It’s Mental, Bro!
Byline: Poker player and The Spartan Poker pro Sangeeth ‘Samoh’ Mohan talks about the mental aspect of the game
There are a lot of great poker players out there. I remember a conversation I had with one of my mentors when he was talking about another player. He said '… he is the best hold’em player I have ever seen, IF he is not tilting. When he tilts, he is the fish on the table'.
Now let’s try and streamline the natural progression of a poker player from the time he starts playing poker to becoming a great player.
Stage 1: Newbie - You are just figuring out that a flush beats a straight.
Stage 2: Fish - You know about the game a little, but still thinks a pair is the nuts in most pots, you can’t fold Over Pairs, you are a payoff machine.
Stage 3: Bad Reg: You know the game pretty well but do not have the resources or the inclination to be the best out there, you are happy with your so-so win rates which is not consistent.
Stage 4: Good Reg: You are pretty good. You know of what spots to take, are positionally aware, is very alert on the table and has a decent win-rate.
Stage 5: The Crusher: The End Bauss. You walk in knowing you are the best. When you run bad you don’t lose, you just win less. You are mostly banned from all games if you live in India.
There could be more but I am just using these 5 stages for the scope of this blog.
Now this is how mental game affects you. It takes you from Stage 5 to a Stage 2. That’sthree steps back.
From a crusher you go right down to a Fish.
During my recent visit to Goa I had a conversation with an old friend and he told me that the online game in India is not about technicality anymore. It’s all about who tilts less.
When people call poker a mental game or mental warfare or whatever, people think it’s about who can do math faster or figure out spots better.
In fact it’s a mental game because only if you are mentally strong, you can be a winner in this game. You can do all the math in the world, know all the combos, but if you can’t apply it while you play it beats the purpose.
Good luck at the tables!
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