Monday Motivation With Daniel Rymbei, Winner of PokerStars India’s ₹30 Lakhs GTD Winter Series Main Event

Monday Motivation - Daniel Rymbei
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  • Attreyee Khasnabis January 19, 2022

Gracing our first Monday Motivation interview of 2022 is PokerStars India’s ₹30 Lakhs GTD Winter Series Main Event champion – Daniel Rymbei! On Sunday, the 42-year-old trounced a 647-entry field and bested PokerGuru Ambassador Ankit Wadhawan (2nd for ₹4.39 Lakhs) heads-up to claim the title and a career-best ₹6.88 Lakhs.

Sharing his excitement after his big win, Rymbei said, “I really feel content. And happy for the hard work which eventually paid off.”

Describing how the tournament went for him, Rymbei recalled, “It was my second bullet. First bullet was okay-okay, and I lost to a flip. Rather it was a poor call from my end. I was actually not running very lucky for the last few weeks in flips. So, I decided not to get into any flips with my second bullet. I continued with that strategy. And did well for six to seven hours since then. After that, I had to fold two of my best hands because I did not have the nuts. That dropped me from 10th or 11th in chips out of 35 to 32nd. But I still didn’t give up my strategy of not to get into any flips. I held onto that, and eventually, it paid off.”

Daniel Rymbei
Daniel Rymbei


Being self-taught, Rymbei credits his opponents, saying whatever he has learned is by watching others play. “I was happy that the strategy and hard work during the past year or so really paid off. I have been playing on PokerStars India and Adda52 for quite some time and have been teaching myself by watching the players who have been winning regularly on these two platforms. I was really satisfied that I could pick up their strengths and could avoid the weaknesses I learned from playing hands with them. That’s why this win was quite satisfactory because I don’t have any tutor or mentor. So, I only learn from my opponents. I am really thankful to all my opponents that they gave their best. WE really had a healthy fight.”

Rymbei praised PokerStar India for the success of the Winter Series and offering a platform for poker lovers. Along the way, he also revealed how Chikungunya almost made him miss playing the series altogether. “I really want to thank PokerStars India through your channel for the effort they are maintaining or putting in for promoting, or rather providing platforms for enthusiasts like us. The series really was a success that I got to know from your channel. Unfortunately, I was not keeping well. I was infected with Chikungunya a few weeks back. I still have severe joint pain. So, I was unaware of the Winter Series. Sunday, I was feeling okay. So, I played in the tournament, and I happened to be there at the right time. So, maybe you can call it a day for Danny. I completely capitalized on that.”

Originally from Agartala, Rymbei is currently based in Pune. Sharing how he was first introduced to poker, he said, “I started playing poker almost ten years back. My fishing buddies introduced me to this game. Since then, it has always fascinated or rather attracted me. So, I wanted to know about it. It took me some time to get to the bottom of, or rather, the crux of the game, and now I can somewhat understand the meaning of poker. So, that’s how my journey started.”

“I have never been a grinder. I used to play when I used to get time. While poker attracted me, it was never that exciting or motivating,” he added.

Rymbei runs a sports fishing charter named ‘High Seas Sports Club’ in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Talking about how he balances work and poker, he said, “I spend time of poker tables only when I get the time and to keep my brain active, to be honest. I love challenges. That’s why I keep on finding challenges here and there. Poker is something that pushes me to my limits. As I said, I don’t grind. I always play poker when I feel like playing.”

Rymbei’s poker goal is, in essence, quite simple – to just keep playing. “God permits, I would like to continue the way I am playing right now. I do not have any plans to get onto the professional or semi-professional level or even grinding every day. I just want to enjoy playing with good players.”

Kudos to Daniel Rymbei! We hope he keeps playing and the scores keep rolling in!

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