In Conversation With 2nd Runner-Up Of Big Millions & Last Night’s Adda52 Millions Winner – Deepak Raina

The last night saw another successful edition of Adda52 Millions taking place on Adda52.com. The signature online tourney featuring an impressive 20 Lac GTD prizepool and 7.5 Lac for the 1st place finisher drew a total of 229 entries and took the prizepool to a whopping INR 22,90,000. While the event drew a good mix of pros, players and the past champions from across the country, it was Deepak Raina aka ‘orionn7’ from Srinagar, who stole the show and took it down after beating his heads-up mate ‘ameena1952’. He pocketed an impressive INR 7.5 Lac prizemoney for his grand win.

A respected poker player on India’s poker circuit, Deepak Raina turned to full-time poker towards the end of the last year. While PLO is his bread and butter, he has also started working on MTTs. So far, he has been playing his A-game and results are showing up. He finished 3rd in the inaugural Big Millions. Adda52 Millions seems to be his favourite tourney where he finished runner-up last month. He was on his peak last night and went on to eventually to ship this event. He says that he got inspired by India’s WSOP bracelet winner – Aditya Sushant, who won Adda52 Millions back-to-back.

The victory for Raina was not an easy one and he had to battle it hard with the top pros and players from across the country. Although the final table was tough with the likes of Himanshu Sehgal aka‘ himanshu_s’, Guruprasad Gupta and Big Million final tablist – Abhishek Kumar aka ‘degen88’, Raina went all the way and won the event. We caught up with Raina to talk about his grand win, his run in 2018 and a lot more. Here are the excerpts of the online chat we had with him:

OPN – A big congratulation on the win! Tell us a little about your run in 2018.

Raina – I turned to full-time poker towards the end of the last year. While it’s not easy turning pro, I have worked extremely hard on my game to eventually succeed. While PLO is my bread and butter, I have started working on my MTT game with decent results so far. I can say, the journey has just started!

 OPN – You were on the final table of the inaugural Big Millions and now you have won Adda52 Millions, which is a big feat for a player. How does it feel notchingup big online scores?

Raina – I finished 3rd in Big Millions. The Adda52 Millions seems like my favourite tourney. I finished 2nd in this event last month and finally shipped it this month. I have to say, I was inspired by Aditya Sushant, who had won Adda52 Millions back-to-back. It feels good when your hard work pays off.

 OPN – You have been a high-stack PLO player for the last 6-7 years, but recently you have started focusing on the MTT events. How has been the transition from PLO cash games to tournaments?

Raina – PLO is (hopefully will be) still my daily grind and I mostly focus on it during the week. Towards the weekend, I shift my focus on online tourneys and essentially play the high-value ones. While they are both completely different in terms of the dynamics of the game, I have been able to adjust well when I switch my game. PLO is the T20 of poker, while MTTs are the 5-day test matches. :)

OPN – Coming back to Adda52 Millions, how tough was the field? How was your experience in the tournament?

Raina – I always have had a good experience playing the Adda52 Millions and I think the structure and the 6-max format suits my game style. The field these days is never easy and you really need to be playing your best game to notch a win.

OPN – Any special moment/hand from the tourney?

Raina – It was a very tough and aggressive final table and I was waiting for my spots very carefully as everyone was quite deep. While there were 4 people left, I won a big hand against the chip leader when I hit quads and got full value as well on all the streets. After that, there was no stopping for me. :)

 OPN – Any words of advice for the youngsters and upcoming poker players?

Raina – Believe in yourself and your abilities. It’s amazing what you can achieve if you back yourself. Work really hard on your game as poker is constantly evolving and you need to stay ahead of the competition. As Doyle Brunson once said, “Poker is a hard way to make an easy living.”