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WSOP: Main Event Q and A -- Victor Ramdin

Victor Ramdin Talks About Just Enjoying the Game and Playing a Big Stack in a Big Tournament


Victor RamdinVictor Ramdin has earned more than $2.4 million playing tournament poker, and he's every bit as happy as you would expect someone to be who has won millions in cash. Ramdin's jovial nature hasn't stopped him from succeeding in the cutthroat world of professional poker, however. In 2006, he took down the Foxwoods Poker Classic, earning over $1.3 million. So far this year at the World Series of Poker, he has cashed three times, making the final table at event No. 51 ($1,500 H.O.R.S.E.). He has been perched atop the chip counts for most of day 2B of the main event, finishing the day in the top 10 with more than 300,000. Card Player caught up with Ramdin at the end of the day.

Ryan Cadrette:
You ended the day with 358,000 in chips. How are you feeling right now?

Victor Ramdin: Man, I'm just drained. I'm just tired. It's been a while since I've been so tired, and I don't even know why I am now. I guess I didn't get enough sleep or something last night. I'm happy I got through the day, but right now I want to go home and get some rest for tomorrow.

You have to deal with a lot of amateurs who are usually happy to play really big pots. How do you handle that while still applying pressure as a big stack?

I am pretty much just selectively going after certain players, because the younger players I think have more adrenaline than I do. They have more of a rush for playing big pots, and I don't play big pots. I play big pots when I have the nuts or semi-nuts, or probably if I'm bluffing or something. But I just grind. I've been grinding all day. No all-in feasts or anything like that. Just the old Victor-Ramdin grind.

RC: When you're in a position where you have as many chips as you do now, do you think that it's ever right to make more marginal calls against short-stacked players just to try to knock them out?

It's a big no-no for me. I don't like to double up short stacks, especially if they're good players. If they're weak players, I'll go after them all of the time, but especially if I'm at a table that's not going to be broken, I really don't want a good player to double up on me, because he's the only guy that's going to affect my play at the table. I really want to avoid that doubling up, because sometimes you put yourself in a situation where you raise and they come over the top and you have to call, so you really have to have a decent hand. I'm not going to stop stealing if I don't have to, but the point is I never want to double up a really good player at my table.

RC: How have the players at your table been so far today? Have they been pretty passive and let you grind them down?

I had a great table for my first two days of the World Series until probably three or four hours ago. But later in the tournament it changes, because you get better players with more chips. It's getting tougher, now. Maybe that's why I'm so psychologically not there right now. But I'm going to get by; I'm going to get out of it. I just need a good night's rest and I'm going to be OK.

RC: On your first day, you were doing some prop bets with Antonio Esfandiari. Is that something that helps you get through the day and keeps your energy up?

VR: You know what? I love to play props with players at the table, period, because it helps keeps you in the game. Sometimes I'm upset because I have nobody to play with. I'll lose money, I'll win money, but the point is that props keep you in the game. You focus on the flop, the turn, and the river. So, if I'm there with somebody who will play props, I'm so happy, because my day goes by very fast.

You're an incredibly nice guy at the table. Everyone seems to get along with you really well. Does that help you get through the day, and do you find it easier to play pots with people when you're on good terms with them?

VR: It's a little bit of both. I don't like to sit at the table when everybody seems to want to rip your head off. Sometimes you really get people that are in a better frame of mind, maybe you can steal their blinds or maybe they can lay down a sub-par hand against you. But its not just that -- I enjoy playing poker. I wish everyone could just enjoy playing poker. It's only a game. You win sometimes, you lose sometimes, you give bad beats, and you take them. It's only a game. Just enjoy the game.