Today I’ve been introduced as a new member of Team PokerStars: Online
First of all I’m very happy that I’ve been given this opportunity. I’ve known this news for some time now but still when it was announced today I was extremely excited! I will explain how it all happened and what my plans for 2011 are. In case you want to read about what I did in 2010 I would recommended my previous blogpost as it’s a recap of 2010 with some nice cycling footage 🙂
On the 25th of November I got a call from PokerStars. It was around 14:00 but I was still sleeping since I just grinded out a long session till 08:00. Two things crossed my mind, 1) Somebody hacked my Poker-account 2) Team online? The Round 2 candidate selection deadline had already passed on the 20th so I didn’t really expect that I would still receive a call. I didn’t think my chances were that high anyway but still you always hope that you will be selected for something like this. I’ve chatted with the PokerStars rep and did a mini interview via the phone. I got told that I would hear back something very soon so the waiting started. Now that I knew I was in Round2, I really wanted to get picked so the waiting started!
On Friday the 10th of December I got contacted again and they told me I was selected to become a new member of Team PokerStars: Online! Wow, I was thrilled! I did already know however that there were certain things I had to do before everything could be made official. I got the contract a couple of days later and had some time to think about all the consequences. I still have a regular job which I didn’t want to lose so I had to get permission from my employer. That was a lot easier then expected and after detailing some other points in the contract it wasn’t before the 29th/30rd of December until I actually finalised everything with PokerStars and did the actual signing. I was still busy with my SNE chase and also due to the Christmas period things were delayed a bit more then usual but this was an opportunity I wanted to grab with both hands! I celebrated my signing on the 29th, together with my last VPPs of the year to become SNE. You can read more about this in my previous blog but what a party it was!
When I got contacted by PokerStars I was in the middle of my worst month ever. These things make you think about your future and I was really in doubt what to do. Since this was actually my first year losing on the tables (I did won money after rakeback) I didn’t want to go out like that but I also have a very nice career going at my employer for which I already work since 1999. I decided I would delay my decision till the PCA, since it would be best to make a big decision like that when I wasn’t in the middle of a crazy SNE chase. The opportunity to become a member of Team PokerStars: Online of course changed this and I’m already looking forward to again a year on the virtual tables at PokerStars.
I haven’t decided what I’m going to do exactly but tomorrow I will leave for Florida and the Bahamas so I got some time to think about it. My first poker this year will happen at the PCA and when I’m back I’ll be playing the Full-Ring Limit Hold’em tables again. I doubt I will put in the same volume as this year, so I won’t go for SNE but I still expect to play roughly 1.000.000 hands of poker next year. Till 2009 I played a lot of tournaments as well and I really missed that this year since I was only grinding the limit cashgames. I will not switch my maingame to tournaments for sure but I do expect to do some Sunday, WCOOP and SCOOP Tournament grinding again as I’ve always loved doing that before. On the Full-Ring Limit tables I want to prove again that I can be a winning player. In 2010 I’ve lost at all stakes ($2/4 till $15/$30) but up till the start of 2010 I was winning at all those stakes. This year I focused purely on volume which hurted my game a lot. Poker is still growing as a game and everybody keeps improving. For the coming year I expect to improve a lot myself again and hopefully beat the stakes again which I was playing back in December 2009 (up till $15/30). At least beating $5/$10 tables should be doable for me so that will be my first goal.
Next to Poker Goals I will have think about other goals as well. Alpe d’Huez was fantastic last year (see the movie in my previous blog) and I want to do something like that again. Mt. Ventoux or maybe cycle a full-classic like Luik-Bastenaken-Luik, I’m just not sure yet. Those goals will be a great help for my other goal, getting fit again 🙂 I hardly cycled anymore since Alpe d’Huez which was in June and in stead of going to the gym 3 times a week, I probably didn’t even go twice a week on average during the last 4 months. I gained 8 kilo’s since the summer so it’s time for some exercize again! When I’m back from my holiday I will update my website with the goals for 2011.
Tomorrow I will take the plane to Orlando together with my girlfriend, best mate and his girlfriend. On the 7th I will arrive at the Bahamas and hopefully play Day1B but I’m currently registered for Day1A. I’ll give an update somewhere next week and will keep blogging throughout the year.
I would like to thank everybody for their support, thank PokerStars for this great opportunity and thank all my family & friends for the great fun I have with them day in, day out!
Best wishes for 2011!