Wednesday, November 17, 2021 9:05 PM Local Time
Koray Aldemir Wins 2021 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event for $8,000,000
Koray Aldemir, 31, took the reins from defending champ Damian Salas Wednesday night as he became the 2021 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event champion, topping a 6,550-player field to win $8 million and the coveted gold bracelet.
On the 223rd hand of the final table, Aldemir finished off his unrelenting heads-up opponent — George Holmes — and now sits atop the poker mountain until July 2022.
Aldemir's victory propelled him to fourth all-time among Germany's winningest live tournament players with just north of $20 million in cashes, $12 million shy of Fedor Holz. More importantly, he's the champion of the world and joins an exclusive club that includes legends of the game such as Phil Hellmuth, Doyle Brunson, Stu Ungar, and Johnny Chan.
"It's the one tournament family and friends know of basically. It does mean a lot to me to win it," Aldemir told media moments after shipping the bracelet.
2021 WSOP Main Event Final Table Results
|Place||Winner||Country||Prize (in USD)|
|2||George Holmes||United States||$4,300,000|
|3||Jack Oliver||United Kingdom||$3,000,000|
|4||Joshua Remitio||United States||$2,300,000|
|6||Hye Park||United States||$1,400,000|
|8||Jareth East||United Kingdom||$1,100,000|
|9||Chase Bianchi||United States||$1,000,000|
Aldemir, Holmes, and Jack Oliver were the lone remaining players with dreams of becoming poker's 2021 World Champion entering Wednesday's session. Clearly, Aldemir was the favorite entering Day 9, not only due to having a massive chip lead but also because he's more experienced in tournaments than his opponents.
But he'd quickly discover that his opposition was ready for battle. Holmes played masterfully all evening and pulled off a number of impressive bluffs that even shocked the PokerGO commentators. The gap in experience between Aldemir and the competition wasn't evident much on this day.
Holmes Shows Oliver the Lights
Three players returned to the Amazon room Wednesday for the ninth and final day of the tournament. Aldemir, who played big stack poker throughout the final table, returned with a massive chip lead over Oliver and Holmes but had to grind for every chip during the final session.
Early on, Holmes and Oliver battled each other to face Aldemir for the bracelet, but neither was willing to give in. Holmes would land a small jab, and then Oliver would punch back. In doing so, both struggled for quite some time to make up any ground on the chip leader.
Three hours into Day 9 and Holmes finally landed a haymaker. Or, as his rowdy fans in the attendance repeatedly shouted, he "showed him the lights" on Oliver. But it required a bit luck when he called a 35.7 million chip all-in bet preflop with queen-jack and was up against ace-eight.
The board would run out jack-high, giving Holmes top pair for the win while eliminating Oliver, who received $3 million for third place, in the process.
Underdog Here to Win It
Holmes finished 213th in the 2019 WSOP Main Event for $50,855, his only prior recorded live tournament cash. But if you thought the poker player from the "Dirty South" was satisfied just to make it heads-up in poker's most prestigious event, you'd be mistaken.
When the final two players returned to action following a brief break, Holmes sat down ready to tangle with the German poker superstar. Despite trailing by more than 2-1 in chips at the start of heads-up play, he battled his way back, pot by pot, and eventually grabbed a small lead.
"I was pretty stressed to be honest," Aldemir said of losing the chip lead during heads-up play. "After 10 days of poker, especially the last five or six days were all super stressful. Not a lot of sleep, like five hours a day. All those people watching me play. It's not easy. Respect to all the other players too who all played great. Crazy experience."
For the first time at the final table in two days, Aldemir wasn't well ahead of the competition. Would the setback cause the high-stakes pro to crumble? Not hardly. He's too experienced and composed to wilt under pressure. When the going got tough, the experienced player got going.
Aldemir jumped right back into the chip lead after winning a series of consecutive hands. That didn't deter Holmes from continuing to play solid poker. The inexperienced tournament player forced his seasoned opponent to earn every chip and kept the score close for a lengthy period of time.
In the end, however, overplaying top pair doomed the Atlanta resident. On the 223rd and final hand, with the blinds at 1,200,000/2,400,000 with a 2,400,000 big blind ante, Holmes raised to 6,000,000 with king-queen and his opponent, who held a slight chip lead, made the call with ten-seven suited.
The flop came out ten-seven-deuce and the preflop raiser made a continuation bet of 6,000,000. Aldemir, with top two, check-raised to 19,000,000, which didn't convince the underdog to dump king-high, and he made the call.
When a king hit on the turn, Aldemir led out big for 36,500,000 and when Holmes called, those watching began anticipating the end of the Main Event nearing. The river nine of clubs changed nothing and Aldemir decided on a check. Holmes paused for a bit before moving all in for 133,000,000.
With action back on the German poker great, he had a difficult decision to make given the circumstances. After much thought, he opted to call, then showed his winning hand, which put an end to the 2021 WSOP Main Event. Holmes walked away with $4.3 million and put on an overall impressive performance.
"On the flop, I kind of have the nuts almost all the time," the champ said of the final hand. "On the turn still happy. My plan was to check-call on the river because he showed he was capable, but I had to think about it because it's a big moment obviously. If I lose the hand I don't have much left. I'm glad I made the call."
Congratulations to Koray Aldemir, the 2021 WSOP Main Event champion!
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 8:40 PM Local Time
George Holmes Eliminated in 2nd Place ($4,300,000)
Hand #223: George Holmes raised to 6,000,000 and Koray Aldemir called. On the flop, Aldemir checked, Holmes bet 6,000,000, and Aldemir check-raised to 19,000,000 after about a minute. Holmes called after some thought.
The landed on the turn and Aldemir took nearly two minutes before betting 36,500,000. Holmes took about a minute before coming along with the call, creating a pot of over 100,000,000 in the process.
The crowd held their collective breath as the was dealt on the river. Taking around 90 seconds, Aldemir decided to check. Within twenty seconds, Holmes moved all in for 133,000,000, more than the size of the pot.
Aldemir, who covered Holmes by a mere ten million, went deep in the tank to try and analyse the situation. The German high roller spent nearly three minutes before ultimately settling on a call, which had everyone in the Amazon room jolting out of their seats to watch the showdown unfold.
Holmes showed for a pair of kings and Aldemir slapped on the table for two pair. Just like that, with one amazing call, the 2021 World Series of Poker Main Event came to an end.
Holmes, the home game hero, can reflect on an unforgettable run. With just one previously recorded cash to his name, he left the stage $4,300,000 richer, all while capturing the hearts of many poker fans around the world in the process with his style of play.
Ultimately, despite a valiant effort from Holmes, the victory goes to Germany for the second time in three years. Congratulations to Koray Aldemir, poker's new world champion!
|Koray Aldemir||399,000,000||193,900,000 |
|George Holmes||0||-194,200,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 8:20 PM Local Time
Hands #219-222: Aldemir Back in the Lead
Hand #219: George Holmes raised to 5,200,000 from the button and Koray Aldemir defended. They both checked through the flop to the on the turn. Aldemir bet 4,400,000 which Holmes called. The river completed the board with the , Aldemir barreled a bet of 15,800,000 over the line to get the fold.
Hand #220: Aldemir limped in on the button and Holmes raised to 6,000,000 which was called. The flop came , they both checked to the on the turn. Holmes bet 8,000,000 for the fold.
Hand #221: Holmes limped in and Aldemir opted to check. The flop came , no action ensued and the turn was the . Aldemir bet 4,100,000 and Holmes called to see the complete the board. Aldemir fired a bet of 15,500,000 out and Holmes folded.
Hand #222: Koray Aldemir raised to 6,000,000 and George Holmes called. The flop was and Holmes checked. Aldemir bet 4,800,000 and Holmes folded.
|Koray Aldemir||205,100,000||18,500,000 |
|George Holmes||194,200,000||-18,500,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 8:08 PM Local Time
Hands #216-218: All In and Call Results in Split Pot
Hand #216: Koray Aldemir limped in and George Holmes raised to 5,000,000 for Aldemir to call. The flop was checked by both players and the followed on the turn. Holmes check-called for 4,600,000 and the river was checked. Holmes tabled the and dragged in the next pot.
Hand #217: Holmes opened to 5,200,000 and Aldemir made the call to see the flop. Aldemir's check was followed by a bet worth 7,000,000 by Holmes and the subsequent call by Aldemir came thereafter. On the turn, Aldemir quickly checked once more.
The second barrel by Holmes was worth 17,000,000 and Aldemir tanked for 48 seconds before making the call. He then checked the on the river and Holmes then fired a bet of 40,000,000. Aldemir check-jammed with the for broadway and Holmes snap-called with the to chop it up.
Hand #218: Aldemir opened to 6,000,000 and Holmes defended out of the big blind. The flop was checked by Holmes and Aldemir now bet 4,800,000. This time, Holmes folded and Aldemir collected the pot.
|George Holmes||212,700,000||2,400,000 |
|Koray Aldemir||186,600,000||-2,400,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 8:03 PM Local Time
5th Place Bust Out Interview with Ozgur Secilmis
Ozgur Secilmis has taken pride representing his home country of Turkey in the Main Event. The 5th place finisher said he wasn't paying attention to the final table payouts and was elated to realize he earned himself a $1,800,000 payday. What's up next for Ozgur? Cash games, high stakes and winning next year's Main Event.
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 7:57 PM Local Time
Hands #212-215: Holmes Regains Lead
Hand #212: Koray Aldemir raised to 6,000,000 and George Holmes called. The flop was and Holmes checked. Aldemir bet 4,800,000 and Holmes called. Both players checked the on the turn.
The river was the and Holmes cut out a sizable bet of 17,000,000 and Aldemir gave it up.
Hand #213: Holmes raised to 4,800,000 and Aldemir called. The flop prompted two quick checks. Aldemir check-folded to a bet of 4,800,000 on the turn.
Hand #214: Aldemir made it 6,000,000 and Holmes called. The flop and turn got checked through, as did the river. Holmes showed for a pair to win the hand.
Hand #215: A walk for Aldemir.
|George Holmes||210,300,000||22,800,000 |
|Koray Aldemir||189,000,000||-22,800,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 7:49 PM Local Time
Hands #210-211: Aldemir Makes the Right Call to Take Chip Lead Back
Hand #210: Koray Aldemir raised to 6,000,000 from the button and George Holmes defended. The flop came , Holmes check-folded to Aldermir's 4,800,000 bet.
Hand #211: Holmes raised to 4,800,000 from the button and Aldemir called.
The flop came , Aldemir check-called the 5,400,000 continuation-bet of Holmes. The turn was the and Aldemir checked again. This time, Holmes checked too.
The river completed the board with the . Aldemir took some time and then opted to take over the initiative. He bet 7,800,000 for Holmes to consider his options. In the end, he decided to raise it up to 38,000,000. Aldemir jumped into the tank and called.
Holmes tabled the for the bluff for Aldemir's rail to cheer as he held the for two pair and the pot. Aldemir turned around for a fist pump celebration
|Koray Aldemir||211,800,000||56,600,000 |
|George Holmes||187,500,000||-56,600,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 7:37 PM Local Time
Hands #207-209: Holmes Flops a Straight and Gets Paid
Hand #207: George Holmes raised to 4,800,000 and Koray Aldemir came along to the flop, on which Aldemir checked. Holmes continued for 3,800,000 and Aldemir tossed in calling chips. The turn brought another quick check by Aldemir and Holmes made it 8,000,000 to go this time.
Aldemir made the call after 38 seconds and the on the river brought in a possible flush draw and paired the board. Once more, Aldemir checked and Holmes now bet 20,000,000 and Aldemir snap-called. The pot went to Holmes, who had flopped a straight with the .
Hand #208: Aldemir limped in and Holmes' raise to 6,000,000 took it down uncontested.
Hand #209: Up next it was Holmes who limped in and Aldemir now raised to 10,000,000, which brought no resistance from Holmes.
|George Holmes||244,100,000||39,000,000 |
|Koray Aldemir||155,200,000||-39,000,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 7:28 PM Local Time
Level 41 started
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 6:56 PM Local Time
Chip Counts on the Break
The players are on an extended 30-minute break and their counts are as follows.
|George Holmes||205,100,000||0 |
|Koray Aldemir||194,200,000||0 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 6:54 PM Local Time
Hands #203-206: Small Pots Prior to the Next Break
Hand #203: Koray Aldemir defended against a button min-raise by George Holmes and checked the flop, which Holmes checked back. On the turn, both players checked and the fell on the river. Both checked once more and Holmes won the pot with the for a pair of fives.
Hand #204: Aldemir made it 4,600,000 to go and Holmes filled up to the flop, on which Holmes opted to check. Aldemir continued for 2,700,000 and Holmes sent the cards into the muck.
Hand #205: Holmes raised it up to 4,000,000 and Aldemir defended the big blind. On a flop of , Aldemir's check triggered a bet worth 5,800,000 by Holmes and a call by Aldemir. The turn was checked around and the river completed the board. Aldemir checked once more and Holmes made it 25,000 to go, which won the pot without showdown.
Hand #206: Aldemir limped in and Holmes checked to the flop, on which the latter checked. The check back by Aldemir led them to the turn and both checked it down once more. On the river, Holmes eventually bet 4,000,000 and Aldemir folded.
|George Holmes||205,100,000||13,200,000 |
|Koray Aldemir||194,200,000||-13,200,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 6:48 PM Local Time
WSOP 2021 | High-Stakes Legend Is 60th Hall Of Fame Inductee! | Interview
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 6:44 PM Local Time
Hands #199-202: A Straight and Two Pair; Not Much Changed
Hand #199: George Holmes raised to 4,000,000 from the button and Koray Aldemir defended. The flop came , they both checked to the on the turn. Aldemir check-called the 3,000,000 bet of Holmes. The river completed the board with the and they both checked. Holmes tabled the for ace-high but Aldemir showed the for the rivered straight and the pot.
Hand #200: Aldemir raised to 4,600,000 and Holmes called. The flop came , they checked to the on the turn. It went check-check again for them to see the complete the board. Holmes bet 4,000,000 and Aldemir called but mucked when Holmes flipped over the for two pair.
Hand #201: Holmes min-raised and that did not scare Aldemir away. The flop came , Aldemir quickly checked but Holmes bet 3,500,000 which was enough to get Aldemir out of the hand.
Hand #202: Aldemir limped on the button and Holmes opted to check. The flopped over and Holmes check-called the min-bet of Aldemir. The turn was the , Holmes checked again. Aldemir bet 10,000,000 to get the fold.
|Koray Aldemir||207,400,000||-1,600,000 |
|George Holmes||191,900,000||1,600,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 6:33 PM Local Time
Hands #196-198: Aldemir Leaps Back Into A Narrow Lead
Hand #196: Koray Aldemir limped in and George Holmes checked his option in the big blind. The flop was checked by Holmes and Aldemir made it 2,000,000 to go. That prompted a fold from Holmes and Aldemir recovered some chips.
Hand #197: Holmes was next to limp from the button and Aldemir checked back to the flop, which was quickly checked. On the turn, both checked once more and that led to the river. Aldemir bet 2,000,000 and received no call.
Hand #198: Aldemir made it 4,600,000 to go and Holmes filled up to see the flop. Holmes checked and Aldemir made it 3,700,000 to go as Holmes came along to the turn. Another check by Holmes followed and Aldemir checked it back to the turn. Holmes now bet 6,400,000 and Aldemir took one minute and 20 seconds before raising it up to 24,100,000.
Holmes called after more than one minute of consideration and Aldemir won the large pot with for queens and fours.
|Koray Aldemir||209,000,000||40,400,000 |
|George Holmes||190,300,000||-40,400,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 6:23 PM Local Time
Hands #193-195: Biggest Pot of the Day Goes to Holmes
Hand #193: George Holmes limped in on the button but Koray Aldemir raised it up to 8,500,000 to get the fold.
Hand #194: Aldemir raised to 4,600,000 from the button and Holmes defended. The flop came down with the , Holmes checked and so did Aldemir. The on the turn didn't bring any betting action either so the completed the board. They both checked again. Aldemir showed the for the ace-kicker to claim the pot.
Hand #195: Holmes raised to 4,000,000 and Aldemir three-bet to 17,000,000. Holmes called.
The flop came , Aldemir took a minute and barreled a bet of 10,000,000 out, Holmes raised it up to 28,000,000 after thinking about it for 44 seconds. Aldemir called after 47 seconds.
The turn was the and Aldemir checked. Holmes did the same for the to complete the board. Aldemir tanked for 74 seconds and then bet 9,000,000. Holmes raised to 24,000,000 after considering it for a minute. Aldemir called but Holmes held the for two pair and the big pot.
|George Holmes||230,700,000||62,400,000 |
|Koray Aldemir||168,600,000||-62,400,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 6:11 PM Local Time
Hands #189-192: Three Limped Pots Without Any Drama
Hand #189: George Holmes limped in and Koray Aldemir checked in the big blind. The flop was checked and the turn was checked through as well. On the river, Aldemir checked the third street in a row and Holmes bet 3,000,000 in order to avoid a showdown, as Aldemir folded.
Hand #190: The next limped pot led to the flop and neither player bet to see the turn for free. Holmes checked and Aldemir bet 2,000,000 to win the pot.
Hand #191: Holmes min-raised and Aldemir called. The flop went check, check, and the turn completed a possible flush draw. Aldemir checked to Holmes and Holmes checked to the river. The bet worth 8,800,000 by Aldemir won the pot, as Holmes folded within two seconds.
Hand #192: Aldemir limped and Holmes checked as the third limped pot within four hands headed to the flop. Holmes checked to Aldemir, who bet for the minimum and received a call. The turn brought a second flush draw and Holmes checked once more. Both players checked to the river which was checked down, too. Holmes tabled the for sixes and fours to drag in the pot.
|Koray Aldemir||231,000,000||0 |
|George Holmes||168,300,000||0 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 6:03 PM Local Time
Hands #186-188: Holmes Rivers the Higher Pair
Hand #186: Koray Aldemir completed his small blind and George Holmes opted to check. The flop came , they both checked to the . it was checked again to see the complete the board. Holmes checked for the final time. Aldemir bet 3,000,000 for Holmes to fold.
Hand #187: Holmes raised to 4,000,000 and Aldemir defended. The flop came , Aldemir check-called the 5,000,000 continuation-bet of Holmes.
The turn was the , Aldemir quickly checked again. This time, Holmes decided to bet 7,000,000 for Aldemir to call. The completed the board and Aldemir checked for the final time. Holmes did the same.
Aldemir tabled the for the flopped pair of nines but Holmes held the the higher pair he had rivered.
Hand #188: Aldemir raised to 4,600,000 and Holmes came along to the flop. Holmes check-folded to the 3,700,000 continuation-bet of Aldemir.
|Koray Aldemir||231,000,000||-7,400,000 |
|George Holmes||168,300,000||7,400,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 5:54 PM Local Time
Hands #183-185: Straight Flush for Aldemir
Hand #183: George Holmes raised to 4,000,000 and Koray Aldemir filled up to see the flop, which went check, check. On the turn, Aldemir bet 4,000,000 and Holmes folded.
Hand #184: Aldemir opened to 4,600,000 on the button and Holmes defended. The flop brought and Holmes opted to check, Aldemir bet 2,400,000 and received a call. After the turn, both players checked to the river and Holmes checked once more. Aldemir bet 8,000,000 and won the pot without showdown.
Hand #185: Holmes min-raised the button and Aldemir called. The flop was checked and the followed on the turn. Aldemir now bet for 5,200,000 and Holmes called as the fell on the river. The check by Aldemir was followed by a check from Holmes who flashed the for a flush with the four. However, Aldemir had the for a straight flush to win the pot.
|Koray Aldemir||238,400,000||22,200,000 |
|George Holmes||160,900,000||-22,200,000 |
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 5:52 PM Local Time
Master of Ceremonies Vince Vaughn Suffers Bad Beat in His First WSOP Tournament
Hollywood actor Vince Vaughn, the star of Swingers, Old School, Wedding Crashers, and Dodgeball, was recently announced as the "Master of Ceremonies" for the 2022 World Series of Poker (WSOP).
Yesterday, he gave the traditional "shuffle up and deal" announcement at the final table of the WSOP Main Event, and on Wednesday he returned for several other promotional endeavors. Once finished, he took the opportunity to enter his first-ever WSOP gold bracelet tournament, Event #79: $1,979 Poker Hall of Fame Bounty where every Poker Hall of Famer had a bounty on their head.
While not a member of the PHoF, Vaughn, too, had a target on his back as Jack Effel revealed the WSOP was putting a $10,000 bounty on the actor, much to the delight of players sat with him at Table 2 in the Brasilia Room.
How did he do? Find out here!
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 5:45 PM Local Time
Hands #180-182: Aldemir Bets All the Streets for the Chip Lead
Hand #180: Koray Aldemir raised to 4,600,000 and George Holmes called. The flop came , they both checked through it to the on the turn. They both checked again for the to complete the board. They checked again. The of Holmes for the turned pair of sevens was enough to claim the pot.
Hand #181: Holmes raised to 4,000,000 for Aldemir to call. They both checked through the on the flop and the on the turn to the on the river. Aldemir bet 3,400,000 for Holmes to fold.
Hand #182: Aldemir raised to 4,600,000 from the button and Holmes came along to the flop. Holmes check-called the 3,000,000 continuation-bet of Aldemir.
The turn was the for Holmes to check again. This time, Aldemir bet 12,400,000 for Holmes to call again.
The river completed the board with the . Holmes checked for the final time. Aldemir took a minute and then barreled a bet of 36,000,000 over the line. Holmes contemplated his options for 129 seconds and then folded, revealing a .
|Koray Aldemir||216,200,000||21,400,000 |
|George Holmes||183,100,000||-21,400,000 |