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Generation Next -- Jake Cody

by Rebecca McAdam |  Published: Apr 01, 2010


From playing in a local pub team at the age of 15, to studying psychology while reading poker books and forums, and discussing hands with fellow players, to eventually taking down the European Poker Tour Deauville, Jake Cody has come a long way at such a young age. However, he is quick to name Matt “pez102” Perrins and Tom “7tHEcROw7” Macdonald as players he owes the most to in regards to improving his game over the past year.

After a bad run at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, the 21-year-old found himself wondering what he was doing wrong. Encouraged by Perrins and Nicky Evans, Cody decided he would give his first EPT a shot, and the rest is history. He qualified for the event where he is most comfortable — on the virtual felt — beat some of the poker world’s trickiest opponents, took €847,000 back to Rochdale in Greater Manchester, and with that the “live” seed was sown.

Rebecca McAdam: What was your experience of your first EPT?
Jake Cody
Jake Cody: The very first day I was really nervous and I was actually shaking the first few times I raised. I was fine after about half an hour though, and for the rest of the tournament, even the final table. I loved the whole experience and playing and talking with some of the big names, and (hopefully) getting their respect felt awesome.

RM: Your final table was very swingy, how did you handle the ups and downs of it? Did you see it slipping away at any point?

JC: Definitely, after the huge race versus Mike “Timex” McDonald, I was so down, I couldn’t even watch it being dealt it was so intense! After I lost that I thought I would be out next, I was really gutted. But I fought back and managed to claw my way back into it, and I knew with a bit of luck if I got some chips together I’d have a big shot at winning. The final table was ridiculously swingy, it was a huge roller coaster, but I loved every minute of it — I think it will definitely be a good final table for TV.

RM: Who was your strongest opponent in the event?

JC: With a few tables left there was a few sick unknown European guys who I thought played really, really well, but I’m going to go with Timex I think, he just doesn’t seem to make mistakes — we spoke about hands at the breaks a couple of times and he’s just ridiculously good.

RM: Did you learn anything new about your game from the experience?

JC: I think I’ve definitely grown as a player from the experience. Afterwards I was really proud at how well I handled the pressure and how fearless I was all the way through.

RM: Did studying psychology help your game?

JC: I would say it definitely has, it encourages you to look at things from a different perspective, which is great for poker — looking and talking about hands etcetera — it really helps.

RM: Do you prefer online poker or live now?

JC: There are pros and cons of both, to be honest. I’m kind of biased towards live poker after this. I always preferred playing online though, being able to play in my pyjamas and playing 14 tables whilst getting a take-away definitely seemed more fun than grinding one tournament for 12 hours playing hardly any hands. But on the other hand, live poker is so much fun, three-betting and four-betting players and seeing their faces is hilarious.

Seeing players and actually touching the chips and cards definitely brings a totally new dynamic to the game, and although they’re essentially the same game you have to take a completely different approach. I think you have to be a lot more flexible when playing live and be ready to do “unorthodox” plays that just wouldn’t be profitable online. Raise-calling and raise-folding ranges against shorter stacks is so much different to online — I think that’s the biggest difference.

RM: What kind of games and levels do you play online?

JC: My bread and butter game used to be heads-up cash. A few years ago I used to grind that all the time and use bits of the profit to take shots at tournaments. I remember I won a $24 tourney for like $6k and from there I started playing loads more and started reading books and forums to try and become better. Nowadays I play medium and high stakes multi-table tournaments but I still play a bit of heads up now and again. There’s definitely more money to be won on a consistent basis with cash, but tournaments are just way more fun.

RM: Are you planning to play more EPTs or live events in general?

JC: Yeah for sure, I’ll be playing much more live poker this year. There’s the UK and Ireland Poker Tour Manchester then EPT Copenhagen then Grosvenor UK Poker Tour Walsall — this year will probably be really, really busy. I’m looking to play most of the decent events around the UK and Europe, and then off to Vegas this summer for the World Series Of Poker. I’m really excited about the WSOP, seven of us are getting a house out there for six weeks so that should be really fun, and it’s my first WSOP so hopefully I can make a big impact.

RM: What are your poker ambitions?

JC: To win an EPT was one of them! I don’t know now, I guess to win some more live events and get recognition from my peers. Actually I really want to win a GUKPT, my record in them is horrific but hopefully I can change that this year. Spade Suit