Rocco Palumbo outlasted a field on 173 players to win the World Poker Tour Venice Grand Prix held at Casino di Venezia – the oldest casino in the world – this weekend.
Palumbo had to overcome a tough final table, which included World Poker Tour commentator Mike Sexton, to claim the victory and score the $180,097 first-place prize.
Palumbo’s play was flawless during the final table and he was never in threat of being eliminated.
However, it was not Palumbo who eliminated the majority of the people at the final table with fellow Italian Marcello Montagner’s aggressive style meaning that he was always involved in the action.
Montagner eliminated Erion Islamay and Robert Begni while Palumbo send Xia Lin to the rail to make the tournament three handed.
Sexton was in a good position to win his first ever World Poker Tour event but his dreams were crashed when his pair of Jacks was bested by Montagner’s two-pair.
Although Montagner had been the dominant figure at the final table it was Palumbo who took the chip lead into the heads-up battle.
Palumbo never surrendered the chip lead and after less than an hour of heads-up play was able to seal victory.
Montagner moved all-in with pocket nines but was snapped called by Palumbo who had hit two-pair on the flop.
The river was no help for Montagner but he was still happy to take home $108,316 for his second place finish.
The result was Palumbo’s second major poker tournament victory in less than twelve months after he took home $464,464 and won a World Series of Poker bracelet in the $ 1,000 No Limit Hold’em event during the 2012 World Series of Poker.
Palumbo has now won just shy of $1 million in live poker tournament earnings.
Season XI of the World Poker Tour continues in Barcelona this week.
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