MEET THE LATEST WSOP CHAMPION – DOMINIK NITSCHE
Name: Dominik Nitsche
Birthplace: Wittlich, Germany
Current Residence: Brighton, Great Britain
Occupation: Professional Poker Player
Years Attending WSOP: 1
WSOP Cashes: 4
WSOP Final Table Appearance: 1
WSOP Victories: 1
Note: Nitsche will be classified as a professional poker player in WSOP records, since he plays poker full-time and has been supporting himself by poker winnings for the past few years.
INTERVIEW WITH THE WINNER
Question: Talk about your rail of supporters, they’re from all over the place!
Nitsche: These are all my friends that I’ve just met playing this game. They’re some of my best friends right now. Feels incredible to have them here.
Question: You had an interesting experience this year, where you came in 230th, 116th, 44th, and now first -- you’ve improved each time. Like every time you focus a little better.
Nitsche: I must honestly say I didn’t play my best at the start of the series. I was just getting into it and getting used to the players. They play way differently than Europeans. I just had to adjust to the players and I feel the deeper we got into the series, the more I got a feel for how they play and how I can take advantage of their weaknesses. I brought my absolute best game in this tournament and took advantage of so many good spots and I think I played real well.
Question: You say they play so much differently here than Europeans. What would you say are things that are noticeable differences?
Nitsche: In general just how they are way more passive. They like to check-fold a lot. When they only call, they’ll just call any bet regardless, they’re so willing to just call you down, cause this crazy European kid is bluffing them again. I had a couple cool spots where I just got three bets through where I just go bet, bet, all-in, over show, and I just got called with some ridiculous hands. It’s incredible. Where I possibly can’t be bluffing, they just call me, because they think I’m just crazy and I’m really not that crazy.
Question: So this was your first World Series. What were your expectations coming in?
Nitsche: You can’t really have any big expectations. The field is so massive and I just wanted to play really well. Do what I do best. Play my game. I was obviously very excited about the Main. I’ve been looking forward to this tournament for five years. I started playing poker six years ago and ever since I got any good at this game, I just wanted to play at the World Series. The age limit is 21, which is really unfortunate for me, because I would have been here four years ago. I’m just glad I could come here. I was ready to have a good time. I’ve played in absolute loads of tournaments here. I’ve played like 40 tournaments since I got here. I think I was just well prepared for it. I grind every day when I’m at home, so it wasn’t a problem for me to do it here. I think that’s kind of what helped me push to the victory.
Question: Big field! Is that something that means a little bit more to you than winning a small field?
Nitsche: The big field thing is kind of interesting, because I was talking to a few friends yesterday and they said, ‘You know you’re so deep in this.’ I said, ‘Well, it doesn’t really feel like I’m that deep, because there are 50 players left and beating 50 players is a lot.’ And I was kind of shot gunning to today and I thought about it some more and I just felt like this feels like a Sunday warm-up. I’ve never ever finaled the Sunday warm-up (online) or any major. I finaled a table at the Sunday Brawl a few years ago, but this is like my biggest score in like a Sunday major where there are massive fields of 4,000 or more. It feels good to finally win one of the big ones. It’s been kind of annoying to go deep and get kind of screwed over. And the money is obviously mind-blowing.
Question: A lot of people win when they are 21 or 22 years-old and then we don’t ever hear of them again. That’s probably not going to happen with you and you’re going to be around. Tell us why.
Nitsche: I think I’ve been around for long enough. That’s the short answer. I said I’ve been playing this game for six years and I’ve been playing live poker for four years now. I’m not looking to stop any time soon. I’ve had success, I have great friends who travel with me, I’m living the life right now and it’s awesome.
Question: Do you enjoy playing live more or online more?
Nitsche: Wow, that’s a good question. These days, I actually enjoy playing live more, just because of an event like this, you’ll never get the prestige online. There are some reasons why I still play online. Obviously, because you can play more tables and make a lot of money this way. But in general I prefer live to online, which is I came out for the whole six weeks.