POKER

EPL Mix-Max; WPT Venice; Marianela in at WPT; Hachem out at PokerStars

TAGs: Epic Poker League, Joe Hachem, Marianela Pereyra, PokerStars, World Poker Tour, WPT

WPT-EPL-HachemChris Klodnicki has earned a healthy $801k for taking the Epic Poker League $20k mix-max main event at the Palms in Vegas. The third and final EPL event of 2011 saw 100 players take part, including Andy Bloch, who earned his way in by triumphing at the EPL’s third Pro/Am event last week. The main event final table took 15 hours to produce a winner, with Andrew Lichtenberger the last to fall at Klodnicki’s hands. Lichtenberger picked up $514k for finishing second, while third-place finisher Joe Tehan took $306k and Michael Mizrachi earned $174k for winding up fourth. The EPL will reconvene on Jan. 27 at the Palms.

Edoardo Alescio has taken the World Poker Tour Venice main event title, outlasting the 212 other competitors who anted up the €3,300 buy-in at the final WPT event of 2011. Italian Alescio earned €175k for the victory, plus a $25k seat at the WPT Championship at the Bellagio in Vegas next year. Runner-up was American pro Steve O’Dwyer, who will have €95k to declare when he passes through US customs, while Italian Michele Caroli took third and €67k. The WPT’s first event of 2012 will be its first ever stop in Dublin on Jan. 5.

The WPT is scheduled to make a return visit to Venice starting Feb. 6, and when it does, it will have a new female anchor calling the shots for its television coverage. Former Poker After Dark hostess Marianela Pereyra has been asked to pick up the microphone dropped by Kimberly Lansing as she headed out the door on her way to the maternity ward. (Actually, Lansing’s sprog isn’t due until February, but why take chances?) There’s no definitive timeline for how long Pereyra will be holding down the fort in Lansing’s absence, so enjoy her while she lasts.

Another recent poker personnel change involves PokerStars parting ways with longtime Team Pro member Joe Hachem. Hachem was been with Stars ever since his 2005 World Series of Poker main event win, and while he described the six-year relationship as “a great run,” he’s decided to “pursue other career opportunities” now that his current contract has expired. Stars’ communications point person Eric Hollreiser said the company wished Hachem “all the best at the poker table and in life.”

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