Albert Amato Wins Vic Champs Main Event!

Posted at 14:11 2009-08-18
Fifteen players returned for day 3 action at the 2009 Victorian Poker Championships, and what an exciting day of poker it was!
Play kicked off with the elimination of Peng Khoo in 15th when his dominated {Th}{4h} was unable to match Mick Nolton’s {Ad}{4s}. Martin Stewart fell next when he was unable to win his coin flip, only to be followed by Vito Dalessandri’s runner-runner bad beat thanks to Morry Edelstein.
Jason Gray continued to accumulate chips, and was gifted a few more when Peter Vratsidis bluffed off his chips to see him head to the rail in 12th as James Kronos doubled an opponent up before tripling up in the dark. However it would be to no avail as Kronos found a flush and straight to go broke with and become our final table bubble boy.
Final Table Lineup:
Seat 1: Jason Gray (1,595,000)
Seat 2: Morry Edelstein (1,507,000)
Seat 3: Julian Cohen (254,000)
Seat 4: Chris Chronis (1,349,000)
Seat 5: Mick Nolton (1,015,000)
Seat 6: Gary Benson (206,000)
Seat 7: Albert Amato (297,000)
Seat 8: Matt Rolfe (317,000)
Seat 9: Dean McIver (232,000)
Seat 10: Kane Sherwell (1,791,000)
On one of the first hands of the final table, Dean McIver moved all in and was called by Kane Sherwell before Julian Cohen found {Ac}{As} and moved all in. Sherwell called the remaining few thousand tabling {Qh}{Qs}, and McIver only managed to roll over {6s}{6d}. The board blanked out to see McIver fall in 10th as Cohen near tripled up.
Sherwell managed to take most of his chips back - and a handful more - from local player Morry Edelstein when they battled in a pot that saw over 1.3 million chips enter the pot before the turn fell.
Lee Nelson wandered in the room to check out the action as both Gary Benson (9th) and Morry Edelstein (8th) fell to see Kane Sherwell soar to an over-whelming chip advantage. Benson committed his chips holding {Ac}{Jc} to be behind Sherwell’s {Ad}{Kc} and Edelstein’s {Tc}{Ts}. The board ran out {3c}{5s}{4s}{9h}{Kh} to see Sherwell add another two notches to his belt of tournament knockouts.
The quiet Matt Rolfe doubled through the just as quiet Albert Amato as Jason Gray – arguably the most experienced player on the table – continued to take down pot after pot until doubling up Julian Cohen. Both players saw a flop of {4s}{8c}{7h} out of the blinds; and after a bet, a raise, and a re-raise all in, Cohen made the call holding {5h}{6h} to be well in the lead against Gray’s {8d}{4h}. The turn and river blanked out to see Cohen soar to second chip position as Gray slipped below a million.
Albert Amato doubled through Chris Chronis as Jason Gray picked off a Chronis bluff to surge back near the top. However Gray would continue his roller coaster ride at the final table thanks to Amato and his rivered one-outer! After all the money went in on the {Qd}{Jd}{7d} flop, Gray would in the lead holding {Kd}{Kc} to Amato’s {4d}{4c}. With the turn landing a blank, the river fell the {4h} to see Amato stay alive and Gray slide back down to under a million while Kane Sherwell commented that he folded Ace-four preflop.
Julian Cohen continued his dominance of Jason Gray taking a sizeable pot holding pocket Kings to soar to two million in chips as Gray slid further before slowly creeping back up to over a million thanks to a stop-n-go here and pocket pair of ladies there.
Chris Chronis was flushed with a double before drowning in the River of Dreams (thanks to Mike Tarr for this pearl of wisdom) when he had Matt Rolfe all in and dominated holding {Ad}{Kh} to Rolfe’s {Kd}{9d}. The board blanked out until the {9s} fell on the river as seven players parted ways for dinner.
Kane Sherwell - 3,700,000
Julian Cohen - 1,700,000
Jason Gray - 1,220,000
Albert Amato - 787,000
Matt Rolfe - 565,000
Mick Nolton - 265,000
Chris Chronis - 125,000
Once play recommenced, Chronis was quickly out the door when his {8d}{7d} was unable to improve against Kane Sherwell’s {Ks}{Qs} when the board ran out {9d}{5s}{2d}{5h}{Jc}. Mick Nolton fell soon after when he pushed holding {3h}{2h} and was called by Sherwell holding {ks}{9h}. Nolton flopped a flush draw, turned a straight draw, but blanked on the river to see him exit in 6th.
Matt Rolfe doubled with a pair of tens as Jason Gray chipped back up with a pair of aces against Kane Sherwell’s top pair. Rolfe however wouldn’t last too much longer when he flopped a flush holding {9h}{8h} against Kane Sherwell, only to have his all in called on the river with Sherwell holding the nuts with {Kh}{2h}.
Kane Sherwell - 3,958,000
Julian Cohen - 1,770,000
Jason Gray - 1,640,000
Albert Amato - 1,100,000
Albert Amato doubled with a set against Kane Sherwell as Julian Cohen became our 4th place finisher in a hand that will definitely be talked about!
Sherwell made a standard raise from the button and Cohen made the call from the big blind before checking a {5c}{7h}{3c} flop as Sherwell fired out 200,000 for a just under pot sized bet. Cohen made the call and checked the {7d} on the turn; only to be faced with a 500,000-chip bet. Cohen deliberated for a few minutes before moving all in for 1,350,000 holding {6s}{6c} and was called by Sherwell and his {Ad}{7s}. Unfortunately for Cohen the river was unable to bring a five of six and he hit the rail as the three remaining players headed on a break.
Jason Gray would be next to fall when he committed his short-stack holding {Ad}{Kh} to be in a race against Kane Sherwell’s {8c}{8s}. The board ran out {Js}{Jc}{4c}{7c}{Qs} and Gray fell in 3rd place for a $94,050 payday as the Main Event went into heads-up play.
Kane Sherwell - 5,125,000
Albert Amato - 3,375,000
In his first ever live tournament, Kane Sherwell would start heads-up play on fire taking down pot after pot to increase his chip lead to a near seven-to-two advantage before Albert Amato started to claw his way back.
After doubling back to 3,500,000 holding {2c}{2h} on a {3s}{4s}{5s} against Sherwell’s {Qc}{6c}, Amato would get some super thin value out of a rivered pair before calling two bets with a gutshot, only to river a pair to take another pot of Sherwell as the chip counts hovered around the even mark.
It took just over an hour for Amato to claim the chip lead when his flopped top-pair held strong against Sherwell’s middle pair and flush draw to see Amato sit with 5,100,000 to Sherwell’s 3,450,000.
In the final hand Amato limped in from the button before calling a 200,000-chip raise from Sherwell to see a flop of {7c}{2h}{Qh} land and a continuation bet of 400,000 follow from Sherwell. Amato made the call to see the {9s} land on the turn and an all-in bet from Sherwell be snap-called by Amato tabling {9h}{7h} to be in great shape against Sherwell’s {6h}{6c}.
When the river landed the {Ks} we lost Kane Sherwell in second place, earning the first time player a handy $129,100 to get the poker bankroll in motion while Albert Amato took down the $190,050 first prize, coveted trophy and title of 2009 Victorian Poker Champion in front of a few friends and family and the ovation of the weary but watchful onlookers.
Check out the winner's interview below...

PokerNetwork would like to thank you for following the live coverage from the 2009 Victorian Poker Championships, and to get your tournament poker fix make sure to stay locked on to the News section for updates from the APT and APPT Macau, as well as many other tournaments from around the world!
Until then . . . may your Aces run into Kings, your sets into two-pair and your triple-barrel bluffs find many folds!


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Albert Amato Wins Vic Champs Main Event! Albert Amato Wins Vic Champs Main Event!

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