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Justin Bonomo, Sung Joo Hyun Among Early Winners In Bellagio Five Diamond High Roller Events

The First Four High-Stakes Tournaments of the Series Wrapped Up Over The Weekend, With Nearly $2.9 Million In Prize Money Paid Out So Far


The 2021 Five Diamond World Poker Classic series is running from Dec. 2-19 at Bellagio, with the centerpiece of the whole affair being the $10,400 buy-in World Poker Tour main event that kicks off on Dec. 15. In addition to that prestigious tournament, the festival is also playing host to 13 high roller events over the next few weeks. The first four high-stakes tournaments wrapped up over the weekend, with just shy of $2.9 million in prize money paid out across those events. Below is a look at the results.

Bellagio High Roller #1

Giuseppe IadiserniaThe first high-stakes tournament on the agenda was a $10,500 buy-in no-limit hold’em event that kicked off on Dec. 2. A total of43 entries were made by the time that registration closed, building a prize pool of $430,000 that was paid out among the top seven finishers.

Giuseppe Iadisernia emerged victorious with the title and the largest payout of the event: $146,200. This was his third recorded tournament title, bringing his lifetime earnings to more than $2.1 million.

In addition to the title and the money, Iadisernia was also awarded 300 Card Player Player of the Year points for the win. This was his sixth POY-qualified final table of the Year. With 957 total points, he now sits in 315th place in the 2021 POY race, sponsored by Global Poker He also earned 146 PokerGO Tour points, enough to climb inside the top 200 on that leaderboard.

Iadisernia defeated a tough final table on his way to the title, knocking out the final four players in a row to secure the win. Five-time bracelet winner Brian Rast finished second for $94,600 and 250 POY points. This was his second qualifying score of the year, behind his victory in the $3,000 no-limit hold’em six-max event at the World Series of Poker for $474,102 and 1,368 points. This second-place finish was enough to move him into 121st place in the standings.

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points PokerGO
1 Giuseppe Iadisernia $146,200 300 146
2 Brian Rast $94,600 250 95
3 Rok Gostisa $64,500 200 65
4 Ben Yu $43,000 150 43
5 Punnat Punsri $64,400 125 34
6 David Szep $25,800 100 26
7 Sean Winter $21,500 75 22

Iadisernia photo provided by PokerGO.

Bellagio High Roller #2

Justin BonomoThe $103,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em event saw Justin Bonomo expand his lead on Card Player’s all-time money list. The 36-year-old poker pro and three-time bracelet winner overcame a field of 19 total entries in the six-figure buy-in tournament, striking a deal heads-up with Jason Koon to secure the title and a $928,200 to increase his lifetime total to $59,035,450.

This was Bonomo’s 28th recorded tournament title, and his 11th-largest career score. All of the top ten paydays on his resume are for at least seven figures, with the largest being the $10,000,000 he earned as the 2018 WSOP Big One For One Drop champion.

Bonomo has now made five final tables in 2021, starting with his runner-up showing in the Super High Roller Bowl in late September for just shy of $1.9 million. He has accrued nearly $3.8 million in POY-qualified earnings so far this year, and sits in 104th place in the POY race with 1,440 total points. He climbed to 34th place in the PokerGO Tour rankings thanks to the 278 points he earned for this latest win.

Koon earned $667,800 and 200 points toward both the POY and PokerGO Tour races as the runner-up. Koon has made nine final tables this year, winning two titles including his first bracelet as the last player standing in the $25,000 heads-up no-limit hold’em championship. He climbed into 40th place in the POY standings and 18th place in the PokerGO Tour race with this latest strong showing in an ultra-high-stakes event.

Koon now has nearly $35.2 million in lifetime tournament earnings to his name, enough to put him in eighth place on poker’s all-time money list. Dan Smith, who is fifth on that leaderboard with $38.2 million, finished third in this event for $304,000.

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points PokerGO
1 Justin Bonomo $928,200 240 278
2 Jason Koon $667,800 200 200
3 Dan Smith $304,000 160 91

Bellagio High Roller #3

Sung Joo HyunSung Joo Hyun earned his third title of the year by taking down the third high roller of the series, a $10,500 buy-in no-limit hold’em event that drew 35 entries. Hyun, known to many by his vlogger name ‘Arte Poker,’ earned $140,000 and 240 POY points for his latest deep run in 2021.

With two previous titles and four other final-table finishes, the Korean poker pro now sits in 26th place in the POY race with 3,094 points and $754,395 in POY earnings.

Hyun defeated Rok Gostisa heads-up for the title. Gostisa had finished third in the first high roller of the series just days earlier for $64,500. This time around he earned $91,000 for the third-largest payday of his career. The biggest came earlier this year when he took down the World Poker Tour Online Championships main event for $959,493.

Like Gostisa, Punnat Punsri also made the final table in both of the two $10,500 buy-in high rollers held so far. The Thai player finished fifth in the first event for $64,400 and third in this event for another $56,000.

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points PokerGO
1 Sung Joo Hyun $140,000 240 140
2 Rok Gostisa $91,000 200 91
3 Punnat Punsri $58,000 160 58
4 Ky Nguyen $35,000 120 35
5 Mark Hammond $28,000 100 28

Hyun photo provided by World Poker Tour.

Bellagio High Roller #4

Henrik Hecklen$10,500 buy-in eight-game mixed event drew 19 players, building a prize pool of $190,000 that would be split between the top three finishers. Denmark’s Henrik Hecklen emerged victorious shortly before 2:00 am local time, defeating four-time WSOP bracelet winner Benny Glaser heads-up to secure the title.

Hecklen earned $102,600 as the champion, the eighth-largest score of his career. This was his fifth live tournament title and 37th career score. He now has more than $4.5 million in lifetime cashes to his name.

In addition to the money, he also locked up 120 POY points for his third qualified score of the past month. In November he final-tabled a $10,000 no-limit high roller at ARIA, finishing sixth for $25,800 and 100 points. A week later he placed fifth in the $100,000 buy-in high roller at the WSOP for $434,523 and 300 more points.

Glazer earned $57,000 and 100 points for his sixth POY-qualified final-table finish of 2021. With two titles and $917,994 in POY earnings, Glaser has climbed into 69th place on the leaderboard. Bracelet winner and high-stakes mixed game regular Randy Ohel finished third for $30,400.

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points PokerGO
1 Henrik Hecklen $102,600 120 103
2 Benny Glaser $57,000 100 57
3 Randy Ohel $30,400 80 30