WSOP: Roberto Romanello Defeats Niklas Astedt to Win Event #39

Roberto Romanello joined poker's Triple Crown club on Sunday after taking down World Series of Poker Online Event #39. (partypoker photo)

As far as the 2020 World Series of Poker Online events go, the final battle of Event #39 had all the makings of a heavyweight battle between two elite players. Roberto Romanello defeated former #1-ranked PocketFiver Niklas Astedt heads up to win $216,212.95 and in the process become the first Welsh-born player to win a WSOP bracelet.

The win makes Romanello just the ninth player to ever have won poker’s Triple Crown: a World Poker Tour title, a European Poker Tour title, and a WSOP bracelet. He won EPT Prague in 2010 and and WPT Bratislava in 2011.

The event drew 922 runners for a $1,313,850 prizepool and was the second event in as many days with a start time geared towards the massive Asian online poker market.

Astedt started the final table with more than twice as many chips as his nearest competitor and it didn’t take long for him to put them to use. Jeffrey Cormier only got to spend 10 minutes at the final table before Astedt picked him off. From UTG, Astedt raise to 220,000 and Cormier jammed all in for 432,000 middle position. Astedt called and showed Ad9c and Cormier turned over KsQs. The Ac7c2h flop gave Astedt a firm grasp on the hand. The Jc turn gave Cormier Broadway outs but the Js river was the proverbial nail in the coffing and he was out in ninth place.

Five minutes later, an all in preflop race ended on player’s tournament. Paul Barnes made it 200,000 from UTG+1 and Orkhan Allahverdiyev raised to 1,176,000 from the cutoff and Barnes called. Allahverdiyev showed AcKc while Barnes tabled 4c4h. The KsTs5s flop paired Allahverdiyev but the 4s turn gave Barnes a set. The 6d river didn’t complete a board flush and Allahverdiyev was finished in eighth.

Ravali Krishna opened to 200,000 from middle position before Romanello raised to 1,900,000. Krishna called off his last 1,500,000 and showed AcQh. Romanello was ahead with 7d7h and stayed there through the Kh8c8sKhJc runout to eliminate Krishna in seventh place.

Astedt continued to hold the chip lead despite having to watch other players do the eliminating. This time it was Russia’s Aleksandr Trofimov‘s turn to do the heavy lifting. Trofimov opened to 240,000 as the first to act and Hannes Speiser shoved for 1,500,000 from the cutoff. Trofimov called and showed ThTs with Speiser needing help with KcQd. The Tc8c6d flop left Speiser needing help and he got some on the 3c turn. The 5h river didn’t make his runner runner flush and he was sent packing in sixth.

Five-handed play lasted a half hour before Barnes found a second victim of the night. Action folded to Thomas Cazayous in the small blind and he called only to have Barnes raise to 475,000 from the big. Cazayous called to see a Qc4d2c flop. Both players checked. The turn was the 4h and Cazayous led out for 535,500 and Barnes called. The 5d river got Cazayous to bet 1,000,000 and Barnes raised again to forced Cazayous to call off his last 67,000. Barnes showed QdQs for top set while Cazayous showed QhJh for top pair and was out in fifth.

Over the next half hour, Astedt surrendered the chip lead with Barnes and Romanello each taking a turn at the top. Astedt recaptured it in a hand that ended Trofimov’s night. Down to just 12 big blinds, Trofimov moved all in with AcJh and Astedt defended from the big blind with AsQc. The Jc6s4d flop was a great one for Trofimov but the Tc turn and Kc river gave Astedt Broadway and busted Trofimov in fourth place.

Twelve minutes later Astedt send the tournament to heads up. Astedt moved all in from the small blind wit4h 5c5d and Barnes called for his tournament life with 3d3s. The board ran out Jd8h2d6sTs to eliminate Barnes in third.

Despite having eliminted the previous two players, Astedt began heads up with the shorter of the two stacks, but only by three big blinds. The pair clashed early with Romanello doubling thanks to a flopped set of sevens and a few hands later, Astedt was done. Astedt bet his last 2.5 big blinds with Qs9c and Romanello called with Jd6s. The Jc4s2c flop gave Romanello top pair and Astedt got no help on the Ac turn or 8h river and was eliminated in second place.

Final Table Payouts

  1. Roberto Romanello – $216,212.95
  2. Niklas Astedt – $156,905.35
  3. Paul Barnes – $113,866.12
  4. Aleksandr Trofimov – $82,632.62
  5. Thomas Cazayous – $59,966.47
  6. Hannes Speiser – $43,517.60
  7. Ravali Krishna – $31,580.88
  8. Orkhan Allayverdiyev – $22,918.14
  9. Jeffrey Cormier – $16,631.76