A message to us all

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colin_147

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A pretty well known local poker proffesional has posted this story up on the Ladbrokes forum over the last couple of days, and it has headed warning to a lot of us who can get in too far

Worth reading

Out of the game.

What happened? Where did it all go wrong? Why did i do it? Can i turn back the clock?

Is what i keep saying to myself over n over for quite sometime now. Many friends know what happened some of you may not know the full extent of it as im quite a quiet person and keep myself to myself at times. Mayb different on a table buts thats just my poker personality coming out where i spend many of my days on online poker.

Last July time i took the decision to give up my 39hr week office job, paid off all my credit cards with wins., to do full time online poker. Only had a 10ksterling bankroll but thought it was plenty to give it a shot even for a small while. No debts and worrys as well to boot. Small selection of poker friends for help and advice and vice versa and all was going well. I did attempt in february but never lasted long. Was more wiser this time and more money, or so i thought.

I had built this 10k bankroll upto a nice 30ksterling, some weeks with no results, some with small break evens and then catching a nice win along the way. Played some live festivals as well along the way and trips to poker weekends in dorchester and norwich. Paid for everything i needed to and had to live on this bankroll as well. I new there be tough times but all was well till december time.

I new a player from my casino and was a good online player and was big winner r so i thought, some may no him, some may not. I wont mention his online r real name but he can be "Joe" (Joe Bloggs as they say). First time properly spoke to Joe in the casino and he had mentioned how my game had come on alot live and online. Hes a true gambler, live by the sword die by the sword. Won alot of money and lost alot. The sheffield Stu Ungar mayb.

After a trip to a poker event we got talking bout sports betting, and me being the total novice followed a tip from him on Portsmouth-West ham. So backed Portsmouth and it won. He told me all the percentages of sports betting and so on and always try bet on a 100% game r if u get real inside info, follow it.

Few tips from him and was going ok. He was on a bad run and asked to borrow some money, i said no problems as hed help me win money, so was ok to help. Nothing big mind ya, just a sponsor into competitions. Time after time followed and he finally hit a win and the debt was clear. But this was affecting my game badly, as i needed to win just to clear the money i had lent out. Started to play lot worst.

Won a seat on the poker cruise and had my best live win of 22k onboard. Got bk home and top of the world. Bankroll was backup, all loses covered and was great. Joe had worst run ever and was bust again, as id borrowed him money and he payeded back ok. I lent him bit more money, again the amount went up n up and my bankroll was going down and down. The tips was bad tips, horses i got was donkeys and money i was losing was going fast. After a steady win i was ok again. But the debt had arisen to 5 figure amount and it was 2 much. Stopped all money to Joe, and he managed to win a comp and pay most back. But not all.

But my football bug got worst and worst. I had best weekend ever on football. Netting around 12k in this weekend. Only for that amount to go in the next week. Bets got bigger and chased like nothing. My debt to joe was still quite high and he wasnt winning and i was lending him no more as i was struggling financially.

I had a really good week on poker, winning this tournament 3 times in a week including other cashes and won approx $10k, the saturday come and i put it on the football. $10k gone, had 5/5 losers and not a penny back. That evening i plunged more money on, and altogether i did around £10k. The sunday i did the same. I had 6 credit cards and 4 of them have big limits. I had done 2 of them in the single day. Chased and chased and chased. It was the world snooker final, and got Peter Ebdon at 3/1 when he was on rush on 7 back to back frames to win. And wacked £5k on. He missed a crucial frame winning ball when it was 16/14 to make it 16/15 with 3 to play. Dott who was totally gone mentally managed to clear up and was 17/14 and Dott needed 1 frame and he won. If Ebdon had won at 16/14 to make it 16/15 in frames i think Edbon would of won and i win £20 back. Instead its a massive 5k loss on a credit card. I had very little money from bankroll left and was off 2 blackpool that week for poker festival.

No win in Blackpool ment i was crushed, financially, personally. Still had some money left on credit card and in bank. But i did what i was always doing and put it on football and lost. Lost everything. Borrowed my self to get back in the poker game. Did well but all my winnings went on football. Hoping the one time id get a break. Never happened. Joe was as well skint but when he did have money it went on poker so he could try win. For a gr8 player he never had anything to show. All went back on cash tables. With no bankroll he was getting crushed constantly. Scrimped and scraped my self for cash untill i get a win. Was doing well and doing what i was good at, and that was winning tournaments against average online players. As per usual i went for glory on football and didnt happen.Credit card bills was coming in and couldnt pay, never quite new when i was gonna get cash again. But as every gambler r poker player. Always find a way of getting money and in2 the game. Did have a good m8 who sponsored me into a few games and did quite well. Went 50/50 and always paid when i won, but where did my 50% go, as always. Back to the bookmakers.

For how bad it got, i booked to go to las Vegas around April/may time and got it paid for. I had $1400 spending money as well a that time. But as all gamblers i needed to cash it in. Did $700 then another $700 few weeks later. Where did it ok. Straight to the bookmakers on football. So week b4 i went to vegas i had no spending money. Asked around but no joy and i dont blame any1 as they prob wouldnt get cash back now as new my situation. But my good friend sponsored me that week for comps. $100-$200 a day. On the friday i won $1800 and i was flying the sunday. gave him quite a bit back and asked for small loan. and went away to vegas with $1200 in end. If i didnt win i would be going with nothing.

Since then its been reality. My debts are just to high, with no income what so ever. Took decision to go back to work and looking at moment and come back into poker in the future at some time. Getting my ladbrokes account closed for 6months.

Since i met Joe. I did have £33k in the bank and credit limit of round bout £13k on credit cards. So really a bankroll then of £46k, that has all gone plus i have done alot more. I won all the 33k on poker tournaments. Every penny of it was won on poker. And i have lost mayb £50-60k mayb more on sports betting. Joes debt to me is still in 5 figures. It did reach $23k but now down to $11k r so, as some is cash, and doubt il never see it. If it wasnt for thats Portsmouth match it be alot different, and when he payed me his debt i shoulda said no more. But i backed him so he can try win it back for me and get himself going.

Ultimatly i am a gambler and an gambling addict. Lost alot of friends because of it and any1 reading, im sorry, and unable to say sorry to your face/online/msn. I am in debt to some people, hopefully pay u back but i doubt i can now. Sorry for this. Want to though. But i just dont know when and when il be back in the game and when have the money.

Didnt want to name names, as its not fare on them but some may know the people im on about. and if u see Joe win, get my money off him if u can.It will at least pay the debts i have with other people payed off and a 2nd shot for me in the game.

But overall i love the game of poker and always have, but gambling has killed me and everything to do with me.

Just a big thanks to every1 in poker i have met and in recent times helped me. Just sorry it had 2 come 2 this.

Just what could of been, and what really is.

I hope no one ever goes on this route.

Andrew Muir

"muirspud"
 
Debi

Debi

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Hmm not a good ending so far. It seems that poker was not as much his problem as the other gambling he did - including making large loans to a friend which is always a gamble.

And a person with a gambling problem like that should never step foot in Vegas.

But I wish him well and hope he is able to recover.
 
Welly

Welly

Guest
Bookmakers make their money by offering neq equity across the book as a whole. Yet we have a poker player addicted to neq eq "calls".

A contradiction lost on many poker players/gambling addicts.
 
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Guin36

Guest
10k roll to start going pro? Geez I think I need over 1 mill CAD just to even think about living off of my ability to invest well. Lending money from a short roll like that to anyone is plain silly and so is gambling... this guy was never a pro if you ask me.

A real "pro"fessional has to be able to roll with the worst of times and not just from the job. Life has a funny way of exploiting weaknesses and poker is usually not that far away from other vices. Approach life like your poker game where you study your habits (spending, eating, etc.) and then plug your leaks. Smoking only a couple packs a week costs you $10 is only 5.2% of this 10k roll in a year.... talk about the rake!

Read Ben Franklin's autobiography as he has a great method for focusing on improving as a person that I have found useful. As a pro poker player you will need to have one strong personality to handle it... most don't have that sort of mental fortitude to handle the swings of life and that will make your variance in poker that much greater.
 
aloevera

aloevera

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He should stick to his 9-5 job and stay far away from anything addictive.
 
smd173

smd173

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A real "pro"fessional has to be able to roll with the worst of times and not just from the job.

Lot's or pros go broke. You just don't hear about it all the time, and the few stories you do hear are long after they were broke. Like Howard Lederer. Matusow has gone broke many times.

This guy's story is not that uncommon.
 
wsorbust

wsorbust

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I'm not saying it's a bad post or anything, but it means basically nothing to me based on a couple of reasons. Mainly because anyone can claim themselve as pro. I think smd173 is right in saying that most "pros" go broke, and you just don't hear about it because they're amateurs no one's ever heard of or had any kind of success to begin with. Note: I didn't read more than a sentence of that article. I assume its a "I went pro, then broke, then robbed a liquor store, went to jail...." type of story. If everyone who went to vegas and lost a lot of money, ended up writing an article claiming their stupidity would anyone go to vegas? Sure.
 
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colin_147

Guest
I'm not saying it's a bad post or anything, but it means basically nothing to me based on a couple of reasons. Mainly because anyone can claim themselve as pro. I think smd173 is right in saying that most "pros" go broke, and you just don't hear about it because they're amateurs no one's ever heard of or had any kind of success to begin with. Note: I didn't read more than a sentence of that article. I assume its a "I went pro, then broke, then robbed a liquor store, went to jail...." type of story. If everyone who went to vegas and lost a lot of money, ended up writing an article claiming their stupidity would anyone go to vegas? Sure.

I think you are missing the point of the post, and its very difficult to make a comment on a post when you havent actually read it. Saying that, I can see where you are coming from. The story meant more to me, as I have played with this guy for the past few years, and know he is a very competent player

The story focuses on the perils of online gambling, friendship and the disasters and addiction that can follow

Many of the top pro's have written articles on going broke, how else would you know about it? I dont think this guy wrote this post to get sympathy, or to look for handouts.
 
Beriac

Beriac

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I dunno guys, I think this was a great post - thanks Colin.

First off, I think the most reasonable definition of a "pro" is someone who makes the majority of their income from playing poker (or perhaps someone who plays poker full-time) -- either way, this guy qualifies.

Second, yeah his gambling was pretty bad, but that doesn't take away from his poker skills. One of the most interesting things I learned from The Professor, the Banker, and the Suicide King is that Ted Forrest, one of the pro poker players who I respect most, was unable to maintain his bankroll because he kept blowing his poker winnings on other games of chance at the casino. Games which, like betting with a bookmaker, favour the house and offer negative equity. I think this is an important lesson to learn for many poker players. This isn't everyone's Achilles heel, but it's still important.

Thanks again, Colin. Great read.
 
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Nubze

Guest
Yeah I know what thats like, since I came from crapping out in NBA/NFL over a long perod of time. I would say I won probably 450 but lost about 750 but I did only put in what I could afford and never borrowed which I made a golden rule. Which ultimately led to me having a 0 dollar bankroll due to teams who were the hype of the day even though their stats/players blew the other team out of the water and who was injured and who had homecourt etc.... I would advise anyone to stay away from sports betting since on any given day (or Sunday nfl :) )You can get crushed bad. And totally be shocked with the outcome (NBA). The team is only there to win and they dont care if you have money on the game or what your spread is for them to cover or how much you had on them losing by. Thats why I switched to poker where I've already won 3 tournaments placed in a few hundred player free rolls and usually I'm up at the cash tables.

NBA Record 65-40-2
NFL Record 13-8-0
 
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