Since the establishment of the November Nine format, we've seen a myriad of players who make their one appearance in the spotlight and quickly fade away ... even some of the champions.
Matt Giannetti hasn't fallen into that category. On Tuesday, he locked up his second World Poker Tour title with a victory at the WPT Lucky Hearts Poker Open. The victory, worth $298,304, was his second win and fourth WPT cash since making the 2011 WSOP main event final table.
"Strong finish to a great tourney," said Giannetti on Twitter. "Very happy to win 2nd WPT title."
As the field of 369 entries in the $3,500 re-entry event was reduced to a final six, the final table offered a variety of talented players including Hollywood producer and writer Matt Salsberg, one of the hottest players on the tournament circuit. After winning the WPT main event in Paris last September, Salsberg nearly reached the final table at EPT San Remo in October, then made the final table at the previous WPT stop at the Borgata, where he finished sixth. This back-to-back final table appearance had only been accomplished a handful of times in the history of the tour, but Salsberg wouldn't be able to improve on his last result. According to the World Poker Tour, Salsberg opened from the button with the short stack, and Darryl Fish, making his third WPT final table, made a move with 7-5 to put Salsberg to the test. Holding J-J, Salsberg called all-in, but devastatingly watched as the board ran out 6-6-4-K-3 to give Fish a straight.
Fish momentarily earned the chip lead at that point, but it was Giannetti's show. As the other four players tried to position themselves for a run, Giannetti simply accumulated chips, and by the time Hayden Fortini was eliminated in fifth, he had an edge of 30 big blinds over Fish, his closest competitor. Lily Kiletto eliminated Danny Shiff in fourth, then picked up aces against Fish to win a big pot and make it a two-horse race as Fish was never truly able to bounce back. Fish's exit in third, worth $125,921, was the second-largest live tournament cash of the 26-year-old's career.
Giannetti held less than a 2:1 edge over the 30-year-old fashion designer to start heads-up play. Seven hands later, he was holding the trophy after making a gutsy call with 8-8 on a 49-big blind four-bet all-in by Kiletto who held only 8-7. The win pushed Giannetti over the $4.2 million mark in career tournament earnings.
Here are the results of the final table:
1. Matt Giannetti ($323,804)
2. Lily Kiletto ($191,880)
3. Darryll Fish ($125,921)
4. Danny Shiff ($86,946)
5. Hayden Fortini ($64,160)
6. Matt Salsberg ($50,968)
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