Twenty five of 609 players made it into the money at the 2017 888Live Poker Festival Barcelona Main Event after two days of play, but it was a 23-year-old Italian who would take down the field and walk away with the grand prize in Spain. Luigi Shehadeh went into the final table with a massive chip lead and took down five players on his path to first place.
When the last day began, American Cate Hall was leading the finalists but had fallen to second by the time the final nine got down to business. Shehadeh had more than double the chips of Hall and was also the first to score an elimination.
The Italian held an A-K against Javier de Vicente Miquel’s pocket sixes, and an ace on the turn sealed his Spanish opponent’s fate. Marco Regonaschi was the only other Italian at the final table but couldn’t hang on for long and was taken down by Carlos Garcia Rodriguez in eighth place.
Jaime Rueda Sampedro was the next to go. He had pocket kings and jammed at the raise of Hall, who was sitting on pocket queens. The flop instantly gave Hall a set and two blanks meant Rueda Sampedro was the third player to bite the dust in just 10 minutes. He won €18,000 for his efforts.
Sweden’s Stefan Eriksson stepped up to the plate next, eliminating Hamza Miri in sixth with pocket nines. His high wouldn’t last long, however, and the eventual winner got in against Eriksson with a king-high. The Swede had pocket threes, but Shehadeh’s king paired on the flop and Eriksson hit the rail.
Despite impressive beginnings, Hall went down in fourth place when her A-6 went down to Shehadeh’s K-10. When the final three began, Shehadeh had a commanding lead that he didn’t relinquish until the end.
Jose Alberto Lopez Gonzalez shoved with pocket threes and quickly fell to the A-J of Shehadeh, which left Garcia Rodriguez to battle him in heads up. The Italian had an 8-1 lead going into the matchup.
Despite a few good doubles, Garcia Rodriguez was eventually down to 13 big blinds when he shoved with an A-7. Shehadeh called with eights and despite a promising flop, Garcia Rodriguez couldn’t pull out a straight. A blank board turned the Italian into a champion and he nearly doubled his all-time live earnings with €115,000.
Shehadeh’s only other first-place win came in April at Only the Barracudas 37, Campione d’Italia Main Event.
Final table results:
Photo credit: 888Live.
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