The poker scene in India today is at an all-time high. The number of poker tournaments and players in the country is more significant than ever before. With the scene growing at such a rapid rate, we can only predict the poker industry in India to go higher and higher.
A significant credit for this growth goes to the players in the fraternity. The players have, time and again, proved their skills and passion for the game by delivering some unmatched results. To understand the poker multi-table tournaments (MTT) scene in India and the key players in the scene, we got in touch with one of the notable MTT players himself – Kanishka Samant.
Kanishka Samant is among the most notable and veteran names in the Indian poker scene. He completed his MBA and then began working as a technical analyst in 2010. He discovered poker around the same time and took it up professionally in 2012. While talking about Samant, one cannot simply miss mentioning his feat of being a two-time India Poker Championship (IPC). He first won an IPC title in 2012 (one of the earliest and lesser-known editions) and then nailed the IPC No Limit Hold’em Main Event in 2015.
Among his list of other titles is World Poker Tour (WPT) India 2017 Kick-off and APPT High Roller in 2019. He has had excellent records at IPC ever since he started playing poker professionally in 2012. Since then, he has also played at events like the Asian Poker Tour (APT), Macau Poker Cup, PokerStars Festival Manila, Manila Megastack and Spanish Poker Festival, among others.
Samant shared his favourite MTT players in the Indian poker circuit. Here’s who he picks:
Samant first pick was Dhinesh Kumar. According to Samant, Kumar is “Skillful and hardworking.” Apart from that, he also chooses Kumar for his studying approach.
Kumar is one of the emerging names in the poker circuit, with some really impressive and notable results in the recent past. Predominantly an online crusher, Kumar has also recently expanded his scope to the live felts and faired well there too. He recently shipped Spartan Poker’s Legend title. Know More about it here.
Kanishka Samant believes Abhinav Iyer is “naturally gifted and extremely hardworking” and thus is one of the best poker MTT players in India. Well, we agree with Samant here. After all, one does not become India’s first solo World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet winner just like that.
Iyer has some fantastic results to prove why he is undoubtedly one of the best poker talents that the country has. His most notable achievement is winning India’s first solo WSOP bracelet. Among his most recent achievements is winning the Final Table Series (FTS) 6.0 Master Table, wherein he bagged a FREE trip to Las Vegas. Want to know who Iyer picks as his top favourite MTT players? Find out here.
Finally, Samant picks Gaurav Sood. Samant suggests that Sood’s approach towards poker as a profession and temperament are one of the key factors why he is one of the leading MTT players in the country.
Well, most players we spoke to unanimously chose Sood among their top picks. That itself speaks for the legacy and space that Sood has created for himself in India’s poker scene. Sood nailed his first live title last year outside the country at the APPT Manila 2022 NLH Deepstack event.
What do you think about Samant’s picks? Let us know what you think in the comments section below. Also, let us know who you think are the top MTT players in India.
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Amarylisa Gonsalves is a Content Writer at Gutshot Magazine. Advancing from a marketing background, she found her calling in writing. She takes delight in exploring genres and is a curious learner. Patient and ambivert, she believes in letting her work speak for itself. Apart from content writing, she finds solace in writing poetry by expressing herself through words. Additionally, she adores indulging in anything that satisfies her creative self, like drawing and DIY crafts.
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