Success in the Sunday Million

All poker players would like to be able to boast of a big prize in a huge poker tournament, of being able to tell their mates that they had a deep run in the Sunday Million for example, that they were able to outlast almost 46,000 players and cash for a whopping $44K!!! For most players this would be just a dream, but not for PokerStars School member ‘rokkicsq’ who managed to do just that…

PokerStars School: Tell us a little about yourself?
rokkicsq: My name is Dmitry and I play on PokerStars as ‘rokkicsq’. I’m 28-years-old and I work as an Economist. I play a lot of volleyball to keep fit but I also spend a lot of time playing poker, which I love to do.

PokerStars School: How long have you been playing poker, and on PokerStars in particular?
rokkicsq: Since I turned eighteen, so for the last ten years really. I’ve only ever played on PokerStars.

PokerStars School: That has been your best result to date?
rokkicsq: It would have to be this one, finishing 13th in the 13th Anniversary Sunday Million, it was an amazing experience. Some people say 13 is an unlucky number, but seemingly not for me!

Big Poker Pot

PokerStars School: Tell us more, how much did you win?
rokkicsq: I cashed for exactly $44,367, that’s a massive amount of money for me. When I see an opportunity to play a big tournament I always try not to miss out on a chance to take a shot. Of course, I usually play much lower buy-ins, but for this one, I decided to have a go thankfully.

PokerStars School: How did you prepare for the tournament and what strategy did you use?
rokkicsq: The funny thing is I didn’t prepare for this tournament, which is not recommended. It was really a spur of the moment decision to play. I usually play with a very aggressive style which seems to work for me. This is not to say that I didn’t pick my spots carefully though, I folded many times when I thought I was beaten, but for the most part, I played super aggressively with the odd well-timed bluff. When we got down to the last 3 tables things began to get very serious and everyone slowed down a lot as big decisions were being made.

PokerStars School: Can you remember any key hands from the tournament?

rokkicsq: Yes, I can remember two in particular. The first was when I was down to 10 big blinds. I was in early position and was holding A8o when I shoved all-in from early position. I think in hindsight this was a mistake. I got called by a player holding A10 but luckily an 8 came on the flop and I held on. The second hand I remember very well. I was on the BB with AQs and the button (who was stealing lots of small pots) tried to steal the blinds by raising to 11 million. I took an aggressive stance and re-raised to 41 million. After tanking for a little while he shoved all-in and I called. Of course, he turned over 68s and I won what was a huge pot at that stage of the game.

PokerStars School: What will you spend the prize-money on?
rokkicsq: For a long time now I’ve been planning on buying my own house. This will surely help with the deposit and get the ball rolling on that one. Maybe I’ll play some more big tournaments but I certainly won’t waste it all.

PokerStars School: And finally, any tips or advice for school members reading this?
rokkicsq: Yes, learning the rules and the basics is one thing, but learning the theory and psychology of the game is also extremely important. Learn about Tilt and the ability to deal with it. Learn how to manage yourself during a downswing. Review your hands to see what mistakes your making and ask more experienced players for advice in the poker forum. Finally, it’s ok to take a shot at a higher tournament every now and then but for the most part, stick to solid bankroll management and you won’t go wrong.