‘It was a long grind but was totally worth it!’: PayCheck Winner, Abhinav Iyer

The 24-year-old Mumbai-based Abhinav Iyer is one of the upcoming poker players from India. A student of the game for over 4 years, he has earned a lot of name on India’s online as well as live circuit. The player is known for his bold game play and has already notched up several big scores.

Iyer has been in great form. In April this year, he finished 4th at DPT Super High Roller Event 2018, notching up his career-best score of $ 16,294. The same month, he scored 2 final table finishes at Macau Millions, finishing 4th at HK$ 7,200 + 800 No Limit Hold’em (Event #3) and then 9th at HK$ 2,250 + 250 No Limit Hold’em – Deepstack (Event #14). The PSLTeam’s Goan Nuts Pro, Iyer plays online poker on various sites in India and has already earned a name and fame for himself.

Known online on Adda52 as ‘checkshove’, Iyer has made numerous online scores. Some of his notable scores include his 20 Lac GTD Adda52 Millions win and an 8th place finish in the 1 Crore GTD Big Millions. Last night, he added one more score to his impressive resume by winning PayCheck for INR 4,90,409. He beat Willson Yomso aka ‘Kaling’ in heads-up to secure the win.

Last night’s PayCheck tourney on adda52.com was a grand success. The event attracted a huge field with 1007 entries and took the prizepool to a massive INR 20,14,000, which was shared by top 103 players with a min-cash of INR 3625. Some notable players who made money in this event included Kaling – 2nd for INR 2,67,258, rishabh16 – 4th for INR 1,30,306, and kornkif – 11th for INR 22,154.

We caught up with the winner – Iyer to know about his win, his tournament journey, some special moments in this tournament and his future plans. Here are the excerpts of the conversation:

OPN: Congratulations on PayCheck win! How does it feel to win this big field tourney?

Iyer: Thanks a lot! I am really happy and satisfied to win the Paycheck on adda52.com! It was a long grind but was totally worth it! It always feels good to win a big field tournament!

OPN: Please share your tournament journey. Any special moments from the final table?

Iyer: To be honest, I started off really slow but picked up the momentum in the middle stages of the tournament and then never lost control over it till the end.

The final table was good. I started with the chip lead and didn’t lose it till it was 3-handed. One of the crucial hands was when I raised from cutoff and flopped top set with J-J on J-T-5ddd in a 4-way pot. I bet flop, turn vs button and rivered a full house. He had flopped a flush. Another crucial hand was when we were 3-handed and I got short. I jammed 11-12 BB from SB with A-Jo and Kaling decided to call with 6-2s.

OPN: You faced the well-known ‘Kaling’, can you describe your heads-up game play?

Iyer: Kaling started heads-up with a 6:1 lead. Although he had the lead, I knew I could always comeback because of his style of play. I just decided to keep the pots small and play more post flop.

OPN: How do you see the future of online poker in India, especially after celebrities like Chris Gayle and a host of Bollywood stars joining in the game?

Iyer: Online Poker is growing rapidly in India. Celebrities like Chris Gayle associating with poker is a great boost as it’ll help to change perception of the game and attract more people.

OPN: Finally, what are your future plans in live and online poker?

Iyer: I will be heading to Vietnam next and Goa after that!