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It’s WCOOP, I’m Not Scared!
Poker Tournaments aren't for the faint of heart. During a tournament one will often find themselves in difficult spots, confronted with betting or calling with a hand strength they are just not sure about. PokerStars Team Pro Lex Veldhuis faced just such a situation deep in WCOOP Event 58-H the $5200 buy in Main Event against top tournament pro Dominik "Bounatirou" Nitsche.   

With the blinds at $80,000/$160,000 and a $20,000 ante, Lex opened preflop from the Lo-jack with . As action progressed to the turn, Lex found himself facing a queen high board with the field thinned down to Nitsche, who had defended from the Big Blind position, and check-called on the flop. Many players are unsure what to do here, but Lex isn't. Watch how he bets again, explaining what he's hoping to accomplish, "I'm betting, to get him off those hands (5x and 2x)", as well as demonstrating a clear understanding of the choice he's made on the small bet sizing, saying "It makes sense if I bet this size for my stack as well", and "it's nice that we can bet small, it makes sense from a stack to pot ratio, we leave a good bet for the river, and we're not super deep".  
Does this bet leave Lex feeling uneasy as he awaits Nitsche's response? Sure, probably as much as it would any of us... but he explains "I just have to make this move, otherwise this guy is going to snow me under out of position, and I don't feel like that happening."   

After Nitcsche folds, we see Lex rightly celebrate winning a nice pot, nicely played with no fear, saying "I'M NOT SCARED! Alright, it's the World Championship of Poker, you got to beat guys like Dominik Nitsche!" And he's right of course… players who play scared don't win too many tournaments. Especially high buy in World Championships against top competition.
Have you a story about a time you played confidently and without fear in a big tournament?  Share your comments below!


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