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Manoj Pentakota Wins First-Ever Millionaire Tournament on Spartan Poker For ₹10.61 Lakhs

Manoj Pentakota
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  • PG News September 7, 2016
  • 3 Minutes Read

It has been an exciting week for online poker players with ‘The Millionaire’ tournament making a grand debut on Spartan Poker. The tournament that guaranteed an ambitious ₹10 Lakhs to the winner, smashed all records with 576 entries and 273 re-entries in the event. The total prize pool of the event reached a staggering ₹42,45,000 with Vishakhapatnam-based Manoj ‘kissmyaces’ Pentakota (cover image) outlasted the massive field to take home the top prize of ₹10,61,250.

The runner-up ‘AurelionSol‘ who collected ₹5,94,300 said, “Super value tourney, a big step in the right direction for online tournaments in India.”

40-year-old Avinash ‘spacecadet’ Tauro who took third place in the event commented on his experience saying, “I started playing poker 2 years back and cashed 4th in the first IPC Main Event. I fell in love with poker then and it continues till today. I am primarily a tournament player and was one of the earliest registrations on Spartan Poker. I have played more on Spartan than any other site. The main reasons are the lightning quick cash outs and the excellent structures for most tournaments. Being an amateur player with a full time business to run the Spartan tourneys let me enjoy the slow and deep structure without having to miss my Sunday night sleep. I love the Sunday Big game and the Sunday Super Stack tourneys which I have cashed a few times. And of course the Millionaire is now my new favourite considering I cashed 3rd in the very 1st one.”

Coming back to the winner, Manoj Pentakota has been playing professional poker for about a year and this is his biggest ever win. PokerGuru was able to speak with him on the following day and here are some excerpts from the interview:-

Manoj Pentakota

Congratulations on becoming the first ever Millionaire from SpartanPoker.com! Tell our readers a bit about yourself.

I am from Vishakapatnam, a coastal city in the state of Andhra Pradesh. I am 28 and have done my Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering, which I am making no use off. My dad used to work for HPCL and now he is happily retired. Most of my upbringing was in metros due to my dad’s transfers. I used to work for a US-based trading firm’s Pune office. Now I play poker professionally and it has been more than a year now.

 

How did you start on your poker journey?

I was a day trader by profession. When I used to work in Pune, a friend of mine introduced me to this BRUTAL skill game and my working hours were so flexible that I could not ditch poker. I should say I have learned poker the hard way – from busting cash on high stakes to reading poker books. It’s always inspiring to learn that people from your poker circuit are making money, lucky to have such poker buddies who always help me push my game, to name a few – Deepak Bothra, Abhineet Jain and Neelabh Baranga.

 

When did you start playing poker for real money?

My first real cash game was on Adda52.com in early 2015 and from there on have been playing cash ever since on pretty much every Indian site. Mostly I play PLO and have been doing well over the past 6 months and I have bagged few online MTTs on Spartan, PokerBaazi and Adda52.com. Shipping Spartan Poker’s ‘The Millionaire’ is my best finish till date and thank you Spartan for this opportunity! Few recent finishes which I am proud of include topping Baazi’s PPL season 3 leader board but Spartan ‘The Millionaire’ will be on top of my specials list. (smiles)

 

Tell us about your start in live poker tournaments.

My first live event was IPC June edition (2015) since then have been regular for IPC and happy to say that I had few moments to cherish and make some friends with real poker brains.

 

Tell us about your online play. What’s your game mix like?

Mostly I grind PLO low stakes to avoid TDS (smiles). Still working on stepping up the game and moving up the stakes where I started in the first place. Not a big fan of MTTs but I do play the big GTDs they have the best ROI. Spartan is always the best place for MTTs with a super smooth UI and importantly management helping players compensate with TDS which is huge.

 

Describe your journey through the tournament.

It was tough. Initially I was running bad with my premium hands getting cracked and my river bluffs getting caught. Was left with 8bb when I shoved my 66s from MP with two callers and was lucky to hit 6 on flop but not lucky enough till river where villain makes backdoor flush. Started my second bullet with 15bb which came real handy. Was lucky enough to win few flips and have people on tables who played tighter than me. Big river bluffs helped me through out and once I had good chip lead was just stealing blinds.

 

Any particular turning points in the tournament?

To be honest, stacks were so shallow even when down to final 2 tables. I had KK on sb with 25bb, UTG (AKo) shoves 14bb and cut off (AQo) who had around 14bb shoved as well. I called to make myself chip lead that was my winning moment. Not much poker to play on FT as stacks were shallow but still managed to pull off a bluff. (laughs)

 

What are your future plans in the live and online space?

I don’t have any plans as such for live games but playing live on international events does excite me. Won a package for WPT to fulfill my excitement but had to ditch due to personal reasons. Hope I fulfill my wish through Spartan who have tie up with APT.

Have been grinding PLO low stakes and will be doing the same for the coming days as well. Will be paying more attention on MTTs as well.

 

Besides this massive win, how has the overall experience on Spartan Poker been?

Spartan has always been a delight when it comes to playing satellites for live IPC events in Goa or playing online. They have the best UI for our playing conditions. Spartan are so generous when it comes to promotions, I would not be typing this if they did not have FREEMIL promotion. Spartan has pulled out the highest number of registrations with Spartan Millionaire and that is HUGE! Thank you Spartan for this gaming experience!

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