 World Series of Poker Main Event Championship concluded at the Rio Casino when Germany's Hossein Ensan defeated Italy's Dario Sammartino heads up to win $10,000,000 and the coveted Main Event bracelet. Three players began Day 10 with Ensan holding a sizable lead. Canada's Alex Livingston busted in third place for a $4 million score. After 101 hands of heads-up action, Sammartino banked $6 million for a runner-up consolation prize. Ensan, 55, became the oldest Main Event Champ since Noel Furlong in 1999.

Ship it to Iran via Germany! Hossein Ensan became the second German player to win the Main Event joining Pius Heinz (2011 champion). He also became the oldest player (55) to take down the Main Event since 1999.

About three plus hours into Day 10, Alex Livingston bit the dust. It happened on Hand #200 too when the big stack took him out. Livingston had gone from the big stack to the short stack quickly. His demise began with pocket Kings that got whacked by Super Dario's big blind special. He lost the lead and could not stop the bleeding.

It came down to German vs. Italy for the bracelet and $10 million in cash. The next world champion was guaranteed to be a European player once again and the first one in five years. Ensan held a 45M lead over Sammartino.

It would take nearly four more hours and 101 hands of heads-up action to determine a new champ. And for the first time in history, the champ walked off into the sunset with pocket cowboys.

Event #73 $10,000 MAIN EVENT CHAMPIONSHIP - Final Results

Pic by Joe Giron (Courtesy of WSOP)

Coming into the final three and Day 10 action, Ensan held a big stack worth 326.8M or 163 big blinds worth. He had nearly twice as much as his opponents combined.

Alex Livingston entered the final three with 120.4M or 60 big blinds, while Dario Sammartino came into Day 10 with the shorty and 67.6 million.

Super Dario doubled up early on in dramatic fashion with Carte As de piqueCarte Valet de pique against Ensan's pocket sixes. Sammartino caught a runner-runner-runner straight to win the pot and double through the chip leader. Sammartino passed over 100M, while Ensan slipped to under 300M to 287M.

At that point, the other sharks smelled blood in the water/ Livingston inched closer to the overall lead as he headed toward 200M and Ensan continued to bleed falling to 215M.

By the end of Level 40, Ensan led with 239M, followed by Livingston's 188M and Sammartino's 88M.

On Hand #170, Alex Livingston seized the lead when he rivered a 6-high straight against Dario's Wheel. It was a slim lead, but a lead nonetheless.

Ensan regained the top spot with only 218M when Super Dario doubled through Alex Livingston. Dario turned two pair with the big blind special. He'd end up snapping off Livingston's pocket Kings with 10-6. Yikes. Dario chipped up to 182M and Livingston slipped to 216M.

On Hand #189 Super Dario took his turn with the lead as he surged over 200M. Livingston quickly went from the penthouse to the outhouse.

On Hand #200, Alex Livingston made a final stand with Ace-Jack against Ensan's Ace-Queen. Both of them hit the flop but Ensan led with a pair of Queens versus a pair of Jacks. Livingston did not improve on the turn or river and busted in third place. The Canadian earned $4 million for third. Not too shabby, eh?

With two remaining, Ensan led 280M to Dario Sammartino's 235M.They would end up in a four-hour battle that lasted 101 hands of heads-up action. They got to Level 43 without anyone busting. Blinds were 2M/4M with a 4M ante.

Heading into the final hand on Hand #301 around 1:30am local time, Ensan led 345.5 million to 169.5 million.

Ensan woke up with Carte Roi de cœurCarte Roi de trèfle and raised to 11M. Sammartino defended his big blind with Carte 8 de piqueCarte 4 de pique. The flop was Carte 10 de piqueCarte 6 de piqueCarte 2 de carreau. Sammartino checked, Ensan fired out 15M, and Sammartino called.

The Carte 9 de trèfle fell on the turn. Sammartino checked, Ensan bet 33M, and Sammartino check-raised all-in for 140M. Ensan could not call fast enough with pocket Kings. He led against Sammartino's gutshot and flush draws.

Sammartino never improved on the river with the Carte Dame de trèfle fell. Ensan won the pot and tournament with pocket Kings. That also marked the first time the WSOP Main Event winner shipped the event with pocket Cowboys.

For a gutsy runner-up finish, Sammartino banked $6 million.

Ensan won $10,000,000 and his first bracelet.

"I didn't play my best game heads up, but my opponent is a very good player," said Sammartino.

When Kara Scott from ESPN asked Ensan about winning the bling and Main Event, he said, "Unbelievable. I cannot fully understand the moment. I'm so happy. I thank my fans back home in Germany and also in Iran."

Ensan won the second-largest Main Event in history and tied for the second-largest score in WSOP history. The $10M score also thrust him into the Top 10 in all-time winnings for Germany.

2019 WSOP - Event #73 Main Event Championship

Buy-in: $10,000

Entrants: 8,569

Prize Pool: $80,548,600

Payouts: 1,286


Final Table Results:

1. Hossein Ensan (Germany) $10,000,000

2. Dario Sammartino (Italy) $6,000,000

3. Alex Livingston (Canada) $4,000,000

4. Garry Gates (USA) $3,000,000

5. Kevin Maahs (USA) $2,200,000

6. Zhen Cai (USA) $1,825,0000

7. Nick Marchington (UK) $1,525,000

8. Tim Su (USA) $1,250,000

9. Milos Skrbic (Serbia) $1,000,000

WSOP Main Event Champions (Since 2003)


2019 Hossein Ensan

2018 John Cynn

2017 Scott Blumstein

2016 Qui Nguyen

2015 Joe McKeehen

2014 Martin Jacobson

2013 Ryan Reiss

2012 Greg Merson

2011 Pius Heinz

2010 Jonathan Duhamel

2009 Joe Cada

2008 Peter Eastgate

2007 Jerry Yang

2006 Jamie Gold

2005 Joe Hachem

2004 Greg Raymer

2003 Chris Moneymaker

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