Like a lot of great players out there I got my start grinding the online tables. Little by little building my way up to where I am today. Now I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I got lucky in the beginning, and I always remind myself of that.

And that’s why I thought it’d be fun to catch up with someone who’s counting his lucky stars too right now Oliver “lede007” Hede winner of the Pokerfest Main Event which boasted a massive $300,000 guaranteed prize pool!

Starting Off

Marvin: First up congratulations what a result! So tell us a bit about your poker playing history if you would. Are you a tournament player, cash game player, professional or amateur?

Oliver: I’m a tournament player and have always been; I have tried cash game as well, but found it way too boring unless it’s drunken PLO with your friends. I probably started like most people, playing a bit for fun with my friends before turning 18 – when I turned 18 my best buddy who was 19, took me to the casino and I luckboxed my first tournament by winning it and bringing home $1000ish.

It was a great feeling and I thought, maybe I’m not that bad at this (obviously I was at the time, because my favourite hand was Q6!). Through high school I mostly played sats for the few bucks you earn at that point in your life, just learning, having fun and trying to qualify for some bigger tournaments (with a few good wins included).

When I finished school I moved from Denmark after getting a “real” job in England, and I started to play more as a “pro” without being it, but it meant using BRM and playing 10-18 tables at a time. I’ve made a nice profit from playing poker for sure, also without this win, but I’m not a professional. Yet!

Tournament Strategy 

Marvin: The way I approach the opening levels of a tournament often depends on my starting table. How was the initial line-up of players you faced?

Oliver: To be honest I don’t recall the opening levels as I was playing many other tournaments at the same time and all pretty much with the same strategy. The only thing I remember from the start was people being really tight except one whale who decided to fire every single street into my nuts, which gave me a quick double up and some space to operate.

Marvin: That always helps of course. But tell me about the first key hand you played in the PokerFest Main Event, did it go your way?

Oliver: I remember one hand pretty clear just before going into the money. It was around the button so the hand played itself more or less, with us both getting it all in pre-flop (Only 70-80% of my stack).. I had it in with a pair of 9’s and the villain turned over jacks.. The flop was xJ9 and the turn was the last 9 in the deck and I took down the large pot with quads which put me into top 15ish.

Marvin: Anyone who wins a big tournament needs a combination of luck and skill, did you have any big slices of luck either through coolering someone or getting it in bad but sucking out?

Oliver: Obviously the hand mentioned above was a huge slice of luck – but otherwise it was a pretty calm tournament for that matter, I wasn’t flipping for my whole stack almost at any point in the tournament. So I think the luck I had was more about great card distribution for me, so when I bluffed they didn’t call me, when they called me I had them. KaaChing!

He’s Going The Distance

Marvin: It was an 11-hour slog to the final table, how did you keep yourself focused on the task at hand?

Oliver: I had a very long day, because I actually started to grind around 11 AM with this tournament starting around 8 PM and I had a rough day busting in every single tournament. But when it was getting late and we were in the money then everything went smoothly I started to realise this could be something great.

I hate the taste of coffee so I had a few energy drinks for the night and then actually split my screen so I was watching some TV show. In the end adrenalin from big hands or bluffs did just the trick J

Marvin: You entered the final table as chip leader, always a nice position to be in! Were you able to chip up just before the final table or had you been near the top of the chip counts for a long time?

Oliver: I was in a great position, but as I mentioned my memory is very poor – but I think I was in top 5 pretty much from we were 50 left and just stacked up abit here and there without getting in danger.

Marvin: Was there any player at the final table who you were particularly worried about playing against?

I wasn’t worried about anyone in the particular, luckily I owned the guy to my right so he gave me lots of space. But I think the player WeRize was being most of a struggle to me, the other players which were good, didn’t have a big enough stack to really do something.

Plan of Attack?

Marvin: Did you have a plan at the final table? you weren’t involved in any of the first three bust outs, was it a conscious decision to take a back seat and let the short stacks battle it out? Or is that just the way it turned out?

Oliver: It was just the way it turned out I think, my only plan was to take down as many pots as possible without showdown and do a bit of post flop play as I thought I had an edge – so in short, not get it in flipping preflop.

Marvin: Any hand from the final table that sticks in your mind as crucial to your victory?

Oliver: I don’t remember any huge crucial hands it more felt like I took some small chunks here and there, which gave me such a huge stack. But if I had to mention one, was when we were 4 people remaining and I had a massive lead with around 14 mil, with the others having 5.6, 4 and 3 mill. The hand was against the dude with 5.6, where I won a 2.7 million pot, with 10,7o bluffing all three streets and putting him all in on the river – where he luckily folded and it gave me and even more massive lead. Here’s a bit of my hand history:

Here’s Comes The Science

Blinds-Antes(60.000/120.000 -12.000) – Monday, March 17, 09:06:01 CET 2014 Table Pokerfest #64 – Main Event – $300,000 Gtd (108340726) Table #169 (Real Money)
Seat 6 is the button Total number of players : 4/9
Seat 6: kokonakueka ( 2,874,981 )
Seat 2: lede007 ( 13,911,835 )
Seat 8: m1ronO ( 5,642,140 )
Seat 5: showtizzzle ( 4,106,044 )
Trny:108340726 Level:35 Blinds-Antes(60.000/120.000 -12.000)
lede007 posts ante [12,000]
showtizzzle posts ante [12,000]
kokonakueka posts ante [12,000]
m1ronO posts ante [12,000]
m1ronO posts small blind [60,000].
lede007 posts big blind [120,000].
** Dealing down cards **
Dealt to lede007 [ 7s Tc ]
showtizzzle folds
kokonakueka folds
m1ronO raises [180,000]
lede007 raises [413,888]
m1ronO calls [293,888]
** Dealing Flop ** [ 4d, Ad, Qd ]
m1ronO checks
lede007 bets [388,899]
m1ronO calls [388,899]
** Dealing Turn ** [ 4c ]
m1ronO checks
lede007 bets [877,799]
m1ronO calls [877,799]
** Dealing River ** [ Qh ]
m1ronO checks
lede007 is all-In [12,099,249]
m1ronO folds
lede007 does not show cards. lede007 wins 15,748,421 chips

Marvin:  Very nice, well from the final table report it seems players chose the wrong time to play back at you, but did you make any big mistakes at the final table that you regret?

Oliver: It is not very often but I think I played it perfectly and I do not remember any mistakes – obviously, you are being called in a bluff occasionally, because you cannot win every single hand. I didn’t get dealt that many great hands as one might think, so again I think the key was card distribution and being a chip leader so I was able to put them under pressure.

Deal Maker?

Marvin: There was a lot of money on the line, did you consider doing a deal at any point?
Oliver: It was going so great and felt like I owned the table, it didn’t make much sense also, because I had so many chips so the deal wouldn’t make sense for either of us.

Marvin: Lastly congratulations on your win, do you plan to make any special purchases with the $43,598.53 you won?

Oliver: Thanks – I’m gonna fill up my bankroll and pretty much just enjoy the summer as much as possible extra everything included J

Shot Clock! – I Have To Ask…

Marvin: Ohh and before I let you go, you know my thoughts on this whole Shot Clock debate vs Mike Sextons thoughts right, so where do you stand?

Oliver: Well Marvin personally I don’t use that much time. So I’d love it, I think it’s a great idea good idea Mike. But you know how about we see what happens when we end up playing live right ;

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