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A Toast to Blair
Ladies & Gentlemen, can we have a little quiet please, I'd like to propose a toast... Well, if this Winners Wall interview were a speech at a gala poker dinner it would begin something like that. What it will achieve, like all great speeches, is an acknowledgment of a superb accomplishment of a PokerStars School member who is well-deserved of a tribute. Let us raise our glasses to 'blairtoast' who has cashed in this year's Spring Championship of Online Poker for a total of $7,195.73 so far. We caught up with Blair to find out a little more about him, how his series is progressing, and what other poker achievements he has made.

PokerStars School: Tell us a little about yourself?
My name is Blair Armstrong-Payne and I'm 28-years-old. I live in Dundee, Scotland and all my life I've worked as a chef both home and abroad including in Sydney Australia for 3 months. I love traveling and I have been doing a lot of that recently, visiting many beautiful places around the world.

PokerStars School: When, and how, did you get your first taste of poker? What got you into the game?
From a young age I was always fascinated by card games. Even when I was as young as thirteen I was learning all the rules of poker. As soon as I turned 18-years-old I created my PokerStars account and I've been playing there since.

PokerStars School: What games/formats would be your normal grind?
I play the odd game of Omaha, mainly during any series such as the current SCOOP for example, but my main game is regular NLHE poker as it is the only game I think I am a winning player at. I'll mix it up and play regular speed as well as lots of turbo and hyper games. I also really enjoy the bounty formats.

PokerStars School: To date, you've won $7,195.73 so far in this year's SCOOP. How's the series been for you so far?
Yeah, the SCOOP has been a great series for me so far with a lot of deep runs. Cashing for that amount has been great however I'm still waiting to claim my first ever SCOOP title, that's what I really want.

PokerStars School: Have you had many big results during your poker career?
Yes, my best online score was only a few weeks ago, when I won an $11 Bounty Builder, defeating over 20,000 players and scoring an $11.6k prize! Poker has been really good to me. Last October I played a $6 online satellite to a PokerStars mega-stack event in Belgium which I won. I went on to reach the final table, from 2000 players and ended up in a 5-way chop for €24,000. I also got a ticket to enter a shootout to win a Platinum Pass which I unbelievably won and got to go to the Bahamas but sadly did not go on to cash but the experience was awesome none the less.

PokerStars School: Do you spend much time reviewing plays and studying hands? What do you do to improve your game?
This year I have been making a lot of effort to try and improve and have been reviewing hands often as well as studying the game.  I've also been trying my best to have a good routine of going to the gym, eating a healthy diet, and not letting my sleep pattern get to out of line, as before I would often find myself up to all hours playing games when I'm tired and playing poor poker in general.

PokerStars School: At the school, we have a lot of new players that win their way into SCOOP events via promotions. What would be your advice to them on approaching the SCOOP events?
blairtoast: Practice, practice, practice. Review your hands, ask for advice, and look after yourself both mentally and physically when preparing for a tournament or session.
Congratulate Blair by leaving him a comment below.

Player 'blairtoast' has been credited with T$25 as a token of thanks for sharing his story. Would you like to share your story? See here for more details.
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