Sunday March 16,2014 : TRICKETT SECOND IN VENICE LIVE POKER TOURNAMENT
Italy's Andrea Dato beats top English pro in an epic heads up.
144 players, among them many of Europe's big names in the online and live tournament game, gathered in Venice this week in a bid to take home the main prize in the Gioco Digitale World Poker Tour Venice Carnival.
Among those registering was the newly-signed Everest Poker pro and most successful English player, Sam Trickett, along with former WPT champions like Roberto Romanello (Bratislava); Giacomo Fundaro (Mazagan) and Vladimir Bozinovic (Baden).
Trickett, Dato, Maurizio Saieva, Mario Vojvoda, Alessio Isaia and Greek ace Sotirios Koutoupas ended up on the final table as opponents.
Trickett looked set to clean up as he eliminated Vojvoda and then Saeiva and set the heads up with the experienced Italian pro Andrea Dato, playing his third WPT Venice final table and determined to take the honours this time despite Trickett's 3 to 1 advantage at the start.
That determination, allied to considerable skill and discipline, soon showed as the Italian hammered away at the Englishman's lead in a fierce – some would say epic – up-and-down struggle for the top prize.
At one point it looked as if the win was in the bag for Trickett, but Dato avoided elimination with a lucky King card that enabled him to play on and eventually wrest the lead from his opponent, only to find the situation reversed a little later and Trickett back in charge.
After four more tense levels and repeated changes in the lead Dato managed to create a 10 to 1 chip advantage that even Trickett could not reel in, and the main prize of Euro 105,000 ($145,859) went to the Italian, along with a seat at next month's WPT Championships.
The victory is Dato's third six-figure career win – the others have been in 2011 and 2013 WSOP live tourneys.
Trickett's fighting display of skill and controlled aggression continues to impress, and was rewarded with a runner up prize of Euro 66,000.