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Poker is a marathon, not a sprint. Finding peace and harmony whilst at the table is vital to the success of the very best players in the game. So what are the type of actions that their opponent’s indulge in that drives them crazy?

I asked some of the best players in the game to list the most annoying things that poker players do at the table.

1. Teaching and Berating the Fish

The most annoying thing that poker players tend to do at the table is to teach and berate the fish. Toby Lewis believes that trying to  teach the fish how to play poker better, and then later telling them off for playing badly crushes his soul; Bodo Sbrzesny cries when he sees fish leaving because of this problem; Craig McCorkell particularly hates it when they castigate them moments after they have busted; Ashley Mason believes everyone has paid the same buy-in and they can do what the hell they like; and Mickey Petersen gets annoyed when the pros create an unwelcome atmosphere for the recreational players.

2. Abusing the Dealer

Players who abuse dealers are the next in the list of annoyances. Marvin Rettenmaier doesn’t like it when playing cards are thrown at the dealer (it’s a good job Chris Ferguson never did that); Kyle Julius feels likewise, but also hates it when the cocktail waitresses end up getting unwarranted stick; and Richard Trigg takes the very gentlemanly line that people who are sleazy to female dealers should walk the plank.

3. Poor Personal Hygiene

Poor personal hygiene ranks highly in the list of professional poker player annoyances. Martin Jacobson hates life when he is seated next to someone who smells like puke, Marko Neumann hates the lads and lasses who get a little too close with their halitosis; and Nicolas Levi is one Frenchman who doesn’t do the garlic thing… he hates everyone who smells.

4. The Tank

Players who like to spend exorbitant amounts of time in the tank are a complete turn off. Scott Shelley particularly hates it when the decision is so obvious and Bodo Sbrzesny isn’t too keen on the fake tanking professional either.

5. Talking Bollocks

It’s true; poker players can talk an incredible amount of bollocks. If you don’t believe me just ask Ben Wilinofsky who counts people who spout nonsense to him as his number one pain in the gluteus; and he’s not alone. Richard Trigg has a complete distain for people who tell terrible jokes. ‘For King Jack Trigg!”

6. Talking Strategy

Yes…yes…we know you are a super-duper-nova-elite, who has out leveled a leveler, but we don’t want to hear about your 12-bet squeeze thingymajig. Jake Cody doesn’t hold much sway for professionals exchanging in depth strategy tips at the table; and Ashley Mason wants to stick toothpicks into the eyes of the young Internet kids who do likewise.

7. Over Exuberance

Over exuberance can wind up the professionals. Andrew Seidman was once seated next to a player who shouted muaahahahaha every time he won a pot and found that particularly annoying; and Nicolas Levi gets a little bit rankled when people start singing.

8. Angle Shooters

Nobody likes an angle shooter least of all Andrew Moseley who tells me that he doesn’t get annoyed that easily, but angle shooters really grind his gears. Nicolas Levi also has a problem with angle shooting, but it’s generally when people are accusing him of it.

9. Hollywood

All poker actors are terrible actors. Keep the charades for New Years Eve. Well that’s the opinion of Jason Wheeler who from a game flow perspective wants to do nothing but pluck the nostril hairs of his opponents whenever they start putting on a show at the poker table.

10. The Obvious Chip Stack Question

You’ve all experienced this one. Your opponent looks at your stack and asks you how much you have when it is obvious what you have. This is John Eames pet peeve, and I can understand his frustration because everyone knows he has 30k irrespective of what stage of the tournament he is in.

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