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Mumbai-based poker pro Nishant Sharma (cover image) aka ‘DoJingBULLETS’ is a regular on the domestic and Asian circuit and often been labelled the ‘rising star’ of Indian poker. In 2017, he won Event 10 at the Macau Poker Cup 27 in 2017 and made several deep runs at APT Macau. This year, his start has been fabulous and Sharma has won several top-notch online events including Adda52’s Crazy Leaderboard-III, Godfather 2.0 and Whale.
But what this 26-year old self-effacing former event manager has achieved at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) surpasses by far all the bright spots on his scoreboard and that too in his debut outing to Las Vegas!
After winning a free trip to Vegas via the 9stacks #LFGVegas contest, Sharma broke all previous records in the Main Event with his 34th place finish that won him a payday of $230,475 (~₹1.57 Crores). Sharma’s strategy for the Main Event was simple; he took his confidence to the tables, played low ball game and steered clear from high variance spots.
Dedication is the key to success for the young trendsetter who’s always on the hunt to beat his own scores and dreams of besting his mentor Danish Shaikh one day. His stellar WSOP run already makes him an inspiring figurehead among the upcoming talents entering poker. Sharma is now planning to use his bankroll for APPT Manila, online games, as also WSOP Europe and Aussie Millions.
Sharma spoke to PokerGuru on his WSOP adventure and his Main Event run. Read the excerpts here.
Hello Nishant and thank you for speaking with PokerGuru. Congratulations on your deep run in the WSOP Main Event. You are the only Indian who has made it to the top 50 of WSOP Main Event, how does it feel?
It feels great for sure but I don’t want this record to be there for a long time and want one of us to break it next year.
What was your immediate response/reaction after getting eliminated?
I was pretty calm and in no way I felt low or sad until I saw the final table rail which got me.ðŸ™ˆðŸ™ˆ
Please share your Main Event journey.
I always had a stack of 50 big blinds or more throughout my Main Event journey and tournament life was at risk only four times, first two times it was on Day 4 – AK>JJ and JJ>AK. Then on Day 6 – 45>33, all in on the turn where I had two pairs and villian had open ended straight draw. Finally, the QQ<AA hand where I busted. So, I kind of had a variance free journey (chuckles).
How did you prepare for the Main Event?
Nothing special but just wanted to play low ball game and not to take any high variance spot and it worked out perfectly for me.
Please share your overall journey at this years WSOP?
I had a great start by cashing in my 1st tournament of the series – Double Stack and finishing in the top 350 out of the 7,000+ field but after that I played more at Venetian than WSOP. I cashed at a few events including a 26th place in the bounty and then came back to WSOP for Main Event. After that I played The Closer where I finished 19th which could have been better if I wouldn’t have taken the high variance spot but that’s okay, we always learn and will get them next time.
Please share your qualification journey on 9stacks – first reaching level 42 and then level 75 in the #LFG promotion. How was your experience playing on 9stacks?
It was a great experience playing there and I was impressed on how flexible they were. Reaching level 42 wasn’t that hard and I did it in 8-9 days but there was Poker Sports League (PSL) in between so I had only 20 days to reach level 75 from 45 but I guess I did it with 3 days left so overall it was 26-30 days grind with 6 hours a day which is quiet low compared to some other promotion and hopefully they keep offering such promotions.
Please share some funny instances from the trip. We want to know the scoop behind the hashtag #AlwaysRunLikeSharmaji.
Me and Raghav (Raghav Bansal) were waiting for Sushi (Aditya Sushant), Rughani (Vivek Rughani) and all after the dinner as they were taking some parcels too so we decided to punt a bit on Ultimate Texas holdem casino game. As usual we both were losing and I said this game is pretty hard to beat. We are not even 48/52 against the casino in this game and I put the big bet and was preparing to leave but then I hit a straight flush got $1,600 and I cashed out immediately and Raghav is happy obviously but there is that reaction too saying WTF I’ve been playing this game since ages but it never happened to me **ingluckboxðŸ¤£
Moral of the Story #AlwaysRunLikeSharmaJi
Indians are known to be a close-knit community. What are your views on the Indian rail and support from fellow Team India members?
It was overwhelming!! I’ve never seen something like that before and would like thank to each and everyone for it and sorry that I couldn’t reply back in time on WhatsApp and messenger.
What are your plans for the rest of the summer?
Mostly APPT Manila and EPT Barcelona and lots of online grind between the two stops.
What are your plans for the rest of the year?
WSOP Europe and Aussie Millions after EPTBarcelona. Set goals? Ahh just to be better than myself everyday and better than my mentor Danish Shaikh one day.
Any parting words or anything you would like to add?
Dedication beats everything. I was playing 100 rupees freeroll 3 years back and now the most prestigious tourney in the world. So, if I can, anyone can!