WSOP 2019: Hossein Ensan Wins Final Table, $10 Million Prize Money

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorJuly 17, 2019

Hossein Ensan, of Germany, reacts after a hand at the final table of the World Series of Poker main event Tuesday, July 16, 2019, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
John Locher/Associated Press

Hossein Ensan outlasted 8,568 competitors to win the 2019 World Series of Poker Main Event in the early hours of Wednesday morning in Las Vegas. 

Ensan beat Dario Sammartino in heads-up action and took home $10 million in addition to the prestigious WSOP bracelet.

The 55-year-old German poker professional was dominant through most of the Main Event's final days.

His $34,500,000 chip count (good enough for second) ballooned to a commanding $177 million heading into the Final Table. No other player had more than $100 million in chips, and only PokerStars Senior Consultant of Player Affairs Garry Gates held more than $60.6 million.

Ensan finished Days 8 and 9 as the leader but needed to hold off a hard charge from Gates, who nearly took the chip lead at the Final Table before finishing fourth.

The bracelet winner did temporarily lose his chip lead to Sammartino after the 32-year-old Italian check-raised third-place finisher and 32-year-old Canadian poker pro Alex Livingston and took down a pot.

Things looked even more dire for Ensan when Sammartino won $94.6 million in chips during heads-up action after his aces and nines beat his jacks and nines.

At that point, Ensan looked like the clear underdog with $185.2 million compared to Sammartino's $329.6 million, but the German chipped away at the lead and eventually took it back on a three-bet pot on Hand No. 222 of the Final Table.

He then built a commanding chip lead with consistently smart play, and Sammartino was the one feeling the pressure:

When the final hand came, Ensan's pocket kings always had him in a strong position, but Sammartino's eight and four of spades were boosted by a 10 and six of spades on the flop.

The Italian went all in on a nine of clubs on the turn and a snap-call by Ensan left Sammartino needing another spade on the river, but the queen of clubs appeared to end the contest. 

Ensan is just the third person to win $10 million or more as the WSOP Main Event winner. Jamie Gold did so in 2005 after banking $12 million, and Martin Jacobsen followed suit with $10 million in 2014.

He is also the oldest person to win the WSOP Main Event since 61-year-old Noel Furlong in 1999.

Sammartino will take home $6 million. 

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