A Hard Way to Make an Easy Living

Ross Boatman

2005 World Series of Poker, Las Vegas
Report by Ross on Saturday, 25 June 2005 at 7:20 pm

We are about half way through the W.S.O.P and I have to say if I wasn’t so used to this way of life I could be in danger of some kind of mental breakdown. Now don’t get me wrong I wouldn’t change places with anyone. I still pinch myself now and again just to check that I’m not dreaming, after all it’s not everyday you wake up to a million dollar deal with a budget big enough to play in as many world series events as you want. I must be one of the luckiest poker players alive, so why is it I don’t feel that way right now?

I’ve been playing poker for more than twenty years and making my living from it for around ten. I made that living playing in live games and playing in tournaments only when my bankroll would allow. This was a successful system for me. Sure I had my losing days I had my ups and downs like all poker players do but over all I was a winner. It felt great. I traveled the world winning, I got used to winning it just became part of everyday life.

What with arrival of sponsorship in poker I no longer have the time to play as much live as I used to. Instead I prefer to dedicate myself to tournament poker. Of course when your playing tournament poker losing becomes much more frequent than winning does and this can take some getting used to.

After having played around fifteen events so far I have found myself deep into seven of them, five times with good chips. I’ve hit the bubble twice and made the money three times. I’m relaxed and playing some of the best poker of my life. Unfortunately things keep falling apart for me at the late stages once because of a bad decision but mostly it’s been down to bad luck. I remind myself everyday that if I keep playing well and keep getting myself to those late stages with chips it will only be a matter of time before things fall into place and I find myself at a final table with a shot for a bracelet. I am confident that my time will come but until then I must admit it’s not always easy to keep believing in yourself. It’s hard to take the beatings, it’s tough to pick your self up and keep coming back for more. When you’re sitting with a mountain of chips in front of you one minute and walking out the door the next with nothing but a bad luck story the feelings of frustration and disappointment are intense. Why do we do it? Because we love it of course, we wouldn’t have it any other way and all the beatings, all the losses, all the disappointments will make the victory when it comes all the sweeter.