Meet the PSPC's "biggest underdog," Mikolaj Syp
We need to talk about Mikolaj Syp, because by the time January 2019 rolls around, you're going to be watching him on PokerStars TV, and you need to prepare yourself for him.
Syp won a Platinum Pass in January as part of the PCA live stream giveaway, which was, for him, a pretty interesting development. See, Syp loves him some poker. It's one of his two biggest hobbies (the other is heavy metal music which he's traveled the world to watch on four continents). This is despite...well, let's just say it: prior to winning his Platinum Pass win, Syp had never set foot in a casino. He'd not heard the jingle-jangle of a slot machine, smelled the smoke rising off a blackjack table, or carried a rack of chips to the poker table.
At 39 years old, Syp works for a charity in the UK. He was born in Poland and eventually relocated to the UK where he never played a live poker tournament. So, the day after he won a pass, he went and found the first live tournament he could find. He finished out of the money but in top 30% of the field. He went back the next day and cashed. Still...
"My excitement has given way to terror!" Syp admitted.
Syp won his pass just because he was a big fan of the PokerStars TV commentators and their stream. He watched a lot of it, and then one day, he heard his name called. The next thing he knew, James Hartigan was interviewing him live on the air, and Syp was coming to grips with the fact he was going to be facing off against some of the world's best poker players.
"I love watching tournaments and listening to commentary and analysis by pros and commentators. You can learn so much from them. Poker to me is what football is to most people and all the great pros are my idols," he said. "Let's face it, I am the biggest underdog in the history of sports ever. "
Syp says all of this with a smile on his face. Why? Because he's been granted one of the first tickets to a veritable poker fantasy camp where he could win millions. Also, while he may not know this...it's the truth: there are going to be a lot more people like him there than he thinks. Just wait until you see some of the ways PokerStars will be giving out Platinum Passes over the rest of 2018.
So, Syp may be an underdog, but he's a happy dog, too.
"I don't care. I am going to make the most of it," he said. "I am going to take a stab at the tournament, meet my poker heroes, hopefully take lots of pics with them, and have a whale of a time."