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Ali Imsirovic Wins His Ninth Poker Tournament Title of 2021 In Venetian $10,000 High Roller Event

The Player of the Year Race Leader Has Made 19 Qualified Final Tables, Cashing For More Than $3 Million So Far This Year


Look at any ranking points race or any other metric used to measure performance on the live tournament circuit in 2021 and you will find Ali Imsirovic’s name sitting at the top of the list. Imsirovic has been absolutely dominant on the high-stakes scene this year, leading the field in three of the most important categories used to track success: earnings, titles, and final-table finishes. The 26-year-old poker pro added to his lead in each of those columns by taking down the latest $10,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em high roller event held at The Venetian Resort Las Vegas. Imisrovic defeated a field of 34 entries to win his ninth title at his 19th POY-qualified final table of the year. He earned $136,000 for the win, increasing his POY earnings to $3,052,460.

Imsirovic has now won five more titles and made four more final tables than any other player on the live tournament circuit this year. He has $554,840 more in POY-qualified earnings than his nearest competitor Sean Winter, who also made the money in this event to bring his year-to-date total to $2,497,620.

Imsirovic earned 240 Card Player Player of the Year points for this victory, increasing his point total to 4,988 to further extend his lead in the 2021 POY race standings, which are sponsored by Global Poker. He now has a 1,157 point lead over second-ranked Chad Eveslage. He also strengthened his hold on the top spot on the PokerGO Tour leaderboard, adding 136 points with this latest title run.

This single-day event drew 34 entries to build a prize pool of $340,000. The top five finishers made the money, with three-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner and World Poker Tour main event champion Nick Schulman being eliminated on the direct bubble. Schulman ran J-10 into the pocket aces of Imsirovic and failed to come from behind.

Imsirovic sat in second chip position after the bubble burst, behind only Eric Worre. Katie Wier was the first to bust inside the money. She got the last of her short stack in with KClub Suit9Diamond Suit and received a call from Cary Katz, who held QDiamond SuitQClub Suit. The pocket queens held up and Wier was sent to the rail with $23,800.

Sean WinterDespite earning that knockout, Katz was the next to fall. He got all-in on a 10Diamond Suit6Diamond Suit4Club Suit flop with 10Spade Suit7Spade Suit and Worre called with ADiamond Suit10Heart Suit. The AHeart Suit on the turn gave Worre aces up to leave Katz drawing dead. The 9Spade Suit completed the board and Katz was eliminated in fourth place ($37,400). He earned 120 POY points for his 14th POY-qualified final-table finish, keeping him in 14th place in the overall POY standings. He also secured 37 PokerGO Tour points for this latest deep run. He currently sits in fifth place on that leaderboard.

Sean Winter called all-in on a JDiamond Suit4Diamond Suit3Heart SuitJClub Suit9Spade Suit board holding 10Heart Suit10Diamond Suit. His pocket tens had been best, but Ali Imsirovic’s 9Heart Suit9Diamond Suit improved to a full house on the river. Winter was knocked out in third place, earning $54,400 for his 13th POY-qualified final-table finish of the year. He climbed into 12th place in the POY standings, and surpassed Sam Soverel to move into third in the PokerGO Tour rankings.

With that Imsirovic took a slight lead into heads-up play with Worre. The decisive hand of their battle for the title began with Imsirovic raising to 75,000 from the button with KDiamond SuitKClub Suit. Worre called from the big blind with QHeart Suit7Heart Suit and the flop came down QClub Suit7Diamond Suit3Heart Suit. Worre checked his top two pair and Imsirovic bet 100,000. Worre called and the KHeart Suit on the turn gave Imsirovic a set while Worre picked up a backdoor flush draw to go along with his queens and sevens. Both players checked and the 5Spade Suit completed the board. Worre bet 325,000 and Imsirovic moved all-in. Worre called and was left with less than a small blind remaining in his stack, having just edged into the lead before this hand was dealt. He was eliminated the following hand, earning $88,400 as the runner-up finisher.

Here is a look at the payouts and rankings points awarded at the final table:

Place Player Earnings POY Points PokerGO
1 Ali Imsirovic $136,000 240 136
2 Eric Worre $88,400 200 88
3 Sean Winter $54,400 160 54
4 Cary Katz $37,400 120 37
5 Katie Wier $23,800 100 24

Photo credits: PokerGO.