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Roberto Romanello has sampled it all this week. He has played in the European Poker Tour (EPT) San Remo, played Dealers Choice (DC) cash games with his friends back home in Swansea and he has also had a little online grind.

So what memorable hand stands out from the hundreds he’s played?

“Getting Benny Spindler to six bet me, all in, during the third level of the High Roller in San Remo is my favourite hand. It was early in the tournament and I was trying to build an image as usual. I felt comfortable and liked my table a lot. I had position on the good players and there were a few donks to my left.

I was three betting quite a lot with hands like suited connectors. I was using my experience, betting small portions of my stack. I was needling the good players by being aggressive, waiting for the perfect scenario that eventually did emerge.

A young kid opened and I looked down to see pocket kings and instantly three bet him. Spindler thought I was making a move and four bet me. I know a lot of players go through the motions and act a lot because it’s so early to be five betting with air. So I thought I could play with his head a little bit. I asked him to lift his hand so I could see his stack and I five bet instantly.

It’s so early in the tournament that it’s so hard to get paid, or to get someone like Spindler to do something crazy. I knew I would have to do something a little different. So I just instantly clicked it back. He was sitting on a 50k stack at the time, probably thinking, “WTF was that? He instantly five-bets me on Level 3…just clicks it back?”

He just sat there for a while, before picking up his 25k chips. I thought, “I’ve got him here,” and he grabbed everything and put the lot in. When I called I could see his face drop. It was special…but obviously your hand needs to hold up and it didn’t.

Bryn Kenny was on the table behind me and when I was walking around trying to come to terms with the hand, he looked up at me and said, “Only you could do that to someone on Level 3 Roberto”. So that was pretty comforting. But despite losing the hand, it remains my best hand of the week.”

What else has Romanello been up to besides poker?

“Its amazing being home. It’s been a long trip [five-weeks] and its good to come home. It fires me up for the next tournament. I was going to wait for Prague but I have already started thinking about playing in the Masters Classic in Amsterdam. That’s what happens to me. I have to come home to get hungry again. So for me it’s like a recharge. I need to get home to get that hunger.”

It’s a good job Romanello has a hunger as well with all of that home cooked Italian/Welsh fusion food that his mother makes him.

“My family owns properties running into double figures, but it wouldn’t even cross my mind to move out of my parents house. We all got together again, today, and my mother made us all Cannelloni. Not your supermarket nonsense, we are talking Cannelloni from scratch. It’s amazing to get together with my family. I have had the lot this week, lasagne, cannelloni…the only thing that would take me away from my parents home is if I got married and had children. Otherwise the thought of leaving doesn’t cross my mind.”

So how does Romanello keep so trim after eating all of that pasta?

“I told myself that I was going to come home from San Remo and exercise, join the gym, do this and do that. But as usual I haven’t done anything. I am quite good if I start something. But I just don’t get started easily. A few months ago I stopped drinking for a while and lost a stone. But I need a spark. Both of my brothers are in the gym these days, so maybe that’s my spark?

Keeps Me Grounded

I have been picking my brothers three kids up from school in the afternoon. I bring them back home and we all eat together. So I have been babysitting, which is good for me as it keeps me grounded. I have been going up the restaurant pretending to work. Just hanging around and looking after the shop with my eyes. My eyes have been getting tired watching everyone in the shop. Ah…I did have a shopping spree and spent €5-6k when I was in Europe. When I win a bit of money I always like to treat myself with some nice clothes. I came home with around five pairs of different shoes, some of which were Prada…I love Prada shoes and clothing.”

Coming Up In Part 3

In the final part of the Romanello interview we talk about his online game and finally reveal what his final profit was for the week.

Lee Davy is a writer from Ogmore Vale in South Wales. You can follow his views and opinions through his blog or on Twitter.


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