Andrea Dato wins Gioco Digitale World Poker Tour (WPT) Venice Carnival after defeating a stacked final table that included the recent Everest Poker signing Sam Trickett.
The Italian maestro Andrea Dato finally reigns victorious at a WPT Venice final table after the agony of finishing fourth and third back in Season X; and boy did he do it the hard way.
Dato overcame a stacked final table that included the recent European Poker Tour (EPT) Deauville winner Sotirios Koutoupas, former Season IX WPT Venice winner Alessio Isaia and Europe’s top money earner Sam Trickett.
The six final tablists managed to duck and dive their way through a field of 199 players and Dato took $145,859, plus a seat in the $15,400 WPT World Championships due to be held at the Borgata Hotel & Casino April 21-26, after his heads-up victory over the impressive Trickett.
Sotirios Koutoupas started as the short stack and as is so often the case in these situations he was also the first player eliminated. The EPT winner making a move on Dato on a board of [Jh] [7d] [5h] [Qd], with the open-ended straight draw, and Dato called with [Qh] [3h] for top pair the flush draw that held.
With Dato pulling away at the top the former champion Isaia was struggling at the bottom. Then a tournament defining hand for Isaia as he moved all-in from the button holding [Js] [8s] and the table rock Maurizio Saieva took him to the elimination station when he called from the small blind holding pocket sixes; Trickett finishing off the job in an all-in and call two hands later.
Mario Vojvoda was the next to leave the table and what a fantastic hand it was. Sam Trickett was the vanquisher, but he could so easily had been crippled in a hand that had everything.
Vojvoda opened from the cutoff and Trickett flatted on the button. The flop rained down [Qs] [Qh] [9h], Vojvoda bet 70,000, Trickett made it 140,000, Vojvoda made it 280,000 and Trickett called. The turn card was the [Jd] and Vojvoda check-raised jammed, Trickett made the call and when the cards were overturned he was well behind.
Trickett had flopped a strong hand with [Qd] [8d] for trips, but Vojvoda had turned a boat holding pocket jacks. Trickett needed a miracle and it arrived right on cue when the [8h] sprang from the deck to send the Croat to the rail.
The three-handed action was all about Trickett and Dato as they exchanged blows whilst the passive Saieva just watched from the sidelines. Then finally, as Saieva got shorter and shorter, he jammed over a Trickett raise with [Ad] [Jh], Trickett was priced in with [6d] [4h], and a six on the flop set up a heads-up clash with Trickett holding a 3:1 chip lead over his opponent.
The heads-up action centered around three vital hands.
Dato played excellently to catch up with Trickett, but the Brit still had a slight lead when the pair got it in with Dato holding [Kc] [Qh], and Trickett ahead with [Ac] [8d].
“I like King-Queen much better,” said Trickett.
A King turned up on the flop and Dato had a big lead.
Then the tables were turned when they got it in again, this time with Trickett behind, and needing some help. The Brit was holding [Qd] [Th], Dato was holding [Ah] [3c], and Trickett rivered a straight to once again retake the lead.
The final hand came when both players’ flopped top pair on an eight high flop with Dato holding the advantage with a bigger kicker. This time the deck offered no salvation for Trickett and he was eliminated in the following hand when Dato’s [Ts] [2h] found a deuce on the flop to beat the [Kc] [7c] of Trickett and a new champion was crowned.
Final Table Standings
1st. Andrea Dato – $145,859
2nd. Sam Trickett – $91,683
3rd. Maurizio Saieva – $58,343
4th. Mario Vojvoda – $43,063
5th. Alessio Isaia – $33,341
6th. Sotirios Koutoupas – $26,951