Koray Aldemir Wins 2019 USPO Event #9: $50K NLH for $738K; Sean Winter Takes Overall Points Lead
One week ago, Koray Aldemir nearly won a 2019 U.S. Poker Open tournament but came up one spot short when he finished runner-up to Lauren Roberts in Event #3: $10,000 NLH for $159,250. He found some redemption in the penultimate event of the series by topping a 41-entry field to win Event #9: $50,000 NLH for $738,000.
It was also a bit of redemption from last September’s Poker Masters when he finished runner-up to Ali Imsirovic in Event #6: $50,000 NLH. Aldemir earned $517,000 in that event.
“This feels great, honestly. I had a lot of second and third finishes in the last year and winning one feels great," Aldemir said after his win. “Playing these high rollers is the best thing in poker for me. I have a lot of fun playing these things. Sometimes I take a break from poker, but when I do play I just love competing with the best.”
In other news, Sean Winter had 440 points on the 2019 USPO leaderboard entering the Event #9: $50,000 NLH final table. Thanks to a third-place finish, he earned 100 points to tie Stephen Chidwick on top with 540 points. However, Winter has cashed for more in the first nine events, which gives him the tiebreaker. Still, there’s one more event to go, so all signs point to it coming down to the wire.
Event #9: $50,000 NLH Final Table Results
|2||Ryan Riess||United States||$492,000|
|3||Sean Winter||United States||$328,000|
|4||Alex Foxen||United States||$205,000|
|5||David Peters||United States||$164,000|
|6||Seth Davies||United States||$123,000|
Final Table Action
Things got off to a quick start when Seth Davies jammed the hijack holding ace-queen of diamonds and Alex Foxen woke up with the same hand in the big, albeit in clubs. The latter flopped a Royal Flush draw, and while he didn’t hit poker’s top hand, he did find another club on the river to send Davies out the door in sixth place for $123,000.
Soon after, Foxen dispatched David Peters in fifth place when his Big Slick won a flip against pocket eights, and then a marathon four-handed match ensued where a dozen straight all-in-and-a-call hands resulted in 11 short stack doubles and one chop.
Eventually, the blinds and antes got big and Foxen got his stack all in preflop with ace-eight suited only to run it smack dab into 2013 World Series of Poker Main Event champ Ryan Riess’ ace-nine suited. The better ace won and Foxen finished in fourth place for $205,000.
Winter, who was at his fifth final table of the 2019 USPO, missed out on his second win – he previously took down Event #4: $10,000 Short Deck for $151,200 – when his jack-nine failed to get there against Riess’ Big Slick.
While he didn’t notch any of the eliminations up to that point, Aldemir got the one that mattered. He began heads-up play with a lead over Riess and set about whittling him down. In what would be the final hand of the tournament, Riess jammed with king-seven and Aldemir woke up with king-queen. It held and Riess had to settle for second place and a $492,000 consolation prize.
Because of this win, Aldemir is in real contention for the U.S. Poker Open Championship as the $100,000 Main Event is now underway.
Here's how things look on the overall leaderboard after the conclusion of Event #9:
Current 2019 USPO Overall Leaderboard
*Winter holds the tiebreaker by virtue of having won more money over the course of the series.
“The leader board is very exciting, I wish more tournament series and casinos would do that," said Aldemir. "I think that it brings out more players to participate and I think that it’s also just a lot of fun to play in it.”
PokerNews coverage of the 2019 USPO continues now with updates from Event #10: $100,000 Main, which you can follow by clicking here.
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Images courtesy of Drew Amato/Poker Central.