In the mid-2000s, online poker "challenges" were all the rage.
From bankroll building to hands played per hour/day/month, players were starting online poker challenges almost daily to show how big their edge was and how easy it was to make money online.
Mind you, a lot of these players never made their goals and most challenges slipped by the wayside.
Now, in the late 2010s, the nature of the online challenge has changed. And Ukraine’s top online player Roman Romanovsky is setting an example for how it should be done.
Challenges in Challenging Times
The general consensus these days is it’s not that easy to make a ton of money online anymore. Surely you're heard the phrase “everyone’s solid” by now.
So why is at this time that Romanovsky -- aka “Romeopro” -- has started an official campaign playing the toughest online tournaments there are to raise $1 million for charity.
What drives a player to start such an altruistic poker challenge? Says Romanovsky:
“My inspiration comes from the total mess in which the world is right now and the desire to fix it at least a little bit.
"I feel bad for all the people who live in poverty, the refugees, all these kids who die under the age of five. It’s just very frustrating that in the 21st century we’re facing this. It’s ludicrous.”
"You Can Save a Life In Africa for $5k"
Few players seem to be able to see the bigger picture the way Romanovsky does. But there is a growing group, like the guys at REG, who strive to do something beneficial for society -- and for the weakest members of that society in particular.
“I think [REG] is overall great. It’s basically the same as GiveWell. It’s the GiveWell version for poker players.
"In general, these kind of aggregation charities that show you the possibilities on how to be the most effective are very important. For example, in Ukraine there are a lot of people who donate to helping cancer patients. On average the cost there is $100K.”
“You can save a life in Africa for $5K, so you spend 20 times more on basically the same result. You can save either 20 people or children, or one person or child. It’s unfortunate that so many people are spending so much money ineffectively.”
A Full Million Now the Goal
When Roman started out last year he set $600k in profit as his goal with $400k of that going to charity. He started with a bankroll of $66.6k and didn't set himself a time limit.
As you can see in the graph, he’s already there. So now he’s upped the target money to a full million dollars.
It helped quite a bit that Romanovsky won the XL Eclipse High Roller this summer.
Ending on a High Note
The million might still not be the end of the challenge -- after which Romanovsky says he'll end the poker era of his life.
“I updated the goal to make it $1 million. Maybe I will change it once again, but we will see next year. The maximum I’d change it to if things go well is $1.5 million profit, meaning $1 million would go to charity. After finishing the marathon, I’d essentially end my poker career and focus on how to make the world better.”
Romanovsky truly is a remarkable player. And while the poker community hopes for him to achieve his goal, it's with mixed emotions because it would hurt to see a player like him leave the community.
Join In with an $888 Bonus
Do you want to take on “Romeopro33” and maybe contribute to his charity? He plays all the tournaments with $109 buy-in and higher on 888poker – plus some $55 tournaments.
You can satellite into all these high buy-in events for as little as one cent so all you really need is an account at 888poker. Get all the information and your 888poker download here on PokerListings.