Mikita Badziakouski Wins 2021 Poker Masters $25,000 Buy-In For $342,000
The final day of the 2021 Poker Masters $25,000 no-limit hold’em event no. 10 began with a stacked final table of five players remaining. Lead by Mikita Badziakouski, the final five players had a combined $131 million in tournament earnings between them, with three having more than $30 million in cashes under their belts coming into this event. In the end, it was Badziakouski who emerged victorious, securing the title and adding $342,000 to his running total. As a result, Badziakouski’s career earnings grew to $31,436,521, which is good for 12th place on poker’s all-time money list. He now sits just a few hundred thousand behind living legend Phil Ivey on that leaderboard.
Action started off fast and furious at the final table. Just minutes after the resumption of play Seth Davies got all-in preflop with AJ facing the pocket queens of Jason Koon. Davies improved to aces full of jacks by the river to double up, leaving Koon on fumes. He was knocked out a few hands later, earning $76,000 as the fifth-place finisher. Koon increased his lifetime earnings to $33,177,383. He remains in 10th place on the money list.
Ali Imsirovic’s run in this event came to an end in brutal fashion, with his KK losing a preflop showdown against the AK of Badziakouski, who turned the ace-high straight to win the pot and narrow the field to three. Imsirovic earned $104,500 and 168 Card Player Player of the Year points for his 23rd POY-qualified final-table finish of the year. He remains the clear leader in the 2021 POY race, which is sponsored by Global Poker. He has a 1,269-point lead over second-ranked Sean Perry.
Imsirovic also added to his lead in the inaugural PokerGO Tour points race, earning 63 points for his 25th qualifying cash. With 3,095 points and more than $4 million in earnings in tour events, he will be the player to beat heading into the final months of 2021.
Three-handed play continued for more than two hours. Daniel Negreanu was ultimately the next to fall. He got all-in with 66 facing the AA of Badziakouski, who flopped top set to increase his lead. Negreanu was drawing dead by the turn, and earned $152,000 as the third-place finisher. This was his eighth final-table showing of the year, with two titles won along the way, including one of the $10,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em events earlier this series. He climbed into 35th place in the POY race, and 14th place on the PokerGO Tour leaderboard. The 91 points he earned for his third top-three finish at the Poker Masters saw him move into second place in the race for the purple jacket, behind only AP Louis Garza.
Heads-up play began with Davies holding 2,885,000 to the 1,865,000 of Badziakouski. He was able to extend that advantage even further before a preflop showdown turned the tables. The chips got in preflop with Davies holding A6 against the J9 of Badziakouski. A nine on the river gave Badziakouski the double up into the chip lead.
In the final hand, Badziakouski led out for 100,000 on a J86 flop with the Q10. Davies moved raised to 225,000 with J4 and Badziakouski shoved. Davies called off his last 400,000 and was ahead with his top pair. The turn was the 7, which left Badziakouski needing a nine or queen heading into the river. The 9 completed Badziakouski’s straight, locking up the pot and the title for Badziakouski. Davies earned $228,000 and 280 POY points for his 10th final table of the year. He moved into a tie for 21st place in the rankings. The 137 points he earned towards the PokerGO Tour standings were enough to move him into eighth place in that race.
Here is a look at the payouts and rankings points awarded at the final table:
Here is a look at the current top ten in the race for the purple jacket:
|1||AP Louis Garza||376||0||4||$550,200|
Photos provided by PokerGO.