Russian wins World Poker Tour Venice Grand Prix

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Feb 11, 2012 Posted in Poker News | No Comments »

It seems that even after years of effort the World Poker Tour is still having trouble making inroads in Europe (where the European Poker Tour basically reigns supreme). While the WPT has had some very successful tournaments on the European continent, the attendance numbers have been all over the place historically, with many of the events held drawing lackluster numbers.

Take for example the recently completed Season X WPT Venice Grand Prix (the first running of the tournament on the WPT), which drew just 155 entrants. Furthermore, this comes on the heels of the usual WPT Venice tournament dropping from 523 players to 213 players from Season IX to Season X.

Despite the relatively small turnout, there was still a first-place prize of €229,800 (about $300,000) on the line, thanks to the tournament’s €4,950 buy-in.

As the official final table of six players approached all eyes were squarely focused on Italian Andrea Dato, who was looking to make his second straight WPT final table in Venice, having finished 4th in December’s WPT Venice tournament (I know it’s confusing with all these WPT Venice tournaments happening just months apart!). And by the time the final six players remained it was Dato who was not only in the mix, but the chip-leader as well.

Unfortunately the Italian would not be the one hoisting the WPT Venice Grand Prix in front of his countrymen, as he eventually finished in 3rd place, just one-spot better than his December showing. Dato’s exit left Rinat Bogdanov, a Russian stock-broker, to battle against another Italian in Alessandro Longobardi.

After a 12-hour final table, the two heads-up competitors had the tournament decided in just two hands, when Longobardi raised with K/Q and was called by Bogdanov with 6/4. Both players caught a piece of the Q-7-4 flop and the action went bet, call. The Turn Card, a 6, would catapult Bogdonav into the lead with two pair, and he once again check/called Longobardi’s bet. If the Turn Card was a pleasant site for Bogdanov, then the River 4 was even better, giving him a well-disguised Full House while his opponent was holding Top Pair. Bogdanov once again checked (perhaps repping a missed draw) and Longobardi once again bet; this time Bogdanov raised, pushing all his chips into the middle, which Longobardi called.

Here is a look at the final table payouts from the WPT Venice Grand Prix:

1. Rinat Bogdanov, €229,800

2. Alessandro Longobardi, €111,700

3. Andrea Dato, €72,275

4. Simon Ravnsbaek, €52,565

5. Gianluca Trebbi, €42,705

6. Andrea Carini, €32,195

The WPT is now in Florida for the Seminole Hard Rock Lucky Hearts Poker Open, and while the players in Venice were crowning a Champion, the Hard Rock saw 125 players register for Day 1a of the re-entry event.

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