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by Simon Young

Not everyone can win a big online tournament, but with dedication, hard work and, of course, a little bit of luck, it is a dream that can come true for many.

So it was for Alexander Albrecht – PartyPoker player cashvselv1s – who worked hard at his game to be in a position where he could win our $300K Guaranteed Sunday, taking home a tasty $57,709.50.


Winner: Alex Albricht

Alex, 25, from Cologne in Germany, works in marketing and sales by day. But in his spare time he has worked on his game. “I started to play poker with my circle of friends two or three years ago, and like everyone else I got more and more into the game with every hand I played.

“From there it was an easy step to register at PartyPoker, and since then I have been a happy member of the site. At the beginning I played only cash games (up to NL200), but after that I really got into the competitive aspect of tournaments.”

Alex plays many of the tournaments and has played the $300K Guaranteed Sunday “as often as I can”. He added: “It’s an exciting part of online poker, and a real challenge!”

The $300K has a buy-in of $215, and although there are loads of satellite qualifiers – see here how you can take part for as little as $3 – he decided to buy in direct for the full cost.

He has some advice for those looking to progress in the event: “I had to learn a lot of lessons to keep being patient and wait for my spots. In a tournament which can last eight hours this, keeping your focus on the game is critical.”

He said there were a couple of key moments leading up to his title: “One was when I took the chip lead for the first time. I had nine big blinds left and found 8-8. I was pretty sure I was going to end up all in with this hand, so when TooLucky72 pushed in front of me for about the same amount of chips, I went all in as well. Then behind us HallonKaar re-pushed with 18 big blinds – not the situation I wanted.

“But now we were three-handed, with K-Q for TooLucky72 and A-K suited from HallonKaar against my 8-8. The board came 5-2-J rainbow, which was nice, followed by another J and a 7, so all the chips came to daddy. What a heart-stopping moment that was for me!”

Alex got down to heads up with AAtthis, where they made a deal leaving an amount on the side for whoever came first. Alex takes up the story: “In the final hand I had A-8 of hearts. I raised in position pre-flop and was called by AAtthis holding 5-7 of spades. The flop was 6-K-7 with two hearts, and I had a good feeling about my flush draw since they had not worked out for me at all in other situations.

“So I put in a continuation bet and just got a call. The turn brought a 5 of diamonds, so adding the open-ended straight draw to my flush draw but giving AAtthis two pair. AAtthis now bet and I decided to bring the hand to an end by re-raising all in, getting an instant call. At this time I had the chip lead with 5.5 million chips to 3.1 million chips. The river came 4 of hearts, and I could choose between my straight or flush! Well played to my opponent, though – a great player.”

Alex, who likes soccer, basketball and going to the gym, plans to cashout some of his winnings and re-invest the rest in his bankroll.

“I want to continue to improve my game and hopefully not end up as a one-hit wonder,” he said.