WSOP Bracelet Hunters: Simon Deadman

Simon Deadman (photo: Flickr)

Do you often wonder how on earth people become professional poker players?

Perhaps you've even tried it yourself and decided it wasn’t for you after a series of losses threatened your sense of ease around bill dates.

In truth, you can likely boil it down to just two reasons someone has cracked the how-to-be-a-pro code:

  • He or she is a lucky bastard
  • He or she worked hard

More Likely to Use His Computer for Directions to a Casino

More likely to look for directions than bet pot button. (Photo: PokerStars)

Norfolk may be famous for its Turkeys but 26-year old Simon Deadman much prefers a chicken dinner, if you get my drift.

He works hard, and because of that determination and grit he now leads the life of one lucky bastard.

People faced with a mountain generally try to find the easiest route up it. Those that choose the hardest way up are the type of people who relish a challenge.

They'e not afraid of sweat; they get their head down and they work hard.

In poker parlance Deadman could not have picked a more difficult route to the top. He may be a young wizard, but he didn’t pick up his wand in an online store.

The lad from Heacham is more likely to use his computer for directions to casinos around the UK than to play a hand of online poker.

Deadman followed the route less traveled. The one that produces sweat and hard work. He earns his corn working in the fields of the live tournament scene.

Always has, and probably always will.

With the exception of Roberto Romanello there aren’t too many UK tournament specialists who have had to lean so heavily on live tournament results around the UK to make his way to the top.

Deadman Knows How to Make Bread

A former baker, Deadman knows how to make bread, and so far he has made close to $1m of it.

If you look up his Hendon Mob page you'll see that most of that lolly has come from the tournament circuit in the UK. Take a look at his 2014 results alone.

In January he entered the Genting Poker Series Main Event in Nottingham and finished second for $115,355. Shortly after in Normandy he took second in the European Poker Tour (EPT) Deauville French Poker Series (FPS) High Roller for $119,447.

Knows how to go on a run. (Photo: Neil Stoddart, PokerStars blog)

In February he entered his second Genting Poker Series event of the year, this time in Birmingham. Once again he picks up the bridesmaid spot for $45,603.

March was next and a runner-up finish in the Grosvenor United Kingdom Poker Tour (GUKPT) Main Event in Manchester for $66,752.

Into April, he finished 53rd in the €10,000 EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo for $33,575 and then in May he once again finished second in the GUKPT Main Event in Walsall for $31,851.

Now that’s what you call a run.

“I'm just enjoying life and love doing what I do,” Deadman says.

"I Measure My Success on the Amount of Money I Make"

Now you may have noticed a concurrent theme throughout that 2014 spiel. Deadman does seem to finish second quite a lot of times.

In fact, if you go through his entire live tournament career, you will find that he has had to watch someone else walk away with the title on 20 different occasions.

Now that has to hurt, right? What softens the blow is what inspires Deadman, and his goal in life.

Time to be #1 again. (Photo: WPT)

“I am inspired by the prospect of making enough money to make a comfortable living for me and Shola.

"I measure my success on the amount of money I make. If you can make enough to have a nice life, then you are successful.”

To earn money in poker you need to finish in the top three spots with supreme accuracy and Deadman has done that in 43% of the tournaments he has cashed in.

That’s an astonishing rate of success.

Deadman landed in Sin City just a few days ago and will "be playing whatever I can up to and including the Main Event," he says.

I have a feeling he has been saving his prize-winning performance for the World Series of Poker (WSOP). It’s time to be number one.

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