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World Series Of Poker Main Event Day 7: Hossein Ensan Takes Massive Chip Lead Into Final Table

The German Dominated Day 7 And Has Nearly One-Third Of The Chips In Play


Hossein Ensan stole the show on Day 7 of the 2019 World Series of Poker main event. The German poker pro originally from Iran ran up a monster stack Friday leading up to the final table and leads the final nine players remaining.

Ensan came into the day second in chips with 35 players still vying for the title behind 21-year-old Nicholas Marchington. Ensan won a massive pot off Marchington with 20 players left when he flopped top and bottom pair on a flop of A-8-5.

Marchington check-raised the flop and barreled off with 10-2. He bet 9.5 million on the turn and 25 million on the river. Ensan snapped off both bets with A-5 to cross the 100 million chip mark, take over the chip lead and never looked back.

Later in the night, with 11 players remaining, Ensan won another massive pot, this time off Timothy Su. Ensan raised to 1.6 million from the cutoff and Su three-bet to 6.8 million out of the small blind. Ensan called and they went to a flop of Q-10-7. Su bet 6 million and Ensan called.

The turn was another seven and both players checked. The river was a six and Su bet 16 million. Ensan raised to 45 million and Su tanked for several minutes before calling. Ensan tabled pocket tens and won the pot with a full house.

Hossein EnsanThe pot against Su was worth 116 million and Ensan finished the night with 177,000,000. Both Marchington and Su survived the day, but are two of the shortest stacks at the final table.

“In poker, you need skill 100 percent, and after skill, you need luck, you need good cards,” said Ensan. “How can I say? Poker for me is everyday life. You need a good run.”

Outside of high-stakes Italian pro Dario Sammartino, Ensan is easily the most accomplished player at the main event final table. Despite his more than $2.3 million in tournament earnings, mostly from Europe, Ensan feels that his experience winning poker tournaments will be secondary to lady luck in his ultimate finish.

“I so often final table and at final tables, you need more luck than skill,” said Ensan. “You need cards. If you have cards, and good run, you can win. But with my stack, I’m chip leader and must try to work with my chips. My chance for top three, I think is close. But ninth? Never.”

Sammartino finished with 33.4 million, good for sixth in chips, after playing one of most controversial hands of the tournament. Sammartino raised and Marchington moved all in for 22.2 million out of the small blind, but the dealer announced it as 17.2 million.

Sammartino called and after the hands were turned up, Sammartino saw that he was in bad shape with his pocket 10s against Marchington’s pocket queens. Sammartino then argued with tournament staff about how much he should be forced to call. In the end, Marchington’s hand held up and Sammartino paid him the full amount.

Garry GatesIn a distant second in chips behind Ensan is PokerStars’ Senior Consultant of Player Affairs Garry Gates. Gates comes into the final table with 99.3 million. Gates has worked in the poker industry for more than a decade and has seen plenty of players make main event final table runs.

Being on this side of the rail, however, is an indescribable experience for Gates.

“It’s hard to put that into words,” said Gates. “Being an industry person and having interactions with the best players in the world and being on the other side of the rail and cheering for them and seeing their dreams come true, I mean…. this morning I woke up to text messages from John Juanda and Erik Seidel and Jason Koon wishing me luck. That’s crazy.”

Gates currently works in the poker industry, but when he first moved out to Las Vegas, he had dreams of grinding out a living on the felt.

“I think 15 years ago was when I packed up my entire life, I didn’t even have a cellphone. I threw all my belongings in a 1999 Honda Accord and drove across the country to pursue this dream, this pipe dream of playing poker for a living,” said Gates. “And early on, I went broke again and again and again and made terrible decisions. But just to see my life and my career pan out the way that it has, it’s incredible.”

Zhen Cai will come into the final table third in chips with 60.6 million, Kevin Maahs fourth with 43 million and Alex Livingston fifth with 37.8 million. Livingston just missed out on a final table in the main event in 2013, when he finished 13th for $451,398. This year, Livingston is guaranteed a seven-figure payday.

Robert HeidornRobert Heidorn bubbled the final table. He finished in 10th and earned $800,000. Heidorn was all in with K-Q against Livingston’s pocket eights. The board came 9-8-7-J-5 and Livingston sent everybody home for the night.

Milos Skrbic, Su, and Marchington are the three short stacks coming into the final table. The final nine players will have an off day on Saturday before the final table plays from nine players to six on Sunday evening. When play resumes, there is 1:31:35 remaining in level 37 with blinds of 500,000-1,000,000 with a 1,000,000 big blind ante.

Florida pro Corey Burbick, bracelet winner Yuri Dzivielevski, Duey Duong and Card Player Poker Tour Choctaw champion Austin Lewis were among the notable eliminations on Day 6.

Final Table Chip Counts:

Seat 1: Hossein Ensan – 177,000,000
Seat 2: Nicholas Marchington – 20,100,000
Seat 3: Dario Sammartino – 33,400,000
Seat 4: Kevin Maahs – 43,000,000
Seat 5: Timothy Su – 20,200,000
Seat 6: Zhen Cai – 60,600,000
Seat 7: Garry Gates – 99,300,000
Seat 8: Milos Skrbic – 23,400,000
Seat 9: Alex Livingston – 37,800,000

Results From Day 6:

35th: Corey Burbick – $261,430
34th: Steven Parrott – $261,430
33rd: Thomer Pidun – $261,430
32nd: Daniel Charlton – $261,430
31st: Christopher Ahrens – $261,430
30th: Mario Navarro – $261,430
29th: Luke Graham – $261,430
28th: Yuri Dzivielevski – $261,430
27th: Oliver Bithell – $324,650
26th: Zackary Koerper – $324,650
25th: Hiroki Nawa – $324,650
24th: Jonathan Dempsey – $324,650
23rd: Marcelo Cudos – $324,650
22nd: Nicholas Danias – $324,650
21st: Preben Stokkan – $324,650
20th: Warwick Mirzikinian – $324,650
19th: Duey Duong – $324,650
18th: Mihai Manole – $400,000
17th: Enrico Rudelitz – $400,000
16th: Austin Lewis – $400,000
15th: Paul Dhaliwal – $500,000
14th: Christopher Barton – $500,000
13th: Viktor Rau – $600,000
12th: Michael Niwinski – $600,000
11th: Henry Lu – $800,000
10th: Robert Heidorn – $800,000

For more coverage from the summer series, check out the 2019 WSOP landing page, complete with a full schedule, results, news, player interviews, and event recaps.