cod meharly aka Nicky Evans interview

cod meharly aka Nicky Evans interview

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Fishy Brit and MTT aficionado talks Canada, UFC and a bit of poker.

How did you get started in poker and what the heck does ‘cod meharly’ mean?

I started playing small home games in 2005 while at Brighton University. I was then introduced to Grosvenor Casino where I met the likes of James Dempsey, Sam Razavi and Ben Meredith. When Ben was bluffing he would tell people he was fishing and had “cod”, and over time that progressed to cod meharly so I used it as my name on PokerStars when signing up.

What stakes and games do you currently play?

Right now I play any NLH tournament online from the $8 rebuy right though to the $10,300 SCOOP Main Event. I used to play 15-plus tables but felt it was a huge leak, so now I play fewer and try to focus more on game flow. At the Series, I’ll play the daily Rio $300 events up to the $10,000 Main Event. I don’t put in crazy volume as I like to maintain a balanced lifestyle.

Why did you move to Canada? How has your lifestyle altered?

My fiancée is Canadian so we relocated here in 2010. The hours for grinding are perfect and allow me to be finished at a reasonable hour. There’s a good online community in Toronto and I’ve met a lot of Americans who moved here as a result of Black Friday. I’ve been able to bounce a lot of hands off them, which has helped my game immensely.

The live scene is pretty poor; the WPT has returned to Montreal, but for the most part you have to travel all the way out to Vancouver or the States to find a good live tournament.

We hear you're a UFC fan? Which fighter do you think best compares to your playing style?

I’m a huge MMA fan and love going to events. I want to say I’m like Anderson Silva, the most unpredictable and greatest fighter of all time, but I’m probably more of a Cain Velasquez – my general tendencies are tight-aggressive and I’m fundamentally sound, but know how to mix it up.

We understand you worked closely with Chris Moorman and James Dempsey…

They’ve probably been the most influential people in my poker career. I’ve spent thousands of hours sweating Moorman’s sessions and discussing hands – he’s just a machine who constantly evolves. James, meanwhile, was one of the first live pros I spoke to and understands the game better than anyone I know.

Knowing how players of this calibre think really forces you to open your mind as to how different people approach hands. I wouldn’t be anywhere near as accomplished today if it weren’t for these guys. I’ve also been able to talk poker with players like Rick Trigg, Paul Foltyn and Casey Jarzabek.

Was there a particular moment when everything seemed to click into place?

I have no shame in admitting that I was on autopilot for a couple of years and playing too many tables. When I started working out in the gym I improved mentally and realised that not everything was just “standard”. Once I was able to think outside the box, I began winning a lot more money than I was before.

Last year you won $250K in Canada. Can you tell us a bit about that tournament?

The tournament was a $2,500 NLH event at the Fallsview Casino in Niagara Falls. There were four of us rooming together and we completely crushed the series, with Dave Jones coming third in the $1K for $70K and Tom Middleton picking up around $240K in the $5K. Winning such large amounts really helps you play better down the line as it lifts a lot of the financial restraint.

The fields were unbelievably soft and I was able to just coast along in the Main Event until we got into the money, where I won a big pot with A-A versus 8-8. Then in the final I managed to apply pressure on the right sort of stacks until I just coolered the other big stack with straight over straight. Those were the key hands, but I won a tonne of small all-in flips too.

Tell us about your WSOP so far?

I have been in Vegas for five days but I haven’t played a single hand of tournament poker as I’ve been busy planning a Vegas wedding for September. One day we headed to Fremont Street with the photographer and took some really cool pics in preparation for the big day.

Meanwhile, I’ve been burning myself to pieces by the pool and playing shuffleboard with Jake Cody, Craig McCorkell and other English heroes. It’s been fun but I’m itching to play poker and will be starting on Sunday with the $1K and playing every full-ring NLH event excluding One Drop – I’ll be keeping people updated on my Twitter: @nickyevanspoker.

What has your WSOP experience taught you?

The first year we stayed in a house miles from the Strip with no rental cars and were a little overwhelmed by Vegas, but this time I’m at the Palms Place Suites and within walking distance of the Rio. And I like the idea of having a kitchen and avoiding the hustle and bustle.

I’m just much more focused on getting my head down and winning one of these things, and plan to go to the gym every morning to clear my mind before each day’s play. I see too many people playing with hangovers and underperforming; you’re going to war at the tables, and any edge could be huge if you want to win one of those shiny little bracelets.

What are your goals in poker, and can you see yourself doing this forever?

I am pretty happy with where my poker career has taken me in life and enjoy the flexibility of creating my own work schedule. I’m determined to keep evolving, but at the same time I don’t want to have all my eggs in one basket. I have a few property investments lined up, because you never know with poker where you’ll be one month down the line, let alone three years.

Tags: Nicky Evans, interviews, cod meharley