Gorby3975: Finding the mysterious winning Russian

ps_news_thn.jpgWhen this week's Sunday Million dealt its final river card, we looked at the winner's name and knew we had seen it before. That's because the guy won the Sunday Storm just a week before. What's more, his Sunday Million win came by way of a 2,500 FPP VIP Club satellite. The final payoff? A cool $208,783. Obviously, it was time to track the guy down.

That's not as easy as it sounds. As you might be aware, I'm a native English speaker and live nowhere near the Baltic Sea. Meanwhile, Gorby3975 speaks Russian and lives in Kaliningrad. Fortunately, the PokerStars Blog has grown a great deal over the past seven years, and these days we have a man in Russia who can handle just these kinds of assignments. Our Andrey Maksin scoured Kaliningrad and tracked down Gorby 3975, a man otherwise known as Alexei Gorbunov.


Gorby3975's Sunday Million final table

Here's what we've learned:

Gorbunov is a 36-year-old small business owner in Kaliningrad who has enough free time to dedicate to poker. He focuses almost all of his poker attention on PokerStars, a place where he doesn't have to worry about some of the intricacies of live play.

"Emotions can interfere with making the right decision at some point," he said.

Gorbunov admits that running good is part of the game and that he has seen equally talented as people not win as much as he does. But, he points out, there are ways to mitigate the swings of fate. He summed it up in one word: discipline. In an online tournament that lasts up to 12 hours, keeping focus can make the different between a debilitating mistake and a life-changing win.

Apparently it's that kind of discipline that can put a 36-year-old Russian on a heater that sees him winning nearly a quarter-million bucks inside of eight days.

For a version of the story from Russia, visit the original post on the Russian PokerStars Blog.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in Sunday Million