Think of a tournament, any tournament. Can you remember the winner? Yes, most likely. Can you remember some of the players at the final table? Probably. What about the player that came fifth? Unlikely – they have a tendency to the forgettable.
Now then, can you remember those players which busted out early on? Certainly not. You could hazard a guess who had bought in, but rubber-stamping that fact is a different matter, and they’re the poor buggers that contributed all the prize pool. All the card-waving, flip-winning, trophy-hugging heroes have based their wins and huge bricks of cash on the bust-outs of others.
Take the recent EPT London High Roller, for instance. Hedge fund superstar Talal Shakerchi beat Faraz Jaka heads-up to win £436,330, taking a third of the £1,342,600 prize pool which has been clobbered together from £10k bullets and their equally hefty reloads, of which there were 25.
That’s right, 25 reloads at £10,000 a pop. That’s quarter-of-a-million sterling right there. Just in second bullets. So, I reckon you’re thinking, ‘That’s a lot of money.’ And you would be right. That was the daily security budget for the 2012 Olympic Games. Or, you know, a house. What does that look like?
This is what a quarter-of-a-million in tournament buy-ins looks like. This. Right here.
These buy-in chits are reflective of just one more step (albeit a large one) down the poker road. Even the most casual poker fan would recognise a few of these names. The more committed amongst you will know most, if not all, but we can tell you that all of these guys have proved themselves at tables live and/or online. Look up any of those names and you’ll find results. Joni Jouhkimainen? $ 1,217,271 in live cashes. Byron Kaverman? $1,409,526. Salman Behbehani? $1,426,790. And that’s just live results.
There might be different playing styles among them but there’s a couple of things that all 25 names will agree upon. You got to speculate to accumulate and that busting tournaments is just part of the long game.
Buy in small, win big
If you’re looking for your own big win then you’d do well to take a look at the next leg of the EPT which take place in Berlin (21-27 April) but with the MicroMillions Main Event coming up anyone can take down a big score: the $22 buy-in guarantees a minimum payout of $150,000 to first place.
Rick Dacey is staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.