Hi there! Thank you for stopping by. Today, I'm writing my first post about my journey through the PLO5 online poker scene.
Before diving into the goals, results, impressions, graphs, and funny stories, let me provide a bit of context. I began playing poker six years ago, shortly after deciding to leave my mechanical engineering degree, which I was just six months shy of completing. You might wonder why I made such a decision. The truth is, the prospect of being an employee in Brazil, especially for someone fresh out of university, wasn't appealing. The best positions for newly graduated professionals paid around USD 1,200 per month – an amount we can all agree is quite modest after five years of study.
At the same time, my best friend was making USD 120 per hour playing live poker games abroad, specifically in Lebanon. After discussing it with him, he agreed to help me embark on this new path. A lot has happened since then, but here I am, six years later, still pursuing wealth through poker.
I'll share more about these past six years in my upcoming blog posts. Stay tuned!
I began my PLO5 journey about four years ago, but initially, it was just a brief stint of 2-3 months of intense grinding. At that time, I was primarily focused on playing NLH MTT. It was two years ago that I truly started to dive deeply into PLO5. My entry into this world was prompted by the same friend who introduced me to poker. He asked if I was interested in PLO5, highlighting how lucrative the games were and mentioning that he had access to excellent content that could give us an edge. He even offered to stake me to start playing at 1/2 stakes (LOL), but I decided to take a chance on it.
I must say, it was love at first sight with PLO5. To me, it’s far more entertaining than NLH, though I admit I might be biased since my skills in PLO5 are significantly stronger, so take this statment with a grain of salt but for sure try the game if you are tired of the nitfest which is NLH.
Reflecting on my journey, I've always believed that intelligence wasn’t my strongest suit, but I've compensated with hard work. This determination stems from my humble beginnings. I diligently studied the extensive library of videos my friend gave me access to, creating flashcards and taking my learning very seriously. Within a few weeks, I had almost completed the video series and then discovered Cory Mikesell's PLO5 book. This book opened up a whole new world of poker strategy and fundamentals for me, not saying is perfect but I could see that his work was way more efficient that the work I was doing.
Knowing I had much to learn, I studied his book thoroughly. I even reached out to him to see if I could exchange any type of service for his HU PLO4 book. He graciously accepted my offer, and we've continued working together to this day, though our discussions rarely touch on PLO5 strategy.
His 1.6k HU book, was a treasure trove of knowledge, I know a bunch of people disagree on this but honestly this is my take on it, not perfect but good content for sure. Meanwhile, I experimented with Monker 4c to create models that might accurately reflect 5c game (trying to make models with more equity symmetry basically). This process involved a lot of trial and error, and frankly, I struggled to make any significant progress. It was uncharted territory, and I didn’t want to overburden Cory, who charges USD 700/hour for his expertise. I was determined to succeed through sheer hard work.
I'll delve deeper into my journey in future posts, but for now, let's focus on the bankroll challenge I've been streaming on Twitch. Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to play high-stakes games, staked in Indian platforms like Adda52 and Spartan. This experience really pushed me to adopt a more professional approach. However, a significant drawback emerged: a 30% tax on winnings, with a recent addition of another 24% on top of that. Needless to say, this made the games unviable. Despite these challenges, I managed to profit around USD 55,000 over three months, playing roughly 80k hands, mostly in PLO6.
After having to exit the Indian poker scene, I decided to start streaming to build a community and see what unfolds. Right now, I'm undertaking a bankroll challenge, aiming to grow my bankroll from USD 5,000 to 50,000. I began by playing PLO5 100 on GG Poker, which is theoretically the toughest field. I wanted to test whether my study methodology, which goes beyond just watching videos and drilling with tools like Jnandez/Vision solver, was effective.
Over five weeks of grinding on GG Poker, here's what I've achieved: I've topped the leaderboard three times, along with a few 2nd and 3rd places. I consistently played across 9 tables, averaging about 550 hands per hour. Taking everything into account (GGCare, Leaderboard, Jackpots, and a 35% flat rakeback), I've been making about 5bb/100 after the rake. This equates to an hourly rate of around USD 35-37, bare in mind playing 9 tables all the time and 0 table selection, I honestly feel happy about the result.
I would like to invite you all to share this journey with me. I will be posting updates every Monday, and you can also follow my grind at twitch.com/ggR4f4. Everyone is welcome, and I hope to see you there!
Best regards, Rafa.