India + Poker = Intervention

Published on Sep 18th, 2008

The beauty of online poker is that it's truly an international phenomenon. Today, I've interviewed a player in Chicago, talked business with a colleague in London, and even discussed rebuy strategy with Aditya intervention Agarwal, one of the top players in India. This week, Agarwal soared 12 spots in the Online Poker Rankings to #50 worldwide on the strength of reaching the final table of the PokerStars $100 rebuy twice in September for $34,000 total. sat down with Agarwal to talk about his rebuy strategy and also examine how he got his start in poker.

In addition to his two final tables in September, Agarwal finished fourth in the $100 rebuy in August. He's clearly developed an edge in the tournament and told, "The $100 rebuy is typically a smaller field and runs twice per day, so it's not really that hard to final table it even though the field is tough. You will see many of the top regular players keep final tabling it. You almost have to when, on average, it's costing $500 to play each time."

He describes what strategy he's used in order to pile up $34,000 winnings this month in that tournament: "I shove the first few hands I get, even if it's a marginal drawing hand like 5-6 suited, and then show it to the table so they know I am willing to gamble. I will gamble in first 20 minutes, try to double up, and then take cheap flops during the rebuy period in order to get all-in on a draw. The field is very tough, so it's important to utilize the rebuy period to stack up. The first 20 minutes is the best time to do it."

Agarwal's rebuy strategy was taught to him by none other than Sorel Imper1um Mizzi. He explained that while he chooses to gamble at the beginning of the rebuy period, others "gamble towards the end, which I think is a mistake." Mizzi is one of the most successful players in the history of online poker and a member of Team Betfair, along with Annette Annette_15 Obrestad and John Tabatabai. Agarwal explained what Mizzi has taught him: "He's taught me bet sizing, position, and other aspects of poker that have changed my game a lot. I used to complain and whine a lot; he has also helped me with that aspect of my game. Now, I don't let beats bother me at all."

The native of Calcutta finished 96th in the 2008 World Series of Poker Main Event, cashing for $51,466. He is fresh off playing in two live events in Macau, which is a stop on both the Asian Poker Tour and Asia Pacific Poker Tour and about an eight hour trip from his hometown. He told, "I feel pretty good about my live play. There was a time when I was more confident playing online, but now I feel that my live game is better than my online game. I am very optimistic about a big live win sometime in the near future."

He came to the United States to attend Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He started playing home games with some of his friends towards the end of freshman year and then got into online poker. He remarked, "I was instantly hooked. I liked the game a lot: the competition, strategy involved, and winning money." He intended to major in engineering, but after finding poker, switched to an "easier major." Since then, his friends have been very supportive of his career. Persuading the family has meant overcoming cultural differences: "Indian families really don't understand poker and just consider it to be gambling, but thankfully my parents are supportive and really like that I am able to travel and play in big tournaments around the world."

He was up 12 spots in the Rankings this week to #50. He is 50th in the PLB standings and 44th in the Pro Poll. On the future of this poker star in the Rankings, Agarwal cautioned, "I really want to focus more on live play this year, but I check my new PocketFives Ranking every Wednesday. Moorman1 and AJKHoosier1 are beasts, but I hope I will make the top 10 at some point."

Congratulations to Aditya intervention Agarwal for his ascent in the Rankings this week. To check out the Top 100, click here.


  1. <p>Adi is the nicest guy I've met in poker. Glad to see he's getting props. </p>

  2. <p>ADIIIIIIIIIIIIIII!!!!!11</p>


  3. <p>Adi = hero</p>

  4. <p>fkin agarwal</p>

  5. <p>Adi is flat out sick and a great person!!!!!!</p>

  6. <p>im indian too</p>

  7. <p>me too</p>

  8. <p>lookout dr. suresh, theres a new hero in town!!</p>

  9. <p>i knew adi before he got all bigtime, back when he was just a lilbit famous.</p>

    <p>his fingers are more skillful and agile than those of a skilled basketweaver.  i'm not exagerrating, not even a lilbit.</p>


  10. <p>lolol i could just here chris now "fkin argarwal"!!   lolol</p>

  11. <p>aggrowalllll</p>

    <p><3 games, lil bit?</p>

  12. <p>hott</p>

  13. <p>tenkiu come again ;) </p>

  14. <p>Intervention!!!!!</p>

  15. <p>Intervention!!!!!</p>

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