Beat 900 Other Players? Not a Challenge!


Late last month, the 888 Poker Sunday Challenge, a $90 No Limit Hold’em tournament, drew a field of 893 players. Among them was PocketFiver Joldis moiadcosmin Cosmin (pictured), who waltzed to a $24,000 payday after claiming gold. He admitted, “This is the first time someone has wanted to interview me,” which made us feel quite flattered.

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Let’s talk about his homeland first. Cosmin is from Romania, where he is the country’s 20th-ranked player, and has nearly a half-million dollars in tracked scores in his profile. He said, “I can say that we’re seeing the beginning of the poker industry in Romania. I think more and more people will play poker very soon.” Romania is #14 in the PocketFives Country Poker Rankings with a combined PLB score of its top 20 players of 80,367 points.

Cosmin added that Romanian players who are involved in poker “see it as a job, a good job that earns them more money than someone who has a job after finishing college. Those who do not play poker, who do not know what’s happening, just see it as a game and nothing more. Lately, more people have begun to play poker and learn poker in Romania.”

Other cashes for Cosmin include a win in the PokerStars Big $11for $14,000 in January 2013 and a final table late last year in the site’s Bigger $109 for $13,000. He said of his poker career, “I am a poker player who likes to play all stakes between $1 and $215. I am excited and happy that I managed to defeat a large number of players in a tournament like the Sunday Challenge.”

That brings us back to the Sunday Challenge on 888 Poker. He final tabled it in 2012 for $9,000 and said this time around he was the chip leader when 30 players remained. He lost a major hand with A-K against A-J all-in pre-flop to sink to the bottom of the pack with a scant six big blinds. He doubled up with A-5 against A-9 and said, “I got some chips without showdown and started to be increasingly aggressive. In the last two tables, I was the chip leader again.”

He described his overall playing style as “mega-aggressive,” saying, “I like to put pressure on all of the other players. I entered the final table and opened UTG+1 with A-K. I shoved with 45 big blinds and the other player had K-J offsuit.” Cosmin was the lone PocketFiver at the final table of that week’s Sunday Challenge.

He plans to use the money from his $24,000 score to play even more poker and he has come a long way since his first year in university, when he received $50 to play and lost it “very, very quickly.” He played for fun for a couple of years before taking the game more seriously starting in 2012.

The Sunday Challenge runs weekly on 888 Poker. If you don’t already have an 888 account, you can sign up through the links on PocketFives and make a deposit to get an enhanced 100% up to $600 sign-up bonus, $88 free in most locations, and one free month of PocketFives Trainingwith no sign-up fee. Click here for PocketFives’ 888 Poker link.

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