Winning a Platinum Pass to the PokerStars Players Championship (PSPC) is always going to be special, regardless of the route you take to do so.
But to win one from a free ticket given to you in a PokerStars chest? That’s definitely near the top of the list in terms of efficiency and, let’s face it, coolness.
For London-based Swede Mats Rosén, the PokerStars Mega Path was the right path to take. In the summer of 2022, he turned a $20 free ticket into a Platinum Pass worth $30K and will be heading to the Bahamas in January to battle in the prestigious $25K buy-in PSPC 2023.
Rosén, who works in IT quality assurance, is no stranger to poker. His Hendon Mob profile lists cashes dating back a decade, and he’s racked up more than $220K in earnings throughout his poker career. But this is by far the biggest tournament he’s ever played, and it caps off a particularly stressful period in style.
Here’s our conversation with Platinum Pass winner Mats Rosén, certainly one to watch when the PSPC 2023 kicks off.
Hey Mats, congratulations on being a Platinum Pass winner! How did you get yours?
I took the free route! I got a chest with a $20 ticket and I spun it into a $100 ticket, then won the $100 into the $1K, and turned the $1K ticket into the package.
PokerStars gives you so many free tickets so I can’t say it was my first attempt, but it was definitely in my first 20 attempts. I’m sure I played some of the $1 steps too.
To turn a free ticket into a Platinum Pass must have felt amazing. What was that winning moment like?
It was amazing. My wife was behind me when I won it.
Sometimes you can feel like poker owns you a little bit. I was on a bit of a downswing, so winning the Platinum Pass soothed my ego! It proved to me I’ve still got it, in a way. But it felt great winning.
Is your wife coming with you to the Bahamas?
She is, yes. We have a young son so we haven’t been able to go on many holidays recently. She’s probably looking forward to it more than me! She’s absolutely in love with the fact that we’re going.
PokerStars has organised activities for the guests of Platinum Pass winners and our son is staying home with family, so everything is taken care of. I’m also going two days before to get used to the time zone.
My wife has been a student for the past three years, and our son is nearly three, so she has been working weekends to make ends meet and I’ve been taking care of him myself at weekends The cost of a nursery in the UK is ridiculous so it’s been a stressful time in terms of finances. She has now passed with distinction and now we have this Platinum Pass which has been a light at the end of the tunnel. It’s awesome.
How have you been preparing for the event since winning your Pass?
I’ve ramped up my live poker play. I went to EPT Barcelona and met some of the PokerStars crew. I played the €1,100 Estrellas Poker Tour Main Event and felt awesome, like I belonged there in the Main Event fields. I’ve played a few others too. But I don’t know where people get their bankrolls from!
I haven’t received coaching, but I play a lot online and I feel like I learn that way. It’s the best training ground for when you’re presented with an opportunity like this. I also love watching back the big online final tables with cards-up coverage, they are a goldmine for learning poker.
What are you most looking forward to?
I’m really looking forward to the challenge of playing such a high buy in. I’ve played a few $10Ks before, including two WSOP Main Events. I’ve had some of the best players in the world at my table in those, such as Adrian Mateos. I don’t think I’ll be intimidated.
I like that I’ve had time to look forward to it. It’s like, when you book a holiday, you don’t want to book it today and go tomorrow. You want to have some time before.
You’ve been cashing live events for a decade now. What kind of games do you play these days?
I’ve been playing forever. I think my average buy-in online is probably $22, but I’d say that when I play the $109 Sunday Million I’m definitely a winning player. If I play a normal $109, though, I’m probably breaking even in those. And live I’ll play anything from $200 up to $1,100.
Satellites are probably my strongest game and it’s where I’ve had the most success. I’ve won a few packages to live events but I’ve never cashed any of the tournaments.
I think one of my strengths will be that, when I play against someone better than me, I can figure out how they play. Great players tend to categorise players they’re not familiar with and I try to abuse that. I think I’m good at playing back against good players, so hopefully, that will be great at the PSPC where half of the table will probably be better than me.Back to Top